If we as a State desire students to be ready for college we need to allow for the system to work. If Johnny fails let him fail and earn his credit the proper way, by attending real class and doing real work. The aspect of Rigor and Relevance has been replaced with lawyers, and parents who have no idea.
With respect to the colleges, many of them have backed down and accept mediocre work now. High School has done the same. Middle School does not do much different. Where is the disconnect. Well somewhere, students are given grades to pass rather than have to explain to a parent that Johnny is not doing his work, and he needs help.
Adding to the parent expectation is a system of testing. People blame teachers..stop it. Teachers are doing what they are asked. 1) Teach a test, Jeb Bush wants you to. 2) Make sure you make the parents happy, 3) Maintain a quiet classroom, 4) Educate based on old Standards, 5) Pass even if they fail, 6) Make it easy..and I can continue yet no reason you get the point.
If we want students ready for college we teach them with rigor and relevance. If we just want graduation rates that are inflated along with grades, we follow the system as it is now. We NEED a makeover, and it will take educating the public to get it.