What's New in Education Research?
We are on a short summer hiatus this week. We'll return with brand-new posts next week, but in the meantime, here is a quick recap of the research we've shared since the spring, organized by topic.
Tip: Be sure to check out our "Guide to the NNERPP EdWeek Blog" page for a topical overview of all of the Urban Education Reform blog posts.
- Do Teachers in Tennessee Improve Over Time?: The Tennessee Education Research Alliance (@TNEdResAlliance) examines how, when, and why teachers improve (or not) in the course of their careers, finding that while the majority of teachers' improvement occurs in the first three years of their careers, teachers in Tennessee continue to improve over the course of their careers on average. However, teacher improvement differs systematically across schools and districts.
- A Look at Teacher Improvement in Tennessee: The Tennessee Department of Education (@TNedu) outlines what Tennessee is learning about teacher improvement and where the state still needs to learn more to explain the variation in teacher improvement and help support teachers to continue to get better.
- Can Research Offer Any Answers for the Ongoing Discipline Disparities Debate?: The Education Research Alliance for New Orleans (@ERA_NOLA) responds to the GAO's latest report on discipline disparities in K-12 schools and the debate around the rescission of the Dear Colleague letter by taking a closer look at what research says about the topic.
- Why Do School Discipline Disparities Exist? What the Evidence Can and Can't Tell Us: The Education Research Alliance for New Orleans addresses specific studies often cited in the discipline disparities debate and provides a deeper look into how we think about and what we can reasonably expect from research on exclusionary and alternative forms of student discipline.
- Deeper Learning For Greater Equity: As more schools districts are moving away from the skills-based approach towards a deeper learning approach to education, the University of Louisville - Jefferson County Public Schools partnership outlines upcoming research that will examine the implementation and outcomes of one district's system-wide deeper learning effort.
- Making the Shift Toward Deeper Learning: Jefferson County Public Schools (@JCPSKY) shares how research helps advance an equity-driven deeper learning initiative.
- Partnership for Equity: Learning from Oakland's Full Service Community Schools: The John W. Gardner Center for Youth and Their Communities (@gardnercenter) outlines findings from a longitudinal, multi-methods research project examining early outcomes and ongoing implementation of one school district's efforts towards becoming the nation's first full service community schools district.
- Becoming A Community School District: The Oakland Unified School District (@OUSDNews) reflects on the the value of partnering with university researchers on community schools work.
HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION
- What is the Role of Noncognitive Skills and School Environments in Students' Transitions to High School?: Given research linking grade 9 performance and high school graduation, REL Southwest (@RELSouthwest) studies how grade 9 students' perceptions of their noncognitive skills and school environments are related to grade 9 success in New Mexico, finding statistically significant differences in how students perceived noncognitive skills and school environments by race/ethnicity and finding that specific noncognitive skills and school environments are associated with grade 9 outcomes.
- Partnering to Reduce Achievement Gaps in New Mexico: The Santa Fe Indian School (@SFIS_Braves) reflects on partnership work to close achievement gaps in graduation and what that looks like in practice.
- What Does 9th Grade Success Mean and Why Is It Important?: With the district focusing on grade 9 as being pivotal to high school completion, the School District of Philadelphia (@PHLschools) shares how it combined internal and external research capacity to develop a 9th grade on-track metric in order to support students in graduating high school.
- Getting On Track to Graduation: The Philadelphia Education Research Consortium (@PHLedResearch) examines the characteristics of 9th grade students who are on track and off track to graduate in Philadelphia. 67% of students were on track at the end of their 9th grade year. Of the off-track students in the sample, about 40% of the off-track students were missing just one of the five requirements, while about 20% of off-track students were missing four or five requirements, meaning they were essentially an entire year behind. Rates differed by by gender, race, and ethnicity.
- What Predicts Early College Success for Indiana Students?: To help narrow the gap between students' college aspirations and their actual attainment, REL Midwest (@RELMidwest) looks at student characteristics associated with early college success in Indiana, with a focus on the types of financial aid students received. Findings highlight the importance of Indiana's 21st Century Scholarships as a means of closing achievement gaps.
- How Indiana Supports College Access and Success for All Students: The Indiana Commission for Higher Education shares how research helped raise important considerations for increasing college success and completion in Indiana.
- How San Francisco Is Transforming Science Education: The Stanford-SFUSD Partnership (@StanfordSFUSD) outlines research on the implementation of a new district-wide, NGSS-aligned science curriculum and instructional model in San Francisco.
- Redefining Science Teaching and Learning: The San Francisco Unified School District (@SFUnified) describes how research findings provided the basis for designing professional development to provide teachers with an understanding of a new science curriculum structure and the tools and abilities to facilitate student academic discussions.
EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION
- Toward Kindergarten Readiness For Every Child: The Baltimore Education Research Consortium (@BaltimoreBERC) examines how Baltimore's early ed 'Judy Centers' improve disadvantaged children's kindergarten readiness, crafting a qualitative inquiry into families' perception of the programs. The findings show that children served by the Judy Centers were more likely to be kindergarten ready, and that the programs were perceived as trustworthy and helped build social capital among participating families.
- Utilizing Research to Expand Early Childhood Services in Baltimore: Baltimore City Public Schools (@BaltCitySchools) shares how the research helps inform the future work of Baltimore's early childhood service centers.
SPECIAL RPP TOPICS
- Bringing Education Research Into the Public Sphere: The Madison Education Partnership (@MEP_WCER) shares how the partnership created a new form of outreach to engage the broader community with research findings and explains why such broader engagement is "worth the trouble".
- Going Public with Research to Drive Engagement: The Madison Metropolitan School District (@MMSDschools) provides the district perspective on a public research event that brought education stakeholders together to discuss important early education issues and shares lessons learned.
- What Research Do Educators Actually Find Useful?: Researchers, policymakers, and foundations often wonder why some research ends up being influential in school district policy and practice while other research does not. The National Center for Research in Policy and Practice (@NCRPP) examines the kind of research district leaders find valuable and actually use in their day-to-day work — revealing that some current assumptions about what makes research useful do not necessarily hold true.
- How can Research-Practice Partnerships Support the Use of Education Research?: Given the NCRPP research findings on the kinds of research educators actually use, NNERPP (@RPP_Network) reflects on how research-practice partnerships can support the use of education research in practice.
RPP work and impact
- What Happens When Educators and Researchers Work Together in Partnerships?: Research from the National Center for Research in Policy and Practice (@NCRPP) looks at the ways in which educators and researchers shifted their engagement with research through participating in a research-practice partnership. Findings show that educators and researchers deepened their appreciation of each other's work, developed new knowledge and skills to conduct research together, expanded their communication with stakeholders about research, and impacted their colleagues and other stakeholders in their respective work.
- 4 Key Characteristics of Research-Practice Partnership Work: The National Center for Research in Policy and Practice finds that researchers and educators develop new ways of engaging with research and experience important perspective shifts through participating in a research-practice partnership.