Kids catch up best with grade-level work — but keep getting easier assignments
Mounting evidence supports an academic strategy known as acceleration, in which students who are behind are challenged with grade-level material while getting help with missing skills or knowledge. But new research finds its use in schools “is currently more talk than action.” Analyzing data from 3 million students assigned lessons through a widely used literacy...
By Beth Hawkins | August 24, 2022
How libraries came to be sanctuaries for LGBTQ kids
In May 2021, as efforts to ban books on LGBTQ topics from school libraries were gaining political steam, “Two Grooms on a Cake: The Story of America’s First Gay Wedding” was published. It is a children’s story about Michael McConnell’s 1971 marriage to a man, which was upheld as legal by the U.S. Supreme Court...
By Beth Hawkins | June 29, 2022
The kids hiding in plain sight: Advocates push to collect data on LGBT students
With an unprecedented rise in the number of youth identifying as LGBTQ — and equally unprecedented efforts to curtail their rights — a leading national advocacy group is calling on the U.S. Department of Education to add the sexual orientation and gender identity of students and teachers to the data collected in the National Assessment...
By Beth Hawkins | June 22, 2022
New Research: Students in majority-Black schools had been 9 months behind their white peers. Now, the gap is a full 12 months
Students in majority-Black schools are now a full 12 months behind those in mostly white schools, widening the achievement gap by a third, according to a new analysis by McKinsey & Co. Overall, students are four months behind in math and three in reading compared with years past, but those totals hide wide disparities. At the same...
By Beth Hawkins | February 23, 2022
Just having standards isn’t enough — study finds teachers use high-quality curricula in states that actively promote them
The number of teachers using curriculum aligned to academic standards has ticked up since 2019, rising more quickly in states that have adopted policies incentivizing the use of high-quality materials than in others, according to a new report from the RAND Corp. Teachers are much more likely to use standards-aligned math curriculum than English language...
By Beth Hawkins | November 11, 2021
Poll: Across political spectrum, appetite for change in education is down; half of parents favor vaccines for kids, many want online option
In its first public opinion poll on education policy since the start of the pandemic, the journal Education Next finds that support for a number of highly visible school reforms is flagging. Between 2019, the last time the survey was conducted, and this past spring, backing for increased school spending, academic standards, public charter schools...
By Beth Hawkins | September 13, 2021
Strong gains, quick losses: New research on students with disabilities finds conventional data hides both opportunity and risk
A new report from the assessment group NWEA underscores two findings that could inform how schools support children with disabilities going forward. Students receiving special education services often make more academic growth during a single school year than their typically abled peers, but are at substantially higher risk of losing ground during summer break. If...
By Beth Hawkins | June 10, 2021
A better equation: New pandemic data supports acceleration rather than remediation to make up for COVID learning loss
As educators plan how they will address lost student learning during the next school year, they should forgo the traditional remedy of remediation in favor of a strategy known as acceleration, a new report recommends. The analysis was performed by TNTP, formerly known as The New Teacher Project, and the nonprofit Zearn, whose online math...
By Beth Hawkins | May 27, 2021
‘Welcome to the Red Summer of 2021’: Minnesota social studies teacher of the year shares lesson on Daunte Wright’s killing & the deadly events of summer 1919
Long before sunrise the morning after Daunte Wright, a Black motorist, was killed by a white police officer outside Minneapolis, Kara Cisco made some quick posts to Facebook. She asked if anyone knew whether the previous night’s protests would affect her commute to work. She would need to traverse the part of Minneapolis where the...
By Beth Hawkins | April 15, 2021
New poll finds parents want better distance learning now, online options even after COVID, more family engagement
While many school leaders focus on bringing students back into in-person classrooms as they were, a majority of parents want them to develop new and better ways of teaching, prioritize high-quality distance learning now and continue to offer virtual instruction even after COVID-19 recedes, a new poll finds. The survey, commissioned by the National Parents...
By Beth Hawkins | December 8, 2020