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This report updates the May, 2012 report AYP Results for 2010-11 to include AYP data from the Consolidated State Performance Reports from the U.S. Department of Education. Several numbers have changed as a result of the new data. The estimated percentage of all public schools in the nation that did not make AYP for 2011 was 48%, an all-time high and an increase from 39% in 2010. The report also provides six years of trends in the percentage of schools in all 50 states, D.C., and the nation not making AYP.
The leader of George Washington University’s Center on Education Policy explains why teacher accountability is so difficult to implement and tells us the advice she’d give to the president to improve schools. Please see Maria Ferguson interviewed on The Fold at the Washington Post.
Secretary of Education Arne Duncan just completed a cross-country bus tour promoting education as an investment in America's future. He joins Diane to talk about ongoing reforms and challenges still facing our nation's schools. Later in the hour, a panel of education experts give their views on what is and isn't working in the U.S. education system.
Maria Ferguson, the Executive Director of George Washington University’s Center on Education Policy, was present for the discussion. Please give some time to listen to this important conversation about the future of American education.
These two reports examine issues related to the accountability systems that approved waiver states have created with the Obama Administration's No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB) waiver requirements. The first report, What Impact Will NCLB Waivers Have on the Consistency, Complexity, and Transparency of State Accountability Systems?, compares the new accountability provisions in the waiver states with those in the NCLB statute. The report focuses on the complexity, transparency, and consistency of the new accountability systems in the waiver states, both on their own terms and in comparison with the NCLB statutory requirements. The second report, Accountability Issues to Watch under NCLB Waivers, highlights issues to lookout for over the next few years as states with waivers implement new accountability systems. For each of the issues discussed, the possible implications for public education systems, teachers, and students are considered.
CEP’s 11th annual report on state high school exit exams finds that states are embracing higher standards on their exit exams, which means schools and students will feel the impact. The report, based on data collected from state education department personnel in 45 states, discusses the present status of state exit exam policies, the future of these policies as states implement the Common Core State Standards and common assessments, and lessons that can be learned from states’ past experiences with implementing new exit exam policies.
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, or ARRA, provided approximately $100 billion in extra federal funding for education fiscal year 2009. This money, intended to help stabilize and support public education during the economic recession, was used to compensate for state budget shortfalls and prevent the loss of educator jobs and to fund or supplement programs like Race to the Top, Title I and IDEA. This summary report synthesizes findings from six previous CEP reports examining the effects of the funding, based on survey responses of state and local officials charged with implementing the ARRA and Education Jobs programs. Taking a retrospective look over three years of survey data, this report distills themes and draws conclusions about the overall effects of ARRA on K-12 education.
This series of three special reports examines implementation of the federal School Improvement Grant (SIG) program. The first special report, Schools with Federal Improvement Grants Face Challenges in Replacing Principals and Teachers, looks at how states, districts, and schools are addressing challenges related to SIG staffing requirements. The second special report, Increased Learning Time Under Stimulus-Funded School Improvement Grants: High Hopes, Varied Implementation, highlights key findings about state, district, and school experiences related to the requirement to increase student learning time in SIG-funded schools. Findings in these first two special reports draw on survey data from 46 responding states and case study research in Idaho, Maryland, and Michigan, published in earlier CEP studies. The third special report, Changing the School Climate is the First Step to Reform in Many Schools with Federal Improvement Grants, examines the positive changes in school climate experienced by six case study schools that received the federal grants in Idaho, Maryland, and Michigan.
This series of papers examines topics related to students’ academic motivation, a critical but often overlooked aspect of education. The summary paper, Student Motivation: An Overlooked Piece of School Reform, pulls together research findings from the six background papers, each of which includes a brief overview of research findings, examples of current programs and policies, and implications for the future, offering a more in-depth look at specific themes surrounding student engagement, including: why motivation is important and how it might be defined and measured; whether rewarding students can result in higher motivation; whether students can be motivated by goal-setting; the role of parental involvement, family background, and culture; strategies schools might use to motivate students; and nontraditional approaches to motivating otherwise unenthusiastic students. The appendix outlines four major dimensions of motivation and how they are defined by major scholars in the field.
This report updates the December, 2011 report “AYP Results for 2010-11” to include AYP data from school year 2010-11 for New York State. Several numbers throughout the report have changed as a result of the new data from New York. Most notably, the estimated percentage of all public schools in the nation that did not make AYP for 2011 has been revised from 48% to 49%, an all-time high and an increase from 39% in 2010. The report also provides six years of trends in the percentage of schools in all 50 states, D.C., and the nation not making AYP.
This report analyzes the NCLB waiver applications submitted in the second round by 26 states and Washington, D.C. to the U.S. Department of Education in February 2012. Among the findings in the report is that, like the first round of applications, these states are proposing new accountability systems that will lead to greater complexity both within states and between states, but at the same time will be more integrated with states’ own existing accountability systems. Also, nearly all the state applications propose annual achievement targets and performance levels that are more nuanced than what is currently in place under NCLB. At the same time, 19 of the 27 applications analyzed will use a combined subgroup for accountability decisions, rather than all of the student subgroups mandated under NCLB. None of the states analyzed will continue to require school choice and SES in schools identified for improvement, as is currently mandated.
This report examines the implementation of the federal School Improvement Grants (SIG) program by drawing on research conducted in three states, seven school districts, and 11 schools -- including schools that were eligible for but did not receive a SIG award. The study looks at how the federal program requirements are working within the state and local context, the progress made during the first year of the three-year grant implementation, and the different approaches being used to improve student achievement in schools that received SIG funds compared to schools that were eligible for but did not receive grants.
Based on a winter 2011-12 survey of state directors of the federal Title I program, this report examines the first year of state implementation of the School Improvement Grants (SIG) program. It focuses on state processes for renewing the SIG awards made for school year 2010-11, state assistance to schools, and general perceptions of the ARRA SIG program requirements. Forty-five states and the District of Columbia participated in the survey.
This report analyzes the NCLB waiver applications submitted by the first 11 states to the U.S. Department of Education in November 2011. Among the findings in the report are that these states are proposing new and complex accountability systems which they assert will respond to local needs and better identify schools that need assistance. Also, nearly all the state applications would base accountability decisions on the achievement of just two student groups: all students and a single “disadvantaged” group. This is a departure from the current NCLB policy, which holds schools accountable for the performance of numerous subgroups of students, ranging from major racial and ethnic groups to students with disabilities.
This report, which is based on a fall 2011 survey of state education agency officials, finds that state spending cuts for K-12 education seemed to have bottomed out in many states, although some states are still strapped for funds. The report also examines states’ efforts to implement the four school reforms they promised to address in their applications for federal stimulus funds.
This report, which is based on a fall 2011 survey of state education agency officials, finds that state funds for state education agency operations are being cut or level-funded in most states despite an improved outlook for overall education spending at the state level. To make up for the loss in this operational funding, most state education agencies are reducing their staffing costs. However, many states are maintaining, and sometimes increasing, state agency staff assigned to school reform efforts.
This January 30, 2012 Huffington Post blog by CEP President Jack Jennings reviews past national movements to improve schools and proposes a new effort where a good education would become a civil right for all. The blog summarizes Jennings’ January 2012 paper Reflections on a Half-Century of School Reform: Why Have We Fallen Short and Where Do We Go From Here?
Upon his retirement from the leadership of CEP, Jack Jennings reviews in this paper the three major school reform efforts of the last 50 years, proposes an agenda focused on the classroom, and advocates for the creation of a federal civil right to a good education to advance that agenda.
This paper by free lance writer Anne Lewis describes the beginning and the development of the Center on Education Policy from 1995 to 2012.
This report, based on a fall 2011 survey of 35 Common Core State Standards-adopting states (including the District of Columbia), examines states’ progress in transitioning the new standards. The vast majority of the states in the survey believe that the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are more rigorous than previous state academic standards in math and English language arts. The vast majority of survey states are taking steps to familiarize state and district officials with the new standards and to align curriculum and assessments. However, most of the states in the survey do not expect to fully implement the standards until 2014-15 or later. In addition, a majority of the responding states caution that having adequate resources is a major challenge to full implementation of the CCSS.
The 2012 Public Education Primer highlights important and sometimes little-known facts concerning the U.S. education system, how things have changed over time, and how they may change in the future. Together these facts provide a comprehensive picture of the nation’s public schools, including data about students, teachers, funding, achievement, management, and non-academic services.
Before Christmas, Jack Jennings, CEP’s president, submitted the following blog to the Huffington Post. This blog discusses the disappointing results from urban school districts on the National Assessment of Educational Progress that were released in December. He suggests a link between those results and the financial problems being experienced by American schools.