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Search Results: (16-30 of 318 records)

 Pub Number  Title  Date
REL 2016128 English Learner Student Characteristics and Time to Reclassification: An Example From Washington State
This study examined how long it typically takes English learner students to become proficient in English and how this time differs by student characteristics, such as gender, home language, or initial proficiency in English. The authors analyzed state data for 16,957 English learner students who entered kindergarten between 2005/06 and 2011/12 in seven cohorts. The students attended seven school districts that comprise the Road Map Project, an initiative designed to double the number of students in South King County (Washington) who are on track to graduate from college or earn a career credential by 2020. The study looked at five language groups in the region, each of which comprises at least 3 percent of the total sample: Spanish, Vietnamese, Somali, Russian and Ukrainian combined, and Cantonese and Mandarin Chinese combined. All other languages, 160 in total, were combined into an "other language" category. The findings show that students who entered kindergarten as English learners took a median of 3.8 years to be reclassified by Washington state as former English learners. Those who entered kindergarten with advanced English language proficiency were more likely to be reclassified than English learner students with basic or intermediate English proficiency. Also, female English learner students were more likely to be reclassified than male English learner students. Speakers of Chinese, Vietnamese, and Russian and Ukrainian were more likely to be reclassified than Somali or Spanish speakers. In addition to contributing to the research base, the study findings may be of interest to state education agencies as they create new targets and standards for English language proficiency. State agencies may wish to consider taking initial English language proficiency into account when determining appropriate targets for federal accountability measures, for example by setting longer expected times to reclassification and providing additional support to students entering school with basic or intermediate levels of English language proficiency. Many states are also implementing new standards for college and career readiness and overhauling their assessment and accountability systems, both of which involve setting additional targets for English learner students. A better understanding of the factors related to variation in time to proficiency may allow states to establish targets that take particular factors, such as initial English language proficiency, into account.
3/23/2016
REL 2016114 Alaska students' pathways from high school to postsecondary education and employment
This study follows Alaskan students in their first six years after high school to describe the pathways they took to postsecondary education and careers. Analyzing data from multiple national and state education and employment sources, the study examines the trajectories of 40,000 students who exited public high schools in Alaska from 2004/05 to 2007/08. The analysis shows that students followed more than 3,000 unique postsecondary pathways. Over two-thirds of the students (67 percent) graduated from high school and most either enrolled in postsecondary education or entered the workforce in the state immediately after graduation. Female students, White students, and urban students were more likely than male students, Alaska Native students, and rural students to enroll in college, respectively. However, students from each of these groups with similar academic and personal background characteristics had similar probabilities of enrolling directly after high school. In addition, students who earned a postsecondary degree tended to have higher early-career employment rates and wages than students who did not earn a degree. The findings provide evidence to inform policy and practice related to academic readiness and closing the gap in postsecondary enrollment rates between Alaska Native students and their White peers.
3/22/2016
REL 2016115 Teacher evaluation and professional learning: Lessons from early implementation in a large urban district
REL Northeast and Islands, in collaboration with the Northeast Educator Effectiveness Research Alliance, examined the alignment of teacher evaluation and professional learning in a large urban district in the Northeast. REL researchers examined the types of professional learning activities teachers reported they participated in, the alignment of the reported activities with what evaluators prescribed, and whether evaluation ratings improved from one academic year to the next. The study found that teachers received written feedback across all standards of the evaluation rubric. Each prescription tended to include one or two recommended professional activities, and more of these activities were professional practice activities, such as independent work to improve instruction, than professional development activities, such as courses or workshops. Teachers reported participating in more professional activities for the instruction-based standards than for the non-instruction-based standards. For all standards, less than 40 percent of teachers reported participating in all the activities their evaluator recommended. While further work may be needed to strengthen the connection between teacher evaluation and a comprehensive system of teacher support and development, this study takes the first step in illustrating the need for coherence among these related systems.
3/1/2016
REL 2016117 Benchmarking Education Management Information Systems Across the Federated States of Micronesia
The purpose of this study was to provide information on the current quality of the education management information system (EMIS) in Yap, Federated States of Micronesia, so that data specialists, administrators, and policy makers might identify areas for improvement. As part of a focus group interview, knowledgeable data specialists in Yap responded to 46 questions covering significant areas of their EMIS. The interview protocol, adapted by Regional Educational Laboratory Pacific from the World Bank’s System Assessment and Benchmarking for Education Results assessment tool, provides a means for rating aspects of an EMIS system using four benchmarking levels: latent (the process or action required to improve the aspect of quality is not in place), emerging (the process or action is in progress of implementation), established (the process or action is in place and it meets standards), and mature (the process or action is an example of best practice). Overall, data specialists scored their EMIS as established. They reported that the prerequisites of quality, that is, both the institutional frameworks that govern the information system and data reporting, and the supporting resources, are emerging. They also rated integrity of education statistics, referring to the professionalism, objectivity, transparency, and ethical standards by which staff operate and statistics are reported, as emerging. Data specialists reported the accuracy and reliability of education statistics within their system to be mature. They reported that the serviceability (the relevance, timeliness, and consistency of data) and accessibility of education data within their system are established. Results show that data specialists know and can apply sound techniques and validate data and generate statistical reports; however the system does not ensure that their roles and responsibilities are defined, nor does it provide any assurance, in the form of a legal mandate, that they receive the data they require. Data specialists provide timely services, but the system cannot assure the public that such services are provided independently, or that public has information regarding internal governmental access to statistics prior to their release. The results of this study provide the Yap State Department of Education and the National Department of Education with information regarding the strengths and areas of the EMIS that may benefit from improvement efforts through the development of action plans focused on priority areas
2/19/2016
REL 2016126 Stated Briefly: Who will succeed and who will struggle? Predicting early college success with Indiana’s Student Information System
This "Stated Briefly" report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. This study examined whether data on Indiana high school students, their high schools, and the Indiana public colleges and universities in which they enroll predict their academic success during the first two years in college. The researchers obtained student-level, school-level, and university-related data from Indiana's state longitudinal data system on the 68,802 students who graduated high school in 2010. For the 32,564 graduates who first entered a public 2-year or 4-year college, the researchers examined their success during the first two years of college using four indicators of success: (1) enrolling in only nonremedial courses, (2) completion of all attempted credits, (3) persistence to the second year of college, and (4) an aggregation of the other three indicators. HLM was used to predict students' performance on indicators using students' high school data, information about their high schools and information about the colleges they first attended. Half of Indiana 2010 high school graduates who enrolled in a public Indiana college were successful by all indicators of success. College success differed by student demographic and academic characteristics, by the type of college a student first entered, and by the indicator of college success used. Academic preparation in high school predicted all indicators of college success, and student absences in high school predicted two individual indicators of college success and a composite of college success indicators. While statistical relationships were found, the predictors collectively only predicted less than 35 percent of the variance. The predictors from this study can be used to identify students who will likely struggle in college, but there will likely be false positive (and false negative) identifications. Additional research is needed to identify other predictors--possibly non-cognitive predictors--that can improve the accuracy of the identification models.
2/17/2016
REL 2016127 Stated Briefly: Professional experiences of online teachers in Wisconsin: Results from a survey about training and challenges
This "Stated Briefly" report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. REL Midwest, in partnership with the Midwest Virtual Education Research Alliance, analyzed the results of a survey administered to Wisconsin Virtual School teachers about the training in which they participated related to online instruction, the challenges they encounter while teaching online, and the type of training they thought would help them address those challenges. REL Midwest researchers and Virtual Education Research Alliance members collaborated to develop the survey based on items from the Going Virtual! survey (Dawley et al., 2010; Rice & Dawley, 2007; Rice et al., 2008). Wisconsin Virtual School administered the survey to its 54 teachers, and 49 (91 percent) responded to the survey. The responses of the 48 teachers who indicated that they taught an online course during the 2013/14 or 2014/15 school year were analyzed for the report. Results indicate that all Wisconsin Virtual School teachers reported participating in training or professional development related to online instruction and that more teachers reported participating in training that occurred while teaching online than prior to teaching online or during preservice education. The teachers most frequently reported challenges related to students' perseverance and engagement and indicated that they preferred unstructured professional development to structured professional development to help them address those challenges. Further research is needed to determine what types of professional development and training are most effective in improving teaching practice, especially related to student engagement and perseverance.
2/17/2016
REL 2016111 Measuring school leaders' effectiveness: Findings from a multiyear pilot of Pennsylvania's Framework for Leadership
This "Stated Briefly" report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. This study examines the accuracy of performance ratings from the Framework for Leadership (FFL), Pennsylvania's tool for evaluating the leadership practices of principals and assistant principals. The study analyzed four key properties of the FFL: score variation, internal consistency, year-to-year stability, and concurrent validity. Score variation was characterized by the percentages of school leaders earning scores in different portions of the rating scale. To measure the internal consistency of the FFL, Cronbach's alpha was calculated for the full FFL and for each of its four categories of leadership practices. Analyses of score stability used data on FFL scores of school years across two years to calculate Pearson’s correlation coefficient. Concurrent validity was assessed through a regression model for the relationship between school leaders' estimated contributions to student achievement growth and their FFL scores. This report is based primarily on the 2013/14 pilot in which 517 principals and 123 assistant principals were rated by their supervisors; an interim report examined data from the 2012/13 pilot year. The study finds that the FFL is a reliable measure, with good internal consistency and a moderate level of year-to-year stability in scores. The study also finds evidence of the FFL’s concurrent validity: principals with higher scores on the FFL, on average, make larger estimated contributions to student achievement growth. Higher total FFL scores and scores in two of the four FFL domains are significantly or marginally significantly associated with both value-added in all subjects combined and value-added in math specifically. This evidence of the validity of the FFL sets it apart from other principal evaluation tools: No other measures of principals' professional practice have been shown to be related to principals' effects on student achievement. However, in both pilot years, variation in scores was limited, with most school leaders scoring in the upper third of the rating scale. As the FFL is implemented statewide, continued examination of evidence on its statistical properties, especially the variation in scores, is important.
1/21/2016
REL 2016106 Measuring school leaders' effectiveness: Final report from a multiyear pilot of Pennsylvania's Framework for Leadership
This study examines the accuracy of performance ratings from the Framework for Leadership (FFL), Pennsylvania's tool for evaluating the leadership practices of principals and assistant principals. The study analyzed four key properties of the FFL: score variation, internal consistency, year-to-year stability, and concurrent validity. Score variation was characterized by the percentages of school leaders earning scores in different portions of the rating scale. To measure the internal consistency of the FFL, Cronbach's alpha was calculated for the full FFL and for each of its four categories of leadership practices. Analyses of score stability used data on FFL scores of school years across two years to calculate Pearson’s correlation coefficient. Concurrent validity was assessed through a regression model for the relationship between school leaders' estimated contributions to student achievement growth and their FFL scores. This report is based primarily on the 2013/14 pilot in which 517 principals and 123 assistant principals were rated by their supervisors; an interim report examined data from the 2012/13 pilot year. The study finds that the FFL is a reliable measure, with good internal consistency and a moderate level of year-to-year stability in scores. The study also finds evidence of the FFL's concurrent validity: principals with higher scores on the FFL, on average, make larger estimated contributions to student achievement growth. Higher total FFL scores and scores in two of the four FFL domains are significantly or marginally significantly associated with both value-added in all subjects combined and value-added in math specifically. This evidence of the validity of the FFL sets it apart from other principal evaluation tools: No other measures of principals' professional practice have been shown to be related to principals' effects on student achievement. However, in both pilot years, variation in scores was limited, with most school leaders scoring in the upper third of the rating scale. As the FFL is implemented statewide, continued examination of evidence on its statistical properties, especially the variation in scores, is important.
1/21/2016
REL 2016104 Analysis of the stability of teacher-level growth scores from the student growth percentile model
This study, undertaken at the request of the Nevada Department of Education, examined the stability over years of teacher-level growth scores from the Student Growth Percentile (SGP) model, which many states and districts have selected as a measure of effectiveness in their teacher evaluation systems. The authors conducted a generalizability study using three years of data in mathematics and reading for nearly 370 elementary and middle school teachers from Washoe County School District in Reno, Nevada’s second-largest district. The study found that in mathematics, half of the variation among teachers’ annual growth score (median SGPs) was attributable to differences among teachers, while half was random or unstable. In reading, .41 of the variance in annual scores was attributable to differences among teachers, while .59 was due to random or unstable sources. More stable measures of effectiveness can be constructed by averaging multiple years of growth scores for a teacher, and the report provides stability estimates for averages of two, three, and four years of annual scores. The results from this study can also be used to examine the accuracy of judgments of teachers’ effectiveness that are based on these scores. Study results suggest that as states examine properties of their estimates of teacher effectiveness and consider their use in teacher accountability, they may want to be cautious in using such scores for teacher evaluation.
1/19/2016
REL 2016108 An educator's guide to questionnaire development
Educators have many decisions to make and it’s important that they have the right data to inform those decisions and access to questionnaires that can gather that data. This guide, developed by REL Central and based on work done through separate projects with the Wyoming Office of Public Instruction and the Nebraska Department of Education, provides educators with a process for developing questionnaires. Principals, superintendents, state-level personnel, or other school or district personnel can use this guide when they need to make a decision about an education policy or practice but (1) lack the information needed to make that decision and (2) lack a preexisting questionnaire that can be used to gather the information. This guide can help these educators collect information about attitudes, perceptions, or factual information to inform their decisions.
1/7/2016
REL 2016113 Where American Indian Students Go to School: Enrollment in Seven Central Region States
This report provides descriptive information about the location and native language use of schools in the REL Central Region with high enrollment of American Indian students, whether Bureau of Indian Education schools or non–Bureau of Indian Education high-density American Indian schools (schools with 25 percent or more American Indian student enrollment). Of the 208 schools with high American Indian student enrollment (33 BIE and 173 HDAI schools), 83% are located in the region’s rural areas. The schools located in counties with the highest concentration of Native North American language speakers are in South Dakota, Wyoming, and Colorado.
1/6/2016
REL 2016116 Teacher retention, mobility, and attrition in Kentucky public schools from 2008 to 2012
The purpose of this descriptive study was to determine the rates of retention, mobility, and attrition for classroom teachers in Kentucky public schools, as well as how those rates might vary by various teacher and school characteristics. The study looks at retention, defined as teachers returning to their same classroom ("stayers"); mobility, when teachers change schools within the school system ("movers"); and attrition, when teachers leave the system ("leavers") from one year to the next. The study used data on teachers collected by the Kentucky Center for Education & Workforce Statistics on every teacher employed in PK-12 public schools in academic years 2008/09, 2009/10, 2010/11, and 2011/12. Data on schools were obtained from the National Center for Education Statistics Common Core of Data. The study found that the Kentucky teacher workforce was largely stable across the study period (2008-2012). Most teachers (85.6 percent, on average) stayed in the same school from one year to the next, 6.0 percent moved to a different school, and 8.4 percent left the public school system. The study revealed some variation in rates based on select teacher and school characteristics. In particular, teachers with the fewest years of experience, teachers in urban schools, and teachers in schools where more students are eligible for free or reduced price lunch were retained at the lowest rates.
1/5/2016
REL 2016091 A Systematic Review of the Relationships Between Principal Characteristics and Student Achievement
This systematic review of the relationships between principal characteristics and student achievement was created for educators, administrators, policy-makers, and other individuals interested in a comprehensive catalogue of research on relations between principal characteristics and student achievement. It synthesizes what is known about associations between principal characteristics and student achievement; specifically it summarizes the studies, highlights the effects found by the studies, and describes the steps of the systematic review process used. Of the 52 studies included in the comprehensive review, only one used an experimental design, and a positive effect was found. An additional 38 quantitative and two mixed method studies provided evidence that some principal characteristics are positively correlated with student achievement. However, causal relationships could not be established. The remaining eleven qualitative studies mirrored the quantitative findings.
12/8/2015
REL 2016110 Professional Experiences of Online Teachers in Wisconsin: Results from a Survey About Training and Challenges
REL Midwest, in partnership with the Midwest Virtual Education Research Alliance, analyzed the results of a survey administered to Wisconsin Virtual School teachers about the training in which they participated related to online instruction, the challenges they encounter while teaching online, and the type of training they thought would help them address those challenges. REL Midwest researchers and Virtual Education Research Alliance members collaborated to develop the survey based on items from the Going Virtual! survey (Dawley et al., 2010; Rice & Dawley, 2007; Rice et al., 2008). Wisconsin Virtual School administered the survey to its 54 teachers, and 49 (91 percent) responded to the survey. The responses of the 48 teachers who indicated that they taught an online course during the 2013/14 or 2014/15 school year were analyzed for the report. Results indicate that all Wisconsin Virtual School teachers reported participating in training or professional development related to online instruction and that more teachers reported participating in training that occurred while teaching online than prior to teaching online or during preservice education. The teachers most frequently reported challenges related to students’ perseverance and engagement and indicated that they preferred unstructured professional development to structured professional development to help them address those challenges. Further research is needed to determine what types of professional development and training are most effective in improving teaching practice, especially related to student engagement and perseverance.
11/24/2015
REL 2016101 Stated Briefly: Redesigning Teacher Evaluations: Lessons from a Pilot Implementation
This “Stated Briefly” report is a companion piece that summarizes the results of another report of the same name. REL Northeast and Islands, in collaboration with the Northeast Educator Effectiveness Research Alliance and the New Hampshire Department of Education conducted a study of the implementation of new teacher evaluation systems in New Hampshire’s School Improvement Grant schools. While the basic system features are similar across district plans, the specifics of these features vary considerably by district. Further, district fidelity to the plans, as measured by the exposure of teachers to different features of the evaluation system, ranged from moderate to high. Finally, researchers identified several factors related to implementation: (1) capacity of administrators to conduct evaluations; (2) initial and on-going evaluator training; (3) the introduction and design of student learning objectives; (4) the professional climate of schools, including the support of the new system by teachers and evaluators.
11/24/2015
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