Eric.ed.gov – Case Studies of Schools Receiving School Improvement Grants. Final Report. NCEE 2016-4002

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The Study of School Turnaround (SST) examines the change process in a diverse, purposive sample of schools receiving federal School Improvement Grants (SIG) from 2010-11 to 2012-13. With the passage of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA), the SIG program underwent three major shifts. First, ARRA boosted total SIG funding in fiscal year 2009 to approximately 6.5 times the original 2009 appropriation through Title I, section 1003(g) of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA). SIG funds were distributed to states by formula based on each state’s Title I share. States then had to competitively make SIG awards to districts with eligible schools. Second, ARRA targeted funds at only the very worst schools–those that were in the bottom 5 percent of performance and had been low performing for an extended period of time. Third, schools receiving SIG were now required to implement one of four prescriptive intervention models believed to be more aggressive and comprehensive than those generally adopted under prior policies. By increasing the level of funding, better targeting these funds to the persistently lowest-achieving schools, and requiring that schools adopt specific intervention models, the revamped SIG program aimed to catalyze more aggressive efforts to turn around student performance. This report focuses on a small sample of schools receiving SIG over the first three years of the revamped SIG program, from 2010-11 to 2012-13. It presents findings from the study’s 25 core sample schools, which were the focus of data collection in spring 2011 and spring 2012, and a subsample of 12 of the 25 schools (collectively referred to as the core subsample), which were selected for data collection in spring 2013 and are the focus of more in-depth analyses looking across all three years of SIG. The findings include: (1) A majority of the 25 core sample schools replaced their principal (21 schools) at least once in the year before SIG (2009-10) or in Year 1 of SIG (2010-11); (2) About half of the 25 core sample schools (12 schools, including 9 turnaround, 2 restart, and 1 transformation) replaced at least 50 percent of their teachers during the 2009-10, 2010-11, or 2011-12 school years; (3) According to teacher survey data, more teachers reported participating in professional learning on math, literacy, and data use than on ELL instruction, special education, or classroom management during Year 2 of SIG (2011-12); (4) Core sample schools reported receiving support from their district (22 of 22 schools) and external support provider(s) (22 of 25 schools), but in some cases, respondents described shortcomings in their district or external support; (5) Among the 12 core subsample schools, those that appeared to engage in more efforts to build human capital in Years 1 and 2 of SIG (7 schools) were more likely to improve their organizational capacity (or sustain their already higher capacity); and (6) Sustainability of any improvements may prove fragile. The following are appended: (1) Study of School Turnaround Codebook, 2010-13; (2) Technical Approach to Qualitative Analyses; (3) Details of Teacher Survey Analyses; and (4) Leading Indicators of School-Level Capacity.

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Troels Gannerup Christensen

Jeg er ansat som adjunkt hos Læreruddannelsen i Jelling, hvor jeg underviser i matematik, specialiseringsmodulet teknologiforståelse, praktik m.m. Jeg har tidligere været ansat som pædagogisk konsulent i matematik og tysk hos UCL ved Center for Undervisningsmidler (CFU) i Vejle og lærer i udskolingen (7.-9. klasse) på Lyshøjskolen i Kolding. Jeg er ejer af og driver bl.a. hjemmesiderne www.lærklokken.dk og www.iundervisning.dk, ggbkursus.dk og er tidligere fagredaktør på matematik på emu.dk. Jeg går ind for, at læring skal være let tilgængelig og i størst mulig omfang gratis at benytte.

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