Ed Impact

News and Insights About Advancing Educators' Impact on Students

  • photo of measuring devices
    Experimenting with Multiple Measures of Teacher Effectiveness
    Apr 24, 2017
    Stephen Lipscomb, Ann Li

    How do we identify great teachers and help all teachers improve their craft? The best option may be to combine student growth measures, observations of teachers in the classroom, and student surveys.

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    Developing Teachers and Leaders: Apply to Work with SEED Grantees on Teacher and Principal Effectiveness
    Jan 12, 2017
    Jeffrey Max

    Large investments of federal money have been flowing to states and districts through Title II to help improve teachers and school leaders. Yet the idea that we know how to help educators improve through professional development may just be a mirage.

  • teacher effectiveness
    Why Is the Achievement Gap So Large? It’s Not the Teachers
    Nov 30, 2016
    Philip Gleason, Eric Isenberg, Jeffrey Max

    The academic achievement gap in the United States is large. A low-income child has less than a 1 in 10 chance of graduating from college, compared to nearly 8 in 10 high-income children.

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    Measuring Principal Performance Is Hard - But We Need to Try
    Nov 18, 2016
    Brian Gill

    Principals have almost as much of an impact on student achievement as teachers do. Indeed, we found in a study of school reform in Washington, D.C., that replacing ineffective principals improves student achievement. But how do we distinguish good principals from bad ones?

  • chainsaw
    Value Added Is a Chainsaw
    Oct 10, 2016
    Steve Glazerman

    On the one hand, value-added measures, like chainsaws, can be powerful tools and really useful for the right problem, like cutting down a tree. On the other hand, chainsaws, like VAMs, can do a lot of damage if you’re not careful and don’t know what you’re doing.

  • invisible teacher
    Meaningful Feedback Helps Invisible Teachers Move Out of the Shadows
    Sep 28, 2016
    Elias Walsh

    Senior Researcher Elias Walsh looks into helping provide meaningful feedback to "invisible teachers" - those who leave the profession feeling as though they have made no progress with their students.

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    Beware Hyped Claims of WMD
    Sep 19, 2016
    Alex Resch

    Alex Resch, Mathematica's associate director, Human Services Research, counters the claims in a new book, which argues that algorithms and mathematical models are destructive and harm society’s most vulnerable members.

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    “I Am Someone Who Tends to Be Lazy”: The Importance of Soft Skills, and How Not to Measure Them in Schools
    Jul 13, 2016
    Tim Kautz

    Guided by the recent Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), states are scrambling to incorporate nonacademic skills into school measurement systems, raising the question: “What measures should schools use and for which purpose?”

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    The False Dichotomy of School Inspections vs. Test-Based Accountability
    Jun 13, 2016
    Steve Glazerman

    In a recent post on the Brookings Brown Center Chalkboard, Helen Ladd urges states to experiment with replacing test-based accountability with school inspections, visits by trained experts who rate the schools they visit and then issue reports.

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    To Do ESSA Accountability Right, Focus on Classrooms, Not Just Schools
    May 31, 2016
    Ryan Balch

    The Every Student Succeeds Act presents a challenge and an opportunity. It changes the question from “what do we have to do?” to “what new opportunities exist?” as states can now design their accountability systems to accomplish their own goals rather than complying with federal demands.