This brief describes the near-term effects of voluntary summer learning programs provided by five urban school districts to large numbers of struggling low-income elementary students in the summer of 2013.
At least half of Syrian refugee children aren't in school. Those who are face risks to the quality of education they receive, a risk they share with host-country children. But by making long-term investments, the international community can help ensure education isn't another casualty of the war.
President Obama's proposal to cover the costs of two years of community college offers hope to many American students, but two key challenges should be addressed: meeting the needs of underprepared students and devising a system to smooth the transfer of credits from one institution to another.
Measuring disadvantaged students' access to effective teachers requires examining the relationship between teachers' value-added estimates and the characteristics of their students. Research simulations investigate this relationship and may also help inform analysts' choices for the appropriate value-added models.
For middle- to lower-income families in the U.S., in particular, the costs associated with attending a four-year university are becoming nearly impossible to bear. More and more students are ending up with significant debt after graduating from college, putting financial pressure on them at the outset of their professional careers.
Technical and vocational education and training in India has expanded significantly over the past two decades. But quality and relevance remain significant issues. What may be learned from other countries' experiences?
There are reasons to believe American students from the middle- and lower-income tiers aren't making affordable college choices. Can a new ratings system help them make better, more affordable decisions?
Longtime RAND supporters Donald B. and Susan F. Rice, for the third time, have established an endowed scholarship at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. Their most recent gift of $1 million was generously donated as part of Pardee RAND's Be the Answer campaign, which Don Rice chairs and which has thus far raised in excess of $19 million.
Summer learning loss disproportionately affects low-income students and therefore likely contributes to the achievement gap between these students and their higher-income peers. Students who attended voluntary, school district-led summer learning programs in five urban areas began the academic year with stronger math skills than their peers who did not attend.
Research increasingly suggests that “soft” skills are important for college and career success, as well as for promoting civic engagement. So far, these skills are largely unmeasured in schools. But new research may pave the way for change.
Equity is a basic goal and value of competency education. Competency-based approaches should promote equity by preventing students from falling or staying behind. Family income can influence this equity and has effects and implications that can limit opportunities for some students to excel in school.
With its Global Food Initiative, the University of California is seeking ways to help the billion people who go to bed hungry each night. At the same time, UC could also be addressing obesity. Experimenting with changes to the food environment and documenting their impact on diet and weight gain would accelerate progress on this national problem not just for students, but for all Americans.
Schools are in a unique position to recognize traumatic stress in children. But first, adults throughout the school system—teachers, staff, administrators, school resource officers, and parents—must be aware of the issue, know how to detect signs of trauma exposure, and create a supportive environment.
With kids working and playing in close contact and sharing supplies and equipment, schools can be hotbeds for infection. Each year, K-12 students miss about 60 million school days due to colds and the flu combined. But these five approaches can help reduce their chance of spreading infections and getting sick.
Thirteen years of research have clarified that metrics like teacher experience and licensure reveal little about teachers' impact on student learning. The focus should be on disadvantaged students' access to effective teachers.