Restorative practices aren't necessarily a cure-all. But if implemented well, they can contribute to an overall solution. Teaching children to treat one another with respect has the potential to make schools safer and to help kids get along better throughout their lives.
To avoid the all-too-common fate of ending up back in prison, incarcerated adults need skills and credentials they typically don't have. Helping them overcome the challenges of reentry is a net gain for them and for the communities to which they return.
The research field increasingly recognizes that we need metrics that everyone can understand. Translating the result into years of learning has become a popular approach, but this metric has major flaws. There are better options.
Hiring good principals is one of the most important things a district can do for its students, second only to hiring good teachers. Students whose schools participated in a principal pipeline initiative outperformed their peers by six percentage points on reading tests and nearly three points in math.
There are many nuances to the implementation and impact of restorative practices. This suggests that continued experimentation could allow school districts to realize the benefits of instituting these practices and reduce the cost of doing so.
As the desire to improve SEL for all students grows, it is increasingly important to measure its effectiveness. But the field has lacked an organized method of identifying, choosing, and using the best assessments to measure students' competencies. Two newly developed tools can help.
Educators have become increasingly interested in supporting students to cultivate the inter- and intra-personal skills that are developed through the process of social and emotional learning. A new guide developed at RAND is meant to help educators adopt evidenced-based interventions that fit the needs of their students and communities.
A recent RAND report focuses on estimates of the impact of restorative practices on comprehensive outcome measures for all students. The report defines these measures in seven outcome domains and leads with the impact on suspensions. It estimates the impact on 50 secondary measures and on the seven primary measures for numerous student subgroups defined by race, income, special needs and English language learner status.
To teach something effectively, educators need to determine whether their instructional approaches are working, and make adjustments to those approaches as needed. The Assessment Work Group and RAND have developed tools to assist educators in finding and using assessments to measure social and emotional learning and higher-order cognitive competencies.
Many schools are looking to close the disadvantage gap in their communities, but they need more evidence about what actually works. Research that helps policymakers and practitioners understand how early years interventions can promote equity and close the disadvantage gap is needed.
Parents, teachers, principals, and community leaders played RAND's first education policy game. Participants had to work through scenarios affecting a fictional high school, such as how to cut its budget by 4 percent. The game showed researchers how different stakeholders might approach school improvement challenges and what drives their decisions.
Louisiana has taken big steps to improve its education policies and the education of the state's children, from birth to grade 12. Parents can help their children benefit from the reforms by being informed about the changes and knowing how to take advantage of new resources.
The goal of social and emotional learning is to give students the skills they need to work in teams, communicate their ideas, and manage their emotions. Research can help educators determine which programs work and which ones qualify for federal funding under the Every Student Succeeds Act.