Education Policy


Education policy includes laws as well as processes and policies that educational organizations, local districts, states, and nations put in place and follow to achieve academic goals. RAND analyses have informed education policy in the United States, United Kingdom, Qatar, and many other countries.

  • Research Brief

    Getting Students to and Through Advanced Math

    Students who take precalculus, calculus, and advanced placement math classes get a leg up when it comes to securing college admission and careers in STEM fields. But a large portion of U.S. high school students don't take advanced math. What explains this gap, and what can be done to close it?

    Apr 17, 2023

  • Essay

    A Four-Day School Week? Here Are the Costs and Benefits

    Hundreds of small school districts across America have cut one day a week from their calendars. A shorter school week helps them compete for teachers and reduce costs. Teachers and parents love it. But is it really in the best interests of students?

    Aug 31, 2023

Explore Education Policy

  • Students raise their hands in the classroom as their teacher reads from a book, photo by monkeybusinessimages/Getty Images

    Journal Article

    Teachers Can Make a Difference Beyond Their Own Classrooms

    Schools may be undervaluing good teachers by at least 30 percent. How? Because they aren't considering the spillover effects that better-educated students have on their peers.

    Apr 3, 2019

  • Brochure

    A focus on education

    Education stands at the forefront of policy agendas as children grow up in an increasingly complex and connected world. A focus on education looks at the core areas in education, detailing RAND Europe's expertise and work in the sector.

    Feb 6, 2019

  • Cute kids with special needs playing with developing toys while sitting at the desk in daycare center

    Journal Article

    Access to Quality Education for Children With Special Educational Needs

    An overview of the policy and practice of EU Member States in offering children with special educational needs access to education. It sets out the policy framework, the main approaches taken by Member States, and key challenges for policy-makers.

    Jan 23, 2019

  • Back view group of children running in park at sunny day


    Investing in Evidence-Based Social and Emotional Learning

    It can be challenging for educators to incorporate data into a narrative that informs decisions about what social and emotional learning (SEL) interventions to adopt. An evidence review companion guide can provide support for educators assessing local SEL needs.

    Dec 10, 2018

  • News Release

    News Release

    Universities Begin Redesigning Their Programs to Make Training of Future School Principals More Effective

    Seven universities are beginning to change their principal preparation programs to better reflect the real-world demands of the job. They are working with local high-need school districts that hire their graduates as well as accreditation agencies in their states.

    Oct 30, 2018

  • Report


    Launching a Redesign of University Principal Preparation Programs: Partners Collaborate for Change: Executive Summary

    The University Principal Preparation Initiative (UPPI) supports the redesign of principal preparation programs according to evidence-based principles and practices. This executive summary provides insight into the first year of UPPI implementation.

    Oct 30, 2018

  • A principal and teacher walking in a school corridor


    Universities Are Improving Training of Future School Principals

    Seven universities are beginning to change their principal preparation programs to better reflect the real-world demands of the job. They are working with local high-need school districts that hire their graduates as well as accreditation agencies in their states.

    Oct 30, 2018

  • A participant votes for the team he thinks should win RAND's education policy game, Let's Improve Tanner High School!, in Pittsburgh, September 28, 2018


    Education Policy 'Game Night' Debuts at RAND

    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.

    Oct 11, 2018

  • Research Brief

    Research Brief

    How Do Teachers Perceive Feedback and Evaluation Systems? Findings from the American Teacher Panel

    Most teachers surveyed reported receiving useful feedback, although the majority perceived feedback from fellow teachers and from coaches or mentors more positively than feedback from formal observations or from school leaders.

    Sep 28, 2018

  • Report


    A Public School Voucher Demonstration: The First Year at Alum Rock

    Reports on the first year of a large-scale educational and social intervention that began in the Alum Rock Union Elementary School District, San Jose, California, in 1972.

    Sep 19, 2018

  • Community members outside of a high school


    Social and Emotional Learning Prepares Students for Life

    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.

    Aug 27, 2018

  • Teacher and children sitting on floors with hands raised

    Research Brief

    Raising the Bar for Student Outcomes in Louisiana

    Historically, Louisiana's education system has ranked near the bottom nationwide. However, early evidence suggests that the state's reform efforts may be helping to reverse this trend. What can other states learn from Louisiana as they examine their respective education policies and practices?

    Aug 3, 2018

  • Report


    Guidance for standardising quantitative indicators of impact within REF case studies

    This report for the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) (now Research England), proposes guidance for standardising quantitative indicators of impact within Research Excellence Framework (REF) case studies.

    Jul 23, 2018

  • A teacher, coach, and principal talking in a school hallway


    How Do Teachers Respond to Feedback?

    Education leaders across the United States have revised their policies in an effort to enhance the quality of teacher evaluation measures and instructional practices. A unique survey asked teachers about their perceptions of the feedback they receive and the evaluation systems at their schools.

    Jul 9, 2018

  • Concept illustration of teacher and education elements representing education research


    The American Educator Panels

    The American Educator Panels, made up of the American Teacher Panel, the American School Leader Panel, and the American School District Panel, report on educators' evolving knowledge, attitudes, practices, and working conditions.

    Jul 3, 2018

  • Students raising their hands in class


    Louisiana's Strategies for Improving Student Outcomes

    Louisiana has received attention for some of its new education policies and promising early results. Its strategies for improving education quality and student outcomes offer lessons for schools nationwide.

    Jun 28, 2018

  • A tired teen girl driving a car


    Teens Are Driving Drowsy Every Day, and That's Dangerous

    About 1 in 10 car crashes are caused by drowsy driving, and young drivers between the ages of 16 and 24 account for more than half of them. Many parents unwittingly allow their teens to drive while tired on a daily basis.

    Mar 12, 2018

  • Tool


    RAND School Leadership Intervention Evaluation Toolkit

    This toolkit is a companion to School Leadership Interventions Under the Every Student Succeeds Act: An Evidence Review. The authors provide guidance and tools for designing and conducting evaluations of school leadership interventions.

    Feb 7, 2018

  • Report


    'Motivating teachers with incentivised pay and coaching' randomised control trial (ICR trial): Closure report: Understanding factors influencing participant recruitment failure

    After recruitment issues had led to the cancellation of a randomised controlled trial on the impact of incentivised pay on teaching in the UK, RAND Europe conducted a follow-up investigation exploring the reasons behind the recruitment difficulties.

    Feb 5, 2018

  • Teacher leading a conflict resolution session with school children


    Learning How to Measure Social and Emotional Learning

    Educators and policymakers are increasingly focusing on non-academic competencies, known as social and emotional learning. To support growth in these areas, teachers need assessments that can help them understand how well students are learning these skills, and what instructional approaches work best.

    Jan 11, 2018