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What’s New at REL Northeast & Islands?

Northeast & Islands | April 20, 2022

Our team at REL Northeast & Islands is thrilled to announce we will continue working with states and territories across our region for another five years. Our region includes seven states—Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont—as well as Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

As you may know, REL Northeast & Islands is one of 10 Regional Educational Laboratories (RELs) across the country funded by the Institute of Education Sciences to work in partnership with states, schools, and districts on three main activities designed to improve student outcomes. RELs conduct applied research and development to address high-priority needs; provide training, coaching, and technical support in the use of evidence-based practices; and disseminate research and evidence to our stakeholders.

REL Resources to Support Your Work

Over the past few years, schools and districts across the U.S. have rose to meet countless challenges. The COVID-19 crisis has required schools to rapidly respond to emerging health, safety, and learning needs. Meanwhile, educators continue to contend with ongoing challenges, such as equity-based learning gaps, further exacerbated by the pandemic.

During this school year some schools and districts are employing innovative interventions such high-dosage tutoring, an evidence-based learning solution, to help address pandemic-related learning loss. If your school or district is implementing or considering this strategy, watch our webinar to help use data to strengthen your program. And if your school or district is using a new intervention, our Continuous Improvement Toolkit can help ensure your program is having the desired effect. Likewise, if you need support evaluating professional learning, check out Evaluating Professional Learning: A Tool for Schools and Districts.

These products—including a wealth of resources from all 10 RELs—can be found on the new REL program website. The website has an updated Products page, searchable by topic, product type, and region. 

New REL Northeast & Islands Research Partnerships

We are extremely excited to begin working with our newly formed state- and territory-based partnerships. These partnerships will focus on a variety of exciting new research projects, from promising practices to innovative learning solutions.

In Rhode Island, college and career readiness of youth is a pressing concern for state leaders and employers. To help prepare public school students for success, we have formed the Rhode Island Partnership to Support Early College Opportunities. REL Northeast & Islands will work with stakeholders to study whether and how Accelerated College Credit Programs help Rhode Island achieve its goals of reaching a 90 percent graduation rate and increasing the percentage of high school graduates who have earned a college credit or industry credential in high school.

In the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI), we’ve formed the USVI Partnership to Strengthen the Early Childhood Workforce. The goal of this partnership is to improve kindergarten readiness and elementary outcomes for PreK–3 students, particularly in literacy and numeracy, by strengthening the Early Childhood Education workforce. REL Northeast & Islands will support USVI by designing evidence-based modules that allow early childhood and elementary teachers to earn micro-credentials toward early childhood certification so they will be eligible to teach in grades PreK–3.

As a final example, in response to a declining population and stagnant workforce pipeline, Vermont has established an ambitious cradle-to-career initiative to offer youth multiple pathways to achieve education and career success. To support these efforts, REL Northeast & Islands has formed the Vermont Partnership to Strengthen Flexible Pathways for College and Career Success. The goals of the partnership are to identify and address opportunity gaps in access to and participation in career and technical education, assess postsecondary program outcomes, and make evidence-based improvements to program implementation.

If you are from the Northeast & Islands region, check back soon to learn about new partnerships in your state or territory.

What’s New with You?

We hope we have piqued your interest with this preview of our upcoming work. If you are from the Northeast & Islands region, we would love to hear what’s next for your school or district. What are you doing to address the learning gaps brought on or exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic? What resources and training would be helpful to your school or district? You can reach us at


Julie Riordan

Julie Riordan

Connect with REL Northeast & Islands