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 Pub Number  Title  Date
WWC 2022007 Providing Reading Interventions for Students in Grades 4-9
The What Works Clearinghouse(TM) (WWC) developed this practice guide in partnership with a panel of experts on reading interventions. The panel distilled recent reading intervention research into four easily comprehensible and practical recommendations that educators can use to deliver reading intervention to meet the needs of students in grades 4-9. The four recommendations in this practice guide will be useful for special educators, general education teachers, reading specialists/coaches, administrators, and parents.
3/30/2022
NCES 2022019 Impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Pandemic on Public and Private Elementary and Secondary Education in the United States (Preliminary Data): Results from the 2020-21 National Teacher and Principal Survey (NTPS)
The 2020–21 National Teacher and Principal Survey (NTPS) collected data on the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on public and private schools, principals, and teachers during the 2019–20 school year. The report presents selected findings, using preliminary data, from coronavirus-related questions that were focused on how schools adapted to the coronavirus pandemic during the spring of 2019–20.
2/22/2022
REL 2022123 Academic Mindsets and Behaviors, Prior Achievement, and the Transition to Middle School

Middle school is an important crossroad in a student’s academic journey. As students enter middle school, their academic achievement and engagement frequently declines. This is true particularly for Black and Latinx students. Poor middle school grades are often a harbinger of poor performance in high school and beyond. In particular, having a grade point average (GPA) below 2.0 is a strong signal of continuing negative academic outcomes. Previous research has found that academic outcomes around the transition to middle school are related to, and might even be driven by, academic mindsets, including growth mindsets (such as beliefs about the malleability of academic ability and the payoff to effort) and performance avoidance (fears of failure and the desire to avoid academic effort), and resulting academic behaviors (such as completing homework).

This study examined the relationship between 2016/17 grade 5 student responses to a Clark County School District (Nevada) survey on levels of academic mindsets and behaviors and the predicted probability of earning a low GPA (below 2.0) at the end of the first semester of grade 6 (the first year of middle school) in 2017/18. Grade 5 students who reported high levels of growth mindset and academic behavior and low levels of performance avoidance had a lower predicted probability of having a GPA below 2.0 in the first semester of grade 6. Once student scores on grade 5 state standardized math and English language arts achievement exams were accounted for, levels of academic mindsets and behaviors among grade 5 students with scores at or above the district median did not predict meaningful differences in the probability of having a GPA below 2.0 in the first semester of grade 6. However, among grade 5 students with prior academic achievement below the district median, students who reported high levels of growth mindset and academic behaviors and low levels of performance avoidance had a lower predicted probability of having a GPA below 2.0 in the first semester of grade 6, even after differences in individual grade 5 prior academic achievement were accounted for. These patterns were essentially the same for all racial/ethnic groups as well as for both English learner students and non–English learner students.

10/25/2021
NFES 2021078 Forum Guide to Virtual Education Data: A Resource for Education Agencies
The Forum Guide to Virtual Education Data: A Resource for Education Agencies is designed to assist agencies with collecting data in virtual education settings, incorporating the data into governance processes and policies, and using the data to improve virtual education offerings. This resource reflects lessons learned by the education data community during the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic and provides recommendations that will help agencies collect and use virtual education data.
6/25/2021
WWC 2021009 Xtreme Reading Intervention Report
The Xtreme Reading curriculum is primarily designed to help students improve their vocabulary, decoding, fluency, and reading comprehension skills. The Xtreme Reading program includes teacher-led whole-group instruction, cooperative group work, paired practice, and independent practice.

Based on the research, the WWC found that Xtreme Reading has no discernible effects on comprehension or general literacy achievement. The WWC based its conclusion on its review of two studies of Xtreme Reading that met WWC group design standards. The two studies included 3,008 students, who were struggling readers based on their low performance on state standardized tests, in 39 high schools in 12 districts across 9 states.
4/8/2021
NFES 2020137 Forum Guide to Cybersecurity: Safeguarding Your Data
The Forum Guide to Cybersecurity: Safeguarding Your Data provides timely and useful best practice information to help education agencies proactively prepare for, appropriately mitigate, and responsibly recover from a cybersecurity incident. It provides recommendations to help protect agency systems and data before, during, and after a cybersecurity incident and features case studies from state and local education agencies.
10/21/2020
REL 2021049 Why school accountability systems disproportionately identify middle schools' SWD subgroups for TSI
The purpose of this study was to understand why middle schools in two mid-Atlantic states were apparently disproportionately identified for targeted support and improvement (TSI) based on the performance of their students with disabilities (SWD) subgroups. The study used publicly available data to examine differences across school levels – elementary, middle, and high – and between all students and SWDs. It is relevant to compare all students to SWDs because accountability systems designate TSI schools as those with subgroups of students that perform poorly relative to all students. The study focused on two aspects of school accountability systems: (1) the number of schools in each school level in which enough SWDs took state assessments for the school to be held accountable for the academic proficiency of its SWD subgroup, and (2) the average performance on accountability indicators, by school level and subgroup. In both states, SWDs in middle schools were over 20 percentage points more likely to take state assessments than were SWDs in elementary or high schools, meaning that middle schools’ SWD subgroups were substantially more likely to meet states’ minimum sample size requirements for including academic performance in accountability scores. Also, SWD subgroups across school levels consistently performed worse than all students on academic proficiency accountability indicators. Taken together, these findings suggest that middle schools’ SWD subgroups are more likely than elementary or high school SWD subgroups to be identified for TSI because their accountability scores are more likely to include academic proficiency indicator scores – which tend to be substantially lower than the all students group’s academic proficiency indicator scores. This research suggests that when designing school accountability systems, state education agencies may wish to consider how sample size affects estimates of subgroups’ performance, and in particular how sample size exclusions may mask poor performance for small subgroups.
10/5/2020
REL 2020023 What Grade 7 Foundational Knowledge and Skills Are Associated with Missouri Students' Algebra I Achievement in Grade 8?
Algebra I is considered a gateway course for advanced math. Consequently, there has been a trend toward enrolling students in Algebra I earlier in the middle grades in order to increase opportunities for students to take more advanced math courses in high school. The challenge for educators lies in determining which students are ready to take Algebra I in middle school and which students need more time to develop foundational knowledge and skills before taking Algebra I. To inform strategies that address this challenge, educators from the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education partnered with Regional Educational Laboratory Central to investigate the specific foundational knowledge and skills that are associated with achievement in Algebra I. This study examined whether student knowledge in five domains of math assessed in grade 7 was associated with Algebra I achievement. The study found that students’ scores in all five of the grade 7 domains were related to Algebra I achievement, but their performance in the expressions, equations, and inequalities domain was most strongly related. The number sense and operations domain was more strongly associated with Algebra I achievement for English learner students than it was for students without this designation. No clear differences in these associations were found between students who were receiving special education services and those who were not.
8/4/2020
NFES 2020083 Forum Guide to Data Governance
The Forum Guide to Data Governance highlights the multiple ways that data governance programs can benefit education agencies. It addresses the management, collection, use, and communication of education data; the development of effective and clearly defined data systems and policies to handle the complexity and necessary protection of data; and the continuous monitoring and decisionmaking needed in a regularly shifting data landscape. The Guide also features 12 case studies from state and local education agencies that have implemented effective data governance programs.
7/7/2020
REL 2020005 Associations between the qualifications of middle school Algebra I teachers and student math achievement
This report describes the associations between middle school teacher qualifications and student achievement in Algebra I. The authors used data provided by the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Results suggest that the teacher qualification most strongly associated with middle school student achievement in Algebra I was performance on mathematics certification exams, followed by years of experience teaching mathematics. Teacher performance on mathematics certification exams and years of experience teaching mathematics were also strongly associated with achievement in Algebra I for under-represented and disadvantaged student subgroups.
10/15/2019
NCEE 20194005 Do Charter Middle Schools Improve Students' College Outcomes?
A study from the National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance (NCEE) obtained college enrollment and completion data for students who — more than a decade ago — entered lotteries to be admitted to 31 charter middle schools across the United States. College outcomes were compared for 1,723 randomly selected "lottery winners" and 1,150 randomly selected "lottery losers". The study found that being admitted to a charter middle school did not affect college outcomes. Also, there was not a consistent relationship between a charter school's impact on middle school achievement and the school's impact on college outcomes.
4/25/2019
NCES 2019031 Findings and Recommendations from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2017 Pilot Study of the Middle School Transcript Study (MSTS): Methodological Report, NCES 2019-031
This report summarizes the methodological findings of a pilot study that was designed to test the feasibility of collecting eighth-grade student transcript and course catalog data via electronic submissions.

The transcript data of eighth-grade students from Trial Urban District Assessments (TUDA) schools that participated in the NAEP 2017 eighth-grade mathematics and reading assessments were collected.
1/18/2019
NFES 2019035 Forum Guide to Early Warning Systems
The Forum Guide to Early Warning Systems provides information and best practices to help education agencies plan, develop, implement, and use an early warning system in their agency to inform interventions that improve student outcomes. The document includes a review of early warning systems and their use in education agencies and explains the role of early warning indicators, quality data, and analytical models in early warning systems. It also describes how to adopt an effective system planning process and recommends best practices for early warning system development, implementation, and use. The document highlights seven case studies from state and local education agencies who have implemented, or are in the process of implementing, an early warning system.
11/16/2018
REL 2017235 Examining school-level reading and math proficiency trends and changes in achievement gaps for grades 3-8 in Florida, Mississippi, and North Carolina
The purpose of this study was to use growth curve modeling to investigate school-level reading and mathematics achievement trends on the state accountability assessment in Florida, Mississippi, and North Carolina for grades 3-8. In addition, this study investigated school-level achievement trends for race/ethnicity subgroups and for free or reduced-price lunch eligibility to determine if significant changes in achievement gaps occurred over the 4-6 years studied for each state. Results indicated that in general, average school-level proficiency increased for most subgroups across grades and subjects in all three states. In addition, reductions in achievement gaps were observed for most grades in reading and mathematics. However, achievement gaps remained large despite the observed reductions. The use of growth curve modeling in the current study provides stakeholders in Florida, Mississippi, and North Carolina with a more in-depth understanding of trends in school-level proficiency than would have been possible using just the sample mean.
4/13/2017
NCES 2017056 Certification Status and Experience of U.S. Public School Teachers: Variations Across Student Subgroups
This report provides a snapshot of the extent to which U.S. public schools students are taught by certified and experienced teachers using two available datasets. The Schools and Staffing Survey (SASS) provides a comprehensive picture, as it includes teachers of K–12 students in all subjects and the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) provides a picture specific to grades 4 and 8. In addition, NAEP data are directly related to teachers of two key subjects: reading and mathematics. SASS data are available for the 2011–12 school year and NAEP data are available for 2013 and 2015.
3/21/2017
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