Lessons Learned From High School SLC and Small School Reform Efforts

This resource offers strategies to help make small learning communities effective. Though the brief acknowledges that the structural framework of small learning communities in not in and of itself enough to catalyze school improvement, it describes strategies for rigorous instruction and support that can be paired with small learning communities to help improve high schools.

Distinguishing Difference from Disability: The Common Causes of Racial/Ethnic Disproportionality in Special Education

This report, sponsored by the Equity Alliance at Arizona State University, discusses strategies to understanding and reducing racial/ethnic disproportionality in special education. The author examines the causes and provides specific recommendations, focused on three areas: 1) gaps in curriculum and instructional implementation disproportionately affect struggling learners, 2) inconsistent pre-referral process, and 3) limited beliefs about student ability.

Time To Act: An Agenda for Advancing Adolescent Literacy for College and Career Success

This report discusses the importance of early literacy in order to prepare adolescents to be college and career ready. It states that literacy crosses over into other subject areas such as science and math and problem solving skills in life. The authors suggest that linking instruction to the growing knowledge base on literacy and using current outcome data and best practices can help bridge this gap and lead to more prepared students.

Supporting Effective Teaching Through Teacher Evaluation: A Study of Teacher Evaluation in Five Charter Schools

This report, produced by the Center for American Progress, examines teacher evaluation practices in five charter schools affiliated with three well-established charter management organizations. It notes that overall, charters seem to have more teacher evaluation practices within them and teacher evaluation appears to influence teachers’ instructional capabilities in a positive way.

Supporting High School Teachers with Instructional Approaches for Adolescent Struggling Readers

This study from the Everyone Graduates Center aimed to evaluate the different ways of supporting teachers for implementation quality and impact on student learning. Using a randomized controlled trial design, the study assessed the impact of workshops, detailed lesson plans, and coaching on instruction of high school English language arts teachers. Data were collected over two years on a total of 41 schools with 84 teachers and 1,996 students.

Meeting the Needs of Significantly Struggling Learners in High School: A Look at Approaches to Tiered Intervention

This brief by the National High School Center provides an in-depth look at the implementation and structural issues, as well as the needed support required to successfully institute Response to Intervention (RTI) at the secondary school level. It defines the RTI models, explores benefits and challenges faced at the high school level, shares a snapshot of implementation at the high school level, and outlines the necessary resources needed to support this work.

Response to Intervention: The Future for Secondary Schools

This article from the National Association of Secondary School Principal’s Principal Leadership journal describes response to intervention’s (RTI) tiered process for implementing evidence-based instructional strategies in the regular education setting while frequently measuring student progress to determine whether these practices are effective. It specifies some common components of strong collaborative teams and elements of effective RTI programs.

Adolescent Literacy Resources: Linking Research and Practice

This synthesis reviews the research on adolescent literacy from the past 20 years. Implications for classroom practice are discussed and organized as follows: Instructional Implications, Curricular/Program Implications, Structural/Systemic Implications, Professional Development Implications, and Assessment Implications. Implications for classroom practice based on this review are discussed.

Approaches to Dropout Prevention: Heeding Early Warning Signs with Appropriate Interventions

This report from the National High School Center outlines steps that schools can take to identify at-risk students and provide the necessary support systems and relevant interventions to assist students in obtaining a high school diploma. Further, the report discusses the use of early warning data systems to target interventions for groups and individual students, offers a variety of best practice approaches undertaken by higher-performing high schools, and presents effective programs that are currently being implemented to stem the dropout problem.


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