Education

School Cost Accounting: What Do We Know and How Do We Get There?

School Cost Accounting: What Do We Know and How Do We Get There?
Public Performance & Management Review, 35 (1): 29-53.

Denison, Dwight, William Hartman, Leanna Stiefel and Michele Deegan
01/01/2011

This paper describes a model for assessing and reporting schoollevel resources. State and local decision-makers have been seeking ways to obtain such information for more than a decade, but there is as yet no easy, accessible way to do so and no way to satisfy both internal and external users of the information. The model, based on case studies in Pennsylvania (with successful replication in New York), resolves many of the issues. The seven principles that guide the model are explained, challenges in developing school-level reports are generalized, and resolutions to the challenges in three states are compared. The conclusion draws out implications for the future of regularly collected school resource data.

The Effect of Immigrant Communities on Foreign-Born Student Achievement

The Effect of Immigrant Communities on Foreign-Born Student Achievement
International Migration Review, 45(3):675-701

Conger, Dylan, Leanna Stiefel, and Amy Ellen Schwartz
01/01/2011

This paper explores the effect of the human capital characteristics of co-ethnic immigrant communities on foreign-born students’ math achievement. We use data on New York City public school foreign-born students from 39 countries merged with census data on the characteristics of the immigrant household heads in the city from each nation of origin and estimate regressions of student achievement on co-ethnic immigrant community characteristics, controlling for student and school attributes. We find that the income and size of the co-ethnic immigrant community has no effect on immigrant student achievement, while the percent of college graduates may have a small positive effect. In addition, children in highly English proficient immigrant communities test slightly lower than children from less proficient communities. The results suggest that there may be some protective factors associated with immigrant community members’ education levels and use of native languages.

The Path Not Taken: How Does School Organization Affect 8th Grade Achievement?

The Path Not Taken: How Does School Organization Affect 8th Grade Achievement?
Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, 33 (3): 293-317

Schwartz, Amy Ellen, Leanna Stiefel, Ross Rubenstein, and Jeffrey Zabel
01/01/2011

Although rearranging school organizational features is a popular school reform, little research exists to inform policymakers about how grade spans affect achievement. This article examines how grade spans and the school transitions that students make between fourth and eighth grade shape student performance in eighth grade. The authors estimate the impact of grade span paths on eighth grade performance, controlling for school and student characteristics and correcting for attrition bias and quality of original school. They find that students moving from K-4 to 5-8 schools outperform students on other paths. Results suggest four possible explanations for the findings- the number and timing of school changes, the size of within-school cohorts, and the stability of peer cohorts.

What Do AEFA Members Say? Summary of Results of an Education Finance and Policy Survey

What Do AEFA Members Say? Summary of Results of an Education Finance and Policy Survey
Education Finance and Policy, 6 (2): 267-292

Stiefel, Amy Ellen Schwartz and Anne Rotenberg
01/01/2011

In the spring of 2008 the authors surveyed members of the American Education Finance Association (AEFA) to gain insight into their views on education policy issues. The results summarize opinions of this broad group of education researchers and practitioners, providing AEFA members and education leaders with access to views that may be helpful as they consider policies to analyze or pursue. This article reports the results in six areas of current policy interest. How should education aid be distributed? Is school choice a good thing? Does school finance reform work? What has accountability wrought? Can school policies close the black-white achievement gap? And how should teachers be compensated? Our findings identify areas of substantial agreement as well as areas where there is disagreement. For example, there is considerable agreement that state and federal governments should provide additional funding for disadvantaged students but disagreement on how to measure school finance adequacy.

The Other Danger...Scholasticism in Academic Research

The Other Danger...Scholasticism in Academic Research
Academic Question, Vol. 23 no. 4., pp. 404-419. 10.1007/s12129-010-9192-9

Mead, L.
12/01/2010

Most members of the National Association of Scholars worry about the politicization of the university. Academia gives undue preference to racial minorities in student admissions and faculty appointments. Teaching and research is often slanted toward minority grievances and Third World claims against the United States. At most leading universities and colleges, the faculty is so liberal that conservative viewpoints are scarcely admitted, even though in society politics and culture have trended rightward in the last thirty years. Leftism has become a defining feature of academe.1 All this violates the academy’s own values, which claim to stress open and honest dialogue regardless of politics.

However, critics have largely overlooked another danger to the university— scholasticism. That term originally referred to medieval philosophy, but it has come to connote academic work that pursues refinement at the expense of substance. Some medieval scholastics debated how many angels could dance on the head of a pin. Likewise, today’s academics often address very narrow questions, and they are often preoccupied with method and the past literature of their fields. The university claims an ability to treat the large questions facing society, but today’s faculties typically work on much smaller issues confined to academic specialties. Scholasticism has no politics; it will not likely exacerbate political correctness. Yet it threatens the essence of the university as a philosophic enterprise.

Here I speak mostly about scholasticism in political science, my own discipline, but similar changes have occurred in other social sciences and academia as a whole.

A School-Randomized Clinical Trial of an Integrated Social-Emotional Learning and Literacy Intervention: Impacts on Third-Grade Outcomes

A School-Randomized Clinical Trial of an Integrated Social-Emotional Learning and Literacy Intervention: Impacts on Third-Grade Outcomes
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 78(6): 829-842

Jones, S.M., Brown, J.L, Hoglund, W.L.G., & J.L. Aber.
12/01/2010

Objective: To report experimental impacts of a universal, integrated school-based intervention in social–emotional learning and literacy development on change over 1 school year in 3rd-grade children's social–emotional, behavioral, and academic outcomes. Method: This study employed a school-randomized, experimental design and included 942 3rd-grade children (49% boys; 45.6% Hispanic/Latino, 41.1% Black/African American, 4.7% non-Hispanic White, and 8.6% other racial/ethnic groups, including Asian, Pacific Islander, Native American) in 18 New York City public elementary schools. Data on children's social–cognitive processes (e.g., hostile attribution biases), behavioral symptomatology (e.g., conduct problems), and literacy skills and academic achievement (e.g., reading achievement) were collected in the fall and spring of 1 school year. Results: There were main effects of the 4Rs Program after 1 year on only 2 of the 13 outcomes examined. These include children's self-reports of hostile attributional biases (Cohen's d = 0.20) and depression ( d = 0.24). As expected based on program and developmental theory, there were impacts of the intervention for those children identified by teachers at baseline with the highest levels of aggression ( d = 0.32–0.59) on 4 other outcomes: children's self-reports of aggressive fantasies, teacher reports of academic skills, reading achievement scaled scores, and children's attendance. Conclusions: This report of effects of the 4Rs intervention on individual children across domains of functioning after 1 school year represents an important first step in establishing a better understanding of what is achievable by a schoolwide intervention such as the 4Rs in its earliest stages of unfolding. The first-year impacts, combined with our knowledge of sustained and expanded effects after a second year, provide evidence that this intervention may be initiating positive developmental cascades both in the general population of students and among those at highest behavioral risk.

Using cross-curricular, problem-based learning to promote understanding of poverty in urban communities

Using cross-curricular, problem-based learning to promote understanding of poverty in urban communities
Journal of Social Work Education, 46(1), 147 – 156.

Gardner, D., Tuchman, E., & Hawkins, R.
11/01/2010

This article describes the use of problem-based learning to teach students about the scope and consequences of urban poverty through an innovative cross-curricular project. We illustrate the process, goals, and tasks of the Community Assessment Project, which incorporates community-level assessment, collection and analysis of public data, and social policy analysis and planning. Students in three master's classes (Social Work Research I, Ending Poverty: Models for Social Change and Social Action, and Advanced Social Policy in Aging) worked in self-directed groups to explore the impact of economic insecurity on our most vulnerable clients. The project engaged students, linked research and policy practice, and helped to educate the next generation of social workers about urban poverty and strategies for community-based research and practice.

The American Single Mother

The American Single Mother

Women of Color Policy Network
10/01/2010

Across race and age groups, education is the single greatest predictor of single-motherhood in America. This policy brief offers a profile of the American single woman mother, contemporary population trends, and the economic security of this growing demographic. See also our full report "At Ropes End: Single Women Mothers, Wealth and Asset Accumulation in the United States.

Understanding the Political Context of "New " Policy Issues: The Use of the Advocacy Coalition Framework in the Case of Expanded After-School Programs

Understanding the Political Context of "New " Policy Issues: The Use of the Advocacy Coalition Framework in the Case of Expanded After-School Programs
Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory 20(2): 335-355

Brecher C, Brazill C, Weitzman BC, and D Silver.
04/01/2010

This article uses the Advocacy Coalition Framework to identify the stakeholders and their coalitions in the arena of after-school policy, which drew much new attention beginning in the early 1990s in many American cities. Using evidence from case studies in five cities, we show how the framework can be extended beyond stakeholder analysis to include identification of core and secondary value conflicts and of opportunities for policy analysis to help strengthen coalitions and pressures for change. Coalitions in each of the cities differ over core values relating to the purposes of after-school programs (academics versus “fun”), but policy analysts can promote common goals by developing options to deal with the secondary conflicts over the relative importance of facilities versus program content, the modes of collaboration between public schools and community based organizations, and the incentives for public school teachers to engage in staffing after-school programs.

Teaching About Health Disparities Using a Social Determinants Framework

Teaching About Health Disparities Using a Social Determinants Framework
Journal of General Internal Medicine, Vol. 25, Issue 2 Supp. (May 2010), pp. 182-185. DOI: 10.1007/s11606-009-1230-3

Chokshi, D.
03/10/2010

The intersection of two trends in health intervention has the potential to fundamentally change the practice of medicine. First, research into the social determinants of health is revealing the mechanisms by which living conditions cause disease. Second, the restructuring of primary care around preventive interventions represents the convergence point of medicine and public health. These trends have profound implications for medical education. Whereas traditional educational paradigms favor a “bottom-up” approach to disease—focusing on molecular origins or organ systems—new paradigms must emphasize the entire causal chain of ill health to facilitate the understanding of novel interventions available to tomorrow’s clinician.

Pages

Subscribe to Education