What Works Clearinghouse

Christina Hentges

U.S. Department of Education
July 2007

In the land of education innovation, it helps to know what works. And the What Works Clearinghouse's summer smorgasbord of studies reveals promising practices and programs--those having "positive" or "potentially positive" effects--in areas including dropout prevention, elementary school math, and early childhood education. Some of the winners include Kaplan SpellRead (a literacy program for readers who've fallen behind) and Peer Tutoring and Response Groups (collaborative learning to aid English Language Learners). Other initiatives have proven less effective, such as the Quantum Opportunity Program (a dropout prevention program for high schoolers). Researchers also note which specific parts of a given program are successful and which are not. For example, a literacy program might aid students' comprehension but show no effect on their fluency. Still, contrary to earlier WWC studies, many of the projects actually received positive ratings. (Perhaps now people will stop calling it the "Nothing Works Clearinghouse.") It's worth checking out here.

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