Publications

Under the Every Student Succeeds Act, the federal School Improvement Grants program is gone, but the goal of school improvement remains. States must now use seven percent of their Title I allocation for these efforts, but are no longer constrained by a prescribed menu of intervention options. That...
No Child Left Behind meant well, but it had a pernicious flaw: It created strong incentives for schools to focus all their energy on helping low-performing students get over a modest “proficiency” bar. Meanwhile, it ignored the educational needs of high achievers, who were likely to pass state...
Eleven weeks ago, in High Stakes for High Achievers: State Accountability in the Age of ESSA , the Fordham Institute reported that current K–8 accountability systems in most states give teachers scant reason to attend to the learning of high-achieving youngsters. We coupled that bleak finding with...
No Child Left Behind meant well, but it had a pernicious flaw: It created strong incentives for schools to focus all their energy on helping low-performing students get over a modest “proficiency” bar. Meanwhile, it ignored the educational needs of high achievers, who were likely to pass state...
In Common Core Math in the K-8 Classroom: Results from a National Teacher Survey, Jennifer Bay Williams, Ann Duffett, and David Griffith take a close look at how educators are implementing the Common Core math standards in classrooms across the nation. A nationally representative survey of over one...
Like other states, Ohio has over the past few years put into place a standards and accountability framework with the clear goal of readying every student for college or career when she graduates high school. Given the difficulty and the outcry as a result of these changes, one may ask why we...
Gadfly editorial by Chester E. Finn, Jr. and Amber M. Northern While the merit and politics of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) have been much debated and discussed, one topic has been virtually ignored: What do the standards portend for America’s high-ability students? This brief addresses...
The Common Core is at a critical juncture. While many surveys show that support for the standards themselves remains strong, implementation has not been without major challenges. State Accountability in the Transition to Common Core , a new policy brief from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute,...
by Katie Cristol and Brinton S. Ramsey Foreword by Amber M. Northern and Michael J. Petrilli The Common Core State Standards are in place in forty-five states—and in many of those jurisdictions, educators are hard at work trying to bring them to life in their schools and classrooms. But how is...
Children cannot be truly literate without knowing about history, science, art, music, literature, civics, geography, and more. Indeed, they cannot satisfactorily comprehend what they read unless they possess the background knowledge that makes such comprehension possible. Yet most American primary...

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