Updates

The 2020-21 Future Forward Literacy Program: Implementation and Impact During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Future Forward is an early elementary literacy program that integrates one-on-one tutoring with family engagement to support literacy skill-building and the social development of students. In the 2020-21 school year, as part of an Education Innovation and Research (EIR) Mid-Phase grant, the impact of Future Forward on reading achievement was tested with a randomized control study of students in nine schools. Although not statistically significant, the overall impact of Future Forward was estimated at between 0.09 and 0.10 standard deviations, depending on model specifications. A smaller number of schools and implementation challenges, both resulting from COVID-19, hindered our ability to measure the impact of Future Forward. Even considering the reduced power of the study and implementation challenges, we found strong evidence that Future Forward had a positive impact on underserved students facing more challenges learning to read. Future Forward had roughly three times the impact on Black students (0.34 standard deviations, p =.095) and five times the impact on Black male students (0.54 standard deviation, p =.052) than the overall impact. Black male students with more developed reading skills benefitted even more from their participation in Future Forward (0.74 standard deviations, p < .001). View the full report here.

February 22, 2022

New WEERP report about school efforts to promote equity

In this report from the Wisconsin Educator Effectiveness Research Partnership, school administrators and teachers share their experiences promoting equity in their schools. The results suggest some schools see promoting equity as a critical need. However, most other schools are only somewhat focused on it. Schools engaging in equity has typically involved superficial efforts such as book groups. Few schools have engaged in the systemic changes necessary to promote equity.

January 25, 2022

New WEDSR Dashboard allows Wisconsin Schools and Districts to Explore their Professional Culture

The Wisconsin Educator Development Support and Retention (WEDSR) Survey is a powerful tool that Wisconsin Schools and Districts can use to measure the strength and weaknesses of their professional culture. The new WEDSR dashboard 1.0 allows schools and districts to track changes to their professional culture over time and to benchmark their results against statewide results of like schools and districts. Only districts with a high response rate on the WEDSR are provided private access to this tool. Email us if you have any questions about this tool at sreed-info@uwm.edu.

January 4, 2022

WEERP examines evidence of bias and discrimination reflected in Wisconsin Educator Effectiveness Ratings

In this study, we examine statewide effectiveness ratings data of over 55,000 educators for evidence of bias and discrimination. Bias can take many forms that diminish the ability of educators of color to succeed, such as being assigned more challenging classrooms with more underserved students or being viewed by their administrator less positively because of their race. Acting on bias and assigning low effectiveness ratings to an educator of color is a form of discrimination. The results of this study suggest ratings assigned to educators of color are discriminatory. Administrators view White female educators as the most effective, with Black and Asian male educators viewed as the least effective; 89% and 78% of White female educators are rated as more effective than the average Black and Latinx male educator, respectively. The performance appraisal process is just the tip of the iceberg regarding the negative impacts of bias on educators of color in Wisconsin.
View full report here.

June 30, 2021

Improving Wisconsin school professional culture reduces racialized achievement gaps

In this longitudinal study (from 2016 to 2019) of 211 Wisconsin schools, we examined the impact that schools with a strong professional culture have on the achievement gaps between Black, White, and Latinx students. If more schools serving Black and Latinx students were organized to improve, with a strong professional culture, our school system would be more equitable, more anti-racist, and achievement gaps would be reduced.

Full report available here.

October 12, 2020

New SREed report examines predictors of college success for former MPS students

As part of our evaluation of the MPS Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs (GEAR UP) grant, we analyze the connection between measures of high school performance, such as AP course participation, participation in GEAR UP programming, ACT scores, and GPA with first-year college GPA.

May 21, 2020

Lessons learned from a school in Hong Kong that switched to distance-learning during the COVID-19 pandemic

The lessons learned from a Hong Kong school’s efforts to switch to distance-learning while also dealing with the impact of COVID-19 may be of use to other schools struggling through their own transition to distance learning.Their experience stresses the importance of strong school leadership and two-way communication for building an effective system, helping teachers, parents, and students successfully transition to that system, and for helping people manage the stress and isolation of COVID-19.

April 13, 2020

UWM publishes news article that features our study on teacher retention and race in Wisconsin schools.

https://uwm.edu/news/uwm-researcher-studies-importance-of-diversity-in-recruiting-retaining-teachers/

 

January 15, 2020