The majority of schools teach to the middle.
Most schools teach through a lecture-based model designed to achieve a narrow goal: improved ELA/Math test scores. Students are bored and unmotivated: by high school as many as 40-60% of students become chronically disengaged from school (Klem & Connell, 2004). Achievement suffers (only 53% of high school graduates are college and career ready), and students lag in skills employers value most, like critical thinking and problem solving (“Are High Schools Preparing Students…”; It Takes More than a Major…).
Acknowledging student variability can accelerate mastery of academic standards.
Student-centered approaches to teaching and learning can accelerate mastery. SAGA Innovations, an Overdeck Family Foundation grantee providing high dosage tutoring to high needs students, was able to reduce the black white achievement gap by almost 50% in one year–and lead to higher grades across subjects.
Social-emotional learning correlates to improved academic achievement.
Multiple studies have found that students who engage with experiences that develop social-emotional competencies earn more course credit, higher grades, and higher standardized test scores (Durlak et al., 2011).
The learning environment matters.
Learning is most effective when content is meaningful and relevant, when adults build caring relationships with their students, and when students are in classrooms that foster a sense of belonging and a growth mindset (Duke et al., 2017; Dweck, 2006; The Science of Learning, 2016; Quay, 2017). Recent Overdeck-supported studies by researchers in the Mindset Scholars Network showed that 9th grade students with stronger reports of growth mindset earned higher core course GPAs than students reporting a more fixed mindset (Hennessey, 2018a). A second study found that math teacher messaging that supported growth mindset, belonging, purpose, and affirmation explained roughly 29% of the variance in student test score growth, exceeding the predictive power of established classroom practice inventories (Hennessey, 2018b).
SAGA Tutoring Innovations
High dosage math tutoring for the students that need it most--with results that extend across subjects and grades.
Harvard Strategic Data Project
Providing data professionals a way to make an impact outside of Silicon Valley and Wall Street.
NewSchools Venture Fund
Supporting schools that expand the measure of student success beyond academic.
Invest in developing and studying student-centered school models and practices that foster an expanded definition of success.
Scale access to high-quality professional learning, instructional resources, and providers that enable the development of rigorous personalized academics, socioemotional development, and/or engaging learning environments.
Build school and partner capacity for monitoring and collecting academic, social-emotional, and learning environment measures that are used to create quality educational opportunities for all children.
Establish a rigorous evidence base for student-centered learning.
What are conditions for successful student-centered learning? What support do schools, particularly traditional district schools, need in order to effectively implement student-centered learning models?
What are key lessons learned for schools implementing student-centered learning models?
What practices and models are most effective in personalizing learning while also maintaining rigor?
What types of education technology are most impactful in supporting in-school learning?
What are best practices for scaling student-centered learning model from one context to another?
Page Data Sources:
“Are High Schools Preparing Students to Be College- and Career-ready?” The Hechinger Report. April 06, 2016.
It Takes More than a Major: Employer Priorities for College Learning and Student Success. 2013. Washington, DC: Association of American Colleges and Universities and Hart Research Associates.
Duke, N. D., Halvorsen, A-L., Strachan, S. L., Kim, J., Konstantopoulos, S. (2017). Putting PBL to the Test: The Impact of Project-based Learning on Second-grade Students’ Social Studies and Literacy Learning and Motivation.
Durlak, J., Weissberg, R., Dymnicki, A., Taylor, R., & Schellinger, K. (2011). The Impact of Enhancing Students’ Social and Emotional Learning: A Meta-Analysis of School-Based Universal Interventions. Child Development, 82(1), 405-432.
Dweck, C. S. (2006). Mindset: The new psychology of success. New York, NY: Random House.
Hennessey, Jess (2018a). Mindsets and the Learning Environment: Relationships Between Mindsets, Socioeconomic Status, and Academic Achievement. http://mindsetscholarsnetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Relationships-Between-Mindsets-Socioeconomic-Status-and-Academic-Achievement.pdf
Hennessey, Jess (2018b). Mindsets and the Learning Environment: Understanding “Pscyhologically Wise” Classroom Practices on Student Achievement. http://mindsetscholarsnetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/Understanding-the-Impact-of-%E2%80%9CPsychologically-Wise%E2%80%9D-Classroom-Practices-on-Student-Achievement.pdf
Klem, A. M., & Connell, J. P. (2004). Relationships Matter: Linking Teacher Support to Student Engagement and Achievement. Journal of School Health, 74, 262-273.
The Science of Learning, 2016. Deans for Impact. http://www.deansforimpact.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/The_Science_of_Learning.pdf
Quay, Lisa (2017). Leveraging Mindset Science to Design Educational Environments that Nurture People’s Natural Drive to Learn. http://mindsetscholarsnetwork.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/Learning-Enviros-Research-Brief.pdf