Billions in School Improvement Spending But Not Much Student Improvement

Billions in School Improvement Spending But Not Much Student Improvement

Date
Thursday, January 19, 2017

Excerpt from the Education Week piece by Sarah D. Sparks:

Seven years and $7 billion dollars later, the federal School Improvement Grants program seems in the final analysis not to have yielded much in terms of improved student achievement.

The Institute of Education Sciences on Thursday released its final evaluation of the program, which Congress killed last year.

...

"There were such high expectations for the program when it first started, that these would become dramatically different and better schools," said Robin Lake, the director of the Center on Reinventing Public Education at the University of Washington at Bothell. "They didn't hit dramatically different; unfortunately, they didn't even hit better."

...

"As schools and states consider evidence-based approaches for turning around low-performing schools, it's important for researchers to continue conducting rigorous studies to find out 'what works' to improve student achievement," [said Lisa Dragoset, a senior policy researcher for Mathematica Policy Research, who co-wrote the evaluation].

Lake agreed: "The amount of money spent here was a lot, so contextually we're talking about billions of dollars spent to little avail," she said. "That should give all of us pause when it comes to big new interventions. We need to have an evidence base before we ask everyone to implement them."

...

Read the full article.

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