Transformative, Evidence-Based Ideas

Sean Gill

Research Analyst

Background

Sean Gill is an education policy expert, with a focus on personalized learning, school finance, portfolio management, and district-charter collaboration. As a research analyst at the Center on Reinventing Public Education, Sean has led research projects, managed outreach, and planned & facilitated practitioner convenings. He began his career at the California State Auditor’s Office leading legislative audits/program evaluations. He subsequently provided research and policy support for school choice and education finance legislation across 18 states at StudentsFirst (now 50CAN). Originally from Carlsbad, California, Sean holds a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of California, Davis and a master’s degree in public policy from Pepperdine University.

Publications

Sean Gill

  • Research Reports    

Special Education at a Crossroads: Ensuring Equity and Inclusion for Students with Disabilities

Lanya McKittrick, Katy Bateman, Sean Gill

This brief outlines the ongoing challenges and offers recommendations to reshape how America’s schools serve students with disabilities.

  • The Lens    

In Washington State, COVID-19 created a unique opportunity for charter-district collaboration

Georgia Heyward, Sean Gill

Charters and traditional schools are often portrayed as at odds with each other. But this collaboration shows that isn’t always the case—and it shows promise for the future.

  • Research Reports    

Promising Practices Drive Progress: Closing Learning Gaps for Students with Disabilities

Georgia Heyward, Sean Gill

This brief highlights six promising practices for serving students with disabilities after the pandemic.

  • The Lens    

As urban districts prepare to reopen, most are not doing enough to communicate how they will keep students and teachers safe

Sean Gill, Bree Dusseault

As districts move to offer more in-person learning this spring, many teachers, parents and students remain hesitant, worrying whether schools — and their specific campuses and classrooms — are safe.

  • The Lens    

Help wanted: School systems must act now to support graduating seniors

Georgia Heyward, Sean Gill, Ashley Jochim

COVID-19 disrupted the already tenuous system of support for students graduating high school and going on to college or career. Students from low-income households and students of color have been hit hardest.

  • Research Reports    

Toward Understanding Unionization’s Impact on Charter School Students

Sean Gill, Ashley Jochim

In this brief, we set out to understand how unionization may or may not shape practices central to charter schools’ ability to serve students.

  • The Lens    

Mapping the landscape of learning in New England

Sean Gill, Ashley Jochim, Cara Pangelinan

The COVID-19 pandemic disrupted public education in ways that were unimaginable at the beginning of the year. Students, parents, and teachers have struggled to make remote learning work.

  • Research Reports    

Support Every Student: Lessons from Five Charter Schools on Effective Special Education During the Pandemic

Lanya McKittrick, Betheny Gross, Sivan Tuchman, Sean Gill

In-depth case studies of five charter schools reveal lessons learned on educating students with disabilities remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • The Lens    

Urgent action by states, fed needed to clarify school reopening decisions

Ashley Jochim, Sean Gill, Robin Lake

Schools around the country are shuttered again this fall as school systems continue to face chaotic conditions as result of the pandemic.

  • The Lens    

How 18 top charter school networks are refining remote learning for the fall

Sean Gill, Lanya McKittrick

Eighteen leading charter school organizations are strengthening curriculum offerings and modifying schedules — although their plans are less detailed than districts’ on remote learning improvements or lessons learned from the spring.

  • The Lens    

Districts Are Missing an Opportunity to Innovate as Most Take Traditional Approaches to Summer School

Bree Dusseault, Sean Gill, Lisa Chu

Note from the authors: We share our most recent COVID-19 findings during a critical moment, as the recurring impact of systemic violence against Black people devastates our communities and the nation.

  • The Lens    

Four Steps States Can Take to Level the Remote Learning Playing Field

Ashley Jochim, Georgia Heyward, Sean Gill

The COVID-19 crisis has laid bare some old truths: where you live and what school you attend has profound impacts on what students can expect to get out of public education.

  • The Lens    

Summer Haze: School Districts Slow to Communicate What Will Happen After the School Year Ends

Sean Gill, Lisa Chu

The end of an unusual school year is on the horizon, yet few districts have provided details on what, if any, summer learning opportunities their students will have. 

  • The Lens    

The Power of “How Are You?”: Teacher Check-ins in Remote Learning

Alice Opalka, Sean Gill

Last week, Fairfax County in Virginia delayed the launch of remote learning due to technical challenges. Earlier in the month, Los Angeles Unified School District reported that about one third of their over 600,000 students were not logging into their online learning platforms regularly, and that about 15,000 had been completely absent since online learning began.

  • Research Reports    

After Decades of Financial Challenge, How Can Oakland Reorient Itself?

Sean Gill, Ashley Jochim, Robin Lake

In this brief, we explore evidence related to the causes of OUSD’s financial crisis and why previous efforts to right the ship have failed.

  • Research Reports    

Seizing the Opportunity: Educating Students with Disabilities in Charter Schools

Michael DeArmond, Sean Gill, Betheny Gross, Georgia Heyward, Robin Lake

This report is the first step in developing an evidence base about how charter schools meet the needs of unique learners, how they can improve in this work, and what aspects of chartering as a governance model support or impede their ability to do so.

  • The Lens    

LeBron James’s School Drew Lots of Attention, but It Doesn’t Take an NBA Star for Districts to Forge Innovative Partnerships

Sean Gill

Last fall, NBA star LeBron James and his foundation received a lot of attention for opening the I Promise Academy in partnership with Akron Public Schools.

  • The Lens    

Trust, Autonomy, Achievement Gap — 3 Areas Where Ferebee’s Work in Indianapolis Could Help Him Succeed as D.C. Chancellor

Sean Gill, Shannon Murtagh

It’s perhaps no surprise that Mayor Muriel Bowser selected Lewis Ferebee to be the next chancellor of D.C. Public Schools. His work at Indianapolis Public Schools made him a rising star nationally.

  • The Lens    

Partnering with Districts to Support System Transformation: An Interview with Samantha Olson of the Colorado Education Initiative

Sean Gill

Samantha Olson is the Vice President of Strategy for the Colorado Education Initiative (CEI), which supports districts and schools in personalized learning and systems change.

  • The Lens    

Reflecting on the Portfolio Strategy and School Improvement in San Antonio

Sean Gill

A 15-minute drive from the Alamo, Ira C. Ogden Elementary School is in its first year of an ambitious turnaround effort.

  • The Lens    

Creating District-Charter Partnerships in the Lone Star State

Sean Gill

The State of Texas passed an innovation law (Senate Bill 1882) in summer 2017 to foster partnership schools, much like those profiled in CRPE’s recent brief.

  • The Lens    

What Continuous Improvement Networks Should Learn from District-Charter Compacts

Sean Gill

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation recently announced a new focus on supporting networks of middle and high schools. These Networks for School Improvement are intended to support continuous improvement—built on collecting data and testing solutions—in order to tackle some of public education’s most pressing challenges.

  • Research Reports    

Opening the Schoolhouse Door: Helping Charter Schools Access Space in District-Owned Facilities

Sean Gill

This paper reviews state policies on providing charter schools with facilities and recommends better incentives for districts to share space.

  • The Lens    

District Schools? Charters? In Indianapolis, Partnership Schools Offer A Third Way

Sean Gill

In 1997, Paul Hill published his book Reinventing Public Education: How Contracting Can Transform America’s Schools (the center where I work at the University of Washington was founded on the ideas presented).

  • Research Reports    

Partnership Schools: New Governance Models for Creating Quality School Options in Districts

Sean Gill, Christine Campbell

This brief examines a promising new “third way” approach to school improvement and provides guidance for district and charter leaders and policymakers considering partnership schools.

  • Research Reports    

Bridging the District-Charter Divide to Help More Students Succeed

Robin Lake, Sean Gill, Alice Opalka

Based on six years of research, this report explores why a growing number of districts and charter schools are choosing to work together, the costs and benefits of different types of cooperation, and the real impacts of successful collaboration on students and families.

  • Research Reports    

Herding Cats: Managing Diverse Charter School Interests in Collaboration Efforts

Sean Gill, Robin Lake

This paper looks at why many cities have missed opportunities to create more lasting relationships between their district and charter sectors, and offers suggestions for fostering stronger partnerships that could help improve outcomes for all of the students in their cities.

  • The Lens    

The State of Florida Takes a Leadership Role in District-Charter Collaboration: An Interview with Adam Emerson

Sean Gill

The Florida Department of Education has provided two competitive grants to Duval County and Miami-Dade County to foster district-charter collaboration. CRPE research analyst Sean Gill spoke with Adam Emerson, the Florida Department of Education’s charter schools director, about his thoughts on how the collaboration work is progressing.

  • Research Reports    

Suburban Schools: The Unrecognized Frontier in Public Education

Sean Gill, Jordan Posamentier, Paul Hill

This paper reviews trends around changing student populations in suburban America and the accompanying demands facing suburban public school systems.

  • The Lens    

The Charter-District Relationship: Is Generating Goodwill Enough?

Sean Gill

With the support of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, there are now 21 cities in which leaders have signed official District-Charter Collaboration Compacts.

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