NEPC Resources on Poverty
Investing for "Impact" or Investing for Profit? Social Impact Bonds, Pay for Success, and the Next Wave of Privatization of Social Services and Education
NEPC Review: Fewer Children Left Behind: Lessons From the Dramatic Achievement Gains of the 1990s and 2000s (Fordham Institute, October 2019)
Reviews Worth Sharing: The Effectiveness of Secondary Math Teachers from Teach for America and the Teaching Fellows Programs (Institute of Education Sciences, September 2013)
NEPC Review: The Michigan Context and Performance Report Card: High Schools 2018 (Mackinac Center, January 2019)
NEPC Fellow Douglas Harris Responds to Critiques of Study, and a Q&A on the Effect of New Orleans School Reforms
NEPC Review: Balancing Act: Schools, Neighborhoods, and Racial Imbalance (Brookings Institution, November 2017)
Education Interview of the Month: Greg Smith Interviews Ken Zeichner on Independent Teacher Prep Programs
NEPC Review: Renewing Our Cities (EdChoice, March 2017) and CPR Scholarships (American Enterprise Institute, March 2017)
Law and Order in School and Society: How Discipline and Policing Policies Harm Students of Color, and What We Can Do About It
The Manhattan Institute's SchoolGrades.org evaluates and assigns grades, using reading and math test scores, to U.S. schools and compares schools across their respective states and to other countries. They apparently use a four-step process: (1) average two state test scores; (2) “norm” these results to the NAEP exam; (3) make an adjustment to this national “normed” measure using free and reduced price lunch data to account for SES; and (4) “norm” these results to the international PISA exam.
NEPC Review: Lessons From State Performance on NAEP: Why Some High-Poverty Students Score Better Than Others
Diverse Housing, Diverse Schooling: How Policy Can Stabilize Racial Demographic Change in Cities and Suburbs
This policy brief provides a review of the social science evidence on the housing-school nexus, highlighting the problem of reoccurring racial segregation and inequality absent strong, proactive federal or state integration policies. Three areas of research are covered: (a) the nature of the housing-school nexus, (b) the impact of school desegregation and housing integration policies on the nexus, and (c) the connection between the implicit racial biases literature (the “perceptions of place”) to research on school and housing choices.
NEPC Review: The Hidden Value of Curriculum Reform: Do States and Districts Receive the Most Bang for Their Curriculum Buck?
A recent Center for American Progress report, The Hidden Value of Curriculum Reform, draws bold conclusions about the high payoff of better textbooks. It finds that textbooks are rarely chosen based on evidence of effectiveness and true alignment with standards. It also finds that elementary mathematics textbook prices vary little, regardless of quality or whether or not a state recommends particular texts for adoption. While these elements of the report have merit, it then overreaches.
A recent report published by a new project at Brookings called “Evidence Speaks” claims that advocates exaggerate unmet need as well as the cost of universal pre-kindergarten (UPK). It estimates that 69 percent of all four-year-olds already attend preschool and that universal access tops out at 80 percent enrollment. To close this modest gap, the report proposes a means-tested subsidy for half-day preschool that fully funds only those in poverty. The estimated cost is $2 to $4 billion per year.
“When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean – nothing more nor less.”
“The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.”
Kevin Welner provides a commentary on this morning’s release of results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP). The lower grades on the Nation’s Report Card are not good news for anyone, but they are particularly bad news for those who have been vigorously advocating for “no excuses” approaches — standards-based testing and accountability policies like No Child Left Behind.
In this policy brief, Jennnifer King Rice revisits Horace Mann's vision of education as the balance wheel of society. She describes the current school system with its own inequities, far from the needed counter-balance to the opportunity gaps that arise from poverty, discrimination and other outside-school forces.
NEPC Review: Increasing Education: What it Will and Will Not Do for Earnings and Earnings Inequality
A recent report discusses three commonly held propositions about education’s economic power: 1) education is the critical factor in creating economic prosperity; 2) college degrees increase earning power; and 3) increasing educational attainment will narrow income inequality. The report endorses the first two propositions but finds the third inaccurate, concluding that a significant increase in educational attainment is not likely to significantly decrease wage inequality.