We focus our efforts in working with state departments of education in the following five areas:
With the increased mandate to ensure that schools and districts are effectively supporting the achievement of all students, states have had to develop and pursue new strategies and efforts to foster and assist significant improvement efforts in schools and districts. In many states, despite these well-intentioned efforts, the number of schools and districts in need of improvement continue to grow as a result of both the ever-increasing benchmark for achievement as well as the fact that achievement is not improving in far too many schools and districts.
Given this reality, and initially supported through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, we have worked with several states and districts in helping them to seek coherence in their improvement efforts, and have developed a number of tools and processes toward that end.
In particular, we are currently working with the Maryland Department of Education as they develop and pilot an innovative approach to leveraging the resources of the department and other state organizations in support of partner districts’ efforts to build district capacity.
In Pennsylvania, we are assisting the Delaware County Intermediate Unit in their work with the Pennsylvania Department of Education as they develop a system of school improvement efforts supported by a portfolio of on-line tools and resources for statewide school improvement. Our support comes in the form of ongoing formative evaluation of the activities as they develop their assistance efforts and resources.
Building on this work, we continue to explore, assist, and assess state systems of support in partnership with states and state organizations.