Subject: Studies in the News 06-12 (March 29, 2006)


CALIFORNIA RESEARCH BUREAU
CALIFORNIA STATE LIBRARY
Studies in the News:
Education Supplement


Contents This Week

Introductory Material EDUCATION
   Transforming schools
   Twenty-first century skills
   State-level proficiency goals
   New look at advanced placement
   Improving student performance
   Gaps in mathematics achievement
   Qualitative teacher evaluation
   Education involvement in our economic future
   Standards-based education policy
   Educating to the full potential
   High-performing after-school programs
   Value of after-school programs
   Framework for after-school programs
   Improving support for after-school programs
   Operations and achievement in Edison Schools
   Engaging students for success
   Comprehensive school reform initiative
   English learners
   Dual-language programs
   Part-time work increases student preformance
   College-entry trends for Hispanics
   Education in Mexico
   Assessing student literacy
   Middle and high school literacy
   Adult education and community colleges
   Alternative education for out-of-school youth
   Multiple measures lead to graduation
   High-stakes testing and corruption
   Severe crowding in public schools
PREVIOUSLY IN STUDIES IN THE NEWS
   Studies in the News, November 2005 - March 2006
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News is a very current compilation of items significant to the Legislature and Governor's Office. It is created weekly by the State Library's Research Bureau to supplement the public policy debate in California’s Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Library’s website. This week's list of current articles in various public policy areas is presented below.

Service to State Employees:

  • When available, the URL for the full text of each item is provided.

  • California State Employees may contact the State Information & Reference Center (916-654-0206; cslsirc@library.ca.gov) with the SITN issue number and the item number [S#].

  • All other interested individuals should contact their local library - the items may be available there, or may be borrowed by your local library on your behalf.

The following studies are currently on hand:

EDUCATION

ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT

Getting Smarter, Becoming Fairer: A Progressive Education Agenda for a Stronger Nation. By Cynthia G. Brown and others, Center for American Progress and the Institute for American Future. (The Center, Washington, DC) August 2005. 104 p.

Full Text at: www.americanprogress.org/atf/cf/{E9245FE4-9A2B-43C7-A521-5D6FF2E06E03}/TASKFORCEREPORTFINAL.PDF

["The agenda outlined here calls for a marked transformation of our schools, that requires greater commitment, greater accountability and greater investment. This transformation is essential if we are to provide our children with the education they need and deserve."]

[Request #S61201]

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Assessment of 21st Century Skills: The Current Landscape: Draft. By Margaret Honey and others, Education Development Center's Center for Children and Technology. (Partnership for 21st Century Skills, Tucson, Arizona) 2005. 102 p.

Full Text at: www.21stcenturyskills.org/images/stories/otherdocs/Assessment_Landscape.pdf

["Assessments of student achievement have become an essential component of educational practice and a crucial ingredient of educational reform.... With spending on assessment development expected to grow into the billions of dollars this decade it is vital that our investment focuses not merely on fulfilling federal requirements, but on preparing today’s children to face the challenges of tomorrow’s complex communities and workplaces."]

[Request #S61202]

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"Ultimate Test: Who Is Accountable For Education If Everybody Fails?" By Jennifer McCombs and Stephen J. Carroll, The RAND Corporation. IN: RAND Review, vol. 29, no. 1 (Spring 2005) Online.

Full Text at: www.rand.org/publications/randreview/issues/spring2005/ulttest.html

["Student test scores nationwide raise doubts about the ability of the 50 states to meet the ambitious federal goal that 100 percent of students in each state pass a state-administered achievement test within 12 years. As of 2003, ... the majority of the states are not even close to reaching the goal of 100 percent proficiency."]

[Request #S61203]

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Advanced Placement Report to the Nation: 2005. By College Board. (College Board, New York, New York) 2005. 56 p.

Full Text at: www.collegeboard.com/prod_downloads/about/news_info/ap/2005/ap-report-nation.pdf

["This report uses a combination of state, national, and AP program data in new ways to provide each U.S. state with a context for celebrating its successes, understanding its unique challenges, and setting meaningful and data-driven goals to connect more students to college success."]

[Request #S61204]

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Report Card on American Education: A State-by-State Analysis, 1981-2003. By Andrew T. LeFevre, American Legislative Exchange Council. (The Council, Washington, DC) 2005. 148 p.

Full Text at: www.alec.org/meSWFiles/pdf/2004_Report_Card_on_Education.pdf

["The analysis ... confirms that there is no evident correlation between pupil-to-teacher ratios, spending per pupil, and teacher salaries on the one hand, and educational achievement as measured by various standardized test scores.... Simply spending more taxpayer dollars on education is not enough to improve student performance."]

[Request #S61205]

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Examining Gaps in Mathematics Achievement Among Racial/Ethnic Groups: 1972-1992. By Mark Berends and others, RAND. (RAND, Santa Monica, California) 2005. 163 p.

Full Text at: www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2005/RAND_MG255.pdf

["As our society continues to become increasingly diverse, there is now a national focus on the achievement gaps between students of different social backgrounds (socioeconomic, racial-ethnic, language, and challenges with disabilities)."]

[Request #S61206]

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ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE

Using Student Progress to Evaluate Teachers: A Primer on Value-Added Models. By Henry L. Braun, Policy Information Center. (The Center, Princeton, New Jersery) 2005. 20 p.

Full Text at: www.ets.org/Media/Research/pdf/PICVAM.pdf

[“While welcoming the possibility of introducing a quantitative component into the teacher evaluation process, Henry Braun counsels policymakers to move forward with caution, especially if high stakes are attached to the results.... Braun examines value-added models and concludes with advice for policymakers who are seeking to understand both the potential and the limitations inherent in using such models to evaluate teachers.”]

[Request #S61207]

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Toward A New Golden Age in American Education: How the Internet, the Law and Today’s Students Are Revolutionizing Expectations. By U.S. Department of Education. (The Department, Washington, DC) 2005. 72 p.

Full Text at: www.ed.gov/about/offices/list/os/technology/plan/2004/plan.pdf

["Over the next decade, the United States will face ever increasing competition in the global economy.... It is the responsibility of this nation's educational enterprise --including policymakers -- to help secure our economic future by ensuring that our young people are adequarely prepared to meet these challenges. Today, they are not. This report explores why -- and recommends steps to ensure that they will be."]

[Request #S61208]

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ACADEMIC STANDARDS

Fulfilling the Promise of the Standards Movement. By Laura Lefkowits and Kirsten Miller, Mid-Continent Research for Education and Learning. (Mid-Continent Research for Education and Learning, Aurora, Colorado) April 2005. 8 p.

Full Text at: www.mcrel.org/PDF/PolicyBriefs/5052PI_PBStandardsBrief.pdf

["The project engaged hundreds of participants nationwide in community conversations about what it will take to help all children achieve high academic standards. Some key findings: 1) Accountability based on test scores does not have the same value for the public as it does for policymakers; 2) Parents are considerably more tolerant of variance in outcomes for their own children than accountability policies allow; 3) The public appears to have a very different agenda for school reform than policymakers; and 4) Current accountability systems may be widening the rift between the public and public schools." Public Education Network Weekly (April 29, 2005)1.]

[Request #S61209]

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Delivering the Promise: State Recommendations for Improving No Child Left Behind. By National Conference of State Legislatures. (NCSL, Denver, Colorado) February 2006. 74 p.

["State legislatures and local schools have been working for many years to improve the quality of education for all students and close the achievement gap. The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 ... crystallizes efforts that were under way in states and classrooms all over the country.... The success of American democracy and our economic future depend on a society in which everyone is educated to their full potential."]

[Request #S61210]

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AFTER SCHOOL PROGRAMS

Shared Features of High-Performing After-School Programs: A Follow-up to the TASC Evaluation. By Jennifer Birmingham, Policy Studies Associates, Inc., and others. Prepared for The After-School Corporation and Southwest Educational Development Laboratory with support from the U.S. Department of Education. (The Laboratory, Austin, Texas) 2005. 69 p.

Full Text at: www.sedl.org/pubs/fam107/fam107.pdf

["The study found that after-school programs that helped lead to improved achievement don't necessarily focus on academics.... Instead, these after-school programs are safety zones where students received homework help and were able to explore new ideas and interests. And students were able to develop long-term supportive relationships with adults and peers." Youth, Education and Technology News. (February 28, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S61211]

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"Leveraging the After-school Value Added." By Terry K. Peterson. IN: The School Adminstrator, vol. 5, no. 62 (May 2005) Various pagings.

Full Text at: www.aasa.org/publications/saarticledetail.cfm?ItemNumber=2514&snItemNumber=950&tnItemNumber=951

["This article offers promising recruitment and retention strategies to school administrators seeking to boost participation rates in their school-based after-school programs."]

[Request #S61212]

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Moving Towards Success: Framework for After-School Programs. By Priscilla Little, Harvard Family Research Project, and An-Me Chung, C.S. Mott Foundation. (Collaborative Communications Group, Washington, DC) 2005. 48 p.

Full Text at: www.publicengagement.com/Framework/images/framework_61505.pdf

["The Framework ... outlines a broad range of desired participant outcomes to consider, and discusses conditions most suitable for achieving positive results that meet the needs of the after-school participants."]

[Request #S61213]

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Making Out-of-School-Time Matter: Evidence for an Action Agenda. By Susan Bodilly and Megan K. Beckett, RAND. (RAND, Santa Monica, California) 2005. 153 p.

Full Text at: www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2005/RAND_MG242.pdf

["RAND researchers assess the evidence for different sides in the debate over how to improve support for before- and after-school programming. Their analysis finds a set of factors that could be used to help improve programs. The authors recommend a set of actions for improving the knowledge base to support better policymaking."]

[Request #S61214]

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CHARTER SCHOOLS

Inspiration, Perspiration, and Time: Operations and Achievement in Edison Schools. By Brian P. Gill and others, RAND. (RAND, Santa Monica, California) 2005. 292 p.

Full Text at: www.rand.org/pubs/monographs/2005/RAND_MG351.pdf

["In its comprehensive evaluation of Edison Schools ... RAND found that the resources and accountability systems that constitute Edison's design represent a coherent, comprehensive, and ambitious strategy to promote student achievement."]

[Request #S61217]

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DROPOUT RATES

Community-based Learning: Engaging Students for Success and Citizenship. By Atelia Melaville and others, Coalition for Community Schools. (The Coalition, Washington, DC) 2006. 64 p.

Full Text at: www.communityschools.org/CCSDocuments/CBLFinal.pdf

["Nearly a third of high school students don't graduate on time; among blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans, it's almost half.... Most students don't drop out because they can't do the work. Nearly 90 percent had passing grades when they left school. Their major reason for opting out? The classes were too boring."]

[Request #S61218]

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EDUCATIONAL REFORM

Making Progress Toward Graduation: Evidence from the Talent Development High School Model. By James J. Kemple and others, Manpower Development Research Corporation. (The Corporation, Oakland, California) May 2005. 134 p.

Full Text at: www.mdrc.org/publications/408/full.pdf

["Targeting some of the most troubled schools in the country, the model seeks to raise the expectations of teachers and students and to prepare all students for postsecondary education and employment... The findings in this report provide encouraging evidence that real improvements can be made in some of the lowest-performing high schools in the country."]

[Request #S61219]

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ENGLISH LEARNERS

Effects of the Implementation of Proposition 227 on the Education of English Learners, K-12: Findings from a Five Year Evaluation. By Thomas B. Parrish and others, American Institute for Research and WestEd. (The Institute, Washington, DC) January 24, 2006. 228 p.

Full Text at: www.air.org/news/documents/227Report.pdf

["There is no conclusive evidence that one instructional model for educating English learners, such as full English immersion or a bilingual approach, is more effective for California’s English learners than another, according to a five-year study of Proposition 227....Our findings suggest that it is not the language of instruction but rather the quality of instruction that matters most." AIR Press Release (February 21, 2006) 1]

[Request #S61215]

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"Bilingualism for the Children: Implementing a Dual-language Program in an English-only State." By Mary Carol Combs and others. IN: Education Policy, vol. 19, no. 5 (Novebmber 2005) pp. 701-728.

["This article examines the effects of Structured English Immersion(SEI) on the teachers, administrators, and students at an urban school. The study found that SEI teachers are largely unaware of the model and unprepared to teach it effectively, that training in SEI strategies has been haphazard, ... and that forcing English learners into SEI is traumatizing some of them and distressing their parents."]

[Request #S61216]

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HIGHER EDUCATION

Parental Transfers, Student Achievement, and the Labor Supply of College Students. By Charlene Marie Kalenkoski and Sabrina Wulff Pabilonia, Office of Productivity and Technology, U. S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (The Office, Washington, DC) December 2005. 37 p.

Full Text at: www.bls.gov/ore/pdf/ec050130.pdf

["When college students lack adequate resources to cover college expenses due to insufficient parental transfers and borrowing constraints, they may participate in market work as a means of financing their studies....Contrary to existing evidence that a greater number of hours worked leads to poorer academic performance, the number of hours worked per week does not negatively affect a student's GPA and may actually improve it."]

[Request #S61220]

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Recent Changes in the Entry of Hispanic and White Youth into College. By Richard Fry, Pew Hispanic Center. (Pew Foundation, Washington, DC) 2005. 44 p.

Full Text at: pewhispanic.org/files/reports/56.pdf

["Although Hispanics continue to increase their sheer numbers in college, they are likely falling further behind whites in the pursuit of completing the bachelor’s degree. Hispanic enrollment gains occurred at both two-year and four-year colleges.... Relative to whites, a smaller share of Latinos are obtaining a college education at a four-year college or university, diminishing their likelihood of completing a bachelor’s degree."]

[Request #S61221]

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LATINOS

Education in Mexico: Challenges and Opportunities. By Lucrecia Santibanez and others, RAND Education, The RAND Corporation. Prepared for the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation. (The Corporation, Santa Monica, California) 2005.

["This documented briefing provides background and context on K-12 education in Mexico. It highlights the main educational issues and associated challenges, and identifies related investment opportunities. The most promising prospect ... would be to help build institutional capabilities to develop a broader understanding and public transparency of the Mexican education system and provide empirically supported feedback on existing programs and policies." RAND Child Policy Update (2005) 1.]

Full Report. 128 p.:
http://www.rand.org/pubs/documented_briefings/2005/RAND_DB480.pdf

Summary. 8 p.:
http://www.rand.org/pubs/documented_briefings/2005/RAND_DB480.sum.pdf

[Request #S61222]

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LITERACY

Achieving State and National Literacy Goals, a Long Uphill Road: A Report to Carnegie Corporation of New York. By Jennifer Sloan McCombs, and others, RAND Corporation. (RAND, Santa Monica, California) 2005. 368 p.

Full Text at: www.rand.org/pubs/technical_reports/2005/RAND_TR180-1.pdf

["Recent reform efforts in education have yielded positive results in improving reading achievement for the nation's children in the primary grades, but many children are not moving beyond basic decoding skills to fluency and comprehension....This report provides a portrait of the condition of adolescent literacy as measured by national and state assessments. It contains individual state write-ups for the 50 states."]

[Request #S61223]

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Reading Next: A Vision for Action and Research in Middle and High School Literacy. By Gina Biancarosa and Catherine Snow, Alliance for Excellent Education. (The Alliance, Washington, DC) 2005. 52 p.

Full Text at: www.all4ed.org/publications/ReadingNext/ReadingNext.pdf

["Approximately eight million young people between fourth and twelfth grade struggle to read at grade level.... This report stresses that improving the literacy achievement of today's and tomorrow's youth requires keeping action balanced with research. The report outlines a balanced vision for effecting immediate change for current students and building the literacy field's knowledge base."]

[Request #S61224]

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To Ensure America's Future: Building A National Opportunity System for Adults. Council for Advancement of Adult Literacy. (The Council, New York, New York) 2005. 117 p.

Full Text at: www.caalusa.org/ensureamericasfuture.pdf

["The gap between the 'haves' and the 'have nots' in American society is growing, and the main pathway to the education and training needed to hold decent jobs and function as parents and citizens is through the community college door.... It is time for community colleges to make service to underprepared adults a much higher priority. These people represent a substantial portion of America's current and future workforce."]

[Request #S61225]

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SCHOOL DROPOUTS

An Overview of Alternative Education. By Laudan Y. Aron, The Urban Institute. Prepared for the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration. (The Urban Institute, Washington, DC) January 2006. 44 p.

Full Text at: www.urban.org/UploadedPDF/411283_alternative_education.pdf

["Current estimates put the number of youth who are not in school, do not have a diploma, and not working at 3.8 million. For these young people, labor market prospects are often gloomy. This report looks at policies and funding streams that could help states and communities replicate and expand alternative learning opportunities for out-of-school youth." Connect for Kids (March 13, 2006) 1.]

[Request #S61228]

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STANDARDIZED TESTING

Multiple Measures Approaches to High School Graduation. By Linda Darling-Hammond, Stanford University, and others. (School Redesign Network at Stanford University, Stanford, California) 2005. 112 p.

["[The study] provides an in-depth examination of 27 states currently using multiple measures assessments to determine student eligibility for high school graduation. Multiple measures assessments differ from single-test assessments in that they consider a variety of student work, which may include student academic records, research papers, portfolios, essays, capstone projects and oral exams. States that use multiple measures assessments for graduation tend to have higher student test scores and higher graduation rates, and produce students who are better prepared for today’s workforce and for higher education."]

Report. 106 p.
http://www.schoolredesign.net/srn/mm/pdf/multiple_measures.pdf

Research Brief. 8 p.
http://www.schoolredesign.net/srn/mm/pdf/mm_rb.pdf

Executive Summary. 1 p.
http://www.schoolredesign.net/srn/mm/pdf/execsumm.pdf

[Request #S61229]

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The Inevitable Corruption of Indicators and Educators Through High-Stakes Testing. By Sharon L. Nichols, University of Texas at San Antonio, and David C. Berliner, Arizona State University. (Education Policy Studies Laboratory, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona) 2005. 187 p.

Full Text at: www.asu.edu/educ/epsl/EPRU/documents/EPSL-0503-101-EPRU.pdf

["The over-reliance on high-stakes testing has serious negative repercussions that are present at every level of the public school system.....These include future employability of teachers and administrators, bonus pay for school personnel, promotion/non-promotion of a student to a higher grade, achievement/non-achievement of a high school degree, reconstitution of a school, and losses or gains in federal and state funding received by a school or school district."]

[Request #S61230]

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URBAN SCHOOLS

Ending School Overcrowding in California: Building Quality Schools for All Children. By Raymond A. Colmenar and others, PolicyLink. (PolicyLink, Oakland, California.) 2005. 27 p.

Full Text at: www.policylink.org/pdfs/EndingSchoolOvercrowding.pdf

["Over a million California school children -— predominantly from low-income families and communities of color -— attend severely overcrowded schools. Lunchrooms, libraries, and an assortment of other spaces are used as classrooms and attempts are made to alleviate overcrowding by such temporary measures as reorganizing—even shortening—school years, busing children to other neighborhoods, and using portable classrooms. But the fact remains that children who attend overcrowded schools are less able to learn, feel socially inferior and alienated, and are more exposed to health and safety hazards."]

[Request #S61231]

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PREVIOUSLY IN STUDIES IN THE NEWS
[This section links to items in Studies in the News since the last Education Supplement.]

"Education." IN: Studies in the News, No 05-40 - 06-05 (November 2005 - March 2006).

["Includes: Survey of low-income students;" "Schools may use student race as a factor;" "Sex questions found not to violate parents' rights;" "College financial aid dropping;" "College tuition costs rise;" "Report card on higher education;" "Waste in use of school Internet funds;" "School violence and safety;" "Highly qualified" teacher credentials revoked;" "Fostering instructional improvement;" "Income declines for less educated workforce;" "Academic performance index reports;" "San Diego’s education reforms;" "UC staff got unreported cash;" "Higher drop-out rate for foreign-born teens;" "Charter schools without classrooms;" "High school dropout rates;" "Capping support for college presidents;" "Higher education in a market-driven era;" "Benefits of higher education;" "Economic value of the UC;" "Intelligent design court decision;" "Learning communities and student success;" "Florida Supreme Court voucher case;" "Undercounting the school exit exam;" "Changing nature of segregation;" "Postschool experiences of youth with disabilities;" "School reform practices in the classroom;" "State financial aid;" "Boosting student aid;" "Consequences of federal tuition aid;" and others.]

[Request #S61232]

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