Outstanding Learning for All, Secure & Healthy Learners, and Culture of Equity

To close achievement gaps, education leaders must adopt more complete approaches to outstanding learning for all, secure and healthy learners, and a culture of equity within low- and moderate-poverty schools.

A shortfall in any of these three areas within a school magnifies the impact of unequal access to resources-educational, personal, and sociopolitical-outside of school.

In a new report commissioned by Oak Foundation, Public Impact examines the research and formulates a fresh, complete package of approaches to closing achievement gaps in diverse schools.

The report recommends that district leaders center their work on three complementary goals:

Outstanding learning for all

  • Guaranteeing excellent teachers and principals, including redesigning schools to enable the district’s excellent teachers and principals to reach all students, not just a fraction.
  • Ensuring access to high-standards, materials and learning opportunities.
  • Using teaching methods and school practices that work, including screening for and addressing learning differences, personalizing instruction, and responding to trauma.

Secure and healthy learners

  • Meeting basic needs, including meals and reducing school transitions from housing changes.
  • Fostering wellness and joy via school-based health clinics, social-emotional learning, and other building blocks of academic success, and addressing mental health challenges.
  • Supporting families by understanding and responding to individual and collective needs.

Culture of equity

  • Addressing key equity challenges in schools, including teachers matching their racial and other identities, access to advanced opportunities, culturally relevant assignments, and research-based, non-discriminatory disciplinary policies.
  • Fostering community accountability via shared leadership that truly empowers.
  • Equipping individuals to act by developing leadership and addressing implicit bias via consistent, ongoing anti-bias training.

If district leaders and their communities pursue these approaches, they can help equip low-income students and students of color to close gaps and succeed in large numbers

For more, see: http://publicimpact.com/pi/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/Closing_Achievement_Gaps_in_Diverse_and_Low-Poverty_Schools.pdf

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