• 06/30/2015

    The literature on predictors and effects of grade retention is vast, with known predictors of grade retention including gender, ethnicity, poverty, parental education, and academic skills. Still, what is lacking in the grade retention literature is the use of advanced methodologies to examine the occurrence and timing of grade retention, and to analyze predictors at the school- as well as the child-level. The current study found grade retention was most likely by third grade, and also found school readiness predictors, specifically low early academic skills (i.e. reading, math, and general knowledge skills), were the strongest predictors of grade retention at both the school- and child-level.

  • 06/23/2015

    A very small share of news media about education mention research; an even smaller percentage mention research that has been peer-reviewed. Policymakers and members of the public who rely on the news media for information about education should be aware that, on the rare occasion that they do encounter research-based evidence in the print news media, it is not necessarily the most rigorous or important work that the field has to offer.

  • 06/17/2015

    Alternative high schools can potentially play an important role in preventing dropouts among at-risk students. Recent research investigates how school staffing and processes in these schools impact graduation rates. Findings suggest that alternative high schools for at-risk student have their own dynamics and require different approaches than traditional schools.

  • 06/09/2015

    School health centers (SHCs) are well situated to support students who are bullied and victimized at school, because they provide crisis intervention, mental health care, and broader interventions to improve school climate. Recent research examined the association between urban adolescents’ experiences of school-based bullying and victimization and their use of SHCs. Findings suggest that SHCs may be an important place to address bullying and victimization at school, but confidentiality concerns are barriers that may be more common among bullied and victimized youth.

  • 06/02/2015

    Postsecondary readiness has become a centerpiece of major education policy initiatives, but few systems are available to track students’ progress toward this goal, and even fewer focus on anything beyond academic achievement. To address this gap we developed a college-readiness index for middle school students. Given its predictive power and its focus on affective traits like motivation and behavior, the index may help educators intervene early and appropriately to keep students on track.

  • 06/01/2015. San Francisco Chronicle

    California’s 112 community colleges are designed to provide high school graduates who don’t go to four-year universities a second chance at higher education. But when it comes to math proficiency requirements, too many community college students are getting a raw deal, beginning with the way colleges test incoming students’ math skills and send the vast majority of students to remedial math courses.

  • 05/25/2015

    Military-connected adolescents tend to experience unique stressors that, in conjunction with normative adolescent stressors, may contribute to higher suicide risk. Findings from a recent study of California youth emphasize the need to address suicidality among military-connected adolescents and their families.

  • 05/19/2015

    Increased learning time in literacy instruction is a strategy that has been deployed broadly to support struggling leaders, but little work has explored whether the same approach can boost average readers. Recent research finds that additional literacy coursework in middle school for readers of average ability produced counter-intuitive impacts that differed by race, with Black students faring less well on subsequent measures of literacy.

  • 05/12/2015

    High rates of absenteeism limits the potential of California’s children and costs school districts and the state billions of dollars each year. Research into the drivers of chronic absenteeism have generally been limited to documenting the presence of individual and family factors. New research looks instead at whether going to center-based care in prekindergarten might be linked to chronic absenteeism once in kindergarten.

  • 05/05/2015

    Although researchers have analyzed the impact of financial incentives on teacher behaviors and work conditions, few studies have looked inside schools to examine how current teachers interpret their rewards, to gauge how payouts affect their willingness to participate in these programs, and to explain the conflicting evidence about the effects of incentives. In recent research focused on teachers’ views of these pay incentives, findings identify design considerations that may affect the potential of educator incentive programs to operate as intended.


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