COVID-19 has induced an unprecedented crisis in education in California. Due to the pandemic, a variety of academic, health, and social-emotional needs will emerge among California’s students. Pre-existing achievement gaps in California will likely be exacerbated as a consequence of inequities in learning opportunities across the state. PACE has activated our network of researchers to work with policymakers and education leaders to bring evidence to bear in helping California’s systems become stronger to support students in the aftermath of the crisis. The PACE COVID-19 Recovery Initiative will draw on research to inform a range of topics related to building system capacity for recovery in California schools in the COVID-19 context.
In October 2015, Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE) and the CORE Districts launched the CORE-PACE Research Partnership. The CORE districts (Fresno, Garden Grove, Long Beach, Los Angeles, Oakland, Sacramento City, San Francisco, and Santa Ana Unified School Districts) together serve nearly a million students and utilize a unique multiple measures data system to work together to improve student outcomes. Our research aims to deepen their learning, while sharing lessons more broadly to accelerate improvement across the state.
How does the public view California’s schools and education policy effectiveness? Do voters understand the challenges that California faces, and are they prepared to make the tough choices and tradeoffs that potential solutions entail? Annual polls conducted by PACE and the Rossier School of Education at the University of Southern California seek to learn more about how Californians perceive and understand the opportunities facing California’s education system, and to gauge voter interest in policy options that move the system forward.
The PACE Policy and Research Panel (PRP) is a collaborative approach to rapidly building and mobilizing knowledge on key topics that sit at the nexus of research, policy action and educational practice. The PACE PRP assembles leading researchers, policymakers, and practitioners in the state to build and consolidate the knowledge base on what is known on high-priority education policy areas and make this knowledge more useable for education system leaders and policymakers who are tasked with designing programs and policies that shape the education of students with disabilities in California.
The Local Control Funding Formula Research Collaborative (LCFFRC) brings together a diverse set of policy experts who, since 2014, have been documenting implementation of the Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF), California’s pathbreaking finance and governance system. Operating under the auspices of Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE), principal LCFFRC researchers are Julia Koppich (J. Koppich & Associates), Daniel Humphrey (Independent Consultant), Julie Marsh (University of Southern California), Jennifer O’Day (American Institutes of Research), Magaly Lavadenz (Loyal Marymount), and Laura Stokes (Inverness Research).
Getting Down to Facts II is a research initiative that provides in-depth analysis of California’s education system as of 2018 and looks at what is working well and where improvement is still needed. Over one hundred researchers from the nation’s leading academic institutions focused on four aspects of California education – student success, governance systems, personnel issues, and school finance. These studies resulted in 36 methodologically rigorous technicial reports that span these four areas. Nineteen research briefs synthesize the main findings from the technical reports for a broader readership. Taken together, these research products help to build a common understanding of the performance of California’s PreK-12 school system and the opportunities for improvement. While this research is not intended to advocate specific policies, the findings provide evidence to inform the policy decisions that can ensure California continues to move in the right direction on behalf of all students in the state.