The Invisible Achievement Gap, Part 1 - Education Outcomes of Students in Foster Care in California's Public Schools
The Invisible Achievement Gap, Part 1 – Education Outcomes of Students in Foster Care in California's Public Schools is a first-of-its-kind analysis that links data from California’s education and child welfare systems for the 2009-10 academic year to create an education snapshot of K-12 students in foster care in California. The report reveals a previously invisible achievement gap between children in foster care and other students, including other at-risk subgroups such as low-Socio-Economic Status (SES), English learners, and students with disabilities. The research shows that students in foster care:
The Invisible Achievement Gap is the result of a unique collaboration between the California Department of Education, the California Department of Social Services, the Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WestEd, and other agencies. Funded by the Stuart Foundation, the findings are particularly relevant and timely as California becomes the first state in the nation to attempt to track the academic progress of students in foster care as part of its new school finance reform plan. This research offers new evidence for policymakers to use in their continuing efforts to improve the academic success of students in foster care.
College Bound in Middle School & High School? How Math Course Sequences Matter finds that there is no clear path to mathematics learning in California. Based upon an examination of the course-taking patterns and performance in mathematics for 24,000 California students, spanning 7th grade through high school, researchers found that:
The report also presents findings from in-depth conversations with a subsample of participating districts on the specific findings from within their district and how district leaders might use the information for future planning efforts. College Bound in Middle School & High School? concludes with a set of considerations for policymakers and education leaders at the state and local levels.
The Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WestEd has posted new teacher workforce data from the 2010-11 school year. The content, platform and format for the site were designed especially for use by policymakers, academic researchers, philanthropic organizations, journalists and others interested in public education in California.
This important resource provides access to data that has been compiled and analyzed for the Center by SRI International. These analyses, which are not found elsewhere, are available free of charge.
The new analyses allow users to examine the distribution of novice teachers by school characteristics such as academic performance or percentage of minority students, as well as examine the differences in teacher experience by core subject areas. Some of the data is also available on a county-by-county basis.
Funding for the Center’s Web-based data resource was provided by the S.D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation. It can be accessed online at www.cftl.org/data
The Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning is now operating within WestEd. Renamed the Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WestEd, we will continue to focus our work on strengthening the quality of the teaching workforce. Both organizations have a long history of providing exemplary education service, and we believe that operating the Center within WestEd will be of significant benefit to educators, policy makers, and the public – both in California and beyond.
With the move to WestEd, two important personnel changes also take effect. Margaret Gaston, Center founder and president, assumes the new position of Senior Policy Advisor for the Center, and will be based in Washington, D.C. Holly Jacobson, formerly assistant executive director of the California School Boards Association, is the Center's new Director.
This transition is designed to enhance our collective ability to provide the high quality products and services on which our two organizations' reputations have been built. The Center's joining with WestEd broadens the reach of both organizations and deepen our commitment to strengthening the teaching profession. That work will include the conduct of rigorous research, the dissemination of needed information, and the assistance with state and national policy development.