Education Funding

New Initiative By Brookings Is Under Way

By Laura Greifner — April 11, 2006 2 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

A new economic-policy initiative launched by the Brookings Institution last week includes specific suggestions for improving K-12 education, such as changing teacher hiring and retention practices, and setting up scholarships for low-income students to attend summer school.

The Brookings Institution, a research and policy organization based in Washington, started the initiative, called the Hamilton Project, to promote and discuss ideas from economic- and public-policy experts that are intended to help bolster the U.S. economy.

At last week’s unveiling of the initiative, economists presented papers on three topics: teacher hiring and retention practices, summer school scholarships for low-income students, and retirement savings for low- and middle-income adults.

“Identifying Effective Teachers Using Performance on the Job” is available from the Brookings Institute. Also, read “Summer Opportunity Scholarships (SOS): A Proposal to Narrow the Skills Gap.”

The first education paper highlighted as part of the initiative, “Identifying Effective Teachers Using Performance on the Job,” was written by Robert Gordon, a senior vice president at the Center for American Progress, along with Thomas J. Kane, a professor of education and economics at Harvard University, and Douglas O. Staiger, a professor of economics at Dartmouth University.

It argues that changing standard practices in teacher hiring and retention would have a positive effect on student achievement while also encouraging talented people to become educators. More specifically, the paper proposes downplaying certification as a measurement of teacher quality and using student-achievement data—as well as evaluations by principals, parents, and other teachers—to determine teacher effectiveness.

Summer Learning

The second education paper presented, “Summer Opportunity Scholarships (SOS): A Proposal to Narrow the Skills Gap,” was written by Molly E. Fifer, a graduate researcher at Princeton University, and Alan B. Krueger, a professor of economics and public policy at Princeton. It suggests that the skills gap between students from low- and high-income families is aggravated during the three-month summer vacation.

Ms. Fifer and Mr. Krueger propose establishing “summer opportunity scholarships,” a $4 billion-a-year program that would allow low-income students in grades K-5 to participate in a six-week summer school program focused on reading and math skills.

“I think the proposal recognizes the role that summer learning loss plays in the achievement gap,” Ronald A. Fairchild, the executive director of the Center for Summer Learning, based at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, said in an interview.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the April 12, 2006 edition of Education Week as New Initiative By Brookings Is Under Way

Events

Jobs Virtual Career Fair for Teachers and K-12 Staff
Find teaching jobs and other jobs in K-12 education at the EdWeek Top School Jobs virtual career fair.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Reading & Literacy Webinar
Science of Reading: Emphasis on Language Comprehension
Dive into language comprehension through a breakdown of the Science of Reading with an interactive demonstration.
Content provided by Be GLAD
English-Language Learners Webinar English Learners and the Science of Reading: What Works in the Classroom
ELs & emergent bilinguals deserve the best reading instruction! The Reading League & NCEL join forces on best practices. Learn more in our webinar with both organizations.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Education Funding A Court Ordered Billions for Education. Why Schools Might Not Get It Now
The North Carolina Supreme Court is considering arguments for overturning a statewide order for more school funding.
6 min read
A blue maze with a money bag at the end of the maze.
iStock/Getty
Education Funding ESSER Isn't the Only School Funding Relief That's Disappearing Soon
Federal relief aid, policies to prevent schools from losing enrollment-based funding, and support for vulnerable families are expiring soon.
10 min read
Vector illustration of a businessman's hand holding a slowly vanishing dollar sign.
iStock/Getty
Education Funding Schools Lost Ground on Funding in Recent Years. The Recovery Could Be Slow
School funding took a hit a few years ago. It might be some time before it recovers.
5 min read
Tight crop of a dollar bill puzzle missing one piece
iStock/Getty
Education Funding Here's How the Feds Are Spending $277M for Academic Recovery
A new round of grants from the Education Department aims to spur innovation in academic recovery, with initiatives in math, reading, and AI.
4 min read
Image of a dollar bill folded into an upward arrow.
ImagePixel/iStock/Getty