Adopting a school improvement model under the multibillion-dollar federal school improvement grantsin students’ math or reading test scores, graduation rates, or college enrollment, according to the Institute of Education Science’s final evaluation report on the program.
The school improvement grants launched in 2009 as part of the federal economic stimulus, asked districts to use one of four school improvement models for their chronically underperforming schools. Researchers from Mathematica, who conducted the evaluation, found no difference in test scores for students in grades 2-5 who attended a school using one improvement model over another. However, they found students in grades 6-12 performed better under the turnaround model—which required a school to replace its principal and at least half of its staff, implement comprehensive school reform, and extend learning time, among other things—than the transformational model, which gave districts more flexibility to design their own plans.
A version of this article appeared in the January 25, 2017 edition of Education Week as School Improvement