• Research, Theory, and Analysis

    For years now, this phrase has been the tagline for Ideas & Perspectives, our flagship publication. The phrase not only reflects the content of our advisory letter, but it resides at the core of Independent School Management’s raison d'être—supporting private-independent school leaders.

Why and How Parents Choose Private Schools 1

More Than Scores: An Analysis of Why and How Parents Choose Private Schools

Released in November 2013. This report, published by the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice, discusses the results of a survey administered to Georgia parents of K–12 private school scholarship concerning why and how parents select a private school for their children. The top five reasons why parents chose a private school for their children are all related to school climate and classroom management, including “better student discipline” (50.9%), “better learning environment” (50.8%), “smaller class sizes” (48.9%), “improved student safety” (46.8%), and “more individual attention for my child” (39.3%). Surveyed parents were overwhelmingly satisfied with their private school choice, with 98.6 percent of parents being “very satisfied” or “satisfied” with their decision.

Right Sizing the Classroom 1

Right-Sizing the Classroom: Making the Most of Great Teachers

Released in November 2013. This study, published by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, addresses the issue of class size and teacher-student ratios—with a policy recommendation. “Public schooling in America suffers from a triple problem that a single policy solution might solve: 1) Our best teachers aren’t paid enough, 2) not enough kids benefit from great teachers, and 3) too many are stuck with weak teachers. This paper describes—and demonstrates the value of—a change in policy that could address all three issues at once, and could be done at no additional cost to taxpayers. Following this route, however, means reversing position on a widely popular—but pricey and none too effective—approach to “educational improvement”: class size reduction. Instead of trying to keep classes small, we should be leveraging our existing teacher talent by enlarging the classes taught by our best instructors—and compensating these excellent teachers for the extra work involved.”

Right Sizing the Classroom 1

Right-Sizing the Classroom: Making the Most of Great Teachers

Released in November 2013. This study, published by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, addresses the issue of class size and teacher-student ratios—with a policy recommendation. “Public schooling in America suffers from a triple problem that a single policy solution might solve: 1) Our best teachers aren’t paid enough, 2) not enough kids benefit from great teachers, and 3) too many are stuck with weak teachers. This paper describes—and demonstrates the value of—a change in policy that could address all three issues at once, and could be done at no additional cost to taxpayers. Following this route, however, means reversing position on a widely popular—but pricey and none too effective—approach to “educational improvement”: class size reduction. Instead of trying to keep classes small, we should be leveraging our existing teacher talent by enlarging the classes taught by our best instructors—and compensating these excellent teachers for the extra work involved.”

Who Considers Teaching 1

Who Considers Teaching and Who Teaches?—First-Time 2007-08 Bachelor's Degree Recipients by Teaching Status 1 Year After Graduation

Released in November 2013. This study, published by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, addresses the issue of class size and teacher-student ratios—with a policy recommendation. “Public schooling in America suffers from a triple problem that a single policy solution might solve: 1) Our best teachers aren’t paid enough, 2) not enough kids benefit from great teachers, and 3) too many are stuck with weak teachers. This paper describes—and demonstrates the value of—a change in policy that could address all three issues at once, and could be done at no additional cost to taxpayers. Following this route, however, means reversing position on a widely popular—but pricey and none too effective—approach to “educational improvement”: class size reduction. Instead of trying to keep classes small, we should be leveraging our existing teacher talent by enlarging the classes taught by our best instructors—and compensating these excellent teachers for the extra work involved.”

State_of_the_States_2013_Using_Teacher_Evaluations_NCTQ_Report October 2013 1

Connect the Dots: Using Evaluations of Teacher Effectiveness to Inform Policy and Practice

Released on October 2013. The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) has long advocated that any meaningful understanding of “effective” teaching must be rooted in results for kids. Whatever else they accomplish in the classroom, effective teachers improve student achievement. It seems like common sense. Yet, until recently, it has been an exceptional way of thinking about teacher quality, totally out of step with teacher policy across the states. As part of the annual State Teacher Policy Yearbook, NCTQ has systematically collected and analyzed state policies on teacher preparation, training, retention, compensation and other personnel policies. In this paper we provide: (1) a detailed and up-to-date lay of the land on teacher evaluation policies across the 50 states and the District of Columbia Public Schools; (2) an in-depth look at policy in states promising ambitious teacher evaluation systems (states requiring student growth and achievement to be a significant or the most significant factor in teacher ratings), including states’ efforts to “connect the dots” and use teacher evaluation results in meaningful ways to inform policy and practice; and (3) a compilation of some of the important lessons learned, pitfalls and successes states have experienced on the road to improving teacher evaluation systems.

2013 Ideas and Perspectives Reader Survey   Analysis of Results (August Update)   Independent School Management 1

2013 I&P Readership Survey—Analysis of Results

Released in September 2013. This report provides a summary of the results of the Ideas & Perspectives Reader Survey administered by Hanover Research in 2013. Over 92% of respondents checked either “Agree” or “Strongly Agree” when presented with the statement that articles are “well-written and readable.” This report covers the highlights of the survey responses, respondent demographics, the overall results (represented in graphs and figures), and the open-ended responses from the survey participants.

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