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Teaching and leadership resources

The following is a list of recent resources for those focused on the professional improvement of teachers, principals, and other educational leaders.

The Effect of Teacher Coaching on Instruction and Achievement: A Meta-Analysis of the Causal Evidence This study shows that teacher coaching greatly improves classroom instructional practice, especially in the first year of teaching, and positively impacts students’ academic achievement. The researchers studied 60 teacher coaching programs to understand their effects on instruction and achievement. Researchers found that the instructional and academic gains resulting from coaching were better than other costly district-funded professional development seminars and workshops. (Harvard and Brown Universities)

Exploring the Potential of Teacher Residencies  A researcher from the Regional Education Laboratory Midwest discusses the benefits of collaboration between state departments and researchers to address the teacher shortage. (Education Week)

TN initiative to transform principal leadership in schools  TN Governor Haslam along with Education Commissioner Candice McQueen announced the Transforming School Leadership Initiative, a comprehensive plan to transform principal leadership in schools across the state.  The initiative is made up of three parts:  1) Effective preparation of new school leaders; 2) Recruitment and retention of turnaround school leaders; 3) Development opportunities for rural school leaders

Enacted state legislation in 2017  Here’s a comprehensive look at all enacted teacher policies — plus, select 2018 introduced legislation — in three key teacher issue areas:

Each Policy Snapshot details various state approaches — some traditional, some new — to attracting and retaining a high-quality teacher workforce.

Promoting Educator Effectiveness: The Effects of Two Key Strategies   This brief summarizes the findings from two studies from the Institute of Education Sciences that examined two strategies to promote the effectiveness of teachers: using research-based performance measures to evaluate educators and provide them with feedback (performance feedback) and offering bonuses to educators based on their performance ratings (pay-for-performance). The studies found that providing educators with performance feedback and offering pay-for-performance bonuses can improve student achievement. However, both studies provided evidence that the policy as implemented differed in some ways from the approach envisioned. For example, in the pay-for-performance study, about 40% of the teachers were unaware they were eligible to receive a performance bonus. Among sampled educators 65% to 84% reported being satisfied with the feedback they received on their practices. In addition, pay-for-performance ultimately led to improvements in teachers’ satisfaction with some aspects of their jobs. (National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance)

Virtual Schools Governance  A staff member at a state legislative office asked for a 50-state scan of governance policies for state-operated virtual schools. See the response.

Council of Chief State School Officers and Scholastic Inc. Studied Equity in Education  The Teacher & Principal School Report found that 87 percent of teachers and principals divulged that many students face barriers to learning. These barriers include social, emotional and behavioral issues, as well as factors related to poverty, family support, school climate, safety, substance abuse, mental health, community issues and attendance. For students dealing with these challenges, instruction alone is not enough — schools also need to provide comprehensive learning supports to achieve equity and raise student performance. Policymakers can help state and district leaders create support systems that ensure school, instructional and support services leaders co-create school improvement plans that impact student achievement.

Shoring Up Assistant Principal and Principal Supervisor Roles to Strengthen the Principal Pipeline  To build a deep bench of highly qualified school principals, school districts in Wallace’s Principal Pipeline Initiative found they needed to rethink two other critical jobs: the assistant principal and principal supervisor.  In the final episode of The Principal Pipeline podcast, educators from Prince George’s County, Md., share how they grappled with both of these challenges—and the payoffs they are already seeing in schools.