Evidence-Based Practices for School Improvement
The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) provides states and districts with an opportunity to implement their visions for achieving educational excellence and select evidence-based school improvement strategies that most effectively meet local needs. Struggling schools have created improvement plans for decades, but there is now data that shows what works, giving educators a powerful tool for selecting the right strategy, as opposed to having to rely on intuition, belief or personal experience alone. Through the largest randomized control trial of secondary school improvement in U.S. history, Diplomas Now–a national collaboration between Johns Hopkins University’s Talent Development Secondary, City Year and Communities In Schools–has proven what works to transform struggling schools and keep students in high-poverty neighborhoods on the graduation path. In this session, participants will learn about evidence-based practices for school improvement and ways to replicate them.
Dr. Balfanz is a senior research scientist at the Johns Hopkins University School of Education, where he is also co-director of Talent Development Secondary and the Everyone Graduates Center. He is a leader and a co-founder of Diplomas Now. Dr. Balfanz has published widely on chronic absenteeism, secondary school transformation, high school dropouts, EWSs and instructional interventions in high-poverty schools. In 2013, the Obama Administration recognized Dr. Balfanz as a Champion for Change in the education of African American youth. He is the first recipient of the Alliance For Excellent Education’s Everyone a Graduate Award and the Joan Lipsitz Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Forum to Accelerate Middle Grades Reform. He holds a B.A. in history from Johns Hopkins University and a PhD in education from the University of Chicago.
Dr. Michael Calderone has spent his entire career in Title I schools. He has been a secondary school principal with the School District of Philadelphia for more than a decade and currently serves as the principal for Frankford High School. Prior to becoming a principal, Dr. Calderone was an elementary school teacher and Dean of Students in Philadelphia. He is a certified Restorative Practices trainer.