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K-12 Education

  • Teaching in Context: The Social Side of Education Reform

    Teaching in Context (Harvard Education Press, 2017) provides new evidence from a range of leading scholars showing that teachers become more effective when they work in organizations that support them in comprehensive and coordinated ways. The volume is edited by ASI senior fellow Esther Quintero and has a foreword by Andy Hargreaves.

  • The State of Teacher Diversity in American Education

    At the same time that the minority student population in the U.S. has increased dramatically, the percentage of nonwhite teachers nationwide only increased from 12 to 17 percent between 1987 and 2012. This report analyzes the national trends and takes a closer look at what has been happening in nine major U.S. cities, finding that substantial representation gaps between minority teachers and minority students persist.

  • The Albert Shanker Institute Research Grant Program

    The Shanker Institute awards small seed grants to emerging scholars doing promising work in our focus areas of education, labor and international democracy.

  • Al Shanker Remembered on the 20th Anniversary of His Death: Special Blog Series

    Twenty years ago, the legendary president of the American Federation of Teachers, Al Shanker, died.

  • Deconstructing the Myth of American Public Schooling Inefficiency

    Bruce Baker and Mark Weber (Rutgers University) use existing research and original analysis to dismantle the common myth that U.S. public schools spend more money and get worse results than do other developed nations, and provide discussion and analysis of what can and cannot be learned from existing data.

  • Teacher Segregation in Los Angeles and New York City

    This research brief presents a descriptive analysis of the segregation of teachers by race and ethnicity in the nation's two largest school districts, New York City and Los Angeles.

  • Policy Implications at the State and Local Levels Slides

    The Social Side of Education: How Social Aspects of Schools and School Systems Shape Teaching and Learning

    April 8, 2016, Washington, DC

  • The Schools Where Teachers Stay, Grow and Succeed

    The Social Side of Education: How Social Aspects of Schools and School Systems Shape Teaching and Learning

    April 8, 2016, Washington, DC

  • Improving Education Through a Focus on Partnerships Slides

    The Social Side of Education: How Social Aspects of Schools and School Systems Shape Teaching and Learning.

    April 8, 2016, Washington, D.C.

  • Systems, Networks and Relationships Slides

    Social Side of Education: How Social Aspects of Schools and School Systems Shape Teaching and Learning

    April 8, 2016, Washington, DC

  • Competing Strands Of Educational Reform Policy: Can Collaborative School Reform and Teacher Evaluation Reform Be Reconciled?

    As school systems devote tremendous resources to examining the effectiveness of individual teachers, how can we encourage schools to make room for collaborative practices? This paper begins to conceptualize one avenue for reconciling these ideas: Rigurously measuring team teaching and making room for the assessment of team work in schools' evaluation processes.

  • The Social Side Of Education Reform: A Research Primer

    This publication pulls together six important research essays from the social side of eduction blog series. Collectively, these essays make a compelling case that increasing the instructional capacity of schools requires looking beyond individual teacher effectiveness. 

  • Does Money Matter in Education? Second Edition

    A comprehensive review of the empirical evidence on whether and how money matters in education, written by Rutgers Professor Bruce Baker. This is the second edition of this report.

  • Good Schools November 2015 Resources

  • The State of Teacher Diversity Executive Summary

    The State of Teacher Diversity Executive Summary

  • The Evidence on the "Florida Formula" for Education Reform

    A review of the high quality evidence on the "Florida Formula for education success," a package of policies put in place during the late 1990s and 2000s, which focus generally on test-based accountability, competition, and choice.

  • Video: Let's Talk

    This 5-minute video, a part of the Institute’s Let’s Talk initiative, explains how children’s knowledge and language develop in tandem, forming the foundation for all subsequent learning, and what parents and caregivers can do to help.

  • Let’s Talk Foundations: Oral Language Development I

    Oral language—listening and talking—is the primary means by which young children learn about and interact with the world. This training module for early childhood educators offers simple but powerful ideas to support young children build the skills, knowledge, vocabulary, and attitudes that can help prepare them for future academic learning across the content areas. Here, we offer excerpted materials for a workshop on supporting English language learners.

  • Let's Talk PD: Early Literacy Development

    This module for early childhood educators presents an overview of research on the foundations for literacy and how they may be enhanced in early childhood, including applied information to help guide instructional improvement. The materials are designed to be presented as an intensive one-day seminar or can be broken into separate workshops covering the areas of print and book awareness, phonological awareness, letter knowledge and early word recognition, and written expression and curriculum integration. This excerpt includes materials for a professional development workshop on phonological awareness.

  • Social Side of Education Resources

    Relationships, trust, collaboration and social capital are key to educational improvement. Learn more about the social side perspective through these resources.

  • Let’s Talk PD: Early Mathematics Development

    This training module for early childhood educators provides an overview of the research and standards on age-appropriate mathematics development, including practical takeaway materials to help assist in instructional. The most important early childhood mathematical foundations are addressed, including numerical sense and problem solving, building math vocabulary, using math manipulatives, and curriculum integration. The materials may be presented as a very intensive one-day session or broken into separate workshops. This excerpt contains materials for a workshop on curriculum integration.

  • Let’s Talk PD: Early Science Development

    This module for early childhood educators provides research-based information on early science development in the three key areas of physical science, life science, and earth science, along with applied information for improving instruction in each area. These materials can be implemented as an intensive, day-long professional development seminar or broken up into a series of workshops. This excerpt contains materials for a workshop on life science.

  • How Relationships Matter In Educational Improvement

    This short video explains some shortcomings of mainstream education reform and offers an alternative framework to advance educational progress. Educational improvement is as much about the capacities of individuals as it is about their relationships and the broader social context.

  • Resources on Testing and School Accountability

    Standardized tests play a dominant role in school accountability systems in the U.S. These resources focus on how testing data can be used and interpreted in an accountability context.

  • The Freedom Schools of 1964

    In 2014, to honor the 50th anniversary of Freedom Summer, the Shanker Institute began developing resources for teachers in today’s classrooms. These include lesson plans on the Freedom Schools (which will be posted on these pages in the spring of 2015), historical materials, and interviews with some of the teachers who made history.

  • Literacy Ladders

    This curated collection of essays for early childhood educators and others examines the research on increasing young children's language, knowledge, and reading comprehension.

  • March on Washington Lesson Plans

    2013 marked the 50th anniversary of the historic March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The Institute worked to make a special contribution to this commemoration by publishing lesson plans and materials that K-12 teachers across the country can use in their classrooms.

  • Spending by Major Charter Management Organizations in Three States

    A detailed analysis of spending by the major Charter Management Organizations in three states.

  • Creating a Comprehensive System for Evaluating and Supporting Effective Teaching

    This publication by Linda Darling Hammond was written at the request of and with the input of participants in the Shanker Institute's Good Schools seminars. It discusses the evaluation models that make the most sense and ways to improve teacher preparation, make entry into the profession an educational and developmental experience, and upgrade career and professional development.

  • The Evidence on Charter Schools and Test Scores

    Charter schools are among the most controversial issues in education today, with much of the debate focused on whether they produce better testing results than comparable regular public schools.

  • Call for Common Content

    A statement released by the nonpartisan Albert Shanker Institute and signed by dozens of educators, advocates, policymakers, researchers and scholars from across the educational and political spectrum, highlights one largely ignored factor needed to enable American students to achieve to high levels and become internationally competitive—the creation of voluntary model curricula that can be taught in the nation’s classrooms.

  • American Labor in U.S. History Textbooks

    The study conducted by the Institute in cooperation with the American Labor Studies Center (ALSC) makes the argument that labor history is central to an accurate depiction of U.S. history and argues that a fuller, more balanced depiction of U.S.

  • Muslim Voices on Democracy: A Reader

    A resource for American teachers and students on the turbulent events taking place in many Islamic countries.

  • Best Research to What Works Luncheon Series: Transcripts

    This forum series was designed to highlight best research on key educational issues, then to link these findings to the practical steps that schools can take to improve student achievement. Held periodically from 2002 to 2007, these events brought together a select group of researchers, policymakers, and practitioners to discuss crucial issues about which research and practice appear to diverge.

  • Education for Democracy

    Education for Democracy, a signatory statement released by the institute in conjunction with the beginning of a new school year, the second anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, and the 40th anniversary of the 1963 March on Washington, is a new statement calling for improvement

  • Educating Democracy: State Standards to Ensure a Civic Core

    This 2003 study, authored by the late historian Paul Gagnon, evaluates the extent to which state history, civics, and social studies standards across the nation serve to help teachers in their efforts to prepare an informed citizenry.

  • History Research Paper Study

    The Concord Review approached the Albert Shanker Institute for support for a study of the state of the history research paper in United States high schools. The result is this 2002 study conducted by the Center for Survey Research and Analysis at the University of Connecticut.

  • Early Language and Literacy Development

    What is known about the language and literacy development of young, preschool-age children and how does this relate to their long-term success in school?

  • Bridging the Gap Between Standards and Achievement

    Harvard professor Richard Elmore reviews the research and argues that education reforms that are based on standards and accountability will fail unless policymakers also adopt a strategy to ensure that educators have the knowledge and skill they need to help students succeed.

  • Building a New Structure for School Leadership

    In this major research analysis, Richard Elmore explores the problems with the structure and leadership of public education, while explaining the dangers of public funding for private schools. He urges educators to study the schools whose leaders and best practice are succeeding in meeting high standards, including through the use of collaboration and distributed leadership. 

  • Hart Research Poll of Teachers and Principals

    These early polls show that nation's teachers and principals strongly support higher academic standards, while at the same time harboring serious questions about adequacy of implementation and an overemphasis on testing.

  • The Teaching Gap

    The Institute provided a grant to support the writing of this important book by James Stigler and James Hiebert, which explores the school system's failure to support a culture of professional development for teachers. It compares what's lacking in teacher training in this country with what's working in Japan, where teachers spend time working together to improve their skills.