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An Internet Guide to Education Policy and Research,

by Nicole Devero General Education Information

Sites dedicated to education policy and research abound on the web. A good place to begin, however, is with the U.S. Dept. of Education’s website. Researchers can find information on education legislation and policy, as well as reports on the state of schools and students around the country. The Department also provides links to its affiliated research institutes, such as the Institute of Education Sciences, the National Center for Education Statistics, the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the Policy and Program Studies Service, and the National Institute of Disability and Rehabilitation Research. Resources are also available for students, parents, teachers, and administrators, covering topics such as financial aid, supplemental services, curriculum guidance, and school leadership.

Another good source for education data is the “Educational Attainment” section on the site of the U.S. Census Bureau. There you can find annually collected educational attainment data from the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey (CPS). The survey also includes limited detail for states and some metropolitan areas. Also available is detailed information from recent surveys and historical trends in selected topics. More detail on educational attainment for states, metropolitan areas, and more specific geographic areas is collected in the decennial census and the American Community Survey. Researchers can check under the American FactFinder for these data.

The Brown Center on Education Policy, part of the non-profit and non-partisan Brookings Institution, is another site that warrants attention. Here, you can find policy briefings and analysis, along with reports and data, on education and how education is affected by tax policy, reform measures, and other initiatives.

In addition, in the "Resources" section at the end of every PRRAC newsletter, one can find (under the "Education" section) some of the most recent publications on Education. Past issues of the newsletter can be viewed online here.
All Education resources.

Policy Briefs

“Brown at 50: King’s Dream or Plessy’s Nightmare,” by Professor Gary Orfield and Chungmei Lee for the Harvard Civil Rights Project. See full text.

“Protect Children Not Guns 2010,” a report from the Children’s Defense Fund. See full text.

“Get SMART: Standards for Excellence and Equity in Public Education,” an ERASE policy proposal (Oct. 2000). See full text.

“Student Performance Today,” by Diane Ravitch (The Brookings Institution, Sept. 1997). See full text.

"Improving the Distribution of Teachers in Low-Performing High Schools" an April 2008 brief from the Alliance for Excellent Education is available here.

"Every Student Counts: The case for Graduation Rate Accountability", an April 2008 brief from the Alliance for Excellent Education, is available here.

"Measuring and improving the Effectiveness of High School Teachers", an April 2008 brief from the Alliance for Excellent Education, is available here.

"High Schools for Equity: Policy Supports for Student Learning in Communities of Color", a 12-page, Nov. 2007 Policy Brief by the Stanford Univ. School Redesign Network, is available here.

"The High Cost of High School Dropouts: What the Nation Pays for Inadequate High Schools", a 2007 Alliance for Excellent Education Brief, is available here.


(July 2004): “School Finance,” by Jennifer Park, from Education Week. See full text. (Requires registration)

(Spring 2004): “The Real Value of Teachers: If Good Teachers Matter, Why Don’t We Act Like It?” published by The Education Trust. See full text.

(April 2004): “Mass Imprisonment and the Life Course: Race and Class Inequality in U.S. Incarceration,” by Becky Pettit and Bruce Western, from the American Sociological Review. See full text.

(February 2004): “High-Stakes: Findings from a National Study of Life-or-Death Decisions by Charter School Authorizers,” by Bryan C. Hassel and Meagan Batdorff. See full text.

(February 2004): “Who Graduates? Who Doesn’t? A Statistical Portrait of Public High School Graduation, Class of 2001,” by Christopher B. Swanson (The Urban Institute). See full text.

(May/June 2003): “The New Brown: Integration by class, not race, can fix schools in poor cities,” by Richard D. Kahlenberg, published in Legal Affairs. See full text.

(February 2002): “Powerful Reforms with Shallow Roots,” by Michael D. Usdan and Larry Cuban. See full text.

(2007) When Girls Don't Graduate, We All Fail:A Call to Improve High School Graduation Rates for Girls," a report from the National Women's Law Center. See full text.

(2007) "The Turnaround Challenge: Why America's Best Opportunity to Dramatically Improve Student Achievement Lies in Our Worst-Performing Schools," a report from the Mass Insight Education & Research Inst. See full text.

(Sept 2007) "Achievement Trap: How America is Failing 3.4 Million Hight-Achieving Students from Lower-Income Families," a report from the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation and Civic Enterprises. See full text.

(2007) The Proficiency Illusion," a report from the Thomas B. Forham Institute and the Northwest Evaluation Association. See full text.

(2007) "Federal Support for Adolescent Literacy: A Solid Investment," is a report from the National Reading Panel. See full text.

Advocacy Updates

“Freedom Schools In Action,” from the Children’s Defense Fund. See full text.

“Discrimination in Special Education,” from the Civil Rights Project at UCLA. See full text.

“Zero Tolerance and School Discipline,” from the Civil Rights Project at UCLA. See full text.

Other Resources

“Early Implementation of Supplemental Services under the No Child Left Behind Act: Year One Report, 2004” is available here

The Nation’s Report Card is available for free from the National Center of Educational Statistics. Users are able to compare results by ethnic group, as well as on the state and district level.

"The 2007 Brown Center Report on American Education,” a report from the Brookings Institution. See full text.

“No Exit? Testing, Tracking, and Students of Color in U.S Public Schools,” a report from the Race and Public Policy Program of the Applied Research Center (Feb. 1999). See full text.

“Effects of Recent Fiscal Policies on Today’s Children and Future Generations,” by William G. Gale and Laurence J. Kotlikoff (published by the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center). See full text.

“Educational Attainment in the United States: 2003,” a report prepared by the U.S. Census Bureau (June 2004). See full text.

“Frontline: Testing Our Schools,” a special report from the Public Broadcasting Station. See full text.

"Cities in Crisis: A Special Analytic Report on High School Graduation," prepared by the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center, was released by America's Promise Alliance and is available here (April 2008).

"Education at a Glance," the 2007 annual report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, finds that educational progress in the US is lacking compared to international counterparts. See full text.

"The Nation's Report Card," the annual report of scores on the National Assessment of Educational Progress, is available here.



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