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Full-Text Articles in Education

Long-Term Outcomes Of Low Achieving Third Grade Readers, Sarah Mckenzie, Emily Jordan, Charlene A. Reid Oct 2018

Long-Term Outcomes Of Low Achieving Third Grade Readers, Sarah Mckenzie, Emily Jordan, Charlene A. Reid

Policy Briefs

This brief examines long-term academic outcomes for students who demonstrate low reading achievement in third grade. Following three cohorts of students from third grade through early high school, we find that students who are behind in third grade are unlikely to ever read proficiently. Economically disadvantaged students, Black students, and male students demonstrate less improvement in reading achievement over time than other types of students.


National Assessment Of Educational Progress (Naep) Results: 2017, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Apr 2018

National Assessment Of Educational Progress (Naep) Results: 2017, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The National Center for Education Statistics has released this year’s NAEP results which measure nationwide student performance in 4th and 8th grade Reading and Math. NAEP is administered nationally to a representative sample of students from all 50 states, so acts as a standard measure of student performance across states and time. This policy brief will examine Arkansas’ 2017 results and examine score gaps between student groups.


Arkansas Teacher Salaries, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2017

Arkansas Teacher Salaries, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

This brief examines teacher salaries in Arkansas. Using data publicly available from the Arkansas Department of Education, we examine how teacher salaries compare to the nation and surrounding states. Further analyses examine differences in teacher salary within and between the regions of Arkansas. We identify the district factors most related to and make recommendations for utilizing this information.


School Discipline In Arkansas, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter May 2017

School Discipline In Arkansas, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

This brief examines school discipline practices and outcomes in Arkansas. Using data publicly available from the Arkansas Department of Education, we examine state-wide discipline trends, summarize the analysis on school-level data demonstrating disparities in student discipline, and make recommendations for utilizing this information.


National Board Certified Teacher Incentive Bonuses: Senate Bill 555, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Mar 2017

National Board Certified Teacher Incentive Bonuses: Senate Bill 555, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

National Board Certification is a voluntary process that, according to the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, certifies that they “have developed and demonstrated the advanced knowledge, skills, and practices required of an outstanding educator.” Currently, National Board Certified (NBC) teachers in an Arkansas public school receive an annual bonus of $5,000 for up to 10 years. In this brief, we examine NBC in Arkansas and Senate Bill 555, which proposes the modification and enhancement of NBC incentive bonuses for teachers receiving certification after January 2018.


Quality Counts 2017, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Jan 2017

Quality Counts 2017, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Education Week released their 21st Quality Counts report last month. In addition to the annual grades, this year’s report takes a comprehensive look at the steps states are taking to turn their blueprints for the federal Every Student Succeeds Act’s to a finished structure. Overall, Arkansas received a C– and was ranked 43rd among the 50 states. This policy brief examines Arkansas’ rank in each category of the report as well as the quality of the report itself.


The Succeed Scholarship Progam: A Voucher For Arkansas' Students In Special Education, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Jan 2017

The Succeed Scholarship Progam: A Voucher For Arkansas' Students In Special Education, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The 2016-17 school year is the first year that Arkansas’ students with disabilities could use state education dollars as tuition at authorized private schools. In this brief we examine the Succeed Scholarship Program and consider the impacts for Arkansas schools and students.


Integration In Little Rock Area, Part 5: Are Students Moves More Integrative Or Segregative?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Dec 2016

Integration In Little Rock Area, Part 5: Are Students Moves More Integrative Or Segregative?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

School integration has been a contentious policy issue in Little Rock since the 1950s. Recent charter expansions have raised questions about the current level of integration in public schools (charter and traditional) in the Little Rock metro area. As part of our series on integration in Little Rock, this brief examines the impact of student moves on the overall level of integration in the Little Rock area public school system.


Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 4: What Is The Current Level Of Integration In Little Rock?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2016

Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 4: What Is The Current Level Of Integration In Little Rock?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

School integration has been a contentious policy issue in Little Rock since the 1950s. Recent charter expansions have raised questions about the current level of integration in public schools (charter and traditional) in the Little Rock Area. As part of our series on integration in Little Rock, this brief examines the prevalence of hyper segregated white, black, and economically disadvantaged schools, and calculates the average difference between school demographics and the area’s demographics.


Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 3: Where Do Students Move?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2016

Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 3: Where Do Students Move?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

School integration has been a contentious policy issue in Little Rock since the 1950s. Recent charter expansions have raised questions about the current level of integration in public schools (charter and traditional) in the Little Rock Area. As part of our series on integration in Little Rock, this brief examines the differences in school-level demographics and academics between the schools students leave and the schools these students enter


Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 2: Disproportionalities Among Student Movers, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2016

Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 2: Disproportionalities Among Student Movers, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

School integration has been a contentious policy issue in Little Rock since the 1950s. Recent charter expansions have raised questions about the current level of integration in public schools (charter and traditional) in the Little Rock Area. As part of our series on integration in Little Rock, this brief examines the demographics and academic performance of students switching between public school sectors, and disproportionate representation of certain students among sector switchers


Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 1: Demographic Trends In Enrollment, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Oct 2016

Integration In The Little Rock Area, Part 1: Demographic Trends In Enrollment, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

School integration has been a contentious policy issue in Little Rock since the 1950s. Recent charter expansions have raised questions about the current level of integration in public schools (charter and traditional) in the Little Rock Area. As an introduction to this work, we begin by examining broad changes in enrollment before we drill down in later briefs and study the impacts of individual moves


Postsecondary Remediation And Rogers’ Academic Guarantee, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Sep 2016

Postsecondary Remediation And Rogers’ Academic Guarantee, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Over a decade ago, Rogers School District implemented a policy called the Academic Conclusion P.4 Guarantee, promising to reimburse eligible graduates who have to enroll in remedial courses in college. In this brief, we examine Arkansas’s college remediation policy, Rogers’ policy, and how this might affect other Arkansas school districts.


Kids Through College: How Helena-West Helena And Kipp Delta Are Serving All Students, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Aug 2016

Kids Through College: How Helena-West Helena And Kipp Delta Are Serving All Students, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Two years ago, KIPP Through College advisors from KIPP Delta Collegiate High School started working at Central High in Helena. What’s happened since reveals the power of collaboration and suggests best practices for all schools.


Advanced Placement In Arkansas: Increasing Equity, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Apr 2016

Advanced Placement In Arkansas: Increasing Equity, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Each spring, secondary students across Arkansas sit for Advanced Placement (AP) Exams. Arkansas has one of the most aggressive policies promoting AP in the nation. Despite this, Arkansas students are still struggling with inequitable and inadequate access to AP courses. This brief examines the effects of Arkansas’ AP legislation on equity, adequacy, and productivity in AP policy, particularly for the state’s low-income and minority students.


Quality Counts 2016, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Jan 2016

Quality Counts 2016, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Last week, Education Week released their 20th annual Quality Counts report. This year’s report discusses school accountability and examines state and federal accountability policies. It also grades the nation and each state on academic performance and outcomes. Overall, Arkansas received a C– and was ranked 41st among the 50 states. This policy brief examines Arkansas’ rank in each category of the report as well as the quality of the report itself.


National Assessment Of Educational Progress (Naep) Results For 2015, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2015

National Assessment Of Educational Progress (Naep) Results For 2015, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The National Center for Education Statistics has released this year’s NAEP results which measure nationwide student performance in 4th and 8th grade Reading and Math. NAEP is administered nationally to a representative sample of students from all 50 states, so acts as a standard measure of student performance across states and time. This policy brief will examine Arkansas’ 2015 results and consider possible causes and implications.


Education Funding Equity In Arkansas, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2015

Education Funding Equity In Arkansas, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Thanks to the landmark Lake View case, Arkansas has doubled-down on its commitment to ensuring an equitable education to all students. This brief examines the equity of current education spending in Arkansas.


Education Funding Adequacy In Arkansas, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2015

Education Funding Adequacy In Arkansas, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Over the past decade and a half, Arkansas has made enormous strides in ensuring that every child in the state is has access to a quality learning experience. This brief examines the adequacy of current education spending in Arkansas


Arkansas Science Benchmark, Eoc Biology And Itbs Test Results 2014-15, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Aug 2015

Arkansas Science Benchmark, Eoc Biology And Itbs Test Results 2014-15, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) has released the 2014-15 Benchmark Science and ITBS (Iowa Test of Basic Skills) results. PARCC results of Literacy and Math will be released later this fall. The following brief highlights the results of these tests, compares achievement scores over time, and provides a glimpse of regional achievement results for the following exams:  Benchmark Science Exam (Grades 5 and 7)  End-of-Course Biology Exam  Iowa Test of Basic Skills (Grades 1 and 2)


Aspire In Arkansas?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Jul 2015

Aspire In Arkansas?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

On June 22, 2015, Governor Hutchinson communicated with Johnny Key, State Commissioner of Education, his request for the state’s removal from PARCC by June 30th. This back and forth over student assessment has raised many questions for educators, students, and parents. This brief will review the history behind annual assessments, address the differences between PARCC and ACT/ACT Aspire, and suggest the scores Arkansas’ students would receive if ACT Aspire is administered next school year


Teacher Survey: Common Core Standards, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Apr 2015

Teacher Survey: Common Core Standards, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for K-12 English language arts (ELA) and mathematics were adopted by the Arkansas State Board of Education in July 2010. Teachers have been implementing CCSS in their classrooms for several years, and this spring students across the state are being assessed on CCSS through the PARCC assessments. In February 2015, Governor Hutchinson announced the formation of a Council on Common Core Review, and the Office for Education Policy began a survey of Arkansas public school teachers to gather their opinions on this important topic. In this brief, we will share the preliminary findings from ...


2015 Legislative Summary, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Apr 2015

2015 Legislative Summary, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The 90th General Assembly opened its Regular Session on January 12 and recessed on April 9. Meetings of the House and Senate education committees were usually standing room only for discussions of a broad range of bills on early childhood, K-12, and higher education issues. The purpose of this policy brief is to review the K-12 bills that garnered the most attention and have been signed into law by firstterm Governor Asa Hutchinson. These highlights are organized into several categories as shown in This Brief


Grading Arkansas’ Schools, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Apr 2015

Grading Arkansas’ Schools, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Report Cards for Arkansas schools released by the Arkansas Department of Education contain valuable information for stakeholders. As in past years, the report cards outline student demographics and academic achievement, as well as rates of attendance, graduation, dropout, grade inflation and college remediation. Report cards also contain information on teacher quality and school environment indicators. There are a few new pieces of information provided this year, specifically a school rating which assigns a letter grade to schools.


Broadband Access In Arkansas Schools, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Apr 2015

Broadband Access In Arkansas Schools, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

With the computer-based Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) test, the Arkansas Digital Learning Act, and Governor Hutchinson’s efforts to increase participation in computer science courses, the Arkansas Legislature is discussing actions to take in order to close the “digital divide” in the state. This brief will explore the technological requirements of providing the recommended bandwidth to schools, the barriers to the provision of that service, and potential steps for the Arkansas Department of Education to take in order to ensure that every Arkansas student has fast, consistent access to the Internet to support their ...


Creation Of The Achievement School District: House Bill 1733, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Mar 2015

Creation Of The Achievement School District: House Bill 1733, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Education leaders throughout the country are working to identify successful strategies for turning persistently low performing schools into successful schools. One strategy undertaken in Louisiana, Michigan, and Tennessee is the creation of a unique school district for the most academically distressed schools. In this brief, we review the programs in other states and examine House Bill 1733, which proposes the creation of such a district in Arkansas for schools or districts in academic distress


The Waivers Sought By Arkansas Charters: Should They Be Extended To All?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Mar 2015

The Waivers Sought By Arkansas Charters: Should They Be Extended To All?, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

Should traditional public school districts be allowed to use the same waivers as nearby charter schools? Perhaps the flexibility afforded to charters might be helpful for all schools by allowing them to become nimble, responsive organizations, less governed by inertia and more guided by innovation. House Bill 1377 proposes such an extension of waivers. In this brief, we examine the most common waivers that charter schools request to assess what types of waivers could be available to traditional public schools if House Bill 1377 were signed into law.


Impacts Of Public School Choice Act Of 2013, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Feb 2015

Impacts Of Public School Choice Act Of 2013, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

The Public School Choice Act of 2013 (Act 1227) allows students to transfer to a nonresident district. Previous school choice law restrictions based on race, were removed in the new law. As a result, concerns have been raised about the possible negative impacts of choice on districts’ racial balance. This brief addresses these concerns by examining the impact of the Public School Choice Act of 2013 on district enrollment and racial integration.


Quality Counts 2015, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Jan 2015

Quality Counts 2015, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

In an attempt to gauge the educational progress of the nation and each state, Education Week has published state report cards since 1997 in its annual Quality Counts series. The 19 th annual report - Quality Counts 2015 - was released in January. Overall, Arkansas received an grade of C– and was ranked 36th among the 50 states. This policy brief examines Arkansas’ rank in each category of the report as well as the quality of the report itself.


Transportation Funding In Arkansas’ Schools, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter Nov 2014

Transportation Funding In Arkansas’ Schools, Sarah C. Mckenzie, Gary W. Ritter

Policy Briefs

In a report to the Arkansas Joint Senate and House Education Committee meeting in September 2014, Picus Odden & Associates recommended that the Legislature change the state’s transportation funding system. Currently, transportation funding is distributed from the state to districts on a per pupil basis as a part of the unrestricted foundation formula. In doing so, the system does not account for the variation in costs of transportation for districts across the state; therefore, Picus Odden & Associates recommended that the state’s transportation funding structure be changed. The purpose of this policy brief is to highlight transportation funding in Arkansas and across the nation and provide recommendations regarding transportation funding models for Arkansas’ policymakers to consider.