Launching A New Academic Year Under the Cloud of COVID-19 (News And Research 209)

Launching a new academic year under the cloud of COVID-19 | Tigran Shmis, Maria Barron, Kaliope Azzi-Huck | The next few weeks mark the beginning of the school year across the northern hemisphere. Per the World Bank School Closure data, (School Closures and Affected Students by country; a World Bank tracking tool) sixty-seven countries, almost half of them located in Europe and Central Asia, have reopened or are expecting to reopen schools by September…

Community Participation with Schools in Developing Countries: Towards Equitable and Inclusive Basic Education for All, edited by Mikiko Nishimura | Free version of my chapter with Paul Gertler & Vicente Garcia here | Includes chapter by Angela Demas.

The contribution of human capital and its policies to per capita income in Europe and the OECD Higher attendance at pre-primary education, greater autonomy of schools and universities, a lower student-to-teacher ratio, higher age of first tracking in secondary education and lower barriers to funding to students in tertiary education all tend to boost human capital through amplifying the positive effects of greater public spending on education. 

Improving Low-Performing Schools: A Meta-Analysis of Impact Evaluation Studies  The public narrative surrounding efforts to improve low-performing K-12 schools in the U.S. has been notably gloomy. Observers argue that either nothing works or we don’t know what works. At the same time, the federal government is asking localities to implement evidence-based interventions. But what is known empirically about whether school improvement works, how long it takes, which policies are most effective, and which contexts respond best to intervention? We meta-analyze 141 estimates from 67 studies of turnaround policies implemented post-NCLB. On average, these policies have had a moderate positive effect on math but no effect on ELA achievement as measured by high-stakes exams. We find evidence of positive impacts on low-stakes exams in STEM and humanities subjects and no evidence of harm on non-test outcomes. Some elements of reform, namely extended learning time and teacher replacements, predict greater effects. Contexts serving majority-Latinx populations have seen the largest improvements.

Recovering from the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Focus on Older Adults  As we look toward recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, we overview challenges to be minimized, including economic setbacks, health and well-being effects, and highlighted ageism, racism, and classism. We articulate opportunities to be seized, including increased comfort with technology and online platforms; stronger family and intergenerational connections, renewed energy to combat social isolation; more respect for self-care and time management; increased awareness about the importance of advance directives; and, potentially, increased interest across disciplines to work on issues of aging society. Ongoing efforts to improve policies and programs for longer, healthier lives might now be more productive, as we communicate to consumers, public officials, and everyday citizens who may be more aware of what isn’t working, what is at stake, and what might be improved.

The Equality Equation: Advancing the Participation of Women and Girls in STEM

The ABCs for Smart Regulations: Education and the Quality of Business Regulations | Do more educated societies have better business regulations? Yes! Here’s the data.

Uzbekistan prepares for university entrance exams outdoors