General Resources

Practice with Purpose: The Emerging Science of Teacher Expertise

This report from Deans for Impact focuses on the application of “deliberate practice,” or activities based on research-based principles that are purposeful and designed to maximize improvement, to develop novice teachers. The report examines five key principles drawn from studies of individuals who have excelled in a variety of fields and how these principles can be used to develop teaching skill.

To Attract Great Teachers School Districts Must Improve Their Human Capital Systems

This report by the Center for American Progress (CAP) summarizes the findings of a 108-school district survey focused on human capital systems. CAP compares recruitment, selection, evaluation, and retention systems and practices used in school districts to those used in other sectors, including banking, retail, technology, and consulting. Additionally, CAP examines district practices for recruiting and supporting diverse candidates.

Teachers Supporting Teachers: State Policies for Non-Classroom-Based Instructors

Explore how states are addressing talent development policies for coaches, mentors, instructional specialists, and teacher leaders. 

Why Bad Teachers in Twenty-Five Diverse District Rarely Get Fired

This study by the Fordham Institute investigated whether districts are able to dismiss ineffective teachers who have tenure or veteran status. The authors report that in most districts, performance-based dismissal of tenured teachers is difficult, and if pursued is extremely vulnerable to challenge and thus can take years to achieve.

Has it Always Been this Way? Tracing the Evolution of Teacher Quality Gaps in U.S. Public Schools

This CALDER study uses longitudinal data to examine gaps in teacher quality over time between advantaged and disadvantaged students in North Carolina and Washington. The report finds that teacher quality gaps have always existed, but the size of the gaps have varied over time and been driven by different dynamics, including changing student demographics and teacher mobility.

Dynamic Effects of Teacher Turnover on the Quality of Instruction

This report challenges the widely-held belief that teacher turnover adversely affects student outcomes, finding that teachers leave the profession largely as a result of poor performance or ineffectiveness in the classroom. The report suggests that improved selection policies, aligned with better induction, mentoring and professional development policies could positively impact the quality of the teaching workforce and encourage higher retention rates of quality staff.

Building a Stronger Principalship: Volume 5. The Principal Pipeline Initiative in Action

This brief summarizes findings from Wallace Foundation’s Principal Pipeline Initiative, where six urban school districts collaborated with universities to offer principal preparation programs, directed toward high-potential aspiring leaders. Designed to be a resource for districts and policymakers, the brief examines the approaches taken by the districts between 2011 and 2015, and describes the results and lessons learned. 

Great Leaders for Great Schools: How Four Charter Networks Recruit, Develop and Select Principals

This report outlines the methods used by four successful charter networks to recruit and develop principals, and offers recommendations for expanding these practices to schools across the country. Key practices includes establishing a candidate pool, providing coaching and support after hiring, and offering leadership development opportunities at all levels, aligned with clear leadership pathways.

Principals’ time, tasks and professional development: An analysis of Schools and Staffing Survey data

This study examines how principals in public schools spend their time, using data from the 2011-12 National Center for Education Statistics’ Schools and Staffing Survey. Principals were found to work an average of 59 hours weekly, with the bulk of their time spent on administrative tasks. The study also reviews principal participation in different types of professional development.

High hopes and harsh realities: The real challenges to building a diverse workforce

This report from NCTQ and the Brookings Institution examines why diversity in the teacher workforce matters so much, and the challenges associated with recruiting teachers who reflect the diversity of students served. The report finds that minority teachers exit the teacher pipeline at four key points: attending and completing college, majoring in education, hiring into teacher positions, and staying in teaching beyond one year, and it suggests some short-term strategies that could be employed to reverse these trends. 


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