https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Homeschooling-in-Uncertain-Times-2.png 900 1600 William Donovan https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Donovan2021-09-28 05:36:062021-09-28 05:44:36Homeschooling in Uncertain Times: COVID Prompts a Surge
After steadily increasing for years, the number of parents choosing to homeschool their children skyrocketed during the pandemic, and policy makers should do more to acknowledge homeschooling as a viable option, according to a new study published by Pioneer Institute.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Bad-IDEA-1.png 512 1024 Thomas Olson https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Thomas Olson2021-04-08 04:57:452021-04-08 04:57:45Bad IDEA: How States Block Federal Special Education Funding to Private and Religious School Students
This report finds that two states and three school districts around the country for which data are available appear to be out of compliance with provisions of the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) that require provision of equitable, publicly funded special education services to students in private schools, after a $3.8 million settlement was reached in Massachusetts for failure to comply.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Copy-of-WM8-2.png 512 1024 William Donovan https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Donovan2021-03-01 05:08:182021-07-19 10:11:53Madison Park II: Capitalizing on Employment Opportunity
This report reviews the co-operative education program at Boston’s Madison Park Technical Vocational High School, which places students in paid positions with local employers. The study finds that the program lags far behind other Massachusetts vocational-technical schools in terms of both placements and number of employer contacts. But with the school as a whole beginning to improve after years of turmoil, the co-op is also showing promising signs.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/sale-4.png 512 1024 Jason Bedrick https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Jason Bedrick2020-12-13 18:09:542020-12-13 18:11:54Earning Full Credit: A Toolkit for Designing Tax-Credit Scholarship Policies
Tax-credit scholarship (TCS) policies create an incentive for taxpayers to contribute to nonprofit scholarship organizations that aid families with tuition and, in some states, other K–12 educational expenses. This paper explores the central design features of TCS policies—such as eligibility, the tax credit value, credit caps, and academic accountability provisions—and outlines the different approaches taken by the TCS policies in each state. The paper also offers suggestions regarding each feature for policymakers who want to design a TCS policy that most likely to succeed at its central purpose: empowering families to provide their children with the education that works best for them.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Teacher-1.jpg 1414 2121 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2019-06-05 10:35:042020-06-29 13:36:21An Analysis of How Massachusetts’ ‘Student Growth’ Model Limits Access to Charter Public Schools
The Student Growth Percentile (SGP) the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) now uses as 25 percent of the formula for determining school district rankings has a high degree of error. While the SGP may have a role to play as part of discussions around holding districts accountable for performance, it should not be used for high-stakes policy decisions, including which districts are eligible for an increase in the charter public school cap.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/SCOTUS-1.jpg 312 598 Pioneer Institute https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Pioneer Institute2019-04-12 15:04:282020-06-29 13:39:34Amicus Brief: Espinoza v Montana Department of Revenue
Pioneer Institute today announced that it has submitted an amicus curiae urging the United States Supreme Court to hear Espinoza v. Montana Department of Revenue, which challenges a state constitutional amendment marked by religious bias.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/credit-card-21.png 512 1024 Thomas Olson https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Thomas Olson2019-03-20 14:49:422020-06-29 13:42:52Wise and Humane: Private School Nursing in Massachusetts
Private and parochial school students in Massachusetts have been denied well over $10 million in school nursing services to which they are entitled under state law.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/BestPractices-2.jpg 1558 1926 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2019-02-13 15:40:582020-06-29 13:51:00Charter School Funding in Massachusetts: A Primer
A new Pioneer Institute study finds that foundation districts are largely unaffected by students who choose to transfer to charter schools.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/ThinkstockPhotos-458843583.jpg 1415 2122 William Donovan https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Donovan2019-01-09 15:45:382020-06-29 13:57:00Axioms of Excellence: Kumon and the Russian School of Mathematics
At a time of declining state and national math proficiency, after-school math programs offer a viable option for quickly increasing the number of mathematically competent students. In this study, Pioneer Institute profiles two such programs: Kumon and the Russian School of Mathematics.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/splash_screen_schoolgirl_watercolor_1900x1400.jpg 1400 1900 Ted Rebarber https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Ted Rebarber2018-09-01 14:15:502020-06-29 14:21:55Common Core, School Choice and Rethinking Standards-Based Reform
While U.S. academic performance has declined since the broad implementation of Common Core, school choice programs are increasingly hamstrung by regulations that require private schools to adopt a single curriculum standards-based test as a condition for receiving public money, according to a new study published by Pioneer Institute.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/kids-walking-into-school.jpg 1998 1504 Roger Hatch https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Roger Hatch2018-05-15 14:53:272020-06-29 14:55:24Inter-district Choice in Massachusetts
With little fanfare or controversy, Massachusetts’ inter-district school choice program has allowed students to access better schools and spurred competition between districts, but the 27-year-old choice law should be updated to ensure the program’s continuing success.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/privateschool-1024x683.jpg 683 1024 Thomas Olson https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Thomas Olson2018-05-08 15:00:592020-06-29 15:05:02No IDEA: How Massachusetts Blocks Federal Special Education Funding for Private and Religious School Students
Over the past dozen years, thousands of private and religious school students in Massachusetts have been denied hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of special education services to which they are entitled under federal law.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/uniforms.jpg 450 675 William Donovan https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Donovan2017-11-01 16:01:082020-06-29 16:04:56Cristo Rey Schools: A Model of 21st-Century Catholic Education
This paper examines Cristo Rey schools, why they work, how they work and what parts of their education/business design can be successfully transferred to other Catholic high schools. It will look at the Cristo Rey Network, a cooperative organization formed to standardize the Cristo Rey approach, offer resources to the individual schools and help promote the spread of Cristo Rey schools to cities that can support them.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/children-at-desks.jpg 1415 2121 Lauren Corvese https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Lauren Corvese2017-06-30 16:32:492020-06-29 16:34:25Expanding Educational Opportunities: Three Models for Extended Summer Enrichment Programs in Massachusetts
The last of a three-part series by Pioneer Institute on summer learning shows that Massachusetts schools establishing summer enrichment programs to close the achievement gap between lower-income and higher-income students can have a greater impact by eventually expanding the program across multiple summers or for a full year. This final paper introduces three types of extended summer enrichment models: 12-month programs, multi-year summer-only programs, and multi-year, year-round programs.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/schoolgirl-writing.jpg 1545 1944 William Heuer https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Heuer2017-06-01 16:35:512020-06-29 16:37:38Homeschooling: The Ultimate School Choice
This report recommends that states do more to acknowledge the…
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/brockton-school-bus.jpg 450 600 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2017-02-15 11:01:372020-07-01 11:03:10Best Practices in Massachusetts Charter Schools: What We Know Now
This report summarizes the research-based truth about Massachusetts charter public schools, focusing on the ideas that were most prominent in the charter school ballot initiative debate. The data that follow are taken from a series of papers published by Pioneer Institute over the course of 2016. This report illustrates that Massachusetts charter public schools do not drain resources from district schools, they outperform the school districts from which their students come, and have attrition rates that are lower than or equal to those districts.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/CharterPhoto.jpg 424 637 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2017-01-18 11:04:052020-07-01 11:06:10Attrition, Dropout and Student Mobility in District and Charter Schools: A Demographic Report
This paper uses publicly available DESE data to explore student attrition and other forms of student movement, such as dropouts, within district and charter schools. It is not a direct response to the now dated MTA report, but it does explore the validity of the claim that Massachusetts charter public schools have higher attrition than their district counterparts because these schools “select out” or “push out” weaker students in an effort to produce higher test scores.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/sidebar_kids_300x1741.jpg 174 300 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2016-10-26 12:31:002020-07-01 12:32:31Massachusetts Charter Public Schools Best Practices in Expansion and Replication
This paper considers what the limited expansion of some charter organizations in the Commonwealth has looked like so far, and explores the different legal and policy conditions that enable large charter and educational management organizations to flourish. It does so with an eye to understanding whether Massachusetts might benefit from policy changes that encourage the expansion of operators already in the state and provide incentives for successful outside operators to bring their programs to the Commonwealth. Recommendations include providing pathways for new, innovative providers to enter the state.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Teacher-Classroom.jpg 1521 2299 Ken Ardon https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Ken Ardon2016-10-19 12:37:572020-07-01 12:39:38Massachusetts Charter Public Schools English Language Learners: Demographic and Achievement Trends
The following paper describes how charter schools in Massachusetts and especially in Boston enroll and serve English language learners. Another report in this series provides similar information about students with disabilities. This paper provides enrollment, attrition, and achievement data for English language learners in charter schools across the Commonwealth, with a concentration on Boston and Gateway Cities such as Lawrence.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png 0 0 William Donovan https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png William Donovan2016-08-17 13:00:232020-07-01 13:03:36Expanding Educational Opportunities: Best Practices in U.S. Summer Enrichment Programs
This report is the second of a three-part Pioneer Institute series of studies on summer enrichment programs with a particular focus on opportunities for disadvantaged students. It highlights best practices in the field by profiling a range of summer programs. The authors urge summer enrichment programs to partner with entities that help place disadvantaged children in educational programs to help the schools and non-profits recruit students. They also urge programs run by schools to use academic-year faculty.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/credit-card-3.png 512 1024 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2016-06-22 13:16:492020-07-01 13:19:35Massachusetts Charter Public Schools: Best Practices in Character Education
This report explores two high performing Massachusetts charter public schools—Abby Kelley Foster Charter School in Worcester, MA and the Brooke Charter School Network of Boston, MA—and how they approach character education. This study is part of a series of papers from Pioneer highlighting best practices in the charter sector.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/KidsThumbsUp.jpg 420 630 Lauren Corvese https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Lauren Corvese2016-06-08 13:33:592020-07-01 13:38:23Survey of Summer Enrichment Programs at Independent and Parochial Schools in Massachusetts
A survey of more than 70 Massachusetts private and parochial schools found that most offer academically-oriented summer programs, which have been found to prevent summer learning loss and can help close the achievement gap among student groups. The survey is the first of a three-part study that will yield a comprehensive guide to summer enrichment programs in the commonwealth.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/African-American-Student-1.jpg 427 640 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2015-12-01 14:53:172020-07-20 16:03:33Massachusetts Charter Public Schools Best Practices: Serving English Language Learners
This report draws on interviews with school leaders and classroom observations in three Massachusetts charter school organizations to describe some of the successful strategies used to enable large ELL populations to achieve at high levels. The report applauds holding charter schools accountable for recruiting and retaining ELLs and other special populations, but warns against “punishing” schools that succeed in helping students shift out of a category based on academic achievement.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/credit-card-12-1.png 512 1024 Scott Haller https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Scott Haller2015-09-09 15:19:142020-07-01 15:21:21Proving the Viability of a School Choice Voucher
In “Proving the Viability of a School Choice Voucher,” author Scott Haller surveyed 107 religiously affiliated private schools across Massachusetts including Catholic, Jewish, Adventist, Baptist, Islamic and Episcopal schools. The report found that an annual voucher of between $6,000 and $8,000 would be sufficient to provide low-income students access to an education in the majority of religiously affiliated Massachusetts K-12 schools.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Students.jpg 270 630 Ken Ardon https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Ken Ardon2015-07-30 15:24:462020-07-01 15:26:18Modeling Urban Scholarship Vouchers in Massachusetts
Vouchers have the potential to do many things - improve family satisfaction, reduce racial isolation, and strengthen educational outcomes for both the recipients and the children remaining in public schools - all at little or no net cost to taxpayers. The program described in this paper could provide 10,000 students from low-income families with the choices that other families already possess.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/City-on-a-Hill-charter.jpg 263 385 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2015-04-09 16:18:442020-07-01 16:20:15Great Teachers Are Not Born, They Are Made: Case Study Evidence from Massachusetts Charters
This report highlights five high-performing charter schools that have assembled and trained highly effective teaching workforces. These include networks include Lowell Collegiate Charter Public School, City on a Hill Charter Public Schools, Advanced Math and Science Academy, the Francis W. Parker Charter Essential School, and Match Charter Public Schools.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/WGBHmetco.jpg 529 800 Katherine Apfelbaum https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Katherine Apfelbaum2015-03-01 16:30:152020-07-01 16:33:43Expanding METCO and Closing Achievement Gaps
The paper begins by examining segregation in the United States and in Massachusetts. While schools became more racially balanced in the 1970s, that trend has been reversed in more recent decades. In Massachusetts more than one quarter of African American students and similar numbers of Hispanic students attend heavily segregated schools.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Kids-hands-raised.jpg 660 990 Cara Stillings Candal https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Cara Stillings Candal2014-12-01 16:15:242020-07-08 16:17:37Innovation Interrupted: How the Achievement Gap Act of 2010 Has Redefined Charter Schooling in Massachusetts
Massachusetts charter schools are among the highest performing in the country, as measured by standardized test results. Despite this, the Commonwealth has created a difficult policy environment for growing new and existing charter schools, one that is defined by a statewide cap on the number of charter schools that can exist and a Smart Cap, enacted in 2010, which raised the cap on charter schools in certain underperforming districts.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/kids-hands-up.jpg 667 1000 Katherine Apfelbaum https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Katherine Apfelbaum2014-07-01 16:43:242020-07-08 16:47:33Meeting the Commonwealth’s Demand: Lifting the Cap on Charter Public Schools in Massachusetts
Charter public schools are one of the few public school choice options available in Massachusetts largely due to restrictions the state constitution imposes on public education spending. Charters outperform traditional public schools; statewide, charter school students gain an additional month and a half of learning in English and two and a half months in math compared to students in traditional public schools.
https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/Teacher-1.jpg 1414 2121 Ken Ardon https://pioneerinstitute.org/wp-content/uploads/logo_440x96.png Ken Ardon2014-07-01 16:39:262020-07-08 16:43:16Giving Kids Credit: Using Scholarship Tax Credits to Increase Educational Opportunity in Massachusetts
While higher-income families have a plethora of K-12 educational options, lower-income families’ options are often limited to the local district school to which they are assigned. This paper proposes a constitutional and fiscally responsible method of expanding educational options for low-income families.