Making the Case: Compelling Data

This growing library features data points describing the impacts and outcomes of student-centered and competency-based teaching and learning. The data are sourced from research studies, evaluation reports and journal articles, as well as evidence collected directly by classroom, school, district and state leaders.

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    School and Classroom Culture

    Collective Educator Agency Decreases Academic Gaps

    In the AVID program a collective sense of efficacy leads teachers to insist on rigor, remove barriers, align work and advocate for students; improving learning; and decreasing academic gaps between groups. 2020 college enrollment of AVID students varies by only 1% for black, Hispanic and white students, compared to a 10% difference nation-wide.

    Career and Technical Education

    Rural School Delivers Most Industry Credentials in State

    A rural school in Kansas offers courses leading to recognized professional credentials for students in fields key to revitalizing the community's economy. In 2019 students earned the most web design and web and mobile application industry certifications of all schools in Kansas regardless of their location.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Mastery-Based Texas Charter Closes Learning Gaps

    When a public charter school in Austin, Texas, moved to competency-based, personalized learning they saw improved results for all students. The school earned 96 out of 100 points for student achievement and 100 out of 100 for closing achievement gaps on the 2018-2019 Texas state report card.

    Social-Emotional Learning

    Teachers Rank Relationships Biggest Lever for Student Engagement

    In a nationally representative survey, fourth to twelfth grade teachers ranked relationship-building as the most effective way to build student engagement. Seventy-eight percent of the 400 people surveyed selected it as a “highly effective” strategy.

    Student Agency and Voice

    Teachers See Self-Direction as Key to Student Engagement

    In a recent poll of fourth to twelfth grade teachers across the country, a lack of skills to self-direct the learning process was ranked second of all the reasons students may not be engaged, with 63% of teachers selecting it.

    Career and Technical Education

    Teachers Say Relevance is Key to Student Engagement

    Surveyed teachers ranked several student-centered strategies among the top five ways to improve student engagement. Strategies marked "highly effective" included: connecting learning to real-world skills (72%); leveraging students’ personal interests and passions within learning (65%); and incorporating active, hands-on learning experiences (64%)

    Career and Technical Education

    Personalized Public Charter in Indiana Boasts High Graduation Rates

    In 2022, the three campuses of Purdue Polytechnic, an individualized, project-based and career-oriented school in Indianapolis, Indiana, reported graduation rates of 83%, 86% and 100%, compared to rates closer to 79% in the rest of the district.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Parents Want More Flexible Learning Post-Pandemic

    In a survey of 6,000 parents about post-pandemic teaching and learning, 40% wanted their children learning at multiple sites, compared to 37% who preferred learning in a traditional classroom exclusively.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Parents Look For Small Learning Environments Post-COVID-19 Pandemic

    In a survey of 6,000 parents about post-pandemic teaching and learning, 59% wanted their kids learning in groups of 10 or fewer, compared to only 20% who preferred traditional large group instruction.

    Social-Emotional Learning

    Innovative Schools Integrate Social-Emotional Learning

    According to a survey of over 250 schools known for innovative approaches, almost 75% are prioritizing relationships and wellness. Sixty-one percent reported the use of advisories, just under 50% offer one-to-one mentoring and approximately 70% offer mental health services.

    Curriculum and Instruction

    Parental Interest in Student-Centered Environments Increases Post-Pandemic

    In a large 2022 survey, 33% of parents reported the COVID-19 pandemic increased interest in a fluid daily schedule driven by student needs, 34% in virtual learning and 43% in small learning groups. Surveyors concluded this reflects concerns over academic quality in traditional schools, a driving force in decreased public K-12 enrollment.

    Policy and Advocacy

    Portfolio Model Spurs Enrollment in Indianapolis

    While district enrollment decreased nationally, Indianapolis saw a 2% overall increase in 2020-21. This was fueled by a 42% increase in enrollment at Innovation Network Schools, which have more flexibility to provide personalized learning as part of the district’s portfolio strategy. During that time, enrollment in traditional schools dropped 15%