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research studies database
Research Studies provide concise, bulleted Findings, Policy Implications, and Recommendations on key issues, such as:

  • High school rigor and exit exams
  • Better serving English language learners
  • Boosting reading and math achievement
  • College entry and completion
  • Reducing dropout rates and increasing graduation rates
  • And many more!  (Go to the database.)

progress of education reform
progress of ed reformThe Progress of Education Reform addresses the hottest education issue and provides information in a concise and easy-to-read format based on the most recent studies and reports.

ECS Document Collections
ECS regularly issues useful compilations, summaries and/or comparisons of state policies—enacted or pending—on a wide variety of education topics, listed on the right. For a list of our most current documents, please see our What's New page.

Please use the links below to download PDFs that include all the documents for a given year.

If you'd like to order a print copy, contact the ECS Distribution Center at 303.299.3692 or jivey@ecs.org.

Reprint Permission
ECS is pleased to have other organizations or individuals share its materials with their constituents. To request permission to excerpt part of our publications either in print
or electronically, please e-mail ecs@ecs.org, subject: Reprint Permission. State the full name of the document, and supply detail about how the permission will be used (audience, quantity, etc).  A response will be provided within 24 hours.

 

 

ECS Policy Analysis Topics:

(Note: Not all topics have an ECS document associated with them. If you are looking for information on a specific topic, you can use our search function.)

Service-Learning

NCLCE Schools of Success #5: Service-Learning May Influence Attendance, Performance PDF - In its fifth Schools of Success report, the National Center for Learning and Civic Engagement looked at the relationships between students’ participation in service-learning and academic performance and school attendance. In several instances, the attendance of students who participated in service-learning activities was statistically higher than their peers who did not participate in service-learning. (Paul Baumann, ECS, March 2014)...

High-Quality Service-Learning Opens the Door for Students’ Entry into STEM Fields PDF - Based on a project that examined 19 schools, NCLC has gathered information on the relationship between STEM-focused service-learning and student interest and performance in STEM-related courses and careers. The findings of this evaluation suggest that STEM-related service-learning is a powerful tool for schools to use to drive student performance and interest in STEM fields. (Paul Baumann, ECS, May 2013)...

Educators’ Perceptions of How Schools Can Foster Successful Service-Learning PDF - In 2010, the National Center for Learning and Citizenship (NCLC) established the Schools of Success, a national network of 19 schools that use service-learning as an instructional strategy. The schools were part of a three-year project to examine how the elements of service-learning might enhance key student outcomes, such as academic performance and civic engagement. Through this project, the NCLC also has gathered information on school administrators' and teachers’ perceptions of the facilitators and barriers to successful service-learning. In general, teachers and administrators identified lack of time as the most critical barrier to service-learning success. (Paul Baumann, ECS, February 2013)...

NCLC Schools of Success Network Shows that Service-Learning Quality Matters PDF - A new report about the National Center for Learning and Citizenship's Schools of Success program clearly points to at least one simple and clear conclusion: The quality of service-learning matters. Robust data from 19 schools across the country show that high-quality service-learning has a significant and positive relationship with students' academic engagement, educational aspirations, acquisition of 21st century skills, and community engagement. (Paul Baumann, ECS, November 2012) ...

Network News: Sustaining Service-Learning in Your School: Staying the Course PDF - Over the past year and a half, we have framed issues of Network News around identifying quality service-learning best practices and implementation. In this, our final installment, we look closely at what it takes to sustain service-learning, and offer ideas for how to anchor service-learning in curricula and bolster the wonderful programs taking place in the Schools of Success network schools. (Lisa Guilfoile, ECS, July 2012) ...

Service-Learning After Learn and Serve America: How Five States Are Moving Forward PDF - The elimination of funding for Learn and Serve America coupled with state budget shortfalls has prompted a transition period for the service-learning field. Advocates across the country are choosing to move beyond the devastating budget cut and seize the opportunity to refocus efforts to expand high-quality service-learning. This set of case studies aims to highlight policy and practice in several states where service-learning experts are designing and implementing agendas to maintain and advance statewide service-learning initiatives with no federal aid and no new state aid. ...

Network News: High Quality Reflection PDF - Quality reflection is essential to helping students glean the most from their service-learning projects. This issue examines the attributes of good reflection and its ability to help participants learn what they need to learn, recognize the real-world application of their work and appreciate the richness of their service experience. (Lisa Guilfoile, ECS, March 2012)...

Network News: Linking Service-Learning to the Curriculum PDF - Generating ideas for service-learning projects with strong links to curriculum can be a daunting process for some practitioners. Yet those clear and intentional connections separate service from service-learning, and are much more likely to create the kind of learning that positively impacts students and the community being served. This issue focuses on strategies for connecting service to core learning outcomes in ways that make learning meaningful and stimulating for students—hopefully answers the familiar student question, "Why do I need to know this?"...

Network News - Cultivating Youth Voice in Service-Learning PDF - This issue addresses a challenge that service-learning practitioners are all too familiar with - how to effectively cultivate youth voice without compromising project quality and the learning experience itself. Learn about specific challenges teachers face around youth voice, and some tried-and-true strategies for engaging all students more holistically in the service-learning process. Peruse a list of excellent resources on youth voice, upcoming funding opportunities for service-learning and civic engagement projects and latest news from the field....

State Policies for Service-Learning/Community Service Database - This database contains information about the state policies that support service-learning/community service in all 50 states. (Education Commission of the States)...

Network News, July 2011 PDF - Documenting and Archiving Service-Learning over Time: It’s Not Just a Story Anymore -- This issue focuses on a challenge faced by many service-learning teachers and practitioners in the field - how to effectively document and archive service-learning projects. Learn more about tools and strategies teachers can use to chronicle their project work, while enhancing students' learning experience and creating a collection of quality projects to share with the larger learning community. Get the latest on the District Leaders and Schools of Success network member advocacy, and find out what funding opportunities are available around service-learning and civic engagement. ...

Network News: Measuring Service-Learning's Impact on Community PDF - This issue highlights the importance of measuring service-learning's impact on the community being served and ways to effectively measure that impact. Learn more about the difference between 'Needs' versus 'Strengths' assessments and how those tools can set the tone for community partners' service-learning experiences with students and schools. Get the latest on who's doing what in the District Leaders and Schools of Success networks, and check out what funding opportunities are available around service-learning and civic engagement. (Education Commission of the States, May 2011)...

Service Learning: Does it matter? - Access related research titles from the ECS Research Studies Database. Links embedded in titles will take you to each study's major findings and recommendations....

Network News: February 2011 PDF - The Network News, a monthly publication for members of the District Leaders and Schools of Success networks, is created by the National Center for Learning and Citizenship (NCLC) at the Education Commission of the States (ECS). This publication provides practical strategies for K-12 quality service-learning design and implementation, important dates and events, and news of member advocacy efforts in the field....

Strategies for Student Engagement: A Toolkit to Implement Service Learning in Colorado - This toolkit was designed to provide tools and resources, to educators, principals and superintendents interested in using and sustaining service-learning in their schools, districts and classrooms. (Education Commission of the States and Colorado Department of Education, December 2010)...

The Progress of Education Reform: Service-Learning PDF - The term service-learning is used frequently these days, but confusion remains as to what it is and why it matters. More importantly, are there any measurable benefits? This issue of The Progress of Education Reform looks at four research studies that explore the impact of service-learning on student achievement and civic engagement....

Service-Learning and Hispanic Students: What Works in the Field PDF - This report examines best practices in educating Hispanic students and improving student graduation rates and matriculation into higher education. The author sought to determine whether successful schools implemented different practices for Hispanic students and how successful service-learning was as a pedagogical approach. (Tiffani Lennon, Education Commission of the States, July 2009)...

Service-Learning Policies and Practices: A Research-Based Advocacy Paper PDF - This paper translates service-learning’s research-based evidence for education leaders and identifies best practices and policies. Learn more about the five critical components for effectiveness: vision and leadership, curriculum and assessment, community-school partnerships, professional development and continuous improvement. (Education Commission of the States, NCLC, September 2008) ...

Transforming Students into Active Stewards of Democracy -- A report on the U.S.-U.K. seminar Political Literacy and Service-Learning: The Role of Schools and Their Communiti PDF - Proceedings from a 2005 joint seminar between U.S. and United Kingdom service-learning and citizenship education experts and practitioners, this report presents information on the similar challenges both countries face in promoting and implementing political literacy and citizenship education programs. (Dale DeCesare, Education Commission of the States, 2006)...

Martin Luther King Jr. and Cesar E. Chavez: Legacies of Leadership and Inspiration for Today’s Civic Education PDF - Hundreds of public schools and streets are named after either Martin Luther King Jr. or Cesar E. Chavez, although their lasting influence, particularly regarding the civic mission of schools, extends much further. To demonstrate this lasting influence, this issue paper provides: (1) lessons from the work of King and Chavez that can help educators and policymakers think more deeply about ways in which awareness and advocacy can be strengthened to support the civic mission of schools; (2) examples of ways in which schools are using the King and Chavez legacies; and (3) recommendations for policymakers that use the legacies to create opportunities for effective civic education in America's schools. (Anthony Welch and Julie Chavez Rodriguez, Education Commission of the States, September 2005)...

Learning That Lasts Field Guide PDF - The Learning That Lasts Field Guide is a new companion guide to Learning That Lasts: How Service-Learning Can Become an Integral Part of Schools, States and Communities. The Field Guide provides specific strategies to move service-learning from the margin to the mainstream in American schools. (Education Commission of the States, 2005)...

"...And Justice for All" - Community Service-Learning for Social Justice MS Word - While meeting individual needs in the community is an important aspect of effective citizenship, democracy depends on citizens’ willingness and ability to examine current social problems, evaluate how they have developed over time and consider new directions in creating a better society. An important part of the civic mission of schooling is helping students to understand and work toward the country’s creed of “justice for all.” (Rahima Wade, Education Commission of the States, September 2001)...

From the ECS State Policy Database: Service-Learning - This policy database—updated weekly—is made possible by your state's fiscal support of the Education Commission of the States....

Online Databases
Roll over each database for a description.

p-3 archived databases
kindergarten artscan
k-12 choice
charter highly qualified requirements for special ed
choice-open enrollment NCLB
citizen-ed NCLB snaps
dual kindergarten
high school leadership
K-12 Paraprofessionals: Explore our findings for Title I Instructional Paraprofessional qualifications and certification requirements, paraprofessional professional development programs and state assessments for paraprofessionals.
school accountability literacy
service-learning teacher certification
teacher tenure teacher comp
postsecondary Teacher Professional Development
Postsecondary teacher prep
transfer and articulation special-ed teacher certification
  dual
charter
 
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