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Disrupting the Textbook Status Quo

High-quality instructional materials are essential for American students to succeed in the global economy. Recent research suggests that curriculum choice rivals teacher quality in influencing student achievement outcomes, and that access to good content correlates more strongly with student performance than ethnicity or socioeconomic status. As we discuss in another article, the past few years have been frustrating for educators who want good curricula, but instead are faced with a complex and often underwhelming set of options. morenext

From Stanford Social Innovation Review, August 27, 2014

To Keep Poor Students in School, Provide Social Services

For the 16 million American children living below the federal poverty line, the start of a new school year should be reason to celebrate. Summer is no vacation when your parents are working multiple jobs or looking for one. Many kids are left to fend for themselves in neighborhoods full of gangs, drugs and despair. Given the hardships at home, poor kids might be expected to have the best attendance records, if only for the promise of a hot meal and an orderly classroom. morenext

From The New York Times Education, August 25, 2014

Generation Later, Poor Are Still Rare at Elite Colleges

As the shaded quadrangles of the nation’s elite campuses stir to life for the start of the academic year, they remain bastions of privilege. Amid promises to admit more poor students, top colleges educate roughly the same percentage of them as they did a generation ago. This is despite the fact that there are many high school seniors from low-income homes with top grades and scores: twice the percentage in the general population as at elite colleges. morenext

From The New York Times Education, August 25, 2014

How a Part-Time Pay Penalty Hits Working Mothers

Women get paid less than men in almost all jobs, but when women in low-wage jobs need to take time off work to care for children, they are at an even greater disadvantage. morenext

From The New York Times- The Upshot, August 21, 2014

Teen Moms: The Difference Two Years and a Diploma Make

What would happen if teen mothers waited a few years to have children? What if they simply got their high school diploma? What if they did both? These are three of the “what-if” scenarios considered in a recent Child Trends research brief, co-authored by our own Isabel Sawhill. morenext

From Brookings Institution Blog, August 18, 2014

Want to live longer? Send your kids to college.

New research by Esther Friedman of the RAND Corporation and Robert Mare of UCLA finds that parents of college grads live two years longer than parents whose kids didn’t graduate high school. That two-year bump in life expectancy for parents of the most-educated kids is surprisingly large – it amounts to about two-thirds of the longevity benefit of running every day. morenext

From The Washington Post Education, August 17, 2014

Improving Educational Outcomes for Families

A mother’s level of educational attainment has important implications for her children’s economic well-being, education, and health, says a new Foundation for Child Development report by Donald Hernandez and Jeffrey Napierala. Their findings reaffirm previous research, suggesting that less maternal education is associated with higher levels of poverty, child obesity, and infant mortality, and lower levels of preschool enrollment and academic proficiency for children. morenext

From New America Ed Center, August 15, 2014

Can You Fight Poverty by Paying Kids to Go to School?

Three years ago, Gordon-Cole was one of 600 people (most of them single mothers) selected for the Memphis Family Rewards Program, a widely watched trial that provides cash incentives to poor parents and their high school-age children for completing tasks that seem, at first glance, absurdly second nature for middle-class families. morenext

From Politico Magazine, August 12, 2014

Multigenerational Programs Aim to Break Poverty Cycle

Not much about public education has gone as advertised for Rebecca Goodman or her family. morenext

From Education Week, August 07, 2014

Indiana’s Kids Count On Us for Policies to Improve Child Poverty, Too!

More than one in five Hoosier children are stuck living in poverty, and they need Indiana’s policymakers to tackle innovative policy solutions to help secure their future. morenext

From Indiana Institute for Working Families, August 06, 2014

Born Amid Tumult, Head Start Deeply Rooted in Mississippi

Based here in the state capital, Friends of Children of Mississippi is the Head Start grantee for the Delta region, operating 28 centers in 15 counties that serve 4,000 children. The program supports children and parents, provides economic sustenance in rural areas where well-paying jobs are few, and helps connect families to other services, such as job training. morenext

From Education Week, August 05, 2014

D.C. charter school educates parents alongside children

The District’s Briya Public Charter School enrolls parents and young children together in the same school, a novel effort to improve children’s prospects by building the skills of those who are closest to them. It’s an approach that an increasing number of researchers and philanthropists are promoting across the country as experts worry that investments in early childhood education or school improvement can only go so far. morenext

From The Washington Post Education, August 03, 2014

Seeking Safety: Can preschool help fight crime?

Most children who participate in early education programs are more prepared for kindergarten - academically, socially and emotionally - than those who don't. Studies have indicated that early education translates into higher graduation rates, better paying jobs and a lower tendency to get in trouble with the law. morenext

From The Fay Observer, July 27, 2014

Child Care and the Overwhelmed Parent

This week, a mother in North Augusta, S. C., was fired from her job at McDonald’s following an arrest earlier in the month when authorities learned that she dropped her 9-year-old daughter off at a nearby park while she worked her shift. The news has prompted public debate about the the difficulty of finding and affording child care. morenext

From The New York Times, July 24, 2014

New state rankings on how America’s children are faring

A new report on how America’s children are faring, just released by the nonprofit Annie E. Casey Foundation, found that Massachusetts is doing the best job and Mississippi the worst in four areas: economic well-being, education, health and family/community indicators. morenext

From The Washington Post Answer Sheet, July 22, 2014

The Social Capital Gap

Researchers track race, marital status, and education as proxies for income, and they find that wealthy people, or rather people they assume to be wealthy (for perfectly good reasons), fare better along a number of dimensions than poor people, e.g., the poor are more likely to suffer from diabetes, obesity, and high blood pressure, and they tend to have shorter lifespans. morenext

From The National Review Online, July 21, 2014

A College Savings Account for Every Child

A study finds that students who had saved between $1 and $500 were four times more likely to graduate than students with no savings at all. morenext

From The National Journal Magazine, July 19, 2014

Early education should be integral part of elementary schools, foundation says

Preschool programs should be integral parts of elementary schools with comparable funding levels and school hours; child-care professionals should be trained as teachers, not babysitters; and state data systems should include information about early education, according to a blueprint for speeding up improvements in early education. morenext

From The Washington Post Education, July 16, 2014

Biggest influence on a child’s education may be the mother’s education

It’s long been known that a mother’s education status has a sizable influence on her children’s academic lives. But a report released Wednesday enumerates many of the ways a mother’s education plays out in the next generation’s economic, social and health outcomes as well. morenext

From The Washington Post Education, July 09, 2014

How Much Could We Improve Children’s Life Chances by Intervening Early and Often?

Children born into low-income families face barriers to success in each stage of life from birth to age 40. Using data on a representative group of American children and a life cycle model to track their progress from the earliest years through school and beyond, we show that well-evaluated targeted interventions can close over 70 percent of the gap between more and less advantaged children in the proportion who end up middle class by middle age. morenext

From Brookings Institution, July 08, 2014

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