Are Low-Performing Schools Adopting Practices Promoted by School Improvement Grants? (In Focus Brief)

Publisher: Princeton, NJ: Mathematica Policy Research
Oct 28, 2014
Mariesa Herrmann, Lisa Dragoset, and Susanne James-Burdumy

Key Findings:

  • Schools adopted more than half of the improvement practices examined (20 of 32), on average.
  • No school adopted all practices required by the transformation or turnaround models.
  • The three most commonly adopted practices (see box below) were each adopted by over 96 percent of schools.
  • For half of the practices examined, schools implementing a SIG model were more likely than schools not implementing one to adopt that practice.
  • Almost every school adopted a unique combination of practices, but some practices, such as the three most commonly adopted ones listed below, were much more likely to be included in these combinations.

SIG practices infographicThis brief describes both the individual SIG promoted improvement practices and the  combinations of these practices that low- performing schools reported adopting. Based on spring 2013 survey responses from 480 school administrators in low-performing schools that were and were not implementing a SIG  intervention model, the study found several key findings.


Evaluating Race to the Top and School Improvement Grants


U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences

Time Frame


Senior Staff

Susanne James-Burdumy
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Mariesa Herrmann
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Lisa Dragoset
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