R3: Making up for Unfinished Instruction and Equitable Recession-Induced Layoffs

The Education Trust will partner with Jean Grossman and Matthew Kraft to tackle two pressing policy issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic: unfinished instruction and recession-induced layoffs.

“For the first of two projects, the Education Trust (Ed Trust) and Grossman will synthesize research on best practices to make up for lost learning time and advocate for efforts to ensure that districts serving low-income students and students of color implement these strategies to close educational opportunity gaps. They will build on a literature review that identified four promising strategies to bolster student learning in light of the pandemic: high dosage tutoring, expanded learning time, early warning systems to identify students having problems, and social-emotional learning interventions. Ed Trust and MDRC will explore the impacts of these strategies on students from low-income backgrounds, students of color, and English language learners; the resources needed to implement these practices; and barriers and facilitators to successful implementation. Ed Trust will share promising expanded learning time strategies with national educator organizations, civil rights groups, and parent associations. They will also educate state and local policymakers and practitioners about the review findings and conduct virtual meetings and webinars to inform the equitable allocation of resources to implement these strategies. For the second project, Ed Trust and Kraft will synthesize research on the effects of teacher layoffs after the Great Recession and advocate for local, state, and federal reduction-in-force policies that protect students of color and low-income students from being disproportionately impacted by layoffs. The synthesis will identify available policy options for determining which educators to lay off, and options for deciding which schools, grades, or subjects to protect from layoffs. The review products will offer districts guidance to mitigate the impact of educator layoffs and hiring freezes on students of color and low-income students. Ed Trust will partner with national educator organizations to inform federal policy by developing and implementing a coordinated campaign to advocate for additional federal stimulus funding. Advocacy efforts will also call for an equity-based distribution of funds that enables states and districts to prioritize high-need students in layoff decisions.”

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