Individual growth modeling allows researchers to examine individual research subjects’ trajectories over time. This post describes how the approach was used to test whether the growth in students’ academic skills slowed down during the summer between preschool and kindergarten, and how that pattern varied among students of different demographic groups.
A Better Life is an economic mobility program operating in four housing authorities in Massachusetts. This brief discusses how the program has shifted to meet residents’ dramatically different needs during the COVID-19 pandemic.
How Place-Based Employment Programs like Jobs Plus Can Help During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Employment programs situated within public housing developments are facing multiple challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With routine operations disrupted by shelter-in-place orders, programs like Jobs Plus can find creative ways to keep their doors open and their clients engaged.
Characteristics of Parents Enrolled in the Procedural Justice-Informed Alternatives to Contempt Demonstration
The Procedural Justice-Informed Alternatives to Contempt (PJAC) project integrates procedural justice principles (the idea of fairness in processes) into enforcement at six child support agencies. This brief describes the parents in the PJAC study sample and what led them to the point of being in contempt of court for nonpayment.
A Conversation with William Corrin, Director of MDRC’s K-12 Education Policy Area
In this Q&A, William Corrin, Director of MDRC’s K-12 Education Policy Area, discusses the challenges facing schools during the pandemic, the changing face of education research, and the opportunities to learn from how teachers, schools, and districts are responding to the current crisis.
An Interview with Karen Pennington and Dawn Slinkard
Tulsa Community WorkAdvance is a sector-based training and career advancement program that prepares people for jobs in the health care field. Executive Director Karen Pennington talks about the impact of COVID-19 on operations and future opportunities in health care, and graduate Dawn Slinkard describes her experience in the program.
A recent (virtual) discussion with representatives of 13 schools, districts, and programs that provide work-based learning found each of them seizing unexpected opportunities amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The pivot from hands-on experiential learning to virtual instruction is varied and evolving at these organizations, which offer internships, apprenticeships, job shadowing, and other work-related programs.
Higher Achievement, which serves fifth- through eighth-graders, is an effective after-school and summer program that improved middle school students’ math and reading test scores and the academic quality of many students’ high schools. These short-term gains did not translate into impacts on the types of colleges that students attended.
Adapting the Evidence for 2020 and Beyond
MDRC has studied a number of strategies for helping students stay in college and succeed there. Lessons from some of these models may be readily adapted to support students and close equity gaps now and after the COVID-19 pandemic. This Issue Focus offers three lessons taken from MDRC’s evaluations.
Next Steps for Research
The paper summarizes past and ongoing research, identifies gaps in knowledge, and presents four categories of potential questions to help define future research in employment and training programs serving low-income people.