K-12 Education

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Access to a high-quality K-12 education is critical for the optimal growth and development of every child. Children who attend excellent schools benefit from a range of opportunities designed to develop their intellectual abilities and social skills. The benefits are long-lasting, as educational achievement is linked to higher lifetime earnings and better health. However, there remains a stubborn achievement gap in America's schools due to disparities in funding and teacher training. FPG's work in K-12 education aims to provide educators, public officials, and parents with the resources and tools needed to ensure that a high-quality education is accessible to students from all backgrounds and at all grade levels.

Featured Publication

Transitioning Together is a multi-family intervention designed to support families of adolescents on the autism spectrum as they prepare for the transition to adulthood. Questions remain regarding its wide-scale adoption and implementation in real-world settings such as high schools. FPG researchers contributed to a study that examined student, teacher, and school-level facilitators and barriers to adopting and implementing Transitioning Together at 30 public high schools across three states.

Featured Project

As a Learning Partner for the Effective Implementation Cohort (EIC), the National Implementation Research Network (NIRN) at FPG seeks to support the cohort of Provider-Local Education Agency partnerships in their implementation and measurement efforts related to their scale-up of high-quality mathematics curricula. In addition, NIRN collects and analyzes data to answer learning questions within the cohort-wide learning agenda.

Featured Person

Heather Aiken, PhD, NBCT, is the intervention director for Targeted Reading Instruction at FPG. Her research interests center on early literacy assessment, elementary literacy instruction, and elementary education teacher preparation programs. Prior to joining FPG, she spent more than 15 years teaching at the elementary level domestically and abroad.

Current Projects

This replication study seeks to demonstrate the effectiveness of Targeted Reading Instruction (TRI, formerly called Targeted Reading Intervention) in helping grade 1 struggling readers make substantial gains in reading during one school year. It extends prior TRI studies by conducting an independent external evaluation of the TRI, testing long-term impacts for struggling readers into grade 3, and examining teachers’ sustained impacts for three years.
This project will support a cohort of place-based, cross-sector educational collaboratives ("myFutureNC network") across the state to develop model programs that significantly increase the number of students successfully pursuing post-secondary education and entering the workforce. This pilot aligns with the state's goal of having 2 million individuals between the ages of 25 and 44 with a high-quality credential or postsecondary degree by 2030.
TRI staff will create and present a series of five caregiver education workshops, which are designed to build knowledge and skills in the science of reading, in five locations across the Triangle.
The purpose of this project is to support the use of implementation science methods and practices within the technical assistance services provided by the Comprehensive Center Region 7. The NIRN team will support capacity building efforts of the TA providers and the state education agencies being served by the comprehensive center as well as the implementation of cross-state initiatives.
The K-12 Coherent Instructional Systems portfolio of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s U.S. Program seeks to support a cohort of provider-local education agency partnerships focused on implementing coherent instructional systems (CIS) built around high-quality middle-years mathematics curricula in contexts that serve Black, Latino, and/or English Learning-designated students, and students who are experiencing poverty. As a Learning Partner for the Effective Implementation Cohort (EIC), the National Implementation Research Network (NIRN) at UNC-Chapel Hill's Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute seeks to support the cohort of Provider-Local Education Agency partnerships in their implementation and measurement efforts related to their scale-up of high-quality mathematics curricula.
The mission of the National Implementation Research Network is to contribute to the best practices and science of implementation, organization change, and system reinvention to improve outcomes across the spectrum of human services.
The purpose of this study is to evaluate two group-based treatments: (1) the Program for Education and Enrichment of Relational Skills (PEERS), which targets social skills, and (2) Unstuck and On Target (UOT), which targets executive function skills. The interventions are two 45-minute sessions per week across 16 weeks and will be implemented by school-based staff in middle schools in North Carolina and Southern California (San Diego area).
This project will train school staff who support students using pull-out reading instruction and intervention (e.g., “educators” such as reading specialists, paraeducators, instructional facilitators, tutors) to use Targeted Reading Instruction (TRI, formerly called Targeted Reading Intervention) with two adaptations: 1) a digital version of the traditionally “paper and pencil” intervention (“TRI app”) in a 2) high dosage model whereby educators provide daily reading support to multiple K-3 students not yet reading on grade level.
Effective implementation capacity is essential to improving education. The SISEP Center supports education systems in creating implementation capacity for evidence‐based practices benefiting students with disabilities. Project funding is by the Office of Special Education Programs.
The University of Montana’s Center for Children is seeking support to develop capacity in best practices of implementation science to support sustainability of their implementation of PAX Good Behavior (PAX GBG) in relevant staff in participating centers, and regional and local education agencies. To support development of internal implementation capacity, the National Implementation Research Network (NIRN) will provide virtual training, coaching, data collection, and consultation supports.