Recent research indicates that the single most important factor in student performance is teacher quality. Though the literature on professional development programs is less advanced, researchers agree that most forms of professional development fail to foster teacher quality along these five key dimensions. For 30 years, the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute has been developing a unique model for improving teacher quality. Other research suggests that Institutes also serve to foster teacher leadership, to develop supportive teacher networks, to heighten university faculty commitments to improving public education, and to foster positive partnerships between school districts and institutions of higher education. In recent years, educational researchers have converged on the conclusion that the best way to help students learn is to improve teacher quality.
Though researchers differ on some important issues, virtually all experts agree on the value of five features. The chief caveats here are first, that due both to costs and program structures, relatively few professional development program evaluations have included randomized controlled trials or rigorous quasi-experimental designs with well-matched participant and non-participant groups.20 Few existing programs, then, can claim to have been validated through those forms of empirical research. Since 1978, the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute has been developing a unique approach to improving teacher quality, one now employed by affiliated Teachers Institutes in three other cities: Pittsburgh, Houston, and Philadelphia. At the heart of the Teachers Institute approach is a special sort of partnership between institutions of higher education and public schools.
In these seminars teachers gain more sophisticated content knowledge, and they also enhance their writing and oral skills by preparing substantial curriculum units that they discuss with their fellow teachers in the seminars, then teach to their students. The Institute approach thus involves a stress on improving teachers' content knowledge and on the development of pedagogical strategies tied to the content of their units. The Institutes are especially well-suited to insure that teachers do not learn advanced content in isolation from attention to how it can be conveyed effectively, and that they do not passively receive content from curriculum prepared by others. Since the founding of the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute in 1978, its leaders have consistently supported external and internal evaluations to discern and improve the efficacy of the Institute's work.
But random assignment of teachers to treatment groups is not appropriate for evaluating the Teachers Institute approach. The second-best research option for determining causality is generally considered to be quasi-experimental designs, in which subjects are not randomly assigned to treatment and control groups. The external evaluator of the National Demonstration Project, Policy Studies Associates, also found "clear evidence of important accomplishments" and concluded that the Project had "succeeded in reaching its goal" of showing that the Institute model could be replicated in different contexts, especially districts that respect "teachers as leaders" and value "teachers' professional learning."31 Using qualitative techniques including seminar and classroom observations, in-depth interviews, and focus groups, sociologists at the University of Houston and educators at Carnegie Mellon University and Chatham College, Pittsburgh conducted their own evaluations of their Teachers Institutes during the National Demonstration Project, with similarly positive results. The Houston and Pittsburgh Teachers Institutes continued in conformity with the Institute model along with the original Yale-New Haven Institute, each engaging in annual surveys of teacher participants and in other forms of continuing evaluation. The administration by each Institute of similarly structured annual surveys of teacher seminar participants, which all must complete in order to receive their stipends, makes it possible to update the survey findings of the 2004 National Demonstration Project evaluation, determining whether teachers at the various Institutes continue to rate their seminar experiences favorably. First, the Fellows' surveys from over 1200 Fellows at all four existing sites from 2003-2008 show that teachers chose to participate in Institute seminars out of desires to improve themselves in precisely the areas that research indicates to be vital to teacher quality.
Pittsburgh teachers placed slightly greater relative stress on improving their mastery of their subject matter than teachers at the other three sites, while Philadelphia teachers cited this motive somewhat less often than teachers in the other cities. These responses from the local Institutes in New Haven and Philadelphia and from the National Initiative seminars may indicate the comparative appeal for teachers of working with faculty in Ivy League institutions. There were also interesting variations in the responses among categories of teachers, though none were consistent across all four local sites and the National Initiative seminars, and they cannot be considered statistically significant.33 At three of the four sites middle-school teachers were somewhat more likely than high-school or elementary-school teachers to stress the goal of motivating their students (rather than high-school teachers, as in the National Demonstration Project). After completing their seminars, teachers at all four local sites overwhelmingly reported that they had benefited along dimensions that the professional literature indicates to be vital to teacher quality. As in the National Demonstration Project, the surveys show other variations by categories of teachers, though again these patterns are not statistically significant. The National Demonstration Project included a one-time survey on unit use; and in New Haven, the annual survey of teachers provides an opportunity for open-ended comments on teachers' previous use of Institute curriculum. The results of the National Demonstration Project survey showed that, except for those who are unable to do so due to shifts in assignments or health reasons, virtually all Fellows at each site went on to teach the units they prepared, in whole or in part; and many also reported use of other Teachers Institute units. The Fellows in the National Demonstration Project expressed very strong satisfaction with the units. Overall, an impressive 65% of all Fellows rated the units written by themselves or other Institute Fellows as superior to all other types of curriculum they had used, with almost 34% rating them the same. It should be noted that during the National Demonstration Project, no Institute made a concerted effort to persuade teachers to use Institute-prepared units instead of other curriculum. Because the DeWitt Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund, sponsor of the National Demonstration Project, wished evaluators to focus on the Project's impact on teachers, it did not authorize funds for the complex task of directly evaluating the impact on students of having had teachers who had been Fellows. In commenting on their experiences teaching units in the classroom during the five-year (2000-2005) period of the New Haven quantitative study discussed in the next section, teachers spoke often of how student attention, enjoyment, comprehension and retention improved whenever they used Institute units, both ones they had personally written or ones written by other Fellows.37 Many also reported that their units were written to be interdisciplinary and served as bases for successful team-teaching, sometimes in pairs, sometimes in larger groups.
As in the earlier National Demonstration Project, the populations of Fellows participating at the four current sites from 2003-2008 display some demographic differences.
Experiences at the four sites during the three years of the Demonstration Project, in New Haven for three decades, and in Pittsburgh, Houston, and Philadelphia since a Demonstration Project, all indicate that the Institute approach generates significant corollary benefits that are not easily grasped through survey responses and not always visible in a relatively short time period. The development of university-public school institutional partnerships in ways that promote respect and strengthen education in both settings. To augment those findings, the Yale National Initiative sponsored a retrospective quantitative study of the impact of the Teachers Institute on New Haven teachers and students from the 2000-2001 academic year to the 2004-2005 academic year. Not all of the data sought proved available, particularly in regard to teacher and student outcomes. In regard to the demographics of teachers who participate in Institute seminars, the chief hypothesis was that they would be broadly representative of all New Haven teachers, not drawn primarily from particular demographic subsets, with the partial exception of elementary-school teachers.45 In regard to teacher outcomes for which data were available, the chief hypothesis was that participation in Teachers Institute seminars would correlate with heightened teacher retention, as the seminars would increase teacher enthusiasm and satisfaction with their teaching.
In regard to student outcomes for which data were available, the central hypothesis was that student exposure to teachers who had been Institute Fellows would be positively but weakly associated with standardized test scores and grades. A multilevel model was used to account for variation explained at the school, teacher, and student levels.
During the study period, African American teachers were 83% more likely than white teachers to be Fellows when holding years of teaching experience, sex, subject, grade level, and degrees constant.
In regard to students, no statistically significant relationships were found between having a teacher who had been a Fellow and student performances on standardized tests and in course grades.
The continuing positive results of annual surveys of teachers at each Institute site and of National Seminar participants leave little doubt that teachers consistently rate their Institute experiences and the curriculum units that result favorably along the five dimensions agreed to be key ingredients of teacher quality: teacher knowledge, teacher skills, teacher enthusiasm, teacher expectations of their students and teacher capacity to motivate students. At the same time, these results underscore the importance of continuing and improved program evaluation.
To summarize the main options: Insofar as possible, each site should seek to institutionalize annual data collection on the use of curriculum units and on their results for students. Institutes should also continue to collect and analyze descriptive data on teachers and on teacher outcomes.
If circumstances permit, Institutes might also seek to obtain and analyze more systematic data that can help answer the question of whether collective participation by teachers from the same school, grade, or department has benefits exceeding those obtained when individual teachers are mixed without any such clustering. Both individual Institutes and the National Initiative should also seek to identify and employ researchable forms of randomization that are consistent with the Institute approach.
There are, then, many routes for continuing and improved evaluation that merit consideration, and there are strong reasons for undertaking such steps. Ferguson, "Teachers' Perceptions and Expectations and the Black-White Test Score Gap," 273-317; Ferguson, R.
Gates Foundation Staff, "High-Performing School Districts: Challenge, Support, Alignment, and Choice," 18. Pittsburgh public schools have experienced severe and continuing declines in student enrollments in the decade since the Pittsburgh Teachers Institute was established. Suggesting the value of collective participation, one Philadelphia teacher stated that initially she was the only teacher from her school enrolled in the program and that "I'm so happy now there are four. To use a political science analogy, it would be similar to trying to evaluate the comparative success of "winner take all" and "proportional representation" presidential primary systems by randomly assigning winning candidates to the two different parties. Yoon et al., "Reviewing the Evidence on How Teacher Professional Development Affects Student Achievement," 5. All percentages reported here are percentages of the Fellows who actually responded to particular questions. Because the numbers of teachers in particular categories were sometimes low, and because some teachers were Fellows multiple times, standard tests for statistical significance are not appropriate. In the National Demonstration Project, more experienced teachers, presumably more familiar with alternative forms of professional development, rated the overall program especially highly. Overall statistics are drawn from the National Demonstration Project Survey of Fellows' Unit Use, Table 111. The standardized tests employed in the study are the Connecticut Mastery Test (CMT), which was administered in the study period in grades 4, 6, and 8, and the Connecticut Academic Performance Test (CAPT), which was administered in grade 10.
Elementary teachers, who were not initially eligible for New Haven seminars, came to be more proportionately represented over the years. Albany Technical College and East Georgia State College held an articulation agreement signing ceremony on Wednesday, May 19, 2016 on East Georgia State College‚Äôs Swainsboro campus. The EGSC Women’s Softball Team will hold a skills camp for ages 7-12 on June 2nd and 3rd. EGSC partners with the Altamaha Chess Foundation to offer a scholastic chess pilot program.
The following students have been named to the Dean’s Honor and Merit Lists for Spring 2016. Hearing Impaired callers may access our campus phone numbers by utilizing your state relay service (such as the Georgia Relay Service) or by utilizing Video Remote Services.
The Institute approach includes all of the seven elements of successful professional development programs, five very extensively; and it significantly strengthens teachers in all five of the major dimensions of teacher quality. Over 96% of all participating teachers rated the Institute seminars overall "moderately" or "greatly" useful. Though causality cannot be imputed, Institute participants also had nearly twice the retention rate of non-participants in local teaching. To confirm, maintain, and improve these impacts, it is advisable for Institutes to continue surveys of teacher participants and to undertake a variety of additional continuing quantitative and qualitative studies of the effects of Institutes on student and teacher outcomes.
Section I summarizes the conclusions of recent research on the ingredients of teacher quality and effective professional development programs.
2 Scholars also see an "emerging" consensus on the characteristics of professional development programs that can contribute to this goal.3 The mandate of Sec. Second, the research literature suggests that districts may face a choice "between serving larger numbers of teachers with less focused and sustained professional development or providing higher quality activities for fewer teachers," since "good professional development requires substantial resources" in terms of time, expertise, and dollars.21 As the Gates Foundation recently stated, an "effective professional learning community" requires "teachers who work together to improve each other's practice," including "weekly time to work together to meet shared challenges and improve their skills.
Each Institute provides professional development designed to help teachers face the challenges of educating effectively in low-income communities with high proportions of racial and ethnic diversity. The Institutes also provide opportunities for collective participation and all engage in continuing evaluation, though with some variations.
These units of roughly fifteen pages or more are based on research into a topic inspired by the seminar and assisted by the faculty member, but adapted to the teachers' courses and students. Teachers are active learners in these seminars, receiving feedback from their peers and often trying out the units with their students as they prepare them. Instead, they research and write curriculum themselves, challenged and aided by their peers to insure that it is exciting for students and teachers alike. The distinctive approach of the Institute does pose challenges for rigorous empirical evaluation.
That approach relies heavily on teacher leadership, including not only the decisions of teachers concerning their own participation, but also the decisions of Teacher Representatives on applicants' eligibility for the program and on the seminars to which teachers are assigned.


Instead, researchers construct or identify a control group that matches the treatment group as closely as possible on all measurable characteristics. Beginning in 1981, distinguished experts have been invited periodically to conduct site visits to the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute and to provide evaluations. In 1981 it began requiring all seminar participants to complete detailed questionnaires on their experience, and in 1981 and 1985 it undertook surveys both of teachers who had and teachers who had not been seminar participants to determine their experiences with using curriculum units. The external evaluator's report included suggestions for improved continuing evaluation that have been incorporated into the ensuing Yale National Initiative. In brief, the results from each individual Institute, from the National Seminars, and in the aggregate national data all show that teachers throughout the country have consistently evaluated their Institute experiences much as the teachers did in the National Demonstration Project.
When asked to choose among 12 reasons for participation in the seminars, the teachers at every site listed the "opportunity to develop materials to motivate my students" as their leading reason.
Nonetheless, teachers at all the sites rated their overall experiences at their Institutes very similarly.
Elementary-school teachers most stressed the goal of developing curriculum that fit their needs. In contrast to most professional development programs, the surveys revealed no widely shared criticisms of the seminars.
These data strongly support the conclusion that virtually all teachers who complete Institute seminars feel substantially strengthened in their mastery of content knowledge and their professional skills more generally, while they also develop higher standards for what their students can achieve.
At most sites, elementary-school teachers were most likely to say that the seminars had increased their knowledge. Though such comments are not available from the other Institutes and so they do not constitute a systematic national data set, they indicate that in this regard, too, the patterns discerned in the National Demonstration Project appear to persist.
About 87% taught their units in from 2 to 5 classes, usually over a full academic year, sometimes half a year. Roughly the same percentages rated the units as more enjoyable or equally enjoyable to teach than other curricula. Teachers using units did, however, provide a great deal of data concerning student responses to those units. These collaborative teaching efforts often involved teachers who had not been Fellows, expanding the influence of the Institute's work.38 And teachers frequently stated that Institute curriculum units enabled them to meet "state and district standards" with materials that were more exciting for their students and for themselves, in part because these were units "tailor made to suit" the "personalities and interests" of the students to whom they were taught. For many teachers, Institute experiences reinforce their desires to continue working in the nation's most challenging educational environments.
In comparison with the other local sites and the National Seminar participants, New Haven Fellows were roughly twice as likely to be under 30.
The study design called for obtaining information on teacher retention, promotion to leadership positions, awards, and attendance, and data on student test scores, grades, awards and recognition, attendance, and promotion to higher grades. The fact that teachers self-selected to apply for seminars means, however, that the analysis can only identify correlations, not support claims for causality. Because Fellows' curricular units are designed to fulfill general state and district content standards and goals, not to prepare the specific knowledge and skills examined in state standardized achievement tests, no strong impact on test scores was anticipated, even when the math test scores of students of math and science teachers and the reading test scores of students of English and history and social science teachers were examined. The results at the school level did not produce statistically significant results varying from those found at the teacher and student levels, leaving unsettled the question of whether collective teacher participation by school produces benefits beyond individual teacher participation. This result is statistically significant at the 95% confidence level; but the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute actively sought to encourage participation by African American teachers during these years. Because these descriptive differences in teacher retention could be traceable to other teacher characteristics, the researchers ran an inferential statistical test to illuminate the Fellow correlation. Though we have less data on teachers' experiences in using Institute curriculum units, those data are also positive. The annual surveys of Fellows at each site and in National Seminars, with high rates of participation guaranteed by the requirement to complete the surveys to obtain Institute stipends, provide invaluable data on teacher responses that need to be sustained. These data could include annual surveys of former Fellows on their use of the units they have written, on their use of units written by other Fellows, and surveys of non-Fellows on their unit use — though past experience suggests that achieving high response rates will be difficult even with modest financial incentives. It is vital to monitor whether Institutes continue to attract teachers from a broad range of demographics.
Because teachers' voluntary choices do sometimes produce collectivities of teachers from the same school or grade in particular seminars, and because the number of Fellows teaching in a school often grows over time, there are opportunities to study the patterns of student and teacher performance associated with these clusters; although the impossibility of constructing randomized controlled tests will still prevent claims for causality. One possibility in large school districts may be to assign schools randomly to be targeted for recruitment into Institute seminars, though the availability of units written by Fellows to all teachers in the district would arguably limit the "controlled" character of such a study. The consistently positive results of the great variety of evaluations conducted at multiple sites over the past three decades suggest that, while further research can surely suggest improvements, the fundamentals of the Teachers Institute approach will continue to be shown to be a distinctive and valuable contribution to both teacher and student learning and achievement throughout the nation.
Coleman and Christopher Jencks, that socioeconomic backgrounds strongly affect student achievement (Coleman, J. This section reports data from the Teacher Surveys on Seminar Experiences conducted in Houston, New Haven, and Pittsburgh from 2003-2008 and Philadelphia in 2006-2008. Teachers with Master's as well as Bachelor's degrees were more likely than those only with Bachelor's degrees to say the seminars raised their expectations of their students, especially in the humanities. Data on relative ratings by teachers in different subject areas are drawn from Tables 311 and 321.
One teacher commented that whereas the previous year, only 4 out of 20 regularly completed all reading and writing assignments, with the Institute unit those numbers were reversed. One teacher noted that "In my school, we had projects generated by the seminars of the Institute involving several teachers not all of them Fellows. During the period of the study, the tests assessed student learning in Mathematics, Reading, and Writing (grades 4, 6, 8, and 10) and Science (grade 10). During the test period, a number of New Haven elementary schools were made part of K-8 schools. Wedincamp was published in the April journal published by the Entomological Society of America. Dee McKinney was honored during Open Education Week with the Textbook Transformation Award. Lee Cheek’s scholarship included in the international bibliography of research on the American South. There were no statistically significant effects on the only measures of student achievement for which data were available, standardized test scores and grades. 1119 of the No Child Left Behind Act for school districts to employ "highly qualified" teachers who receive "high quality" professional development has prompted more thorough data collection by school officials and more rigorous evaluations of teacher quality and of professional development programs. In New Haven, where 45 schools serve over 20,000 students, 70% of the students come from families receiving school meal financial assistance, and 87% are African American or Hispanic. Each year, the Institutes offer weekly seminars over several months, led by university or college faculty members, on topics that the teachers, through their Representatives, have selected to enhance their knowledge of what they teach.
The units often represent the first substantial research and writing project that teachers have undertaken since college. Teachers play leadership roles in every stage of the program, including designation of seminar topics, approval of faculty proposals for seminars on those topics, approval of teacher participants, and assistance in coordinating seminar activities and program schedules throughout the year. The Institute approach does embrace the alternative of "higher quality activities for fewer teachers." Each Institute offers seminars for roughly 50 to 80 teachers per year. Most scholars agree that causality can best be determined via randomized controlled trials, in which subjects are randomly assigned to two groups. To obtain a close match, researchers generally need a great deal of information on a large number of potential group members.
The results showed that the use of Institute-developed units was growing rapidly, with units taught in more than 1500 school classes by 1984. Every Institute administered similar annual questionnaires to all participants on their seminar experiences, and the Project also sponsored a one-time survey on unit use by participating and non-participating teachers at each site.
Through the National Initiative, the Teachers Institute of Philadelphia was established, joining the League of Teachers Institutes in 2007. Along the dimensions most associated with teacher quality, they rate the Institute approach very highly, markedly better than the low evaluations scholars report for most other existing forms of professional development. A similar pattern is visible in the survey results of teachers who have been "National Fellows" in recent years. Instead, over 96% of participating teachers praised the overall program, rating it "moderately" or "greatly" useful, in a remarkably consistent range running from 96.5% in Houston to 100% in Philadelphia. And perhaps surprisingly, teachers with more than 10 years of teaching experience most often indicated that the seminars had raised their expectations for their students — a pattern also discerned in the National Demonstration Project. Most teachers chose to present their units via teacher-led discussion rather than extensive lecturing.
Only Fellows teaching in the physical sciences were more likely to rate them "somewhat" instead of "very useful." All teachers particularly valued the sample lessons and activities the units provided, along with the resource lists for teachers and students. There were no statistically significant variations according to the grade levels or subject areas in which Fellows taught. Although all sites attracted similar ratios of more experienced and less experienced teachers, Philadelphia and, particularly, National Fellows were somewhat more likely to have less than 10 years teaching experience.
In practice, researchers were only able to document teacher retention and attendance and student performances on standardized tests and course grades.44 These results were examined both at the level of individual teachers and students and at the school level. The study cannot rule out the possibility that teachers who choose to participate in the Institute are more likely to continue teaching in New Haven for reasons other than Institute participation. Because more effective teachers may also grade more strictly, it was also not clear that even enhanced student interest and performance in courses led by Institute Fellows would be associated with higher grades in relation to students of non-Fellows.
In regard to teachers, there was no statistically significant relationship between participation as a Fellow and teacher attendance. The data show that these efforts succeeded and that the Institute was at least as attractive to these racial minority teachers as to whites. It underlines the need for future evaluations to use data more closely tied to the goals of the curriculum units written in Institute seminars, and the need for the accumulation of much more extensive data on student outcomes. The New Haven quantitative study indicates that Institute seminars attract a broad range of teachers from every observable demographic category and that those who choose to be Fellows are much more likely to continue teaching in the district than those who do not. If resources permit, Institutes might also survey students on their experiences of units used in their classrooms; and they might seek to use pre-unit and post-unit student tests to determine the extent of student learning. It would also be useful to assess systematically at every site whether experiences as Fellows are associated with heightened teacher retention and with the promotion of teachers to positions of academic leadership within their districts and beyond. Even so, if students of teachers at schools randomly assigned for recruitment appeared over time to perform better on appropriate measures than those from the same pool of schools whose teachers were not eligible for Institute participation, the results would provide additional reasons for confidence in the value of the distinctive Teachers Institute form of professional development. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the University of Pennsylvania, with the assistance of Dr.
L., "Reviewing the Evidence on How Teacher Professional Development Affects Student Achievement," Issues and Answers Report, REL 2007-No. Because the overall completion rate for these surveys was over 98%, percentages of all Fellows surveyed, whether or not they responded to a particular question, are only slightly smaller. Though teachers in the physical sciences rated their seminar experiences highly, their ratings were slightly less positive than those provided by teachers in the humanities, social sciences, and other areas. Another reported that students showed detailed knowledge of a unit involving films a year and half after it was taught. Science is particularly prone for projects with broad participation of students and staff." Another reported that "we have formed a number of teams, often involving teachers who never were Fellows.
Many teachers were reclassified as K-8 school teachers, leading to an apparent decline in elementary school teacher participation.


Teachers Institutes offer five to seven seminars each year meeting weekly over roughly three months, led by university or college faculty members, on topics that teachers have selected to increase their mastery of what they teach.
This expected result underlines the need for evaluations focused on the specific outcomes Institutes seek to achieve, including heightened student interest and attendance and improved student content knowledge in curricular areas featured in local district standards and goals.
Much remains unsettled, but some features contributing to effective teachers and successful professional development are clear. The seminars sometimes include teams of participants from a single school, but most also combine teachers from different schools teaching different subjects at different grade levels, who all wish to learn more about topics in history, literature, politics, chemistry, biology, art, or other areas, in order to improve their teaching. They contain a narrative describing the unit's goals and strategies and several sample lesson plans.
The seminars are of substantial duration, involving a minimum of 26 hours in session, while Fellows also meet with seminar leaders, research seminar topics, and write their units over many more hours.
But through dissemination of their units, Institutes can impact far more teachers than they enroll; and over time, significant percentages of teachers in particular schools and regions can be direct participants. Over 97% of the teachers using the units praised them highly for their quality and the positive responses they invoked in students.
These surveys were analyzed in a 2004 study sponsored by the Institute, "To Motivate My Students," the precursor to this report.
The Santa Ana Teachers Institute relied solely on state funding instead of the recommended diversified funding base, while the Albuquerque Teachers Institute reported to a dean, not a President or Provost. Since 2005, the National Initiative has conducted National Seminars in New Haven for teachers from cities contemplating starting Institutes, as well as for Fellows from existing sites. Only 3% of the respondents said the program was useful only to a small extent, with the remainder non-responses. But whereas during that Project science teachers were slightly more likely than other teachers to list their seminar experiences as "moderately" rather than "greatly" useful, in these surveys teachers currently teaching or planning to teach in the humanities, social sciences, or the sciences showed no consistent variations across the sites in their program evaluations.34 All rated their seminar experiences very highly. They also stressed writing exercises and activities designed to strengthen speaking, listening, vocabulary and reasoning skills, much more than test taking. Roughly 75% of teachers also compared the units favorably to commercially available curriculum in terms of sample lessons and activities, teaching strategies, resources and other features. Both Philadelphia and National Fellows were also more likely to be high-school teachers, though in Philadelphia this pattern arose as a condition of one of the Institute's grants. Kisker of Twin Peaks Partners and executed with the aid of graduate student research assistants from the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute and the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education.42 It used data compiled by the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute and by the Department of Research, Assessment, and Student Information in the New Haven Public Schools.
It was also hypothesized that Institute participation might be positively but weakly associated with teacher attendance (an outcome affected by many factors, including release time for professional development and service).
Still, in the aggregate, improved student interest and learning should be associated with better test scores and better grades. But the hypothesis that Fellows are roughly demographically representative of New Haven teachers as a whole was supported by the data.
Overall, over 50% of those teaching in New Haven in 2000-2001 had stopped being New Haven teachers by 2004-2005, a turnover rate consistent with national averages, especially for urban districts.46 That turnover percentage was substantially less for those who had been Fellows.
If the impact on standardized test scores and grades is, as hypothesized, positive but highly indirect, those relationships will only be discernible when a great deal of reliable data can be analyzed. Institutes should also seek to work with school districts to gather more data on student outcomes that are more closely tied than standardized tests to the content and goals of units written for Institute seminars and used in classrooms. Researchers who stress the importance of pedagogy acknowledge the comparable importance of content knowledge.
245-247; Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Staff, "Challenges to Teaching Capacity in New and Redesigned Schools," Gates Foundation, 2006, 4. These teams have allowed Institute material to benefit many, many children other than those in classes taught by Institute teachers." A third stated, "My school has become a strong YNHTI center school with a Fellow involvement of at least 40% of the faculty. Roughly 60% of all participants rated student motivation and attention as higher during these units, producing substantially greater content mastery. Programs that contribute to teacher quality, as well as promising strategies for ongoing program evaluations, can be identified with confidence. In Pittsburgh, 65 schools serve 28,000 students, 68% financially eligible for school lunch aid. By presenting their units in progress to their fellow teachers, seminar participants receive useful pedagogical feedback as they also improve their oral communication skills. Commissioner of Education, who wrote in 1981 that the Institute was a "dramatic exception" to a pattern of unsuccessful school-college collaborations; Theodore R. The study found that teachers at all sites rated the Institute programs higher than other professional development programs in developing the knowledge, skills, enthusiasm, high expectations of students, and capacities to motivate students that most studies indicate to be central to successful teaching. After the completion of the National Demonstration Project, these departures from the Institute approach appear to have contributed to financial difficulties that forced the suspension of operations in Santa Ana, and to substantial changes in the forms of professional development offered by the Albuquerque Teachers Institute. These seminars provide teachers with experiences comparable to those in local Institutes in a more compressed time frame. About a fifth of the teachers used units to develop math skills, largely but not exclusively teachers in the physical sciences. In these comparisons, teachers in the physical sciences rated the units as high as or higher than their counterparts in other subject areas. Due to their very low numbers, the responses from Fellows using other Fellows' units, as well as from non-Fellows using units, must be interpreted with caution. In comparison with other sorts of curriculum they had used, Fellows found the Institute-prepared units received strikingly superior student responses.
At all Institutes, teachers in the humanities were the most frequent participants, though the varying, often interdisciplinary responsibilities of teachers make these categorizations difficult, and for Pittsburgh they are not fully available. Women were found to be slightly more likely than men to become Fellows, but the difference was not statistically significant. Ellen Kisker has designed a technical research guide that can assist Institutes and school districts in preparing programs for continuing evaluation.48 It describes alternative means that may be appropriate in different settings.
As one Houston teacher put it, "My experience with most professional development is that I dread it. In Institute seminars teachers gain more sophisticated content knowledge, and they also enhance their skills by preparing curriculum units adapting the themes of the seminars for their students.
Section V describes a quantitative study of the impact of participating in Institute seminars on New Haven teachers and students from the 2000-2001 through the 2004-2005 academic years. They need ongoing, job-embedded professional development."22 These needs cannot be met through forms of professional development that feature brief workshops for passive audiences of large numbers of teachers.
Roughly half of each seminar's time is devoted to improving teachers' content knowledge, half to developing effective teaching strategies for their students. The seminars involve a mix of collective and individual forms of teacher participation, though they are weighted toward individual participation.24 And each site engages in continuing evaluation, though for reasons discussed below, chiefly through means of teacher surveys and qualitative studies, not randomized controlled trials or quasi-experiments. Researchers hope that, apart from this treatment, all other characteristics will be randomly distributed among the two groups, so that differences in their subsequent performance can confidently be attributed to the study's causal variable.
Sizer, Founding Director of the Annenberg Institute for School Reform, who termed the program "remarkable" for its "clear and useful focus" and "constructive collegiality"; and Norman C. Wilder of the Education Policy Research Division of the Educational Testing Service assisted the Institute in refining the questionnaires for seminar participants, crafting the format that New Haven and the other Institutes continue to use, with only minor modifications.
Still, these responses were essentially indistinguishable from those of Fellows teaching their own units. The different grade levels and subject matters in which Fellows taught produced only minor variations, although again science teachers rated units somewhat less highly. New Haven, Philadelphia, and National Fellows were more likely to have advanced degrees, Master's or PhD's, than those in Houston and Pittsburgh.
The research also included demographic and performance data for those teachers, schools, and students.
But in light of the high percentages of New Haven teachers who become Fellows, it is reasonable to view this correlation between participation as a Fellow and teacher retention in the district as substantively, as well as statistically, significant.
Less direct but still pertinent evidence of the impact of having had Fellows as teachers might also come in students' relative success in winning academic awards and in graduating. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences, National Center for Education Evaluation and Regional Assistance, Regional Educational Laboratory Southwest, October 2007, 5; Blank, R. Most teachers are enthusiastic about the seminars and the opportunity to teach the units they have written. The Teachers Institute of Pittsburgh has drawn participants from most schools in the district.23 In Houston, the nation's seventh largest school district includes over 300 schools and serves 202,000 students, 58% Hispanic, 30% African American, many with limited English proficiency, with 78% of all students eligible for meal assistance. Both faculty and teachers are paid stipends, in recognition that all are giving time and expertise to improve teaching and curriculum. Francis, President of Xavier University, who stressed the "absolute need for" and "inestimable value" of the Institute's example. She wrote at that time that the surveys showed New Haven Fellows to be representative of the larger population of New Haven teachers in terms of subjects and grades taught, and that all teachers rated their seminar experiences highly with remarkable consistency. Where possible, these indicators should be supplemented by observational research on the teaching of units or material derived from units, both by Fellows and non-Fellows, in actual classrooms. Catherine McCaslin, Director of Research, Assessment, and Student Information of the New Haven Public Schools, and her staff for generous, skilled, and invaluable assistance.
The Houston Teachers Institute has Representatives in roughly 30 schools and draws extensively from those schools, though all Houston public school teachers are eligible to participate. In 1991, Wilder helped develop a "Progress Report" that analyzed the accumulated data from the annual questionnaires and the surveys on unit use.
Analyses of in-depth interviews with the Fellows and students in those classes would also be desirable.
In Philadelphia, where 281 schools serve over 167,000 students, with 80% eligible for meal assistance and the same percentage either African American or Hispanic, the Teachers Institute of Philadelphia targets 25 schools in the South and West Regions, representing over 18,000 students. On average, teachers who were Fellows during the study period had 1.87 fewer years of experience than non-Fellows, a difference that was not statistically significant.
Ideally, these should be accompanied by comparable observations and interviews with teachers and students not directly affected by Institute experiences.
See also Odden and Kelly, "Strategic Management of Human Capital in Public Education," 5, 20. Each Institute makes the curriculum units written by the teachers who participate in its seminars, designated "Fellows," available to all interested teachers in their districts and beyond, in electronic and print formats. In short, the seminars attracted both new and experienced teachers, so that over time, experienced teachers were more likely to have been Fellows in one year or another. As anticipated, holding all else equal, teachers in higher grades were also more likely to be Fellows than teachers in lower grades. Wenglinsky, "How Schools Matter: The Link Between Teacher Classroom Practices and Student Academic Performance," Educational Policy Analysis Archives 10, no.



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