Think Twice Weekly Report

JUNE 15, 2024 - JUNE 21, 2024

The Think Twice Weekly Report compiles public education-related policy reports, research and articles of interest to policymakers, educators and stakeholders. This list is not exhaustive but is meant to highlight recent reports that may be used to support or undermine the work of our subscribers in supporting public schools. We encourage you to take a moment to scan these reports and determine if they may be used by policy makers to assist or erode your mission.

Policy Reports

School Reform and Restructuring

Source: Show-Me Institute
Date: 6/17/2024
Longer Days and Fewer Total Hours: Examining the Four-day School Week in Missouri

In the third of our three reports on the four-day school week (4dsw) in Missouri, we conduct a descriptive analysis of districts that use the 4dsw in order to compare them to districts that have continued to use the traditional five-day school week (5dsw). Some of the results were unsurprising; for example, districts that use the 4dsw tend to be smaller, rural districts. But at least for the time period we examined (primarily the 2021-22 school year), we found no statistically significant differences between 4dsw and 5dsw districts in terms of overall per-pupil revenues or expenses. Our finding that teacher retention rates are lower in 4dsw districts than in 5dsw districts is noteworthy because teacher retention is often cited as a reason for switching to the 4dsw.

Reports Reviewed

GLC seeks to ensure that policy briefs impacting education reform are based on sound, credible academic research. Below are reviews conducted with GLC support.

Review of Did the Emergence of Ohio Charter Schools Help or Harm Students Who Remained in District Schools?

Source: Thomas B. Fordham Institute
Reviewed by: St├ęphane Lavertu

Legislatures across the United States continue to pass policies to add or expand school choice. Within this context, the Fordham Institute, an advocate of school choice expansion, has published a report asserting that charter schools have not negatively affected students in traditional public schools. However, a review of this report finds that though it could contribute to the conversation, its conclusions are highly misleading.

In his review of Did the Emergence of Ohio Charter Schools Help or Harm Students Who Remained in District Schools?, University of Kansas professor Bryan Mann determines the report to have little value to policymakers. This is in large part because the report's conclusions extend well beyond the scope of its statistical analysis.

What We're Reading

Research and articles that we want to highlight for subscribers as potential resources:

Arizona is sending taxpayer money to religious schools - and billionaires see it as a model for the US

By: Casey Tolan, Rene Marsh and Nelli Black, CNN

Betsy DeVos and her right-wing allies have spent more than $250 million to buy vouchers in state legislatures over the last decade. And by her own team's accounting, that's paid off in $25 billion in vouchers and voucher-like schemes. For every $1 Betsy DeVos & Co. have put in, they've been getting back $10 in your money for their right-wing voucher schemes.

As temperatures rise, schools without AC struggle to keep students healthy and learning

By: John Yang, Andrew Corkery, Claire Mufson, PBS News

Studies show that in more places in the United States, there are now more days hotter than 80 degrees during the school year than there were in 1970. Schools that can't afford air conditioning are struggling with overheated classrooms, which researchers say pose both academic and health risks. John Yang speaks with Washington Post reporter Anna Phillips, who covers climate change, for more.

Mapped: The Income Needed to Live Comfortably in Every U.S. State

By: Bruno Venditti and Miranda Smith, Visual Capitalist

This map shows how much income single adults need to live comfortably in each U.S. state. SmartAsset calculated the income needed using the cost of necessities sourced from the MIT Living Wage Calculator, last updated on Feb. 14, 2024.

Warning label needed for social media, US Surgeon General says

By: Kara Arundel, K-12 Dive

Dr. Vivek Murthy also called on parents and schools to create phone-free experiences for youth.

Teachers' job stress has improved to pre-pandemic levels. They're still pretty stressed out.

By: Erica Meltzer, Chalkbeat

A new report out Tuesday from the research corporation RAND draws on a nationally representative survey of more than 1,400 K-12 teachers to take stock of educator well-being. It comes as school districts around the country continue to grapple with high turnover and staffing shortages in key areas.

How the Right Exploits 'Moms' to Privatize Education

By: Maurice Cunningham, The Progressive Magazine

Moms for Liberty is just one of several dark money groups that pretend to be mom-led grassroots movements.