From High School to Learning Communities

January 2010

This booklet summarizes research on best practices for implementing successful small learning communities and career academies. When well implemented, improvements in instructional and personalization strategies in combination with structural supports have demonstrated improved student attendance and learning.

An accompanying tools booklet walks school teams through steps in continuous program improvement to achieve high quality implementation: 1) take stock of existing practice, 2) identify gaps between existing and desired practice, 3) generate and study strategies to adopt, 4) devise an implementation plan, and 5) implement and monitor the plan. Schools and districts have used these tools yearly, together with technical assistance and training, to plan for and measure progress in quality implementation.

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