In this commentary, originally published in District Administration, MDRC’s Michelle Maier and Shira Mattera offer evidenced-backed advice for policymakers and practitioners about how to invest new federal funds to enhance the quality of preschool programs.
What COVID-19 Adaptations We Will Take with Us, and What We Will Gladly Leave Behind
With the onset of the pandemic, MDRC implementation researchers halted travel to programs and transitioned their work to virtual modes. This blog post offers reflections on adaptations they made that are worth continuing post-pandemic and on the in-person practices they look forward to resuming.
In this commentary, originally published by The Hechinger Report, MDRC’s Alex Mayer and Catherine Brown from The Institute for College Access & Success explain how research shows that investing in comprehensive student support programs can increase college graduation rates.
The COVID-19 pandemic exposed inequities in access to and success in career and technical education (CTE). This post summarizes a discussion among teachers and program coordinators about what has changed a year into remote instruction, and about how to make CTE programs more equitable now and when in-person instruction returns.
Recent federal policy supports creating middle-class jobs in the “green economy.” To better understand how community colleges can build programs that provide reliable growth trajectories for students in this field, MDRC talked with two practitioners about the North Carolina Community College System’s 10-year-old “Code Green” initiative.
In this commentary, originally published in The Hill, MDRC’s Alyssa Ratledge highlights the value of postsecondary institutions in rural communities and describes innovations that rural colleges have developed during the pandemic that could be expanded with more support.
Many programs and agencies collect data about their clients and service use but they may not have the time and resources to use those data to inform their decision making. This post shares some simple approaches for how to use data to improve programs.
This paper, submitted in response to a request for information from the federal Office of Management and Budget, offers practical advice about assessing and reducing inequities in public service programs from MDRC’s experience partnering with federal, state, and local agencies.
Career and technical education programs are trying to address challenges faced by disadvantaged students, particularly Black students and other students of color. Access is only part of the path to equity as these programs focus on inclusive workplace environments, meaningful mentorships, and language that emphasizes strengths rather than real or presumed deficits.
Financial aid reduces dropout rates, yet college students are unaware of many financial resources available to them. The 2021 American Rescue Plan Act requires colleges to tell students they can apply for more aid. These evidence-based strategies can help schools create effective messages about aid to get positive responses.