Network for School Improvement

Dallas-Pitt Network for School Improvement

Dallas ISD + Institute for Learning + Center for Urban Education

Funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

The Institute for Learning (IFL), in partnership with the University of Pittsburgh School for Education Center for Urban Education (CUE), and Dallas Independent School District serve as a network improvement hub in literacy for 14 Dallas ISD secondary schools. These schools serve predominantly African American, Latino, and low-income students and this project guides equitable ELA instruction in these classrooms. Research has shown that writing is a foundational skill that is critical to success in other subjects and achievement in college.

In collaboration with Dallas ISD leadership, IFL and CUE support teams of teachers and leadership from six high schools and six feeder middle schools, using continuous improvement methods to increase the number of African American, Latino, English language learners, and low-income students who are on-track for high school graduation at the end of 9th grade.

This project supports

  • school teams in analyzing the root causes of low ELA performance, identify and test research-based changes to address root causes, and collect and study formative data.
  • principals to set the conditions for schools' teams to engage in continuous improvement work and engage school teams in studying formative data and identifying scalable changes.
  • district leaders in understanding and support the school teams' work and build their capacity to run improvement networks in the future.
  • a network of school teams to learn from each other and build their capacity to use continuous improvement as their go-to method for solving problems of practice.

We synthesize our extensive experience with the expertise of school teams to address the network's problem of practice in the context of their school and particular students. We have extensive experience in supporting and building capacity within schools to improve student outcomes.

Our collective work will act as a hub for the network, focusing on addressing the issues around race, culture and community because those are often the root causes of academic performance issues. Our approach is grounded in improvement science.