Understanding the diverse operations of our member districts, the Council’s Research Department provides customized support to help guide and improve the strategic use of research, evaluation, and data analytics among our member districts as well as provide concrete guidance and support to our member districts and other key stakeholders as they work to improve education outcomes and reduce achievement gaps in urban school districts. The Research Department’s staff is committed to conducting research on large urban school districts to expand the field’s knowledge of policies and practices that can be employed to spur achievement and reduce racial and economic achievement gaps.
Over the years, the Council has written or contributed to a number of landmark reports on a variety of topics important to urban student achievement including Mirrors or Windows: How Well Do Large City Public Schools Overcome the Effects of Poverty and Other Barriers? (2021) , Student Testing in America's Great City Schools: An Inventory and Preliminary Analysis (2015), A Call for Change: Providing Solutions for Black Male Achievement (2012) and A Call for Change: The Social and Educational Factors Contributing to the Outcomes of Black Males in Urban Schools (2010), among others. These and a number of additional reports on a wide range of topics written by the Council’s research team and our partners to inform local education decisions and federal policy discussions can be found on this website.
The Council’s research team also leads data collection and reporting of Council member Key Performance Indicators, annually. These data are used to get an understanding of how our districts perform on different academic and operational measures in schools and tracks this performance over time. These data are included in both our Academic Key Performance Indicators Report and our Managing for Results in America’s Great City Schools Report. The Council’s Research Department also developed a series of dashboards that allow users to explore the Academic KPI data beyond what is available in the paper version of the report. The dashboards introduce the ability to parse the indicators by student group, over time, and between districts with similar demographics.
The Research Department's staff is committed to monitoring achievement gaps in large urban school districts, and conducting research to expand the field's knowledge of policies and practices that can be employed to spur achievement and reduce racial and economic achievement gaps.