Deeper Learning Networks: Taking Student-Centered Learning and Equity to Scale. Deeper Learning Networks Series

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Hernández, Laura E.; Darling-Hammond, Linda; Adams, Julie; Bradley, Kathryn
Institutional Author
Learning Policy Institute
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Acquisition Number
Published Date
10-20-2021 3:53 PM
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Many educators have created successful innovative models but have had difficulty sustaining, re-creating, and scaling these models. Classrooms and schools characterized by student-centered learning practices typically deviate from the norms of transmission teaching and the many structures and procedures that David Tyack and Larry Cuban called the "grammar of schooling." As a result, these schools have confronted institutional and normative obstacles as they seek to implement and spread high-quality models and practices with fidelity. This study investigates several networks of schools that had successfully instantiated, sustained, and spread progressive educational practices in ways that advance equity and produce greater success for traditionally marginalized students. It then considered the systems and structures that practitioners have used to anticipate and overcome the challenges that often accompany efforts to enact and spread deep changes to teaching and learning. This report examines three school networks, all of which engage students in inquiry-based learning that has resulted in positive outcomes for students, most of whom are students of color from low-income families: (1) Big Picture Learning, which offers an experiential and interest-based learning approach grounded in personalized, transdisciplinary courses of study and workplace learning that typically takes place in internships; (2) The Internationals Network for Public Schools, which serves newcomers with an "activity-based" pedagogical model that features collaborative, inquiry-based learning for English learners who have had widely variable levels of education before coming to the United States; and (3) New Tech Network, which offers a whole school model grounded in interdisciplinary, project-based learning that is technology supported, including resources for both teachers and students to facilitate collaborative learning. [With DeAnna Duncan Grand, Martens Roc, and Peter Ross. For the research brief, see ED603414.]
English Learners
English Learners
Bilingual Students