Thursday, October 7, 2010

Training Teachers, Child Development Accounts, e-Readers, and more - A Review of Some Recent Reports and Studies

National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education just released a report advocating the need to better train teachers in the rudiments of developmental science, The Road Less Traveled: How the Developmental Sciences Can Prepare Educators to Improve Student Achievement. The report included a multidisciplinary panel of experts, such as experts in teacher education, developmental science and early childhood. It asserts that while there has been an explosion of research demonstrating that teacher understanding of and ability to apply developmental sciences knowledge leads to increased student achievement results, this research and body of knowledge is rarely being used to train teachers.

Lessons from SEED, a National Demonstration of Child Development Accounts is a collaborative (Washington-based nonprofits) study which examines the effects of opening savings accounts for 1,100 newborns. The study, which looked at a number of different communities and also ensured that all income levels were represented, found that these accounts not only led to savings for children, but that they can also "raise college expectations and affordability, and serve as a basis for more stable and productive financial lives for...families"

A New Majority: Low-Income Students in the South’s Public Schools, is a research report on the growth of low income children in the South’s public schools. It found that more than half of public schoolchildren in the U.S. South now come from low-income families, and predicts that the nation as a whole could reach the same demographic reality within a decade if current socio-economic trends persist.

Image via Harris InteractiveA recent Harris Interactive poll looked at e-Readers and e-Reader user habits. The poll found that users of e-readers read more and are more likely to buy or download books. The report contains some interesting stats which should give publishers a little more incentive to push more content to digital.