The last two years disrupted public education systems, but they also highlighted opportunities. Schools and districts can apply the nimbleness they demonstrated during the pandemic to efforts to reconnect and reengage their students. In this moment, state boards of education are in the perfect position to guide schools and districts, not just to a return to normal, but to a system that invites back students’ whole selves through inclusive, culturally relevant practices.

At a time when school systems have reported sharp declines in student enrollment, it is important to recognize that when students are disconnected from school they are disconnected from multiple facets of development. Culturally responsive practice makes use of culture as a basis for engaging and motivating students, and it fosters proactive classroom  management and positive student behavior. Such practices also lead to improved academic performance, attendance, credits earned, retention rates, and positive self-identity.


Creating State Education Systems That Value Student Cultures





Also In this Issue

Five Trends Shaping the Teaching Force

By Brandon Harrison, Daniel Stuckey, Elizabeth Merrill, Gregory Collins and Richard M. Ingersoll

State policymakers looking to increase recruitment and retention should keep an eye on these long-term trends.





The Uneven Landscape of Teacher Preparation

By Leslie T. Fenwick

State statutes impede students' equitable access to profession-ready teachers.





A Data-Driven Approach to Staffing Schools

By Hannah Putman and Heather Peske

Lowering teacher standards may fail to solve actual pipeline problems and can create new ones.





Licensure Tests as Barriers to the Profession

By Victoria Van Cleef

States should explore better means of assessing teachers' classroom readiness.






Teacher Preparation for Whole-Child Design

By Jennifer DePaoli and Ryan Saunders

State leaders have a role in ensuring that educator preparation both models and reflects the science of learning and development.





Teacher Recruitment and Retention in Missouri

By Paul Katnik

State leaders commit to efforts to attract and keep teachers in the classroom.





Ensuring Equity in Grow-Your-Own Programs

By Conra D. Gist

State-level criteria for programs' design can yield better outcomes in preparing and retaining diverse teachers.





Creating State Education Systems That Value Student Cultures

By Tanji Reed Marshall and William Rodick

State boards can set the stage for learning environments that connect and engage all students.






Preparing Pre-K Teachers: Policy Considerations and Strategies

By Amaya Garcia and Cara Sklar

Four practices to increase the pool of skilled early educators stand out as promising.







Featured Items

Multiracial group of teachers walking in school hallway. Image credit: iStock i

Strengthening the Principal Pipeline through State Leadership Academies

Missouri, Delaware, and North Carolina have developed evidence-based professional learning for current and prospective school leaders to increase their effectiveness and reduce turnover.
Credit: istock i

State Advances in Early Childhood Education Seed Plans for 2024

In 2023, several states made significant strides toward universal pre-K, increased funding and support for early educators, and improved literacy and math instruction.
Business people sitting on books. Image credit: iStock i

Curriculum That Counts

Authors in this issue of the Standard draw lessons from a spectrum of state policies that are being used to increase the adoption of high-quality curriculum.

Upcoming Events

From the States