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Scaling Up STEM Academies Statewide: Implementation, Network Supports, and Early Outcomes


by Viki Young, Ann House, David Sherer, Corinne Singleton, Haiwen Wang & Kristin Klopfenstein — 2016

This article presents a case study of scaling up the T-STEM initiative in Texas. Data come from the four-year longitudinal evaluation of the Texas High School Project (THSP). The evaluation studied the implementation and impact of T-STEM and the other THSP reforms using a mixed-methods design, including qualitative case studies; principal, teacher, and student surveys; and a quasi-experimental approach to examining the effects of the programs on student achievement and achievement-related behaviors. The article presents a brief description of T-STEM characteristics and early outcomes on math and science achievement. It then examines variation in the local interpretation and enactment of the blueprint designed to guide T-STEM academy development. A multidimensional infrastructure supported T-STEM implementation and provided needed technical assistance. Yet T-STEM academies’ primary affiliations through their district or external support network provided the strongest context for implementation, shaping priorities and affording resources and know-how. The article offers key lessons for policymakers and practitioners engaged in supporting STEM efforts in particular and new school models in general.


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Cite This Article as: Teachers College Record Volume 118 Number 13, 2016, p. 1-26
http://www.tcrecord.org ID Number: 20601, Date Accessed: 10/22/2017 6:09:20 AM

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About the Author
  • Viki Young
    SRI International
    E-mail Author
    VIKI M. YOUNG is Director of the Center for Education Policy at SRI International. Her research focuses on implementation and impact of education reforms including systemwide initiatives, college and career readiness efforts at high school and transitions to postsecondary, and human capital development.
  • Ann House
    SRI International
    ANN HOUSE is a Senior Research Social Scientist at the Center for Technology in Learning at SRI International. Her work includes research and evaluation projects examining informal learning environments, staff professional development, and reform in K–12 schools.
  • David Sherer
    Harvard Graduate School of Education
    E-mail Author
    DAVID SHERER is a doctoral candidate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. His work focuses on organizational leadership, policy implementation, and the social dynamics of K–12 school reform.
  • Corinne Singleton
    SRI International
    E-mail Author
    CORINNE SINGLETON is a Research Social Scientist at SRI International. Her interests center on evaluations of program implementation and outcomes for teaching and learning, technology in learning, and international education.
  • Haiwen Wang
    SRI International
    E-mail Author
    HAIWEN WANG is a Senior Researcher in the Center for Education Policy at SRI International. She has expertise in quantitative research design, statistical modeling, and applying rigorous research methodology to evaluate the impact of education programs on teacher and student outcomes.
  • Kristin Klopfenstein
    University of Northern Colorado
    E-mail Author
    KRISTIN KLOPFENSTEIN is the Founding Executive Director of the Education Innovation Institute at the University of Northern Colorado. An economist, she has devoted much of her career to furthering the use of causal education research to examine factors that influence low-income, rural, Black and Hispanic students’ preparation for college and the workforce.
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