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Best practice

The processes, practices, or systems identified in public and private organizations that performed exceptionally well and are widely recognized as improving an organization's performance and efficiency in specific areas.

  • Center for Applied Special Technology (CAST)
    CAST is a not-for-profit organization that uses technology to expand opportunities for all people, especially those with disabilities. Information about universal design and accessible curriculum.
  • 21st Century Schools
    It is the position of 21st Century Schools that the current educational system in the United States is in need of total restructuring. This restructuring must occur on all levels simultaneously, and cannot be accomplished with bits and pieces of reform here and there.
  • A Specialized Knowledge Base for Teaching American Indian and Alaska Native Students
    This paper outlines a knowledge base that can be adopted by beginning teachers of American Indian and Alaska Native students. This knowledge base is above and beyond what is now in most mainstream teacher education programs.
  • Ableza: Tips for Teachers
    Tips for Teachers: A list of things for teachers to remember when they are teaching about Native Americans.
  • American Indian/Indigenous Education Resources
    A list of books, articles and programs related to teaching American Indian and Indigenous students.
  • Anti-Defamation League
    The Anti-Defamation League is one of the most recommended sites for prejudice reduction work by equity experts. Of note see their Education page for short articles about discussing hate and violence with your children, responding to hate-motivated behaviors you might see in your children and others, and what to tell your children about prejudice (the latter in both English and Spanish.) Helpful "Tools for Teachers" section.
  • Armstrong, Thomas Ph.D. Home Page
    Thomas Armstrong worked under Howard Gardner at Harvard's Project Zero and is a fabulous trainer on multiple intelligences. His provocative and controversial book on the "myth of ADD/ADHD_ is available here.
  • BICS versus CALPS in English Language Learners
    This provides a concise explanation of the difference between BICS (Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills) and CALPS (Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency Skills), the knowledge of which is central to an understanding of how vitally important it is to the cognitive development of non-English speaking students to receive at least some instruction in their native language as they learn English. Underscores how damaging the ?English only? movement is to the future of Limited English Proficient children.
  • Campbell-Kibler Associates
    Yet another extraordinary gender equity trainer is Pat Campbell of Campbell-Kibler Associates, especially in the area of gender equity in math, science, and technology. Her excellent website has a remarkably large number of free and "user friendly" (in her words - and she is right!) brochures and pamphlets that you may download and use.
  • Center for Gifted Education Policy
    The Center for Gifted Education Policy is run by the American Psychological Association and conducts research and advocacy work to inform educational policy on Gifted and Talented youth. They also have a newsletter, a journal, and a listserv.
  • Center for Research on Education, Diversity, and Excellence
    CREDE conducts research and provide information dissemination on issues of the education of linguistic minority students. One particular concern is the assessment of such students.
  • Center for Talented Youth at John Hopkins University
    The Johns Hopkins University Center for Talented Youth (CTY) provides challenging educational programs for students scoring at 97% or above on national standardized tests. They also provide distance learning opportunities and conferences.
  • Circle of Inclusion
    For families and early childhood educators with a great deal of information about effective and best practices of inclusion and accommodations for special needs children. Includes free materials to download and links to other resources.
  • COMRISE: Center of Minority Research in Special Education
    COMRISE is designed to enhance the capacity of researchers in special education from historically Black colleges and universities and other minority institutions of higher education to build and pursue research agendas focused on minority issues in special education.
  • Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders
    The Council for Children with Behavioral Disorders, the premiere organization to assist children with Emotional and Behavioral Disorders, has back issues of its journal, "Beyond Behavior", available free on its site at http://www.ccbd.net/beyondbehavior/.
  • Curriculum Development for Native American Students
    A guide to developing culturally sensitive curriculum .. especially for Native American students.
  • Cyber Sisters
    An educational telementoring program in science, math and technology for middle school girls.
  • CyberSisters
    A mentoring program that links middle school girls with University of Oregon and Oregon State University women mentors. Mentors use e-mail and face-to-face contact to encourage communication.
  • Differentiated Instruction
    CAST is well known in the Special Education world (see SPED references in section below), and is especially worth checking out for their work on assistive technology. Here is an excellent overview of classroom best practices in Differentiated Instruction.
  • Educating Jane
    Educating Jane is a wonderful site full of thoughtfully-chosen resources and other information. Has an excellent section on women in history.
  • Educational Justice
    The Justice Matters Institute sponsors Educational Justice, a fantastic site of extensive research and annotated links on the gamut of educational equity issues, including how equity plays out in whole school reform efforts. Research-based strategies and online discussion forums.
  • ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education
    The ERIC Clearinghouse on Urban Education reviews many programs aimed at helping urban youth - especially those students of color and low socio-economic status - and suggests some best practices in urban schools. Especially see reports on educational issues of African-American and Hispanic students.
  • Exemplary and Promising Gender Equity Programs 2000
    This well-researched report provides reviews of an exemplary other promising gender equity programs in a variety of subfields including gender equity in math, science, and technology and in career education.
  • Gender Equity in the Classroom: Viewing Guide
    A remarkable free equity resource is the Viewing Guide, written by notable gender equity experts David Sadker and Phyllis Learner, for their Gender Equity in the Classroom video. The video is also available for purchase at this site.
  • GrayMill
    "I just completed the exciting, energizing, enriching three day workshop on GESA facilitating and haven't felt this motivated and inspired in years._ With experience, I can assure you this is a typical comment from a participant in a training session in GESA (Gender/Ethnic Expectations and Student Achievement.) Possibly no individual has more success in teaching teachers how to teach more equitably than Dee Grayson. Along with her partner, Pam Miller, Graymill offers no-nonsense training in strategies that work to lessen the particular "disparities_ that exist within the interaction of the classroom teacher and different subgroups of students.
  • Gregorc Associates, INC.
    A learning styles model that some teachers find easier to learn and apply to the classroom since there are fewer types than the Myers-Briggs model. Assessment tools help define your thinking modality along two continuums: abstract to concrete thought, and random to sequential.
  • Institute for Democracy, Education, & Access
    Oakes' Institute for Democracy, Education, & Access runs projects including an Urban Educator Network, Teachers as Agents of Equity and Change, and an Educational Justice Collaborative. Oakes, Keeping Track: How Schools Structure Inequality (Yale University Press, 1985) and her many more recent articles and books including Educational Matchmaking (1992).
  • Jensen Learning Corporation: Brain Research Applied to Learning
    Eric Jensen, along with the Caines are probably the two most well respected brain-based learning educators. The Jensen Learning Corporation site has a good "brain-based learning quiz_ and a well-written defense of applying brain science for improved learning and teaching and reaching all students.
  • Learning Disabilities Online
    Leading site recommended by experts for educators and parents on learning disabilities. One may ask questions about learning disabilities through the site and get an answer electronically from an LD expert.
  • Mid-Atlantic Equity Center
    The Equity Assistance Centers with the greatest amount of useful information is probably the Mid-Atlantic Equity Center http://www.maec.org Although funded to provide equity-related services to states in the mid-Atlantic region (DC, DE, MD, PA, VA, and WV) their "Education and Equity News" has many articles on national issues. To subscribe send a message to [email protected] stating on the subject line: subscribe ed-news and your e-mail address (e.g., subscribe ed-news [email protected]).
  • Multicultural Pavilion - Teacher's Corner
    A comprehensive site of useful classroom activities, books, quotes, and discussions on multicultural education.
  • Myra Sadker Advocates for Gender Equity
    David Sadker, along with his late wife Myra, are the undisputable King and Queen of research on gender equity in education in the 20th century. Of note on his website is an excellent survey and analysis of the recent bonanza of books about boys.
  • National Association for Gifted Children
    NAGC is an organization of parents, teachers, educators, community leaders and others who are concerned with providing the best educational and life experiences for children who are identified as Gifted and Talented. They have added a useful feature to their site: a "Parent Resource Specialist_ who will respond electronically to your questions and concerns about providing appropriate services to Gifted and Talented children.
  • National Association for Multicultural Education
    The National Association for Multicultural Education, or NAME, is devoted to social justice and educational equity. NAME has great conferences, some active state chapters, and are probably the largest organization for multicultural education anywhere.
  • National Research Center on Gifted and Talented
    The National Research Center on Gifted and Talented, run by noted expert and author Joseph Renzulli (see his book on ?curriculum compacting,? among others) has a huge number of links and resources, including their newsletter. The ?Big Red Notebook? is a compilation of resource material on the full-range of issues for Gifted and Talented education and is available as a free download from the site.
  • National Visionary Leadership Project
    A collection of first-person stories told by African Americans in order to preserve history and link generations.
  • National Women's Law Center
    The National Women's Law Center's section on Education has many policy briefings and texts of Congressional testimonies on issues of females and education, especially on Title IX, and has special sections on sports, sexual harassment, single-sex schooling, career education, and overall gender equity in educational achievement.
  • North Dakota State Board for Vocational and Technical Education
    The North Dakota State Board for Vocational and Technical Education has developed a comprehensive list of Educational Equity Standards that cover preservice and inservice education, climate, curriculum, instruction, assessment, administration and leadership, and the workplace. These are copywrited so ask permission before using or adapting.
  • Office for Civil Rights
    The Office for Civil Rights is the main governmental office for the enforcement of Civil Rights laws, such as those that protect us against discrimination based on race, national origin (commonly understood as language) and sex. They have the power to withhold funds to schools and school districts who do not comply with Civil Rights laws, although to date they have not withhold funds from any violator.
  • Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports
    Part of the OSEP Technical Assistance Center is the Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports program. PBIS provides free resources, including a newsletter, to schools and individuals interested in best practices of school-wide discipline programs.
  • SEED Project
    The SEED (Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity) Project in Inclusive Curriculum provides resources to set up powerful roundtable, book study groups of teachers who wish to transform the (still) largely White Male curriculum. Peggy McIntosh developed the SEED project through the Wellesley Center for Research on Women (www.wellesley.edu) and is the author of "White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack._ Short, powerful, and easily readable, her 1989 article has centered our thinking about race (and other variables) on the notion of "privilege_ like nothing else.
  • Teaching For Change
    Probably the best catalog for overall equity and social justice issues in education is put out by Teaching for Change. Beyond Heroes and Holidays in a "must-have_ for both inservice and preservice work on gender-fair and multicultural education that moves beyond celebrating the "Three F's_: Food, Fun, and Festival, and focuses on undoing racism and oppression.
  • Teaching Tolerance
    Teaching Tolerance serves as a clearinghouse of information about anti-bias programs and activities being implemented in schools across the country.
  • Teaching Tolerance/Southern Poverty Law Center
    Teaching Tolerance is a national education project of the Southern Poverty Law Center dedicated to helping students foster equity, respect, and understanding in the classroom and beyond. The Teaching Tolerance magazine is free and excellent with many useful articles and information for the classroom teacher as well as equity researcher.
  • Techbridge: Encouraging Girls in Technology web site
    This web site describes a technology program for girls that is hosted by Chabot Space & Science Center and funded by the National Science Foundation. The site offers resources and strategies to encourage girls in technology.
  • The American Forum for Global Education
    The noted Global Education/Social Studies expert from CCSSO, Fred Czarra, helped draft these self-assessment checklists with the American Forum for Global Education. The checklists include questions on student knowledge of global issues and cultural awareness, and asks how well schools, school systems, and state education agencies are preparing students to participate in the shrinking global economy.
  • The Association for the Severely Handicapped
    TASH is an international association of people with disabilities, their family members, other advocates, and professionals fighting for a society in which inclusion of all people in all aspects of society is the norm.? This site was recommended by Special Education experts for its Methods and Practices section. Information is available on its provocative newsletter, Connections, that consistently challenges any hesitancy about the full inclusion of people with disabilities in the classroom and in the greater society.
  • The National Association for the Education of Young Children
    NAEYC describes itself as the nation's largest and most influential organization of early childhood educators. Although a bit dated, every equity researcher and inservice and preservice teacher should have a copy of the Anti-Bias Curriculum: Tools for Empowering Young Children by Louise Derman-Sparks, full of research and strategies, available through NAEYC's website for an incredible $12.00!.
  • The National Coalition for Equity in Education
    The National Coalition for Equity in Education employs structures such as Personal Experience Panels and dyads that get to the deepest emotional-psychological experiences of prejudice and discrimination, and healing the pain of racism and other forms of oppression through expression of feelings and personal reflections. For more information contact Julian Weissglass, Professor of Mathematics now housed in the education department at UCSB at [email protected]
  • The National Women's History Project
    The National Women's History Project is highly recommended by many gender equity experts and is a wonderful teacher resource in planning gender-fair curriculum. Their Biography Center is an excellent place for students to begin their research.
  • Urban Special Education Leadership Collaborative
    The Urban Special Education Leadership Collaborative is a network of special education leaders from urban school districts. The site lists resources, conferences, newsletters, professional development training, and publications.
  • Weaving Gender Equity into Math Reform
    One of the best articles summarizing best practices for addressing the persistent problem in math education -- even when we get girls to take math classes in numbers close to those of boys substantially fewer girls choose math-related college majors and careers. Article has been effectively used in teacher study groups for professional development.
  • WEEA Equity Resource Center
    WEEA (Women's Educational Equity Act) is the only Federal legislation devoted to issues of girls' and women's' education. Although it had received much more substantial funding to do outreach and fund small-scale research projects around the country, in the 1990s it was scaled back to only a clearinghouse of information.