SCCS News and Research

Alaskan Schools: What Matters to Students?

Building on seven years of its School Climate and Connectedness Survey findings, AASB has released new research delving into what matters to Alaskan studentsWhat makes a school a place where Alaskan students want to be and do well? Why do students stay in school or drop out? What do Alaskan students believe that schools can do to help them succeed?  (Report Summary; Full Report)

Positive School Climate policy (Word doc)

In spring 2012 a School Climate policy (BP 5137) was made available to all Alaska School Districts. This new policy was a result of collaborative efforts amongst school board members attending sessions at the 2011 Fall Boardsmanship Academy and Annual Conference. This policy highlights the connection between student achievement and positive climate, and lays out how school climate can be improved.

Chugiak High School Peer Mediation

Chugiak High School’s peer mediation program is based on the philosophy that a safe school environment is necessary for students’ success both academically and socially.

Schools report change after semester with anti-bullying program

Students across the Sitka School District are learning about anti-bullying techniques using a new curriculum called OLWEUS. With the halfway point of the school year approaching, KCAW’s Ed Ronco decided to take a look at the curriculum, and whether district staff think it’s working.

Improving Academic Achievement through Improving School Climate and Student Connectedness

A paper given by the American Institutes for Research (AIR) at the American Educational Research Association annual meeting in April 2009 uses Alaska data from SCCS to add to the national literature on the association of climate and connectedness and academic achievement.

“[These results] show that whether a school starts with high or low school climate and connectedness, and high or low achievement scores, changing that school’s climate and connectedness for the better is associated with increases in student performance in reading, writing, and mathematics.”

Record 34 Districts use AASB’s School Climate Survey in 2010

More districts than ever signed up to participate in the spring 2010 School Climate and Connectedness Survey. For 2009, SCCS results showed evidence of a growing improvement in school climate and student connectedness. The findings point to better student involvement in school, fewer instances of delinquent behavior at school, and higher ratings by students and staff for school climate.

The School Climate Challenge – Narrowing the Gap Between School Climate Research and School Climate Policy, Practice Guidelines and Teacher Education Policy

Over the last two decades, there has been a growing appreciation that school climate, the quality and character of school life, fosters — or undermines — children’s development, learning and achievement. Research confirms what teachers and parents have claimed for decades: a safe and supportive school environment, in which students have positive social relationships and are respected, engaged in their work and feel competent, matters.

School Climate Guide for Districts &Policymakers (from CSEE)

This School Climate Guide is intended to assist district policymakers and education leaders in identifying strategies they can use to improve school climate throughout their district.

School Connectedness: A Video Highlight Connect for Kids, Forum for Youth Investment

What is the secret behind students staying in school? Interesting courses? GPA? A new CDC study shows the unwavering support of teachers and community members is a primary contributor to students’ success in school. During a June 23 Congressional briefing, experts from the Search Institute, CDC and local schools shared their insight on how to create these essential connections and their lasting impact on students.

School Connectedness: Strategies for Increasing Protective Factors Among Youth

To help schools enhance this important protective factor, CDC scientists have created a guide that synthesizes available research on school connectedness and outlines strategies for fostering it. School Connectedness: Strategies for Increasing Protective Factors Among Youth identifies six evidence-based strategies that teachers, administrators, school staff, and parents can implement to increase the extent to which students feel connected to school.

School Matters

This video is part of the School Connectness – Creating a Caring Environment module, one of 14 that comprise the Johns Hopkins School of Public Health web course – Building Resilient Kids.

School Climate and Connectedness and Student Achievement – a technical memo reporting new Alaska data from the American Institutes for Research

“Not only are several aspects of school climate and connectedness related to student achievement, but positive change in school climate and connectedness is related to significant gains in student scores on statewide achievement tests. These findings show that whether a school starts with high or low school climate and connectedness, and high or low achievement scores, changing that school’s climate and connectedness for the better is associated with increases in student performance in reading, writing and mathematics.” (American Institutes for Research, 2007)

Video: Dr. Robert Blum at the 54th Annual AASB Conference

“What we have found from our research is that kids who felt connected to school… smoked less, drank alcohol less, had a later age of sexual debut and attempted suicide less.” (Dr. Robert Blum, Johns Hopkins University, 2002)

Taking Your School’s Temperature to Raise Student Achievement
(PowerPoint presentation from Alaska ICE Educator Shelly Eidsness)

Best Practices: Building Blocks for Enhancing School Environment
(from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health)

School Connectedness Resources
(from ACT for Youth Center of Excellence)

School Connectedness Research Facts and Findings
(from ACT for Youth Center of Excellence)

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