Research

Opportunities to Learn

To ensure all children have the opportunity to succeed in school, research and discourse on effective education reform must expand beyond traditional notions of teaching and learning. A more comprehensive understanding of our educational system is needed; one that focuses on the delivery of resources, services, and supports that address children's needs both in-school (e.g. strong leadership, qualified teachers, challenging curricula, modern facilities) and out-of-school (e.g. safety, nutrition, health, enrichment). An overwhelming body of research has shown that socio-economic factors are strongly correlated with children's school readiness and ongoing success. While specific solutions for enhancing educational opportunity and related outcomes remain hotly contested, decision-makers must be willing to confront the role community and family life play in shaping learning experiences and think critically about the design and integration of policies that promote a broad foundation for success.

The Rennie Center's Opportunities to Learn study area examines policies and programs intended to provide all children with the full opportunity to realize their potential, including: student mobility, early childhood education, school choice, extended learning time, and full service schools and wraparound services.