April 28, 2020
Beginning this spring, reports developed by EdReports.org will be using an updated version of our review tools. EdReports “tools” consist of our review criteria, corresponding evidence guides, and the overall review process.
EdReports’ standard practice is to conduct reviews of instructional materials against new or modified tools before we formally release them to the public. The tools will be in draft form throughout 2020. Once reviews are completed in early 2021 the tools will be released in final form.
Our review tools and process will continue to follow the methodology that undergirds our work: by educators for educators, research-anchored, and objective, with a focus on standards alignment, quality, and usability. After working with the current tools on hundreds of reviews over the course of five years, EdReports is applying our continuous learning mindset to address shifts in materials development and student need.
EdReports currently reviews materials for three content areas: mathematics, English language arts, and science. All content areas will be using a revised gateway 3 (focusing on questions of usability) that will include more detail about how materials address and support learner variance, differentiation, technology, teacher guidance, assessment, and other implementation supports.
Additional changes in gateways 1 and 2 (focusing on questions of standards alignment) include:
|K-12 English Language Arts||Provide more specific detail around foundational skills, streamline information about texts and tasks, and examine how program “bloat”—when a program is difficult to use because there is more content than can be feasibly taught in a single school year.|
|K-8 Mathematics||Provide more detailed information on Focus and Coherence. Look at all mathematical practices in more depth.|
|6-8 Science||No changes|
Ever since our very first reviews were launched in 2015, we have received a range of requests from districts to examine specific aspects of materials to better support local selection processes. Those requests have evolved over time, becoming more complex and specific as districts become more informed about what constitutes a quality curriculum. We intend for these revisions to yield reports with more information that the field can use to make critical adoption decisions.