This report examines two key school supports that could help teachers address state standards in their instruction: curriculum requirements and school leader knowledge of standards.
Key findings highlighted in our report include:
- The most commonly-required and recommended instructional materials for English language arts and mathematics are not always aligned closely with the major emphases of state standards.
- Majorities of school leaders could not identify reading approaches that are aligned with most state standards.
- School leaders had particular difficulty with identifying standards-aligned mathematics topics at higher grade levels in their schools. In addition, school leaders who reported requirements or recommendations for standards-aligned instructional materials were also better able to identify standards-aligned reading approaches.
The findings imply that states and districts should try to do more to ensure that the materials they recommend or require are closely aligned with their standards, as well as provide clear information about the materials that are most closely aligned with their standards.
Kaufman, J. H., & Tsai, T. (2018). School supports for teachers' implementation of state standards: Findings from the American school leader panel. Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation. https://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR2318.html