Report: Impact of Participation in PD 360 for Title 1 Schools

Independent researchrecently confirmed that 422 Title 1 schools consistently outperformed their non-Title 1 peers, experiencing higher gains in test scores than any other schools—and they did it in one school year.The achievements were thanks to many factors, including talented teachers, passionate administrators, and students who had a desire to learn. But there was another common denominator: on-demand professional development withPD 360.

The research was performed by an independent source, Dr. Steven H. Shaha, PhD, DBA, who released his study comparing 422 Title 1 schools that used PD 360 with surrounding schools and districts that used other means of professional development. He measured the performance of these schools in the 2008 – 2009 school year (when none of these schools were using PD 360) to 2009 – 2010 when these particular Title 1 schools began implementing the on-demand PD platform.

In his study entitled “PD 360 Impact Assessment: A Study of the Impact of Participation in PD 360 for Title 1 Schools,” Dr. Shaha stated, “Title 1 students are traditionally known to represent among the greatest challenges for showing dramatic improvement, and often struggle to close performance gaps with their non-Title 1 peers, if that gap can ever be closed at all.”

Proficiency gains in reading and math were measured by combining the categories “proficient” and “advanced” on standardized test results. The average district gains in proficiency from the 08 – 09 to 09 – 10 school year were only 0.1%. The Title 1 schools using PD 360, however, gained an overall 4.8% for the same school years, outperforming the districts by 4.6% (p<.001). “And that performance advantage is all the more dramatic,” Shaha states, “when considering that the PD 360 schools began from a point equal to or slightly lower than their respective districts as a whole, meaning that PD 360 use resulted in a gap where none existed prior to its use.”

As with reading, PD 360 schools made statistically significant gains in mathematic proficiency rates above those experienced by their districts collectively (p<.001). In fact, the results show that the districts cumulatively actually saw a decline of -5.9% in the percent of students scoring at Proficient and Advanced levels in mathematics, while the participating PD 360 schools within those same districts experienced a gain of 7.3% for the same time period — a gap creating growth advantage of 13.2%. (p<.001).

Shaha pointed out in the research, “It is important to remember that, since the PD 360 schools were included in the cumulative district results, there is a statistical likelihood that had the gains experienced by the participating PD 360 schools not been included to raise the cumulative rate, the losses experienced by the districts would have been even greater.”