Crosswalk: Aligning Evidence-Based Clearinghouses with the ESSA Tiers of Evidence

The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) in 2015 changed how the education system supports low-performing schools. While states provided direct support to struggling schools in the past, ESSA places more responsibility on districts by requiring them to select evidence-based interventions—which can take the form of programs, policies, or practices—to help these schools improve. This poses a particular challenge for states and districts as they start to implement their ESSA plans.

To address this challenge, the Ohio Department of Education is compiling a clearinghouse of evidence-based interventions that districts can use for school improvement beginning in the 2018/19 school year. Lyzz Davis, an AIR/REL Midwest senior researcher, and David English, an AIR/REL Midwest senior technical assistance consultant, worked with the Department to create a crosswalk document by creating an overview of the four levels of evidence defined by ESSA (strong, moderate, promising, and demonstrates a rationale) and then applying the criteria ESSA uses to determine levels of evidence to the standards of existing research clearinghouses. The crosswalk should be valuable to all states as they support districts in implementing ESSA’s requirements.

How Can States Equip School Districts to Adopt Evidence-Based Interventions? provides a more detailed look at the development of the crosswalk.

Image of Elisabeth Davis
Principal Researcher