contact staff ecs twitter facebook

research studies database
Research Studies provide concise, bulleted Findings, Policy Implications, and Recommendations on key issues, such as:

  • High school rigor and exit exams
  • Better serving English language learners
  • Boosting reading and math achievement
  • College entry and completion
  • Reducing dropout rates and increasing graduation rates
  • And many more!  (Go to the database.)

progress of education reform
progress of ed reformThe Progress of Education Reform addresses the hottest education issue and provides information in a concise and easy-to-read format based on the most recent studies and reports.

ECS Document Collections
ECS regularly issues useful compilations, summaries and/or comparisons of state policies—enacted or pending—on a wide variety of education topics, listed on the right. For a list of our most current documents, please see our What's New page.

Please use the links below to download PDFs that include all the documents for a given year.

If you'd like to order a print copy, contact the ECS Distribution Center at 303.299.3692 or

Reprint Permission
ECS is pleased to have other organizations or individuals share its materials with their constituents. To request permission to excerpt part of our publications either in print
or electronically, please e-mail, subject: Reprint Permission. State the full name of the document, and supply detail about how the permission will be used (audience, quantity, etc).  A response will be provided within 24 hours.



ECS Policy Analysis Topics:

(Note: Not all topics have an ECS document associated with them. If you are looking for information on a specific topic, you can use our search function.)


Learning English in rural America - English language learners (ELLs) — students whose primary language is other than English — are the fastest-growing major school population in the United States. These increases are forcing rural communities to rethink the best ways to teach English as a second language while simultaneously teaching the new, more rigorous Common Core State Standards. This brief explores the ways rural districts are addressing the challenge. (Carol Kreck, ECS, November 2014)...

STEM challenges and solutions in the hinterlands - When it comes to teaching STEM — science, technology, engineering and math — in remote rural areas, intractable problems can become brilliant solutions. (Carol Kreck, ECS, November 2014)...

Dual enrollment: A strategy to improve college-going and college completion among rural students - Research shows that students who participate in dual enrollment are more likely than their peers to finish high school, enter college and complete a degree. This means dual enrollment can greatly benefit students in rural areas, which report lower college-going and postsecondary attainment rates than other locales. (Jennifer Dounay Zinth, ECS, June 2014) ...

Iron Range Engineering PDF - The third in a series on rural education issues, this brief looks at engineering education in northeastern Minnesota. A program called Iron Range Engineering keeps youth closer to home and provides local industry with a steady stream on engineers. The National Academy of Engineering called for such a school in 2005, but few programs left lecture-hall learning for hands-on until Iron Range made the switch. Before then, engineering education hadn't change in 60 years. (Carol Kreck, ECS, November 2013)...

Iowa Harvests the Wind for Economic Development, Education, and Innovation - Economic development. Education. Innovation. This vignette examines how a rural state (Iowa) invested in innovative technology to create economic development opportunities, jobs, hands-on training, and incentives for students (both male and female) to study STEM subjects -- all from wind, Iowa's year-round crop. (Carol Kreck, ECS, August 2013)...

Linking Education and Economic Development: A Very Local, Very Rural Vignette PDF - McDowell County in West Virginia was once considered a wasteland. Now, it may become a beacon for other rural communities in dire straits thanks in part to Reconnecting McDowell. This paper, the first in a series examining rural education issues, examines the comprehensive, long-term effort to make educational improvement in McDowell County the route to a brighter economic future. Partners from business, foundations, government, nonprofit agencies and labor have committed to seek solutions to McDowell’s complex problems—poverty, underperforming schools, drug and alcohol abuse, housing shortages, limited medical services, and inadequate access to technology and transportation. (Carol Kreck, ECS, May 2013)...

12 for 2012 - 12 for 2012 is an ECS “read of the field,” built on our scrutiny of new reports and research, and our analysis of emerging drivers of change. The 12 policy areas do not represent an exhaustive list of the critical issues for the coming year, nor is this report intended to dictate your education policy priorities for 2012. Rather, 12 for 2012 is intended to stimulate thinking around how best to craft the “2.0” of powerful policy across the states. (ECS, 2012)...

From the ECS State Policy Database: Rural - This policy database—updated weekly—is made possible by your state's fiscal support of the Education Commission of the States....

Online Databases
Roll over each database for a description.

p-3 archived databases
kindergarten artscan
k-12 choice
12-grade transitions highly qualified requirements for special ed
charter NCLB
choice-open enrollment NCLB snaps
citizen-ed kindergarten
dual leadership
english language learners Paraprofessionals: Explore our findings for Title I Instructional Paraprofessional qualifications and certification requirements, paraprofessional professional development programs and state assessments for paraprofessionals.
high school literacy
K-12 teacher certification
school accountability teacher comp
state funding for students with disabilities Teacher Professional Development
service-learning teacher prep
teacher tenure special-ed teacher certification
postsecondary dual
blueprint charter
transfer and articulation Postsecondary
Home  |  About ECS  |  Education Issues A-Z  | Research Studies  |  Reports & Databases  |  State Legislation  |  State Profiles  |  Projects & Institutes  |  Newsroom  |  Website User's Guide
700 Broadway, #810 Denver, CO 80203-3442
Phone: 303.299.3600 | Fax: 303.296.8332
©2015 Education Commission of the States |
Read our privacy policy