School Improvement Resources

AFT Resources

Closing Schools to Improve Student Achievement: What the Research and Researchers Say, October 2012

Rooted in classroom reality: Schools benefit when teachers drive reform, American Teacher, Feb. 2010

The AFT Center for School Improvement, March 2008

Sustaining Partnerships for School Improvement, Saul Rubinstein presentation given at the 2008 AFT Convention in Chicago

AFT Resolution: Redesigning Low-Performing Schools (1998)

AFT's Professional Development program
This is a union-sponsored, research-based professional development program developed to help local unions build the capacity to deliver high-quality professional development services, either on their own or in collaboration with their school districts.

Making Data Work for You
This is an AFT course that helps educators become savvy consumers of data. Developed jointly by the AFT, New York State United Teachers, Rhode Island Federation of Teachers and Health Professionals, Toledo Federation of Teachers, and United Federation of Teachers, the course is designed to provide participants with the language, knowledge and tools to make informed changes—individually and collaboratively in teams—on a number of fronts. For more information, email the Center for School Improvement at

Additional Resources

Guide To Working with External Providers, Learning Point Associates, Sept. 2010

School Restructuring: What Works When, Learning Point Associates, June 2010

Listening to Teachers: In Lowell, educators drive reform, AFT Massachusetts, Mar. 2010

Improving Low-Performing Schools: Lessons from Five Years of Studying School Restructuring under No Child Left Behind, Center on Education Policy, Dec. 2009

Other organizations that provide valuable online resources related to the school improvement process

PEN: The AFT supports the PEN Civic Index . Measure your community's support for education.

What Works Clearinghouse: What Works is a resource for accessing scientific evidence on what works in education. The site houses user-friendly databases and reports on educational programs, products, practices and policies focused on improving student outcomes.

Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD): The ASCD is a nonprofit organization of 175,000 educators, including superintendents, supervisors, principals, teachers, professors of education and school board members. ASCD is a resource for information on many useful topics such as professional development, educational leadership and capacity building.

National Staff Development Council (NSDC): NSDC is a professional association that focuses on staff development and school improvement. NSDC hosts a high-quality Web site that can be useful to AFT leaders and members and other educators. NSDC offers publications, programs and conferences on high-quality professional development.

National High School Alliance (NHSA): NHSA provides a forum for organizations to collaborate on and discuss fostering high academic achievement, closing the achievement gap, and promoting the civic and personal growth of youth in high schools and communities. NHSA offers an online resource of special interest to high schools, A Resource Guide for Action: Transforming High School for All Youth.

Standard and Poor's School Matters: School Matters is an online searchable database of key information about schools, districts and states. The site also provides access to publications on achievement-related issues.

Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement: The Center for Comprehensive School Reform and Improvement's website contains searchable information on comprehensive school reform and improvement for educators and other interested parties.

NWREL Catalog of School Reform Models: NWREL hosts The Catalog of School Reform Models, an online searchable database of school reform models. Useful for educators seeking to reform schools, particularly in the era of No Child Left Behind, the site describes in detail whole-school reform models included after being formally reviewed by NWREL. Information included on models includes general approach, results, implementation assistance, and costs, among other data. The entries also contain examples of implementation sites.

Coalition for Community Schools: The Coalition for Community Schools, a consortium of national, state and local organizations serving schools and communities, advocates community schools as a primary method of improving student learning. Through their Web site, members, leaders and others can access research, tools, technical assistance, and links to community school resources.