A Capacity-Building Model for School Improvement

A Capacity-Building Model for School Improvement paper captures the model and history of the Network for College Success (NCS), and situates our work within current research. It uses Freshman On-Track as an example of how the NCS model builds school-level capacity for improvement. The paper was written in collaboration with the UChicago Consortium on School Research.

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NCS bases its model on the belief that educators want to improve their outcomes, and need the tools, skills, and strategies to effectively implement real changes. To facilitate this, NCS has developed a dynamic model of supporting schools to build the systems, structures, and capacity to engage in a process of ongoing improvement.

The UChicago Consortium has worked closely with NCS since its founding, providing research for practitioners working to improve student outcomes.  NCS grounds its work in the problems faced by schools and school leaders. Consortium researchers’ work with NCS staff and other practitioners helps them to better understand the nature of problems from the ground, and what evidence could help practitioners be more effective in their work with students.

This paper is accompanied by the Freshman On-Track Toolkit, which is a collection of protocols, reports, resources, and artifacts used by our experienced Coaches in their daily work to help schools better support students through the critical first year of high school.  

Explore the Freshman On-Track Toolkit >