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By Linda Diamond and Michelle Rodriguez

Numerous recent reports cite the difference in student learning that an effective curriculum can make. These reports include Johns Hopkins Institute for Education Studies, StandardsWork, Curriculum Research: What We Know and Where We Need to Go; Ashley Berner’s report in Thomas Fordham Institute’s Flypaper, August 2018; and Brookings report by Morgan Polikoff,, June 2018. After 25 years of working with school districts to help them select and implement high-quality curriculum, we agree. However, only a couple reports, the Economic Studies Brookings Report by Morgan Polikoff and Ashley Berner’s report, address a critical difficulty—ensuring teachers have sufficient content and curriculum knowledge to use and implement a standards-based curriculum with fidelity.

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Students with disabilities are not making the achievement gains they should make. The achievement gap between students with disabilities and students without disabilities has remained largely unchanged despite adaptive technologies and supposedly research-based methods. But we can improve outcomes for special education students by significantly improving general education and special education together.

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The Honorable Robert H. Pasternack, Ph.D, is our guest blogger for November. This month’s blog post provides a brief overview of Social Emotional Learning (SEL) factors and what schools and teachers can do to address those factors.

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In addition to the Supreme Court Ruling on Special Education, Dyslexia is now a national focus. Through reading professional learning, districts can equip teachers with the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively support dyslexic students.

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CORE’s Excellence in Education Blog post this month is on the impact of the Supreme Court’s Unanimous Ruling on Special Education, setting a higher standard for students with disabilities.

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