Case Study

Improving Student Achievement in Math Through Coherent Instructional Systems

Guilford County Schools

Guilford County Schools (GCS), the third largest school district in North Carolina, serves over 70,000 PK-12 students across 124 schools. During the 2018-19 school year, GCS chose to adopt Open Up Resources math curriculum at their 24 middle schools. They began to implement these high-quality instructional materials (HQIM) in the 2019-20 school year.

CORE partnered with GCS in July 2021 through a 3-year grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation (BMGF) to provide comprehensive curriculum implementation services, and we are now in the third year of our partnership.

Because the effective implementation of HQIM is a systems change, the CORE Curriculum Services model requires multiple years of work. In year 1, we start building leadership capacity to support educators as they implement materials as designed and continue through year 3 to build capacity to sustain the change at the district and school levels and scale to additional grade levels and subject areas as appropriate. With that in mind, the specific goals of our Curriculum Implementation services include:

  • Building sustainable district- and school-level curriculum implementation systems,
  • Providing professional learning experiences that enable leaders to effectively support the implementation of HQIM, and
  • Engaging leaders to monitor and improve curriculum implementation.

Throughout the duration of our partnership, GCS has worked alongside CORE to support all 24 middle schools and across the district. GCS has seen unprecedented improvements in middle school mathematics at their district, including shifts in district and school systems, leader and educator practice, and student engagement and achievement.