Program: Urban Education
Geography: United States

In early 2011, as the foundation was contemplating ways to focus our first Innovation portfolio cohort of investments, a palpable sense of momentum in the blended learning space caught our attention. Given our interest in data-driven education – and the role that timely, relevant student level data plays in blended learning – it seemed a logical place to invest.

But even as the field moved forward rapidly, we remained cautious. Much remains unknown about blended learning models’ impact in schools. Do students in blended learning environments show significantly different learning outcomes from peers in more traditional environments? Do blended models show a propensity to close the achievement gap? Is blended learning more effective for some students than for others?

To help address these questions, we decided to focus our work in the field by contributing to the evidence base that we (and others) need to better understand what works for students in blended learning models. Today, our Innovation portfolio includes a direct investment in a small cohort of schools that not only operated blended learning models during the 2011-12 school year, but that also participated in a series of foundation-funded case studies (conducted by FSG) and a one-year impact evaluation (conducted by SRI.)

We hope that these case studies jump-start a conversation about excellence in blended learning in the field.

BLENDED LEARNING STRATEGY

By making small investments in a cohort of promising models, and funding detailed case studies and an early stage impact evaluation of each model, we seek to contribute to the evidence base of blended learning’s potential to impact student outcomes.

 

Case Studies Recent Blog Posts
Introduction Rocketship tightens the link between classrooms and blended learning labs
KIPP LA
SEPTEMBER 27, 2012 BY CHARLIE BUFALINO
 
Summit Public Schools All Teachers are New Teachers in Blended Learning
FirstLine Schools
SEPTEMBER 18, 2012 BY JUDY BURTON
 
Alliance for College-Ready Public Schools Moving beyond blended learning to optimized schools
SEPTEMBER 6, 2012 BY DIANE TAVENNER
Rocketship Education  
Blended learning addresses budget constraints, personalization requirements
SEPTEMBER 4, 2012 BY MIKE KERR
 
Blended Learning: New case studies add insight into what works
SEPTEMBER 4, 2012 BY CHERYL NIEHAUS
 
Blended learning: A possible answer to education data’s “Now what?”
JUNE 19, 2012 BY CHERYL NIEHAUS