Using “Common Sense” to Broaden Evidence Beyond ESSA

Using “Common Sense” to Broaden Evidence Beyond ESSA

August 17, 2020

Nora Gordon and Carrie Conaway, authors of the new book “Common-Sense Evidence: The Education Leader’s Guide to Using Data and Research,” detail some of their most significant findings as they sought to clarify ESSA’s requirement that instructional interventions and programs adopted by schools be “evidence-based.” ESSA’s four tiers of evidence (based on the rigor of the methods used to evaluate) were meant to help educators identify interventions that “caused improvements” rather than merely being correlated, but “the end result ignores other opportunities to use evidence.” Ultimately, using “common sense” evidence can help educators and school leaders diagnose problems, implement strategies, and evaluate success.