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SERC-Best Practices In Education

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The Connecticut State Education Resource Center (SERC) maintains a best practices section on its website for best practices in education:

Welcome to the Best Practices section of SERC's Web site! We're here to research, compile, disseminate and promote practices for educators and families with the goal of improving educational opportunities for all children. SERC, with support from the CT State Department of Education and the Connecticut Vanguard Schools Initiative, has identified effective practices -- connected to nine standards found in effective schools -- that improve student performance.

This dynamic database of information, literature, and materials has been compiled from a variety of local and national resources and is continuously updated. It is intended to support administrators, practitioners, and family members seeking strategies that have been proven successful in a variety of settings. You will find information on Best Practices in early childhood, elementary, and secondary education.

In addition, this site recognizes and celebrates the Connecticut schools that have embodied the nine standards and strive to continue Best Practices. By sharing their methods, we hope to demonstrate that Best Practices in Education can be achieved in every school.

[edit] What is "Best Practice?"

The term "Best Practice" has been used to describe "what works" in a particular situation or environment. When data support the success of a practice, it is referred to as a research-based practice or scientifically based practice. As good consumers of information, we must keep in mind that a particular practice that has worked for someone within a given set of variables may or may not yield the same results across educational environments.

Grover J. Whitehurst, as assistant secretary for Educational Research and Improvement at the U.S. Department of Education, defined evidence-based education as “the integration of professional wisdom with the best available empirical evidence in making decisions about how to deliver instruction.” Professional wisdom allows educators and family members to adapt to specific circumstances or environments in an area in which research evidence may be absent or incomplete. But without at least some empirical evidence, education cannot resolve competing approaches, generate cumulative knowledge, and avoid fads and personal biases.

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