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Hanover Research


Hanover Research Briefs offer research, literature reviews, case studies and meta-analyses drawn their network of talented researchers and scholars. They aim to provide the practitioner with clear, focused material that will help serve the needs of students. CASDA members can take advantage of a 10-percent discount on Hanover's services when contracted through CASDA.


For more information, contact CASDA Executive Director Michael Piccirillo at 518-442-5045 or

Staff Well-Being Check-Ins During COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic and resulting quarantines and shutdowns require school staff to help children and families cope with crisis, and staff often find themselves providing supports that extend beyond an educator's standard training and expertise. School personnel, particularly those who fail to engage in self-care or monitor their own response to the crisis, are therefore at increased risk of burnout or secondary traumatic stress. Download this month's Hanover Brief to learn how to support your staff with well-being check-ins.

Personalized Learning Online: A K-12 Info-Brief
Many education organizations and agencies have developed definitions of personalized learning that are “similar yet distinct,” identifying anywhere from three to 12 essential components. Hanover Research’s review of the personalized learning literature identified three common themes across these varied definitions. Personalized learning is characterized by: flexible approach to learning; instruction customized to students' needs; emphasis on student choice and ownership.​

Best Practices in K-12 Online and Hybrid Courses
Although there are concerns related to the rigor and quality of online courses, several effective online education programs at the K-12 and post-secondary level have operated long enough to provide insight into what elements are typically associated with high-quality online and hybrid courses. In this brief, Hanover Research examines the extant literature and identifies a number of promising practices associated with high-quality and rigorous online learning programs that are further detailed in the following subsections.​

Instructional Practices to Support Rigorous Instruction: Focus on Metacognition

This Hanover Research brief discusses how teachers can promote meta-cognitive skills and the impacts of this instructional practice on students. The brief includes sample prompts for integrating meta-cognition into course activities, examples of think aloud and collaborative instruction, concept mapping and more. 

Best Practices in Measuring Parent Engagement

Educators consistently agree regarding the importance and value of parent and family engagement in promoting student achievement and building strong schools and communities. However, educators do disagree regarding the definition of parent and family engagement, and little scholarly literature suggests specific, measurable objectives or indicators that leaders can use to determine the success of existing parent and family engagement efforts. Given these complications, evaluating parent and family engagement can be a complicated effort at the school and district levels. Leaders face key two questions, namely: “How should we define parent and family engagement?” and, “Using that definition, how can we measure parent and family engagement?” This Hanover Research brief draws on family engagement literature published by education and outreach organizations like the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) and state departments of education to help districts address both of these questions.

Best Practices for Student Engagement

Effective student engagement is essential to promoting student achievement and ensuring that all students access learning activities. Research identifies engagement as a major predictive factor for course grades and high school completion. This Hanover Research brief reviews best practices for increasing student engagement at both the classroom and school levels. This research is intended to support partner districts in identifying program models and best practices to ensure engagement and access to core instruction for all students.

Early Interventions to Support College and Career Readiness
Research shows that students may exhibit signs of potential dropout as early as first grade. Thus, experts recommend early interventions to support students in middle and elementary school - and early childhood - to enhance their academic and social-emotional development, empower families, and support college- and career-readiness. This Hanover Research brief examines strategies and policies to facilitate accurate and early identification of at-risk students in elementary and middle school and presents best practices for supporting these students on the pathway to graduation. ​

Best Practices in Evaluating and Improving School Climate

Hanover Research identifies common definitions and dimensions of school climate, and discusses best practices related to school climate evaluation and improvement. 

Improving Reading Outcomes for Students with Special Needs

To support public school districts in improving reading outcomes of its students with special needs, this Hanover Research brief reviews strategies and professional development delivery models to support student literacy learning. Hanover identifies strategies for primary and secondary students with reading disabilities, and for students with broader intellectual disabilities, as well as an overview of the focus of professional development in supporting high-needs students for general and special education teachers.

Best Practices for Measuring Social-Emotional Learning

To assist districts in tackling the challenges that come along with measuring SEL, this Hanover Research brief provides strategies that school and district leaders can use to 1) prioritize which skills to measure and 2) select assessment methods and instruments. The brief also includes a Checklist for Developing SEL Assessments which can help district leaders make decisions regarding which instruments to use or what qualities an internally-developed SEL assessment should have.

Checklist for Culturally Responsive Instruction
The Checklist for Culturally Responsive Instruction helps classroom teachers improve their instruction approaches by considering differences in social dynamics, learning styles and life experiences of students. 

Best Practices in Improving Student Attendance

Hanover Research examines research-based strategies for combatting absenteeism in schools. The report also reviews the strategies that four exemplary districts implemented for improving student attendance.

Planning for In-Demand CTE Programs

Hanover Research provides an overview of some of the latest thinking on the need for effective CTE programs and case studies showcasing their successful development and implementation. We hope that you find this information helpful as you look to provide opportunities to your students that prepare them for a successful future.

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