Stanford-SFUSD Partnership

Stanford University and San Francisco Unified School District partnership unites research and practice to shape educational practices and policies that maximize educational experiences for all students. The Partnership matches researchers from Stanford University’s Graduate School of Education with SFUSD district leaders to address challenges and support improvements. Together, they create research projects that directly inform the school district’s work to transform teaching and learning for each and every child in the 21st century.

Laura Wentworth

Director of Research Practice Partnerships
California Education Partners
@StanfordSFUSD on Twitter

Our Mission and Vision

How We Work

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What are the conditions under which research-practice partnerships succeed? by Caitlin C. Farrell, Laura Wentworth, and Michelle Nayfack in Phi Delta Kappan. March 22, 2021.

 A university and district partnership closes the research-to-classroom gap, by Laura Wentworth, Richard Carranza, and Deborah Stipek in Phi Delta Kappan. May 1, 2016.

The Stanford-SFUSD Partnership: Development of Data-Sharing Structures and Processes, by  Moonhawk Kim, Jim Shen, Laura Wentworth, Norma Ming, Michelle Reininger, and Eric Bettinger, in Handbook on Using Administrative Data for Research and Evidence-based Policy. 2020.


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Developing Early Warning Indicators for the San Francisco Unified School District

This brief from 2011 describes the development of Early Warning Indicators to help SFUSD high school principals identify incoming ninth graders who are at risk of not graduating within four years. View link

Summary of Two Studies on the Impact of Distance Learning on SFUSD Students: Middle School Science and Early Literacy Instruction

Deutscher, R., Carlson, J., Silverman, R. & Kipnis F.

This brief highlights findings from a study on the impact of distance learning on SFUSD students related to middle school science instruction and early literacy instruction, with a particular focus on English Learners and Students with Disabilities.

IRF knowledge-sharing research project: Summer 2021 Update

Oyewole, K.A., Arbogast, E., & Kipnis, F.

This brief reports on an examination of what knowledge is shared among Instructional Reform Facilitators (IRFs) and how that knowledge is shared. IRFs provide schools, that have a high concentration of historically underserved students, with guidance on the systemic use of data and strategies to both accelerate student learning and deliberately dialogue around targeted groups […]

SFUSD Personalized Learning Environments Pilot: Lessons from a Year of Distance and Hybrid Learning, 2020-2021

Barron, B., Levinson, A., Poonen Levien, A., & Kipnis.F.

This brief reports on the impact of the SFUSD Personalized Learning Environment (PLE) Pilot in the context of distance and hybrid learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The PLE Pilot leverages digital tools and flexible classroom environments to enhance student learning, equity, independence, and agency. 

Free Meals for All: Utilization of School Meals and Nutrition Services during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Lang, D. & Domingue, B.

This brief reports on a study of the utilization of the National School Lunch Programs during the COVID-19 pandemic, when onsite consumption and distribution requirements were relaxed. 

Ethnic studies increases longer-run academic engagement and attainment

Bonilla, S., Dee, T.S., & Penner, E.K.

This article highlights the longer-run impact of a ninth-grade SFUSD Ethnic Studies course, including: 1) a significantly increased probability of high school graduation among students near the eight-grade 2.0 GPA threshold used for assigning students to the course; 2) increased measures of engagement throughout high school; and 3) the probability of postsecondary matriculation.

Stress in Boom Times: Understanding Teacher’s Economic Anxiety in a High-Cost Urban District

Dizon-Ross, E., Loeb, S., Penner, E., & Rochmes, J.

This article highlights the findings of an SFUSD teacher survey revealing that San Francisco teachers have far higher levels of economic anxiety, on average, than a national sample of employed adults. Moreover, economically anxious teachers tend to have more negative attitudes about their jobs, have worse attendance, and are 50 percent more likely to depart […]

San Francisco Unified School District Personalized Learning Environments Pilot: A Report on Formative Research in the 2018-2019 Academic Year

Levinson A. & Kipnis, F.

This brief highlights findings from SFUSD’s Personalized Learning Environment (PLE) Pilot, developed to model more equitable learning opportunities for African-American students, English learners, special needs learners, and other historically underserved groups. 

Racial Concentration and School Effectiveness in SFUSD

Newton, S., Darling-Hammond, L., & Kipnis, F.

From 2010, this brief explores SFUSD’s efforts to address the achievement gap between historically underserved and other students by investigating the relationship between the racial concentration of students and school effectiveness.

Resource- and Approach-Driven Multidimensional Change: Three-Year Effects on School Improvement Grants

Wentworth, L., Loeb, S., & Penner, E.

This brief describes the three-year effects of School Improvement Grants on the 10 persistently lowest-performing schools between the academic year 2010-11 and 2013.