SOURCE: The Cicero Group

The Cicero Group

January 09, 2013 08:30 ET

Significant Improvements in Student Performance

SALT LAKE CITY, UT--(Marketwire - Jan 9, 2013) - Education Direction's innovative, data-driven inquiry teaching strategies have helped propel significant improvements in student performance at a host of different schools districts. According to recently released student performance data, two of Education Direction's ( largest clients, the Evansville-Vanderburgh School District (Indiana) and the New Rochelle City School District (New York), showed tremendous improvements in student achievement.

These school districts credit their partnership with Education Direction, a subsidiary of Cicero Group (, for this impressive rise in test scores. Each district reported unprecedented growth in both English Language Arts and Math, results they attribute to the use of Education Direction's system of data-driven inquiry, which trains school teams to identify student learning needs and addresses targeted instructional improvement.

Under the two-year guidance plan of Education Direction, students in the Evansville-Vanderburgh School District, Indiana's third largest, produced consistent two-year gains in English/Language Arts and Mathematics scores in grades 3-6, and three years of overall improvement. This is especially remarkable given the district's prior unbroken record of steadily declining scores since 1988. 

As a result of the innovation and focused improvement in teacher training introduced by Education Direction, the district has also secured millions of dollars in private and public grant money, resources that will be used to continue the trend of growth into the future.

Echoing the progress seen in Evansville, the New Rochelle School District (New Rochelle, NY) saw growth double that of average state gains in the school year following their alliance with Education Direction. This dramatic improvement ended several years of stagnant growth, and New Rochelle educators are quick to cite the partnership with Education Direction as the source of the district's newfound ability to focus on what matters: improving learning by improving teaching, and making teachers invested in and excited about the process.

Education Direction is comprised of a team of former classroom teachers and principals, who share a passion for the importance of data-driven instructional improvement. This team relishes the opportunity to partner their efforts one-on-one with districts with a similar vision. Since 2005, Education Direction has been dedicated to making test scores meaningful: using them to measurably increase student learning and performance through improved instruction. The Education Direction team guides educators -- from the classroom to central office levels -- in creating meaningful change for students. Education Direction provides coaching and support tailored around each district's individual needs and corresponding hands-on training for its teachers, building a foundation for ongoing improvement.

On the remarkable results with these partner districts, Dr. Trent Kaufman, Education Direction founder and president, says, "We've had the privilege of working with leaders in districts throughout the country. It's encouraging to see these districts reach their goals and, most importantly, to know that students are learning more. And because teachers are the most enthusiastic supporters of data-driven inquiry, these improvements are sustainable into the future. These are not quick-fix initiatives that pluck low hanging fruit. Our clients are making fundamental changes in the way they do business." 

Comments from educators working with Education Direction are equally enthusiastic. One principal shared the following at the end of the second year of partnership: "I wanted to sing the praises of the inquiry work and what it can help a school do for itself." Another leader echoes: "I think that we are building a level of sustainability and self-sufficiency in working the inquiry process and am excited about the shift that my staff has made in the last 3 years. I really appreciate all that you did to make this possible for my team."

About Education Direction
Education Direction is a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Cicero Group ( We work with districts, schools, and teachers to equip stakeholders with the tools they need to consistently improve student learning. For additional information, visit or call 801-456-6700. 

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