In collaboration with UIC’s Learning Science Research Institute, CUEL helped secure a $5 million, 5-year grant from the National Science Foundation. Led by PI Dr. Alison Castro-Superfine and Co-PIs Drs. Benjamin Superfine, Yue Yin, and Shelby Cosner, its purpose is to develop and implement the Elementary Mathematics Leadership (EML) model for K-8 math. The EML will use a design-based implementation research process involving collaboration between researchers, professional developers, and district and school personnel to co-develop the professional development from district- through teacher-levels. In addition, the EML model is designed to enhance the organizational capacities of schools and districts to support such improvements in math teaching and learning.

The project brings together education leadership and policy researchers, statisticians, and mathematics educators in an interdisciplinary effort to examine the implementation of the EML model in four K-8 school districts in South Cook County. By studying the conditions in which the EML model is effective for improving coherence and quality of instructional improvement efforts, we will understand the structures, processes and routines needed to support sustained improvement in K-8 mathematics. The model also advances previous research conducted in two projects from UIC: Suburban Cook County Mathematics Initiative and Common Core for All in Urban Settings Initiative. Ultimately, the researchers hope to get everyone — teachers, schools and districts — on the “same page.”