Blended Learning Program Helps 35 LAUSD Schools Nearly Double Their Math Gains

Lauren Williams's picture
Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) schools showed significant gains, nearly doubling their growth in math proficiency between 2010 and 2012, with MIND Research Institute’s ST Math®, a visually based instructional software program featuring the animated penguin named JiJi, which fits naturally into a blended learning environment.

“We’re seeing clearly that blended learning implementation by the school district and the business community are making a profound impact on the quality of math education in LAUSD,” said Mónica Garcia, Los Angeles School Board president. “Our teachers and students enjoy using ST Math, and we’re pleased to see that translating into improved test scores.”

The 35 LAUSD schools that fully implemented ST Math: K-5 in the 2010-11 and 2011-12 school years grew on average 11.7 points in the percentage of students scoring Proficient or Advanced in the California Standards Test, according to the report released today by the education non-profit MIND Research Institute. A comparison group of similar LAUSD schools not using the program averaged an increase of 6.4 points.

“MIND Research Institute aims to close the achievement and performance gap in high-need schools across the country by deploying high-quality digital, visual math content,” said Andrew R. Coulson, President of MIND’s education division. “We’re pleased that this is the second consecutive year of positive results in LAUSD schools, thanks to the commitment of teachers, administrators, the district and the community.”

Of the 35 Los Angeles Unified schools in the study, 32 participate in the ST Math program through philanthropic funding, such as the Los Angeles Math Initiative, a public-private partnership aimed at increasing math achievement in LA. Donors include:

  • Southern California Edison
  • Hitachi
  • RGK Foundation
  • Sempra Energy Foundation
  • Legacy Ladies
  • Leonetti/O’Connell Family Foundation
  • Opus Community Foundation
  • The Rose Hills Foundation
  • Boeing
  • The Whitman-Harsh Family Foundation
  • The Ahmanson Foundation
  • The Carol and James Collins Foundation
  • Helping Us Help Ourselves
  • Roth Family Foundation
  • The Seaver Institute, and
  • Henry L. Guenther Foundation.

A total of 4,580 students in grades two, three, four, and/or five at schools where the grades completed an average of at least 50 percent of the ST Math curriculum, and where at least 85 percent of students participated in the program, were analyzed in the study. This group was compared to 9,692 students at 95 similarly performing schools in LAUSD who did not use ST Math.

ST Math, which aligns with California CST math standards at each grade level, provides instructional software, training, and support for a research-based math teaching and learning approach with visual math instruction. The software presents a yearlong curriculum of interactive, animated visual diagrams and puzzles for students to solve.

ABOUT MIND RESEARCH INSTITUTE

The MIND Research Institute is a neuroscience and education research-based, non-profit corporation. MIND applies its distinctive visual approach to illustrating math concepts and building problem-solving skills as the basis for innovative, research-proven math education programs for elementary and secondary schools. MIND’s programs currently reach over 475,000 students and 16,000 teachers in more than 1,375 schools in 26 states.