Regression Discontinuity Designs for Evaluation: Estimating Effects from State School Reform with Validity Checks

  • June 4, 2020 from 12:00-1:00pm
  • Please RSVP by emailing Lisa Maturo at
  • Please include your full name, email address, and institution/organization. 
  • We will provide instructions on obtaining CME credit for attendance.

Using a regression discontinuity design, we evaluate a state turnaround initiative aligned with ESSA requirements. We find the effect on student achievement was not significant in year one and -0.13 in year two. Also in year two, we find that teachers in turnaround schools were 22.5 percentage points more likely to turn over. Extensive validity checks supports that these estimates are plausibly causal effects.  These findings may serve as a cautionary tale for states planning low-performing school reforms under the Every Student Succeeds Act.

Meet the Speaker

Gary T. Henry, PhD

Gary T. Henry is dean of the University of Delaware’s College of Education and Human Development and professor in the School of Education and the Joseph R. Biden, Jr. School of Public Policy & Administration.  Prior to joining UD in August 2019, Henry was the Patricia and H. Rodes Hart Chair and Professor of Public Policy and Education in the Department of Leadership, Policy and Organization at Vanderbilt University.  He has received over $29 million dollars of sponsored research funding from the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, numerous foundations, and state agencies.  Henry has published extensively in top journals such as Science, Educational Researcher, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, and American Educational Research Journal.  His most recent book, Evaluation: A Systematic Approach, 8th edition by Peter H. Rossi, Mark W. Lipsey, and Gary T. Henry was published by SAGE Publications in 2018.

This activity has been approved for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit

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