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Research Analyst, Center for Education Policy
Lauren Cassidy conducts research on K–12 education reforms, with a particular emphasis on policies and innovative efforts that build district and school capacity to support teacher development and student learning. Currently, she is the project director the evaluation of the New Teacher Center (NTC) Investing in Innovation (i3) grant, a study of NTC’s training and full-time release mentor model, and of the evaluation of NTC’s Supporting Effective Educator Development (SEED) grant, a study of the NTC’s instructional coaching model. Cassidy is also the project director for the Scale Up Evaluation of the College Ready Writer’s Program for the National Writing Project (NWP), an expanded version of the NWP’s College-Ready Writers Program, for which Cassidy is an evaluation team member. She also works on the McKnight Foundation’s Education & Learning Initiative, an effort to align PreK–3 literacy practices in the Twin Cities and surrounding areas.
Previously, Cassidy was the project director for Classroom Trials, a study of technology-supported writing instruction for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She was the deputy director of the national evaluation of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Early College High School Initiative, the evaluation of the Texas High Schools Project for the Texas Education Agency, and the Study of Charter School Turnarounds. She has worked on a number of other studies, including a longitudinal study of the effectiveness of inclusive STEM high schools funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Evaluation of Writing Project Professional Development for the National Writing Project, the National Evaluation of the Teacher Incentive Fund Program for the U.S. Department of Education, evaluations of several school reform initiatives in Chicago, and the Bridging the Divide study that examined the transition from high school to college for the U.S. Department of Education.
During her college career, Cassidy worked as a research assistant for the Center for Learning Technologies in Urban Schools (LeTUS) at the Northwestern University School of Education and Social Policy. She analyzed the use of the LeTUS inquiry-based curricula and software programs in fifth- through seventh-grade science classrooms in a Chicago public school. Cassidy was also a member of the research team for the Culture, Language, and Literacy Project, which examined the strategies bilingual children use when they translate for their immigrant family members and how these skills affect literacy learning in school, family dynamics, and children's self-perceptions.
Cassidy earned her M.A. in professional writing and editing from George Mason University and her B.S. in communication studies and English from Northwestern University.