January 3, 2001


January 2, 2001

Contact: David Thomas

(202) 401-2310

U.S. Secretary of Education Richard W. Riley today announced $325 million in contracts over five years to operate and manage 10 regional educational laboratories that serve geographic regions that span the nation.

The labs will promote broad-based school improvements in their regions, using new and existing research about transforming low-performing schools into high performing learning communities, where all students achieve to high standards. The labs will also promote the application of this knowledge in policies and practices to help increase the number of high-performing learning communities throughout the nation.

In addition, the laboratories will support the efforts of states, districts, schools, communities, institutions of higher education, and others to develop high-performing learning communities characterized by the following principles:

  • Shared Vision that links student learning to high standards;

  • Supportive Organizational Structure that organizes space, time and resources to maximize student learning;

  • Challenging Curriculum and Engaged Student Learning that reflects high standards in all content areas and high expectations for all students learning;

  • Learning Communities that promote a culture that is supportive of continuous improvement by students, teachers and other adults;

  • Proactive Community Relations that encourage schools to become not only a community resource, but a place where parents and community members are active participants in student learning and in the life of the school.

Each lab will conduct program development, applied research, and dissemination and technical assistance focusing on specific regional challenges. In addition to serving their regions, each lab will develop a “national leadership area” that focuses on a particular education policy issue.

In recent years, the labs national priorities have included meeting the needs of rural schools, improving education for children at risk of low performance, and enhancing math and science education. The new, national leadership areas are:

  • teaching diverse students;

  • educational leadership;

  • educational technology;

  • expanded learning opportunities;

  • family and community involvement;

  • standards-based instructional practice;

  • assessment of educational achievement;

  • reengineering schools for improvement; and

  • curriculum and instruction related to reading and language mastery.

The regional educational laboratories are authorized by the Educational Research, Development, Dissemination and Improvement Act of (P.L. 103-227) and were first funded in 1966 to develop research applications for schools.

The following organizations received funding:

Northeast and Islands Laboratory at Brown University (LAB), Providence, R.I.

serving Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New York, Rhode Island, Vermont, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands

Contact: Phil Zarlengo, (401) 274-9548 or (800) 521-9550, Total Funding: $38,288,171

Mid-Atlantic Laboratory for Student Success (LSS) at Temple University Center for Research in Human Development and Education, Philadelphia

serving Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

Contact: JoAnn Manning, (215) 204-3000 or (800) 892-5550, Total Funding: $33,030,400

AEL, Inc., Charleston,W.V.

serving Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia

Contact: Allen D. Arnold, (304) 347-0400 or (800) 624-9120, Total Funding: $26,325,000

The Regional Educational Laboratory at SERVE (SERVE), Greensboro, N.C.

serving Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina and South Carolina

Contact: John R. Sanders, (336) 315-7400 or (800) 755-3277, Total Funding: $36,075,000

North Central Regional Educational Laboratory (NCREL), Oak Brook, Ill.

serving Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin

Contact: Gina Burkhardt, (630) 571-4700 or (800) 356-2735, Total Funding: $41,965,380

Southwest Educational Development Laboratory (SEDL), Austin, Texas

Serving Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Texas

Contact: Wes Hoover, (512) 476-6861 or (800) 476-6861, Total Funding: $34,925,000

Mid-continent Research for Education and Learning (McREL), Aurora, Colo.

serving Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming

Contact: J. Timothy Waters, (303) 337-0990, Total Funding: $26,544,954

WestEd, San Francisco

serving Arizona, California, Nevada and Utah

Contact: Gary Estes, (415) 565-3000, Total Funding: $34,575,000

Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory (NWREL), Portland, Ore.

Serving Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington

Contact: Ethel Simon-McWilliams, (503) 275-9500 or (800) 547-6339, Total Funding: $32,675,576

Pacific Resources for Education and Learning (PREL), Honolulu

serving American Samoa, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Federated States of Micronesia (Chuuk, Kosrae, Pohnpei, and Yap), Guam, Hawaii, Republic of the Marshall Islands and the Republic of Palau

Contact: Ronald Toma, (808) 441-1300, Total Funding: $19,273,138)

For additional information regarding the regional educational laboratories, visit the Web site http://www.ed.gov/prog_info/Labs/.