At the Klingenstein Center, we want to build our community's capacity to employ evidence-informed strategies to bring about a desired educational future to life across the independent and international school ecosystem. To do so, we engage in timely, critical, forward thinking research that is dedicated to informing, impacting, and transforming independent and international school teaching, learning, leading, and governing practices, as well as our schools' cultures, structures, and policies. Our faculty and research associates—many of whom are Klingenstein Center alumni and research-practitioners working in schools—engage in dynamic research projects that often involve schools as partners in inquiry. Our graduate students engage in research-practice partnerships with their practicum schools. In focusing on independent and international schools in our research, we are tending to an area that is under-researched, but holds great learning and discovery potential that could benefit the educational ecosystems well beyond independent schools. To learn more, scroll our current projects below.
Current Research Projects
- BlackAt Social Media: Dr. Nicole Furlonge and Dr. Kenny Graves, assisted by graduate students, are analyzing the content of BlackAt social media accounts that have been created over the last several years to provide teachers and leaders with a data about the range of experiences of BIPOC students in predominantly white independent and international schools.
While the research is ongoing, you can read about our current findings in our article The Art of Listening: Using the Black@ Instagram Archive to Improve Schools in the Spring 2022 Issue of Independent School Magazine. When the research project concludes, more resources will be share.
- Impact of Listening Practices on DEIJ Leadership at Independent, Predominantly White Schools: Dr. Nicole Furlonge was awarded a grant through the Teachers College Diversity Research Awards Program to construct a Listening Leadership framework to better understand the use and impact of listening practices for independent PreK-12 school leaders as they develop DEIJ efforts in their schools. Based in the hypothesis that as independent schools engage in DEIJ work, a listening leadership ear—one that is culturally responsive and informed by sense-making and systems thinking practices—might benefit their learning communities and disrupt and repair inequality. This project aims to address the gap in research, literature, and practice regarding the potentially productive intersection between listening, leadership, and DEIJ change work.
- Pedagogy in an International School Context: In partnership with The Council of International Schools and the Jacobs Foundation, The Klingenstein Center will explore the concept of pedagogy in an international school context, understanding how schools define and make pedagogical decisions, plan, and evaluate pedagogical implementation. Additionally, the project will seek to understand how pedagogy is viewed by students, teachers, parents, and leadership and administration, through an evaluation instrument designed by the research team, to explore congruence of perspective. As a result of this learning, the project will lead to an open-source toolkit for international schools to support their leadership of pedagogy.
Klingenstein Center director Nicole Furlonge lauded the project: "What teachers do in the classroom and how they do it is vitally important. Their pedagogical beliefs, practices, and choices – explicit and implicit – have profound impact on their students’ learning experiences. We are thrilled, then, to partner with CIS in this Jacobs Foundation-funded research initiative designed to understand how International Schools make decisions regarding pedagogy. Equally important, our research aims to unearth how diverse communities of students, parents, teachers, and school leaders view pedagogy – and where these views and beliefs are resonant or dissonant. We are hopeful that this project and its findings will generate robust understandings and tools to support educators in learning, reflecting on, and intentionally implementing pedagogical practices in the classroom to the deeper benefit of all children."
Research in Partner Schools
- Student Practicum Projects: Applied research is a participatory, emergent, inquiry, systems thinking process that drives organizational change. Klingenstein Center Full-Year program graduate students conduct applied research and consulting in partner schools under the supervision of Teachers College professors in their Practicum coursework.
If your school is interested in being a partner school in the 2022-2023 school year, please read our Practicum Proposal Guide to learn how to submit your school's project for consideration. The deadline to submit your proposal has been extended past Friday, September 16. The opportunity is open to all independent and international schools regardless of location as students can engage in this work remotely.
- Klingbrief: Published monthly during the academic year, each issue of Klingbrief cuts through the noise to offer a carefully-curated collection of books, articles, podcasts, and other resources of import to independent and international school educators.
- KlingShare: In March 2020, as schools were forced to transition rapidly to online operations, the Klingenstein Center launched KlingChats. These lightly-facilitated sessions convened educators around a common challenge to brainstorm ways to teach, lead and learn in a pandemic world. The outcomes of these conversations were collected into KlingShare documents to provide all educators with access to fresh ideas and solutions.