Where We’ve Worked

National Conference of State Legislatures

In 2014, NCEE partnered with the National Conference of State Legislatures to manage and organize the work of a study group of state legislators from across the country investigating top-performing education systems around the world. Over two years, NCEE supported the study group in their work to understand the successful practices of the world’s top-performers in order to develop a new, state-driven education agenda.

The end result of that initial work was the landmark report, No Time to Lose: How to Build a World-Class Education System State by State. The report provides state policy makers with the tools and strategies to begin the work of building a high-performing education system in their own state.

NCEE’s partnership with NCSL is ongoing, as it continues to support the study group’s international benchmarking research trips and policy symposia.

MD Research Meeting


In late 2016, the Maryland Commission on Innovation and Excellence in Education engaged NCEE to assist in its work to revamp the state’s education finance system and to ensure that future Maryland public school graduates can compete in the workforce and the global economy.

In partnership with the Commission and its staff, NCEE conducted an expansive gap analysis comparing the state to global top performers and high-performing U.S. states. This analysis, along with insights from NCEE’s network of subject-matter experts, has driven the Commission’s work across the various policy areas encompassed by the 9 Building Blocks.

NCEE is assisting the Commission in producing a report based on this work to the Maryland General Assembly and the Governor’s office with policy recommendations in early 2018.


Kentucky Rising was a joint effort of the Kentucky Department of Education, the Council on Postsecondary Education, and the Education Professional Standards Board, in partnership with entities from economic development, workforce development, the Chamber of Commerce, and a host of businesses and industries, to leverage systemic education reform to improve Kentucky’s workforce, increase its global competitiveness, and improve its economy.

In late 2014, the heads of the three Kentucky education agencies engaged NCEE to begin planning for Kentucky Rising. Through the collaborative efforts of the three agencies, the work of Kentucky Rising began with an analysis based on the 9 Building Blocks to assess where Kentucky systems stand compared to the top-performing international and national jurisdictions.

As a result of this partnership, more than 40 districts engaged with NISL on its advanced credentialing system funded by a U.S. Department of Education SEED grant and nearly 50 superintendents are currently enrolled in the NISL Superintendents Academy, an ongoing partnership with the Kentucky Association of School Superintendents.

Other State Work


NCEE provided technical assistance to the Colorado Joint House and Senate Education Committee, the Colorado State Department of Education, and the business leadership collaborative Colorado Succeeds on the economic imperative for improving the state’s education system and giving the state policy makers foundational perspectives from CIEB’s international benchmarking.


NCEE has worked closely with members of the state legislature, the local Fairbanks Foundation, and NCSL to design symposia for policymakers on what the state can learn from top-performing education systems. NCEE has provided strategic advice and support to the state on building an education system for the state that can help it compete in the 21st century economy.


NCEE has worked with Nevada Succeeds, a local group of business leaders, to present a set of recommendations for business and industry to support the development of a world-class education system. In addition, NCEE is working with the legislature to explore how research on top-performing education systems can inform the state’s education policymaking moving forward.

New Hampshire

NCEE helped the New Hampshire General Court to organize a bicameral forum entitled “Education Through an International Lens” and presented on how international comparisons can inform education policymaking. All 424 members of the state’s legislature, the fourth-largest body in the world, were invited to attend.

New Mexico

NCEE, in partnership with NCSL, has worked closely with members and staff of the New Mexico Legislative Education Study Committee, a bipartisan, bicameral interim committee that meets in between legislative sessions to study education issues in depth. NCEE has connected the committee with global experts on topics including teacher quality, the OECD’s PISA assessment, and career and technical education. NCEE has also testified on the economic imperative for strengthening the state’s K-12 education system, its early childhood education system and supports for the state’s families of young children.

North Dakota

NCEE has testified to the North Dakota Interim Education Committee, a bipartisan, bicameral interim committee that meets in between legislative sessions to study education issues in depth. The testimony focused on the economic imperative for transforming the state’s education system to compete in a global economy.


NCEE leadership has made several presentations to lawmakers and policy makers to inform policies that will will propel the state of Pennsylvania toward world-class student performance. NCEE, through NISL, has an extensive footprint throughout Pennsylvania, serving as the state’s leadership development program for school principals. Additionally, in partnership with the Pennsylvania Secretary of Education’s office, NISL launched the Pennsylvania Superintendents Academy, a first-of-its-kind statewide effort to provide district leaders with focused, research-based, executive level professional development informed by NCEE’s international education research.


NCEE recently presented to a bicameral meeting of the state legislature, the State Department of Education, and the State Board of Regents. NCEE’s presentation to state leaders focused on the economic imperative for transforming the state’s education system, and provided preliminary recommendations and facilitated discussion of what steps the state can take to be globally competitive.


NCEE has collaborated with members of the state legislature and the Wisconsin School Administrators Alliance, the state’s professional association for school and district leaders, to convene symposia on the future of education in the state and discuss what the state can do to match the performance of the world’s top-performing education systems.

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