New Video: Making Meaningful Use of Teacher Effectiveness Data

Beginning in 2009, in response to changes in state and federal policy, nearly two-thirds of states began shifting to more sophisticated systems of teacher evaluation using multiple measures. What do these systems look like and how can they work? This three-and-a-half-minute video offers insights drawn from a range of recent research and told through the experiences of one fictional teacher, Bianca, and her fictional principal, Venus.

REL West Reference Desk Service

Check out the latest Reference Desk responses providing research on questions from the field on supports for community college students, research on parent liaisons, high school grading policies and best practices, student attendance and outcomes, and the availability of AP courses and student outcomes.

Research Brief: Opening a Gateway to College Access

The Silicon Valley Research Alliance recently released a research brief shedding important light on policies and practices that affect student success in algebra and preparation for higher level math courses. The brief draws from 3 recently published reports. Download the brief and the reports to learn more.


The Regional Educational Laboratory West (REL West) at WestEd, serving Arizona, California, Nevada, and Utah, is part of a national network of 10 RELs whose mission is to provide research, analytic support, and resources that increase the use of high-quality data and evidence in education decision-making.

Most REL work is carried out in partnership with educators—from state and local decision-makers to district and school support providers and practitioners—through eight regional research alliances.



REL West Handout (PDF)

Looking for REL West Resources from 2006 to 2011?

WestEd has served as the federally funded regional educational laboratory for the four-state western region since inception of the national system in 1966.

The previous contract, 2006-2011, resulted in a significant body of work, including Issues & Answers reports on topics of regional interest, technical assistance briefs, events that brought people together to bridge research and practice, and five long-term experimental studies.

All of these reports and resources are still available here.


Roll over a state to see related statistics.
California Nevada Utah Arizona
  • California: 6,226,989 Students, 9,955 Schools, 1,038 Districts -- (CDE, 2012-13)
  • Nevada: 439,128 Students, 663 Schools, 17 Districts -- (NCES, 2011-12)
  • Utah: 612,551 Students, 1,044 Schools, 41 Districts -- (USOE, 2012-13)
  • Arizona: 1,078,180 Students, 2,378 Schools -- (NCES, 2011-12)

REL West alliances address one or more of four critical focus areas in the West Region:

  • Increasing college and career readiness and success
  • Strengthening educator effectiveness
  • Accelerating achievement among English learners
  • Improving school climate and student achievement in low-performing schools

We continuously review our regional research and technical assistance with our constituents to make sure the work is meeting their needs.



A research alliance is a group of stakeholders who share a specific education concern and who agree to work and learn together so they can make sound decisions leading to improved education.

Alliances consist of multiple schools, districts, states, and/or other support partners.

Whatever their composition and particular focus of work, all alliances share the main objective of examining data and evidence to inform change in systems and practices in order to improve education outcomes.



How can we help you?

Do you want to know the latest research or where to turn for information?

This free reference desk service from the REL Network provides references, referrals, and brief responses to education questions.



Latest Research Digest (PDF)

Read articles, research highlights, interviews, and event summaries in the semiannual REL West Research Digest, featuring the work of REL West and other federally funded organizations to support improved K-16 student outcomes.

Opening the file in Adobe Reader is recommended.

Previous issues of the REL West Research Digest may be found on the Resources & Tools page.