Insights from the Center
As the research and development arm of Agnes Irwin, the Center for the Advancement of Girls authors articles, white papers, and hosts events with leading advocates for advancing girls.
Read on to learn about our work to:
- Raise female participation rates in STEM fields
- Develop leadership in young girls
- Improve student well-being
Advancing Girls in STEM
To encourage the persistence of females in STEM fields, we need to create an ecosystem that supports them from PreKindergarten through college, and ultimately, to the boardroom.
That's why we started hosting interactive, STEM-focused conferences — bringing together educators, nonprofits, higher education, and corporate leaders — to work together to create a new STEM ecosystem. Over the past four years, our keynote speakers and participants explored teacher preparation and curriculum design; mentoring programs; institutionalized bias; design-thinking; and the power of partnerships between organizations and institutions to support the persistence of girls and women in STEM fields. Learn more by downloading our white papers.
Leadership Identity in Young Girls
Research shows that gender stereotypes form at an early age.
School Start Times
A growing body of research from the CDC and American Academy Pediatrics supports later start times in middle and high school.
Due to research findings on the benefits of later school start times, as well as student advocacy, the Center for the Advancement of Girls piloted a late start initiative at Agnes Irwin with middle and upper school students in spring 2018. After conducting pre- and post-surveys with students, faculty, and parents, Agnes Irwin determined it would move forward with a later start to school one day per week for upper school students in 2018-19. Ultimately, the school moved to a later start time across the board for Upper School in 2019-20. You can download our research brief to learn more.
The CDC research found, for example, that students who start school just 30 minutes later, at 8:30 a.m. instead of 8 a.m., saw significant improvements in academic performance, school attendance, and mental and physical health outcomes [...] Evidence is mounting to suggest that even small delays in start times can make a difference for student learning and wellbeing.
DR. JERUSHA CONNER, ASSOCIATE PROFESSOR, DEPARTMENT OF EDUCATION AND COUNSELING, VILLANOVA UNIVERSITY
Explore some of the research we've been employing and participating in on our Research Initiatives page.