State Legislators Launch Study Group
Will Examine High-Performing, Equitable and Efficient Education Systems Around the World

News SREB News Release

Sixteen legislators and eight staff embark on year-long project that will culminate in a major report that will provide a framework for state education systems to achieve at the highest level.

A group of state legislators from across the United States begin their work this week for a year-long project studying high-performing, equitable and efficient education systems around the world. Their findings will be used to produce a major report to state legislatures and the American public that provides a framework for policymakers and state education systems to ensure that all students achieve at high levels, equitably and efficiently.

The Legislative International Education Study Group of 16 state legislators and eight legislative staff members responsible for education in their states who were invited and convened by the National Center on Education and the Economy, the National Conference of State Legislatures and Southern Regional Education Board. This is the second such study group, after the first produced the 2016 report No Time to Lose, the most widely read report ever released by NCSL.

Especially relevant in the time of a global pandemic, the legislators will look through the lens of our current distance learning reality to hear how high-performing systems in other jurisdictions have been positioned to innovate to provide a strong and equitable education to all students. The group will also learn how states in the U.S. have begun implementing systemic education redesign based on the recommendations of No Time to Lose.

At their first (virtual) meeting this week, the study group will:

  • Learn how the U.S. compares to top-performing education systems and understand the potential impact on our state economies if we fail to improve.
  • Explore and discuss NCEE’s policy framework, which distills 35 years of research into the common policies and practices of top-performing education systems to achieve equity, excellence and efficiency.
  • Discuss challenges with benchmarking other countries and why it is a useful approach.
  • Choose a jurisdiction to further study in a small group through December.


Representative Andi Story, Alaska

Representative Terri Collins, Alabama

Representative Michelle Udall, Arizona

Representative Rene Plasencia, Florida

Representative Justin Woodson, Hawaii

Senator Max Wise, Kentucky

Representative Jim Davnie, Minnesota

Senator Dennis DeBar, Mississippi

Representative Llew Jones, Montana

Representative Graig Meyer, North Carolina

Representative Mary Heath, New Hampshire

Representative G. Andres Romero, New Mexico

Senator Marilyn Dondero-Loop, Nevada

Senator Ryan Aument, Pennsylvania

Senator Raumesh Akbari, Tennessee

Delegate Schuyler VanValkenburg, Virginia


Legislative Staff

Dustin Jones, Fiscal Officer, Alabama House of Representatives

Joe Burks, Education Policy Analyst, Kentucky Senate Majority

Porscha Miner, Budget Analyst, Mississippi Legislative Budget Office

Jennifer Foor, Committee Counsel, New Hampshire House of Representatives

Rachel Gudgel, Staff Director, New Mexico Legislative Education Study Committee

Lisa Lovello, Legislative Analyst, Louisiana House of Representatives Committee on Education

Stephanie Buchanan, Legislative Director for Pennsylvania State Senator Ryan Aument

Pierce McNair, Director of Research, South Carolina House of Representatives Education and Public Works Committee




NCSL Forms International Study Group Aimed at Improving Education

NCSL International Education Study Group Report Released



The National Center on Education and the Economy: Julia Banks |

National Conference of State Legislatures: Mick Bullock |

Southern Regional Education Board: Alan Richard |