Math Makeover

A school-university partnership transforms elementary math instruction

By Nicole Rigelman, Sarah Crane, Kellie Petrick and Donna Shrier
April 2018
Vol. 39 No. 2
Walk into Jackson Elementary School in Hillsboro, Oregon, on any school day, and you’ll notice the excitement in the air. You’ll encounter students enthused by the mathematics lesson they just had, along with teachers excited about the collaboration they just completed. Teachers at Jackson embrace a growth mindset and continuously try best practices that better reach all students. They collaborate and bounce ideas off one another, and they observe one another and provide feedback. They’ll even ask another teacher to model lessons with their students so they learn how to implement particular instructional practices. The energy is contagious. As Sarah Crane, Jackson’s principal, reflected, “It’s uncommon for me to walk through the halls without someone telling me about a lesson they did, one they’re going

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Nicole Rigelman, Sarah Crane, Kellie Petrick, and Donna Shrier

Nicole Rigelman ( is professor at Portland State University, Oregon.

Sarah Crane ( is principal of Jackson Elementary School in the Hillsboro School District, Hillsboro, Oregon. Kellie Petrick ( is an elementary mathematics specialist in the Hillsboro School District. Donna Shrier ( is assistant professor of practice, Portland State University.

Jackson Elementary School, Hillsboro, Oregon

Enrollment: 560
Staff: 25
Racial/ethnic mix:
White: 66%
Hispanic: 14%
Multiracial: 9%
Asian: 7%
Black/African-American: 3%
American Indian/Alaska Native: 1%
Limited English proficient: 8%
Free/reduced lunch: 23%
Special education: 13%


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