Skip main content and go to side content

Where am I?

Learning Point Associates Wins Fifth Consecutive Award to Manage Regional Educational Laboratory

A new name and a new scope of work assigned to the regional educational laboratory.

CHICAGO, ILLINOIS—The U.S. Department of Education's Institute of Education Sciences is announcing contract awards for the nation's network of 10 regional educational laboratories. For the fifth consecutive time, Learning Point Associates was awarded the contract to serve the Midwest region, encompassing Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

REL Midwest—the new name for the laboratory—replaces the former North Central Regional Educational Laboratory® (NCREL®), operating since 1984. Under the new scope of work, the new REL will conduct rigorous research studies to address gaps in the current knowledge base about leadership, literacy, professional development, and technology. Technical assistance and training efforts will align with the needs identified by the state departments of education in the Midwest and support the successful implementation of the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act.

"Learning Point Associates is prepared to conduct rigorous research that is high quality and relevant to our constituency groups," said Gina Burkhardt, Chief Executive Officer of Learning Point Associates. "We are honored to receive this award and look forward to continuing to address the most critical education needs of the region with the support of other leading educational organizations such as MDRC, Michigan State University, Northwestern University, the University of Chicago, and Vanderbilt University."

Learning Point Associates has appointed Steven Cantrell, Ph.D., as the Executive Director of REL Midwest. Dr. Cantrell has experience across a broad array of applied research contexts. Most recently as the Chief Research Scientist for the Los Angeles Unified School District, he directed and developed a staff of researchers in the priority areas of school reform policy, accountability systems, policy analysis, and the implementation of district mathematics and science initiatives.

A methodologically sound researcher, Dr. Cantrell is known for his ability to effectively communicate complex ideas and findings to all types of audiences. He has written and coauthored a number of technical reports, papers, and refereed presentations. He holds degrees from Brown University and the University of Southern California.

About Learning Point Associates
Learning Point Associates is a nonprofit educational organization with more than 20 years of direct experience working with and for educators and policymakers to transform student learning using research-based strategies and services. Committed to high-quality research, development, and evaluation services as well as on-site technical assistance, Learning Point Associates builds on more than two decades of research and development conducted by the North Central Regional Educational Laboratory® (NCREL®). Learning Point Associates focuses on the identified needs and critical education issues of K–16 practitioners and policymakers at the school, district, state, regional, and national levels.

Learning Point Associates has effectively secured, staffed, and managed a variety of awards since 1984, ranging from individual consulting contracts to multimillion-dollar federal grants and contracts. Our goal is to build the capacity of our clients to be good consumers, practitioners, and advocates for educational excellence. Our areas of expertise include data-driven decision making, information systems for school improvement, teacher quality, evaluation and policy research services, afterschool programming, comprehensive school improvement support, literacy, and educational applications of technology. Our professional staff of 150 continues to grow as our work expands both nationally and internationally with offices in Naperville, Illinois; Chicago; and Washington, D.C.

Go back to main content | Go back to main navigation

Go back to main content | Go back to main navigation

Go back to main content | Go back to main navigation