The Return to Learn Tracker (R2L) is a tool developed by the American Enterprise Institute's (AEI) Education Policy Studies department, in partnership with the College Crisis Initiative (C2i) of Davidson College, that captures how US public school districts' instructional models change during the coronavirus pandemic. The tracker conducts original data collection examining which schools are offering fully in-person, hybrid, and fully remote instruction and analyzes instructional status across various district and county demographics.
Our goal is to provide a fundamental, up-to-date baseline of school districts' current reopening plans and how they change during the COVID-19 crisis. This tracker categorizes instructional models for about 8,500 school districts nationwide and regularly monitors how each district changes between categories. Accessible, accurate knowledge of districts' plans is foundational for developing strategies of how to best respond to the pandemic. We hope these data will serve school communities as they face ongoing decisions, provide the basic knowledge necessary for shaping policy across states, and allow other researchers to more accurately study how COVID-19 is upending and changing schools.
Fully in-person districts allow all grades an option for full-time, in-person instruction
Hybrid districts provide in-person instruction either part-week and/or only for some grades
Fully remote districts require virtual instruction for all grades, except small, targeted groups
More information on variable definitions
COVID-19 Caseload per 100,000
Percentage of school districts that are operating Fully Remote Hybrid Fully In-Person
We adhere to high standards in research methodology and practices, pursuing rigorous transparency in our approach to this work. This is a live data collection. Current and prior categorizations of districts may be misclassified. As such, we will be doing constant quality assurance over the upcoming months. Publications of previous data may change with additional corrections to the data. If you would like to submit a correction request, please contact us. Data are recent as of February 22, 2021. Please find a thorough description of R2L methodology and data here.
“AEI would like to thank The Achelis and Bodman Foundation for its generous support that helped make the Return to Learn Tracker possible.”