5 Essentials

5 Essentials is an evidence-based system designed to drive improvement in schools nationwide. The 5 Essentials system is based on more than 20 years of research by UChicago Impact, a division of the Urban Education Institute at the University of Chicago, on schools and what makes them successful. What the Chicago Consortium has found is not surprising—schools that are well organized, safe, and supportive are much more likely to be successful.

Specifically, researchers determined five essential components for school success:

  • Effective Leaders: The principal works with teachers to implement a clear and strategic vision for school success.
  • Collaborative Teachers: The staff is committed to the school, receives strong professional development, and works together to improve the school.
  • Involved Families: The entire school staff builds strong relationships with families and communities to support learning.
  • Supportive Environment: The school is safe and orderly. Teachers have high expectations for students. Students are supported by their teachers and peers.
  • Ambitious Instruction: Classes are academically demanding and engage students by emphasizing the application of knowledge.


Take the 5 Essentials survey here:

5 Essentials Survey