Press Release

New Study Shows Large Math Learning Gains Among Students in DC Public Schools


Anna O’Sullivan

WASHINGTON, Feb. 28, 2023A newly released study shows that first through sixth grade students in DC Public Schools (DCPS) who consistently utilized a top-rated math learning platform had large gains in math.

“As DC Public Schools’ works to increase math comprehension and performance across the district, it is exciting to see the significant math growth and acceleration happening for DCPS students who have used the Zearn platform. Our teachers prioritized this opportunity for their students to study, engage and learn, and Zearn lessons strongly support their efforts in math teaching,” a DCPS spokesperson said. 

Researchers looked at how DCPS students performed on spring i-Ready Diagnostic. They compared students who consistently completed three digital lessons on Zearn Math weekly to a matched group of demographically and academically similar students who did not use the platform. 

Findings show that students who consistently used Zearn Math outscored matched students who did not by 7.5 points, which is equal to more than 11 weeks of math learning in one school year.  Moreover, Black and/or Latino students, at-risk students, multilingual learners and students in special education who consistently used Zearn Math exceeded the i-Ready Diagnostic interim assessment benchmark for typical growth. Matched students in these subgroups who did not use Zearn Math fell short of expected growth.

“As a nonprofit educational organization, we developed Zearn’s technology to complement the work of great classroom teachers,” Zearn CEO and Co-Founder Shalinee Sharma said. “This new research shows the tremendous effect DCPS teachers are having, and we are grateful to be supporting teachers and students again this academic year.”

Zearn Math – a flexible math program, which can be implemented as a core curriculum, digital complement or for use during extra learning time – has shown promising evidence to accelerate student learning at scale. DCPS offered Zearn Math as a digital complement to the core math curriculum, providing access to high-quality materials for math learning. Teachers who used Zearn Math received comprehensive professional development and had access to ongoing, real-time reports with precise and actionable feedback to inform instruction.  


Zearn is the 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational organization behind Zearn Math, the top-rated math learning platform used by 1 in 4 elementary-school and more than 1 million middle-school  students nationwide. Everything we do is driven by the belief that every kid is a math kid. For more information about Zearn’s work in D.C. or across the nation, contact Anna O’Sullivan, director of communications, at