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July 30, 2004

Free Books on School Change

The U.S. Dept. of Education's Office of Innovation and Improvement is publishing 3 new booklets this fall:
"Successful Magnet Schools" (September 2004),
"Alternative Routes to Teacher Certification"(October 2004)
"Alternative Routes to School Leadership" (November 2004)
For free copies, call Cynthia Dorfman, 202-205-5560, or email: Cynthia.Dorfman@ed.gov. These public domain booklets can be freely used by anyone. They are part of a 6 booklet series: Innovations in Education.


Posted by Wayne Jennings at 01:29 PM

July 11, 2004

Enemies Sharpen Resistance to Charter Schools

During 2003-04, 3,000 charter schools (independent public schools) served 700,000 students in the U.S. The movement started in 1991 with the first charter statute in Minnesota. Enrollment increased 40% between 1999 and 2003. Now 41 states and DC have charter laws. Clearly, this threatens the established system and it's fighting back. For example, the Massachusetts Legislature voted a freeze on more charter schools. Governor Romney vetoed the bill. Washington (state) enacted a new charter law but it's suspended pending a statewide referendum this November. Another tactic is to try for anti-charter candidates.

Much is being written about charter schools which generally have enjoyed bi-partisan support. The official government supportedsource contains a wealth of information including an email newsletter about this significant movement.


Posted by Wayne Jennings at 02:27 PM

100 New School Choices in Chicago

Mayor Daley, who has been in charge of the Chicago Public Schools since 1995, announced plans to create 100 new small, mostly secondary schools. 1/3 will be charter schools, 1/3 will be contract schools and 1/3 will be reorganized existing schools. This means 2/3 of the new schools will be outside district control. The district has raised 1/2 of the $100 million for start-up expenses. The effort aims at changing urban education on an unprecedented scale by bypassing the forces of status quo that typically impede change in school districts.


Posted by Wayne Jennings at 02:02 PM

July 08, 2004

New Study on At-Risk Alternatives

The Urban Institute has published a comprehensive, thoughtful study, Educational Alternatives for Vulnerable Youth: Student Needs, Program Types, and Research Directions by Laudan Y. Aron, Janine M. Zweig. The study touches on general alternatives but the major focus is on programs for at-risk youth and the enormous expansion in recent years. This is a useful piece with much data for those wishing a landscape view of at-risk programs. Many additional research questions are listed.


Posted by Wayne Jennings at 01:56 PM