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Carnegie Schools for a New Society: Reflections on a National, Districtwide High School Reform Initiative ROCHELLE NICHOLS-SOLOMON & MICHELLE FEIST Academy.

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Presentation on theme: "Carnegie Schools for a New Society: Reflections on a National, Districtwide High School Reform Initiative ROCHELLE NICHOLS-SOLOMON & MICHELLE FEIST Academy."— Presentation transcript:

1 Carnegie Schools for a New Society: Reflections on a National, Districtwide High School Reform Initiative ROCHELLE NICHOLS-SOLOMON & MICHELLE FEIST Academy for Educational Development High Schools for the Future: Lessons From Reforming Schools January 20, 2006 Holy Cross College, Worcester, MA

2 Schools for a New Society (SNS) Carnegie Corporation’s largest initiative Additional funds from the Gates Foundation $60 million to be spent in 7 cities over 5 years $1-to-$1 local match for grant Seven medium to large cities to redesign their high school systems Both high school reform and district reform Grants to lead partner organizations Additional funds support a learning network among the cities individual site consultation services

3 GOALS OF SNS INITIATIVE Reinvent high school experience for more than 140,000 students in more than 100 schools, by high school restructuring and district redesign that supports success for all students

4 Competent in academic skills and knowledge College-ready Confident in their abilities Empowered to take on challenges Ready to become active members and leaders of their communities Student Success:

5 SOURCES OF CONCERN Society and economy have changed, but most high schools remain the same Shift from sorting standards by race and class to helping all students achieve high standards Provide equitable opportunity for learning: Equity = Supports tailored to meet student needs Distributed leadership and partnership is essential Districts must be reformed along with schools

6 SNS SITES  Worcester  San Diego  Sacramento  Providence  Houston  Hamilton County/Chattanooga  Boston

7 SNS CORE PARTNERS Clark University, Hiatt Center for Urban Education (Worcester) American Institute for Research (formerly New American Schools) (San Diego) LEED Sacramento (Linking Education and Economic Development) Rhode Island Children’s Crusade (Providence) Houston A+ Challenge Public Education Foundation of Hamilton County (Chattanooga) Boston Plan for Excellence in Public Schools, also: Jobs for the Future Boston Private Industry Council Center for Collaborative Education

8 TECHNICAL SUPPORT TEAM Academy for Educational Development Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University Institute for Education and Social Policy at NYU Collaborative Communications Group

9 SNS FRAMEWORK FOR ACTION

10 WORKING PARNTERSHIP Create and grow conditions and the resources needed to obtain educational excellence and equity for all students, including: Shared accountability for high schools Expanded number of unique and creative resources to support the educational process Political will required to sustain change in the face of the inevitable conflicts and resistance that is part of major reform work

11 PORTFOLIO OF EXCELLENT SCHOOLS SNS advocates for systems of high schools with diverse organizational formats, educational approached and governance systems A full portfolio of high quality schools may be: Small schools Schools restructured into small learning communities (SLCs) Charter schools Schools operated by community-based organizations under contract with district Other innovative formats Strategy for creating that system uses choice as a central lever in a district change process

12 PORTFOLIO OF EXCELLENT SCHOOLS Two essential elements of Portfolio of Schools: Clear focus that drives instruction Same high expectations for students’ learning

13 YOUTH ENGAGEMENT Research demonstrates that young people who are engaged emotionally, cognitively and behaviorally in their education are less likely to show signs of alienation, and that such engagement increases their connectedness to school. In a model district, young people will be engaged in:  their own learning  their peers’ learning  improving educational outcomes to the community

14 YOUTH ENGAGEMENT

15 DISTRICT REDESIGN SNS calls for a drastic redesign of urban school districts Districts need to serve three essential functions:  Provide schools, students and educators with needed supports and timely interventions  Ensure that schools have the power and the resources to make good decisions  Make decisions and hold people throughout the system accountable by using indicators of school and district performance and practice

16 COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT, DEMAND & SUPPORT For systemic reform initiatives such as SNS, public engagement serves to:  Contribute to improving design and implementation, by tapping the ideas and expertise of parents, citizens and community constituencies  Help build a permanent constituency for the reform  Strengthen the legitimacy of the reform  Contributes to public participation in public education, and thus:  Maximizes the potential for democratic action

17 CHALLENGES Implementing student and community engagement Penetrating the instructional core Providing differentiated supports for adults and students Reach: raising the bar while closing the achievement gap Sustaining work through transitions in leadership

18 ACCOMPLISHMENTS Sustaining work through transitions in leadership Evolution of the working partnership Active use of data Development of new “tables” and structures Changes in values and beliefs Increased coherence Constellation of constituencies Rethinking how resources are mobilized and deployed Willingness and ability to be critical Strong leadership

19 WHAT MATTERS: Equity and Excellence District Transformation Small Learning Environments Focus on Instruction Community Support and Accountability Relationships

20 Presenters: Rochelle Nichols-Solomon Director Schools for a New Society Technical Assistance Team at AED Academy for Education Development Michelle Feist Deputy Director Schools for a New Society Technical Assistance Team at AED Academy for Education Development For more information, contact: Rochelle Nichols-Solomon

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