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school design

Who Should Adapt: Students to School or School to Students?

Education policy is dominated by people who themselves did well in school. As a result, they believe conventional school must be OK and that students should adjust to it. Students give a different view. But nobody much listens to them, or thinks the job of educators and policy makers is to adapt school to the students.

A Viable High School in a Small Rural District

Nontraditional forms of school do exist that are economically and educationally viable at the scale of 120 students. This has huge implications for rural America's sparsely-settled areas. The trick is to think differently about teaching and learning. An article in the magazine of the superintendents' association in Minnesota.

If Kids Don't Want to Learn, You Probably Can't Make 'Em

Jack Frymier sums up a lifetime of experience in teaching: If students want to learn they will. If they don't, you probably can't make 'em. Motivation is individual. Education is failing in the relationship between teachers and students. Motivating students is a teachable skill: It just isn't very often taught where teachers are trained.

Listening to Student Voices: Students at Avalon High on School Design

Much might be learned about effective school design if researchers were to listen to what students say. In this report, student researchers at Avalon High School in Saint Paul challenge adults to allow consumer input to be a driver in efforts to increase students' motivation to attend, to learn and to graduate.

Shifting From "What We Spend" to "How We Spend It"

The total cost of the education system is rising at about 5 to 8 percent per year. If schools are not at the same time increasing "performance" or "productivity," their real cost to the public is increasing. This relationship is not sustainable. To reconcile this problem, schools will need to be designed differently.

Age 3 to Grade 3 Schools: A New Approach to Early Literacy

It would be wonderful to close the achievement gap... before there is one. The "Age 3 to Grade 3 Model" restructures the school, using existing financing, so that literacy efforts span the 'early' years and the 'school' years. The model calls for restructuring child care, Head Start and other pre-K initiatives.

Minnesota's Charter Law is Providing Significant Innovations in School and Schooling

Chartering is hailed as providing a space for innovation in public education. However, research and reporting on chartered schools usually focus on test scores and student demographics, and not on the innovations taking place. This report outlines some of the innovations appearing in Minnesota chartered schools.