Publications

Report · February 2005

Chartering cannot work without quality sponsoring/authorizing. Quality sponsoring requires good systems, competent people and time. That means: money. We studied what it cost three Minnesota sponsors to review applications, develop contracts and oversee schools, over a three-year period.

Report · January 2005

In policy debate the discussion about money is often about ‘how much?’ The conclusion is almost always: ‘Not enough!’ This report looks inside schools and districts at differences in how money is actually spent. It suggests that the size of school and district, the governance arrangement and the degree to which teachers are involved in decision-making influence the allocation of revenue to instruction.

Report · April 2004

Traditional "charter" evaluation is focusing on the wrong questions. To know "what's working" researchers must focus on the institutional innovation of chartering rather than trying to generalize about the very diverse collection of schools. This RFP is designed to elicit recommendations on ways to strengthen chartered schools and to improve the state's overall policy framework for chartering.

Report · February 2004

A guide for charter school authorizing, from the decision to authorize through contract development. It covers how to assist and oversee the school, and clarifies the relationship to and duties of the state department of education, the sponsor and the board of the chartered school. It also explains the 'Sponsor-Initiated School,' whereby an authorizer actively solicits new school proposals.

Report · January 2004

Some national organizations that find good schools a way to further their own mission are now moving to create—and support—new schools in the charter sector. The National Council of La Raza is one example. This can be done in some states through sponsoring (authorizing). Elsewhere it can take the form of partnerships.

Report · January 2004

Teachers could and should have the option to work—as many other professionals do—with colleagues in a professional group which they collectively own, with administrators working for them. This is the original report on the topic. An inventory of schools with teacher autonomy is available here.

Report · January 2004

Many of the reforms school districts are undertaking involve a significant facilities component. As districts pursue strategies such as opening new schools, breaking up large schools, and renovating buildings, they often incur substantial bricks-and-mortar expenses. This report outlines promising ways to meet their facilities needs.

Report · January 2004

School districts nationwide are taking steps to proactively create new, better schools as a strategy for education reform. Spurred in part by innovations being introduced by chartered schools, district leaders are beginning to create a “space” in which schools can form new.

Report · August 2003

This report describes ten of the most unconventional chartered schools in Minnesota. Feedback from students who attended the schools make clear that many families who choose such schools are seeking a positive school culture. To these families, a school's success is measured by more than its average test scores.

Report · June 2003

Even those close to education policy were astonished by the size and growth-rate of 'alternative education'. Districts have been creating these new schools since the 1970s for "kids not doing well" in 'regular' school. This report includes quotes from alternative school students reflecting on their schools.

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