Publications

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 · 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.

Memo · April 2003

Since the late 1990s, there’s been growing discussion about the sponsor’s role – in the ongoing oversight as well as in its initial approval. This paper explores whether sponsors might also play an active role in soliciting proposals.

Memo · March 2003

Opponents of change commonly try to set a test of perfection. They try to persuade everyone that no change can be permitted unless it solves all present problems and creates no new problems. Opponents don’t even have to prove the proposed change harmful. It's enough just to spread fear and doubt, asking endlessly: What if?

Article · February 2003

Many American tax payers seem willing to raise their taxes to further fund public education. While lack of funding is often viewed as being at the root of our failing education system, raises in per-pupil spending have shown to be less influential than we'd like to believe. Might there be another answer to fixing schools?

Meeting Notes · February 2003

A teacher from Milwaukee describes for the Teacher Union Reform Network the arrangement in Milwaukee—a variation on Wisconsin's chartering law—that gives a partnership of professional teachers full authority and responsibility for the school while protecting both the teachers and the union on the economic front.

Meeting Notes · May 2002

Interview notes from conversations with students at a conference of leaders from Minnesota alternative schools. Students were asked why they attend alternative learning programs, what they like about their programs, and what mainstream school could have done to better serve their needs.

Memo · January 2002

A case for why American public education needs an "open sector" and seven essential elements of such a sector.

Book · January 2002

In most occupations we consider, ‘professional’ people do have the opportunity to work with partners in single- or multi-specialty groups they collectively own. But not in education. For heaven’s sake, why not?

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