A Race Against Time: The Crisis in Urban Schooling

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James G. Cibulka, William Lowe Boyd
Greenwood Publishing Group, 2003 - Education - 247 pages
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We are in a race against time to save urban children from educational failure and to reform urban school systems before people give up on them. The authors examine the effectiveness of three reform approaches: systems reform, mayoral influence, and external state or federal intervention, using case studies from seven large cities, as well as state and national trends.

The social and economic transformation of large American cities after World War II laid the seeds for the crisis in urban education that has festered and grown since the 1950s. Decades of appalling test scores and failure rates, and of unsuccessful piecemeal efforts to improve urban education, have led the public and policymakers to embrace radical solutions to reform.

Three approaches to the reform of urban school governance are discussed and analyzed, using data from seven large cities (Baltimore, Boston, Chicago, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., and New York), national trends, and a statewide analysis of Maryland's school accountability system. The first approach, systems reform, focuses on improving the governance of urban education by overcoming policy fragmentation through standards for student performance, student assessments, and accountability, among other things. Strong mayoral roles offer a second reform approach that largely reverses the Progressive-era reforms of the last century separating schools from city politics. Its supporters believe urban mayors can restore accountability, stability, and political support for urban schools. The third reform approach assumes that external intervention by federal or state authorities is needed to restore accountability and improve system performance.

 

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Contents

Accountability at the Improv Brief Sketches of School Reform in Los Angeles
3
Philadelphias Children Achieving Initiative The Promise and Challenge of Systemic Reform in an Urban School District
23
Balancing Autonomy and Control in the New York City Public Schools Using the DoubleACE Model
45
Mayoral Takeover The Different Directions Taken in Different Cities
63
From Court Streets to City Hall Governance Change in the Boston Public Schools
82
Regime Change Mayoral Takeover of the Chicago Public Schools
106
Implementation of an Accountability Agenda in High Schools Integrated Governance in the Chicago Public Schools
129
State and Federal Intervention to Improve Baltimore and Washington DCs Public Schools
167
The Role of Sanctions for Improvising Persistently LowPerforming Urban Schools Early Findings of Policy Effects on Teacher Motivation in the Ma...
185
Urban EducationReform Strategies Comparative Analysis and Conclusions
205
References
225
Index
238
About the Editors and Contributors
245
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About the author (2003)

JAMES G. CIBULKA is Dean, College of Education, University of Kentucky. His research focuses on educational policy and politics, including urban education.

WILLIAM LOWE BOYD is Batschelet Chair Professor of Educational Administration and Professor-in-Charge of Graduate Programs in Educational Administration at Penn State University.

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