So much reform, so little change: the persistance of failure in urban schools

Front Cover
Harvard Education Press, 2008 - Education - 263 pages
16 Reviews
This frank and courageous book explores the persistence of failure in todays urban schools. At its heart is the argument that most education policy discussions are disconnected from the daily realities of urban schools, especially those in poor and beleaguered neighborhoods. Charles M. Payne argues that we have failed to account fully for the weakness of the social infrastructure and the often dysfunctional organizational environments of urban schools and school systems. The result is that liberals and conservatives alike have spent a great deal of time pursuing questions of limited practical value in the effort to improve city schools.Payne carefully delineates these stubborn and intertwined sources of failure in urban school reform efforts of the past two decades. Yet while his book is unsparing in its exploration of the troubled recent history of urban school reform, Payne also describes himself as guardedly optimistic. He describes how, in the last decade, we have developed real insights into the roots of school failure, and into how some individual schools manage to improve. He also examines recent progress in understanding how particular urban districts have established successful reforms on a larger scale.Drawing on a striking array of sourcesfrom the recent history of various urban school systems, to the growing sophistication of education research, to his own experience as a teacher, scholar, and participant in reform effortsPayne paints a vivid and unmistakably realistic portrait of urban schools and reforms of the past few decades. So Much Reform, So Little Change will be required reading for everyone interested in the plightand the futureof urban schools.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
8
4 stars
4
3 stars
4
2 stars
0
1 star
0

Review: So Much Reform, So Little Change: The Persistence of Failure in Urban Schools

User Review  - Joyce Klipsch farrow - Goodreads

The first half of the book was by far the better half. Read full review

Review: So Much Reform, So Little Change: The Persistence of Failure in Urban Schools

User Review  - Goodreads

The first half of the book was by far the better half. Read full review

Contents

Chapter 1
17
Chapter 2
49
Chapter 3
67
Copyright

7 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2008)

Charles M. Payne is the Frank P. Hixon Professor in the School of Social Service Administration at the University of Chicago. He is the author of numerous books, including Ive Got the Light of Freedom: The Organizing Tradition in the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement (1995), which won awards from the Southern Regional Council, Choice, the Simon Wiesenthal Center, and the Gustavus Myers Center for the study of Human Rights in North America. Payne has served on the board of the Chicago Algebra Project, the Steering Committee for the Consortium on Chicago School Research, the Research Advisory Committee for the Chicago Annenberg Project, and the editorial boards of Catalyst, Sociology of Education, and Educational Researcher.