—Gary Howard, founder of the REACH Center and author of We Can't Teach What We Don't Know, Second Edition
“This book should be required reading for all teachers! In his wonderfully readable, highly lucid analysis of poverty and social class, Paul Gorski gently but firmly redirects teachers away from damaging ways of seeing students and families who live in poverty, toward a vision of respect that champions equity and enables young people to bloom in the classroom.”
—Christine Sleeter,professor emerita, California State University Monterey Bay and immediate past president of the National Association for Multicultural Education
“Finally! A book that helps educators not only learn about the devastating impact of poverty on children’s lives, but also helps them think about what they can do—in the words of author Paul Gorski—right now as well as in the future to help improve the life chances of young people living in poverty. Highly readable and comprehensive, Reaching and Teaching Students in Poverty will be a welcome addition to school, university, and community bookshelves.”
—Sonia Nieto,professor emerita, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
“From one of the smartest scholars on poverty and education comes this engaging, relatable, and thoroughly researched book that every educator and school leader should read. Paul Gorski makes vivid and compelling how and why poverty matters, where and when we've gone wrong with current reforms, and perhaps most important, what we can do in our schools and classrooms to ensure that every child receives the very best education that our nation has to offer. Read and share it today.”
—Kevin Kumashiro, Dean, School of Education, University of San Francisco, author of Bad Teacher! How Blaming Teachers Distorts the Bigger Picture
The author draws from decades of research to deconstruct popular myths, misconceptions, and educational practices that undercut the achievement of low-income students.
He carefully describes the challenges that students in poverty face and the resiliencies they and their families draw upon. Most importantly, this book provides specific, evidence-based strategies for teaching youth by creating equitable, bias-free learning environments. Written in an appealing conversational tone, this resource will help teachers and school leaders to better reach and teach students in poverty.
Book Features:A conceptual framework for creating equitable educational opportunities for low- and middle-income youth.Instructional strategies based on an analysis of more than 20 years of research on what works (and what doesn’t work).A depiction of teachers, not as the problem when it comes to the achievement gap, but as champions of students.Activities such as a Poverty and Class Awareness Quiz.
Edited by bestselling author Lisa Delpit and education professor Joanne Kilgour Dowdy, the book includes an extended new piece by Delpit herself, as well as groundbreaking work by Herbert Kohl, Gloria Ladson-Billings, and Victoria Purcell-Gates, as well as classic texts by Geneva Smitherman and Asa Hilliard.
At a time when children are written off in our schools because they do not speak formal English, and when the class- and race-biased language used to describe those children determines their fate, The Skin That We Speak offers a cutting-edge look at crucial educational issues.
Contributors including Beverly Daniel Tatum, Sonia Nieto, and Pedro Noguera describe concrete ways to analyze classroom interactions that may or may not be “racial,” deal with racial inequality and “diversity,” and teach to high standards across racial lines. Topics range from using racial incidents as teachable moments and responding to the “n-word” to valuing students’ home worlds, dealing daily with achievement gaps, and helping parents fight ethnic and racial misconceptions about their children. Questions following each essay prompt readers to examine and discuss everyday issues of race and opportunity in their own classrooms and schools.
For educators and parents determined to move beyond frustrations about race, Everyday Antiracism is an essential tool.
In Please Stop Helping Us, Jason L. Riley examines how well-intentioned welfare programs are in fact holding black Americans back. Minimum-wage laws may lift earnings for people who are already employed, but they price a disproportionate number of blacks out of the labor force. Affirmative action in higher education is intended to address past discrimination, but the result is fewer black college graduates than would otherwise exist. And so it goes with everything from soft-on-crime laws, which make black neighborhoods more dangerous, to policies that limit school choice out of a mistaken belief that charter schools and voucher programs harm the traditional public schools that most low-income students attend.
In theory these efforts are intended to help the poor—and poor minorities in particular. In practice they become massive barriers to moving forward.
Please Stop Helping Us lays bare these counterproductive results. People of goodwill want to see more black socioeconomic advancement, but in too many instances the current methods and approaches aren’t working. Acknowledging this is an important first step.
In a fit of idealism, Ed Boland left a twenty-year career as a non-profit executive to teach in a tough New York City public high school. But his hopes quickly collided headlong with the appalling reality of his students' lives and a hobbled education system unable to help them: Freddy runs a drug ring for his incarcerated brother; Nee-cole is homeschooled on the subway by her brilliant homeless mother; and Byron's Ivy League dream is dashed because he is undocumented.
In the end, Boland isn't hoisted on his students' shoulders and no one passes AP anything. This is no urban fairy tale of at-risk kids saved by a Hollywood hero, but a searing indictment of schools that claim to be progressive but still fail their students. Told with compassion, humor, and a keen eye, Boland's story is sure to ignite debate about the future of American education and attempts to reform it.
In 2010, Nadia Lopez started her middle-grade public school, Mott Hall Bridges Academy, in one of America’s poorest communities, in a record heat wave—and crime wave. Everything was an uphill battle—to get the school approved, to recruit faculty and students, to solve a million new problems every day, from violent crime to vanishing supplies—but Lopez was determined to break the downward spiral that had trapped too many inner-city children. The lessons came fast: unengaged teachers, wayward students, and the educational system itself, rarely in tune with the already disadvantaged and underprepared.
Things were at a low ebb for everyone when one of her students told a photographer that his principal, “Ms. Lopez,” was the person who most influenced his life. The posting on Brandon Stanton’s Humans of New York site was the pebble that started a lucky landslide for Lopez and her team. Lopez found herself in the national spotlight and headed for a meeting with President Obama, as well as the beneficiary of a million-dollar campaign for the school, to fund her next dream: a field trip for her students to visit another school—Harvard.
The Bridge to Brilliance is a book filled with common sense and caring that will carry her message to communities and classrooms far from Brooklyn. As she says, modestly, “There are hundreds of Ms. Lopezes around this country doing good work for kids. This honors all of them.”
From the Hardcover edition.
Among the ten unforgettable students we meet are: Mike, who writes his personal essays from a homeless shelter and is torn between his longing to get away to an idyllic college campus and his fear of leaving his mother and brothers in desperate circumstances; Santiago, a talented, motivated, and undocumented student, battles bureaucracy and low expectations as he seeks a life outside the low-wage world of hard manual labor to which his immigration status threatens to consign him; and Ashley, who pursues her ambition to become a doctor with almost superhuman drive but then forges a path that challenges received wisdom about the value of an elite, liberal arts education.
At a time when the idea of "college for all" is alternately embraced and challenged, this important book uncovers, in heartrending detail, the many ways the American education system fails in its promise as a ladder to opportunity. But it also provides hope in its portrayal of the extraordinary intelligence, resilience, and everyday heroics of the young people whose futures are too often lamented or ignored and whose voices, insights, and vision our colleges—and our country—desperately need. Hold Fast to Dreams will grab you on the first page and will stay with you for a long time. It should be required reading for anyone who cares about the right to education in America.
Just 16 percent of female students, Black girls make up more than one-third of all girls with a school-related arrest. The first trade book to tell these untold stories, Pushout exposes a world of confined potential and supports the growing movement to address the policies, practices, and cultural illiteracy that push countless students out of school and into unhealthy, unstable, and often unsafe futures.
For four years Monique W. Morris, author of Black Stats, chronicled the experiences of black girls across the country whose intricate lives are misunderstood, highly judged—by teachers, administrators, and the justice system—and degraded by the very institutions charged with helping them flourish. Morris shows how, despite obstacles, stigmas, stereotypes, and despair, black girls still find ways to breathe remarkable dignity into their lives in classrooms, juvenile facilities, and beyond.
In a radical analysis of contemporary classrooms, MacArthur Award–winning author Lisa Delpit develops ideas about ways teachers can be better “cultural transmitters” in the classroom, where prejudice, stereotypes, and cultural assumptions breed ineffective education. Delpit suggests that many academic problems attributed to children of color are actually the result of miscommunication, as primarily white teachers and “other people’s children” struggle with the imbalance of power and the dynamics plaguing our system.
A new classic among educators, Other People’s Children is a must-read for teachers, administrators, and parents striving to improve the quality of America’s education system.
New York Times education reporter Abby Goodnough followed Donna Moffett through her first year as a teacher, writing a frontpage, award-winning series that galvanized discussion nationwide. Now she has expanded that series into a book that, through the riveting story of Moffett's experiences, explores the gulf between the rhetoric of education reform and the realities of the public school classroom. Ms. Moffett's First Year is neither a Hollywood- friendly tale of ‘one person making a difference,' nor a reductive indictment of the public education system. It is rather a provocative portrait of the inadequacy of good intentions, of the challenges of educating poor and immigrant populations, and of a well-meaning but underprepared woman becoming a teacher the hard way.
While the story takes place in New York, Ms.Moffett's first year is a metaphor for the experiences of teachers everywhere in America, one that illuminates the philosophical, economic, political, and ideological dilemmas that have come more and more to determine their experience —and their students' experiences — in the classroom.
“Few social problems are of more pressing importance than the challenge of increasing access to higher education. Howard, Tunstall, and Flennaugh carefully outline those problems and give us our marching orders. Historical. Empirical. Well-written. Thoughtful. Provocative. This book is useful for all of us concerned about access and equity in education.”
—William G. Tierney, professor & co-director, Pullias Center for Higher Education, University of Southern California
“This book represents a moral and ethical call to any of us who believe in an educational pipeline for liberty, humanity, possibility, and justice for all—everyday!”
—H. Richard Milner IV, Helen Faison Professor of Urban Education, University of Pittsburgh
Contributors: Irene Atkins, Bree Blades, Jon Carroll, Whitney Gouche, Tr’Vel Lyons, Justyn Patterson, Jerry Morrison, Michelle Smith, Ashley V. Williams
Drawing on in-depth research at an urban elementary school, Posey-Maddox examines parents’ efforts to support the school through their outreach, marketing, and volunteerism. She shows that when middle-class parents engage in urban school communities, they can bring a host of positive benefits, including new educational opportunities and greater diversity. But their involvement can also unintentionally marginalize less-affluent parents and diminish low-income students’ access to the improving schools. In response, Posey-Maddox argues that school reform efforts, which usually equate improvement with rising test scores and increased enrollment, need to have more equity-focused policies in place to ensure that low-income families also benefit from—and participate in—school change.
Like his most recent book, Amazing Grace, this work also takes place in New York's South Bronx; but it is a markedly different book in mood and vantage point, because we see life this time through the eyes of children, not, as the author puts it, from the perspective of a grown-up man encumbered with a Harvard education. Here, too, we see devoted teachers in a good but underfunded public elementary school that manages, against all odds, to be a warm, inviting, and protective place; and we see the children also in the intimate religious setting of a church in which they are watched over by the vigilant grandmothers of the neighborhood and by a priest whose ministry is, first and foremost, to the very young.
A work of guarded optimism that avoids polemic and the fevered ideologies of partisan debate, Ordinary Resurrections is a book about the little miracles of stubbornly persistent innocence in children who are still unsoiled by the world and still can view their place within it without cynicism or despair. Sometimes playful, sometimes jubilantly funny, and sometimes profoundly sad, they're sensitive children, by and large -- complex and morally insightful -- and their ethical vitality denounces and subverts the racially charged labels that the world of grown-up expertise too frequently assigns to them.
The author's personal involvement with specific children deepens as the narrative evolves. A Jewish man, now 63 years old, he finds his own religious speculations growing interwoven with the moral and religious explorations of the children, some of whom have been his friends for nearly seven years. The children change, of course, from year to year as they learn more about the world; but the author is changed also by the generous and tender ways in which the children, step by step, unlock their secrets and unveil the mysteries of their belief to him.
Salvation in these stories comes not from the promises of politicians or the claims of sociology but from the ordinary resurrections that take place routinely in the hearts of children. "We all lie down," a theologian tells the author. "We all rise up. We do this every day." So, too, when given a fair chance, do many of the undervalued urban children of our nation. In this book, we see some beautiful children as they rise, and rise again.
Following on the heels of the bestselling Fires in the Bathroom, which brought the insights of high school students to teachers and parents, Kathleen Cushman now turns her attention to the crucial and challenging middle grades, joining forces with adolescent psychologist Laura Rogers.
As teachers, counselors, and parents cope with the roller coaster of early adolescence, too few stop to ask students what they think about these critical years. Here, middle school students in grades 5 through 8 across the country and from diverse ethnic backgrounds offer insights on what it takes to make classrooms more effective and how to forge stronger relationships between young adolescents and adults. Students tackle such critical topics as social, emotional, and academic pressures; classroom behavior; organization; and preparing for high school. Cushman and Rogers help readers hear and understand the vital messages about adolescent learning that come though in what these students say.
This invaluable resource provides a unique window into how middle school students think, feel, and learn, bringing their needs to the forefront of the conversation about education.
Students from across the country contributed perceptive and pragmatic answers to questions of how teachers can transcend the barriers of adolescent identity and culture to reach the diverse student body in today’s urban schools. With the fresh and often surprising perspectives of youth, they tackle tough issues such as increasing engagement and motivation, teaching difficult academic material, reaching English-language learners, and creating a classroom culture where respect and success go hand in hand.
With little training and experience, these four will be asked to produce academic gains in students who are among the most disadvantaged in the country. Relentless Pursuit lays bare the experiences of these four teachers to evaluate the strengths and peculiarities of Teach for America and a social reality that has become inescapable.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
“A powerful and compelling tale about how educators, parents, and representatives of one of America's most powerful universities came together to create a school that is now a beacon of pride and hope. Their struggle to overcome the obstacles they encountered along the way will inspire others who seek to find ways to use education as a means to break the cycle of poverty and to expand opportunity and justice.”
—Pedro A. Noguera, distinguished professor of education, Graduate School of Education and Information Sciences, UCLA
“This is the story of a little school that could. Could get students to college and beyond, that is. It’s filled with evidence, quotes, and anecdotes, but more importantly it demonstrates that will and skill, aligned with vision and values, results in learning environments in which students thrive. While acknowledging the challenges, trials, and tribulations of creating and leading an urban high school, the authors share their success in a passionate and compelling way, inviting others to learn alongside them as they build successful futures for their students.”
—Douglas Fisher, professor of educational leadership, San Diego State University
“With demanding academics, loving support, and genuine affirmation, the staff, parents, community members, and other supporters of EPAA, as well as Stanford faculty and staff, present an encouraging picture of the kind of high school all young people deserve. This kind of success is not easy, but in describing how it can be done, Linda Darling-Hammond and her co-authors have provided a stirring example for all of those interested in equity and hope for our public schools.”
—Sonia Nieto, professor emerita, Language, Literacy, and Culture, College of Education, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
The goal of this handbook is to offer teacher educators a blue print for strengthening and extending traditional literacy field experiences to include service-learning components. As literacy teacher educators, Sulentic Dowell and Meidl demonstrate how teacher education can be transformed to include more authentic, meaningful, and preparatory field experiences. Adding service-learning components expands teacher education to more adequately prepare elementary education candidates to meet children’s needs in 21st century, urban elementary classrooms. This handbook considers the need to redefine and reconfigure teacher education in regards to literacy teaching and learning.
Shedd draws from an array of data and in-depth interviews with Chicago youth to offer new insight into this understudied group. Focusing on four public high schools with differing student bodies, Shedd reveals how the predominantly low-income African American students at one school encounter obstacles their more affluent, white counterparts on the other side of the city do not face. Teens often travel long distances to attend school which, due to Chicago’s segregated and highly unequal neighborhoods, can involve crossing class, race, and gang lines. As Shedd explains, the disadvantaged teens who traverse these boundaries daily develop a keen “perception of injustice,” or the recognition that their economic and educational opportunities are restricted by their place in the social hierarchy.
Adolescents’ worldviews are also influenced by encounters with law enforcement while traveling to school and during school hours. Shedd tracks the rise of metal detectors, surveillance cameras, and pat-downs at certain Chicago schools. Along with police procedures like stop-and-frisk, these prison-like practices lead to distrust of authority and feelings of powerlessness among the adolescents who experience mistreatment either firsthand or vicariously. Shedd finds that the racial composition of the student body profoundly shapes students’ perceptions of injustice. The more diverse a school is, the more likely its students of color will recognize whether they are subject to discriminatory treatment. By contrast, African American and Hispanic youth whose schools and neighborhoods are both highly segregated and highly policed are less likely to understand their individual and group disadvantage due to their lack of exposure to youth of differing backgrounds.
Book Features:Provides a fresh, dynamic way of understanding educational inequality and social reproduction.Offers a breakthrough social/psychological theory of how adolescents acquire class consciousness.Compares the cultures and curricula of five American high schools focusing on the class composition of their students.
“This highly readable and original book illuminates why we don’t have open class warfare in our society, despite huge inequalities. Peter Cookson shows how schools reproduce classes through institutional practices that forge class-based consciousness. He also suggests how education might be changed.”
—Caroline Hodges Persell, professor emerita of sociology, New York University
“Cookson does a superb job of analyzing the powerful forces in our schools that reinforce the racial, ethnic, and social-class structures our nation hopes to overcome. Breaking out of one’s social class was always hard but may now be harder than in previous decades. Cookson reminds us of what high schools can be, the great equalizers, institutions for promoting America’s finest values.”
—David Berliner, Regents’ professor emeritus, Mary Lou Fulton Teachers College, Arizona State University
Grab this book and learn how to empower yourself and your school community with information gleaned from your school's data. Experienced educators and authors offer simple instructions that can help focus school improvement efforts and result in increasing teacher expertise--a factor that positively affects the quality of life for students long after they have left the classroom. Accepting responsibility for such far-reaching influence requires educators to adopt instructional improvement as a standard by which a school needs to operate and as a means to collaborate and interact with one another. More than that, though, instructional improvement is an important component of successful schools. Learn how to improve instruction by
* Collecting the right data--the right way.
* Incorporating relevant data into everyone's daily life.
* Resisting the impulse to set brand-new goals every year.
* Never settling for "good enough."
* Anticipating changes--big and small, local and federal.
* Collaborating and avoiding privatized practice.
* Involving all stakeholders in identifying problems, setting goals, and analyzing data.
* Agreeing on what constitutes high-quality instruction and feedback.
The challenge is to understand that data--not intuition or anecdotal reports--are tools to be used in getting better at teaching students. And teaching students effectively is what schools are all about. Following the guidance in this book, overcome uncertainty and concerns about data as you learn to collect and analyze both soft and hard data and use their secrets for instructional improvement in your school.
Contributors: Nancy Acevedo-Gil, Alejandra S. Albarran, Edelina M. Burciaga, Leo R. Chavez, Gilberto Q. Conchas, Isiaah Crawford, Cindy Cruz, Briana M. Hinga, Eduardo Mosqueda, Leticia Oseguera, Louie F. Rodriguez, Kip Téllez, and Irene I. Vega
“Conchas’ provocative and compelling case studies in education position him once again as a leading voice in challenging commonsense notions of Latino school failure.”
—Kris D. Gutiérrez, professor of Education, University of California, Berkeley
“Conchas has provided readers with an important gift: authentic stories, authentic struggles, authentic strategies, and authentic success. This work debunks the deficit discourse around Latina/o education with a complex analysis of how race, community strengths, and identity become assets for educational excellence. The cases presented are rich, powerful, compelling and inspiring. Essential reading for social justice advocates!”
—Tyrone Howard, professor of Education at the University of California, Los Angeles and author of Why Race and Culture in Matters in Schools
“In this groundbreaking volume Conchas ushers in a new paradigm for understanding Latina/o student achievement. The authors in this volume collaboratively and compellingly demonstrate the importance of understanding Latina/o educational achievement by analyzing assets and agency in the lives of youths and their families. This volume provides educators, policymakers, and scholars the critical hope and pragmatic agenda for developing a more just educational system—the authors cogently teach us to identify and understand the plethora of contributions that Latina/o students make to our educational system on a day-to-day basis.”
—Victor M. Rios, professor of Sociology and author of Punished
When Bowen Paulle speaks of toxicity, he speaks of educational worlds dominated by intimidation and anxiety, by ambivalence, degradation, and shame. Based on six years of teaching and research in the South Bronx and in Southeast Amsterdam, Toxic Schools is the first fully participatory ethnographic study of its kind and a searing examination of daily life in two radically different settings. What these schools have in common, however, are not the predictable ideas about race and educational achievement but the tragically similar habituated stress responses of students forced to endure the experience of constant vulnerability. From both sides of the Atlantic Ocean, Paulle paints an intimate portrait of how students and teachers actually cope, in real time, with the chronic stress, peer group dynamics, and subtle power politics of urban educational spaces in the perpetual shadow of aggression.
A symbol of middle American working-class values and pride, Wisconsin—and in particular urban Milwaukee—has been at the forefront of a half-century of public education experiments, from desegregation and “school choice,” to vouchers and charter schools. Picking up where J. Anthony Lukas’s Pulitzer Prize–winning Common Ground left off, Lessons from the Heartland offers a sweeping narrative portrait of an All-American city at the epicenter of American public education reform, and an exploration of larger issues of race and class in our democracy. Miner (whose daughters went through the Milwaukee public school system and who is a former Milwaukee Journal reporter) brings a journalist’s eye and a parent’s heart to exploring the intricate ways that jobs, housing, and schools intersect, underscoring the intrinsic link between the future of public schools and the dreams and hopes of democracy in a multicultural society.
This book will change the way we think about the possibility and promise of American public education.
Ten-year-old Hydea is about to start fifth grade with second-grade reading skills. Her friend Marbella is only a little further along. In past years, these students would have received help from the literacy specialist Mrs. Schaefer. But this year, due to cutbacks and a change in job description, she will have to select the few students whom she and the teachers can bet on—the ones who are close to passing the exams. And, for added measure, Principal Hay has already asked his faculty to teach to the test.
Journalist Ron Berler spent a full year at Brookside. In Raising the Curve, he offers a nuanced and personal portrait of the students, teachers, and staff who make up the Brookside community, capturing their struggles as well as their pride, resilience, and spirited faith.
Book Features:A community-based, university- and district-connected partnership model that fosters students’ critical consciousness.
A framework for participatory action research (PAR) within teacher preparation that promotes community and societal transformation. A curriculum premised on sociocultural and sociopolitical awareness. The wisdom, experiences, and lessons learned from educators who have been change agents in their own schools, communities, and college classrooms across the country.
“An enormous contribution to the field. It will also be a cherished resource and guide for Latino/a and non-Latino/a teachers alike, and for the university faculty and school- and community-based facilitators who help prepare them.”
—From the Foreword by Sonia Nieto, Professor Emerita, Language, Literacy, and Culture, College of Education, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
“Provides the elemental sparks for essential conversations about culturally responsive teaching and the well-being of youth in our communities. Through a variety of critical perspectives this volume raises significant questions that must be at the forefront of Latino/a education. This excellent volume is a must read for teachers truly committed to educational practices of social justice in schools today.”
—Antonia Darder, Leavey Endowed Chair of Ethics and Moral Leadership, Loyola Marymount University
—The Washington Post
Moving beyond the debate over whether or not charter schools should exist, A Smarter Charter wrestles with the question of what kind of charter schools we should encourage. The authors begin by tracing the evolution of charter schools from teacher union leader Albert Shanker’s original vision of giving teachers room to innovate while educating a diverse population of students, to today’s charter schools where the majority of teachers are not unionized and student segregation levels are even higher than in traditional public schools. In the second half of the book, the authors examine two key reforms currently seen in a small but growing number of charter schools—teacher voice and socioeconomic integration—that have the potential to improve performance and reshape the stereotypical image of what it means to be a charter school.
Important reading for policymakers, educators, researchers, and all citizens interested in the future of America’s public schools, A Smarter Charter features:Profiles of charter schools that are bucking the prevailing trends, including their performance data and the challenges they face. Best practices from successful charter schools, such as methods for attracting a diverse student body and examples of innovative teacher contracts. Reform strategies that can improve student outcomes in a variety of public schools, not just charters.
“Kahlenberg and Potter have delivered a thought-provoking, serious contribution. Agree or not with their views on the purpose and performance of charter schools, they have important things to say on where charters have been, where they need to go, and how they can get there. Friends and foes of charter schooling, alike, would do well to read this book.”
—Frederick M. Hess, resident scholar and director of Education Policy Studies, American Enterprise Institute
“Read this book and draw inspiration and ideas from charter schools and educators bucking the trend and reclaiming that original, collaborative, and powerful promise and spirit. I hope parents, educators in all sectors, concerned citizens, policymakers, philanthropists—and charter sector leaders—will take its compelling message to heart and act on it.”
—Dennis Van Roekel, former president, National Education Association
“A tour-de-force, laying out in singular fashion what has gone wrong with the charter school movement, and what must be done to get it back on track.... A Smarter Charter is a must-read for those concerned with the future of charter schools and public education.”
—Randi Weingarten, president, American Federation of Teachers
McDonald and his colleagues lay out several interrelated ideas in what they call a theory of action space. Frequently education policy gets so ambitious that implementing it becomes a near impossibility. Action space, however, is what takes shape when talented educators, leaders, and reformers guide the social capital of civic leaders and the financial capital of governments, foundations, corporations, and other backers toward true results. Exploring these extraordinary collaborations through their lifespans and their influences on future efforts, the authors provide political hope—that reform efforts can work, and that our schools can be made better.
Diversity, Equity and Inclusion: Strategies for Facilitating Conversations on Race guides facilitators through a process of becoming comfortable with the discomfort in leading conversations about racism, privilege and power.
This book walks you through the important steps to create a foundation where participants feel brave enough to take risks and share their stories and perspectives. It guides you through strategies for engaging participants in courageous conversations with one another in ways that don’t shame and blame people into understanding. This book is a useful tool for individuals, organizations and college professors who are interested in learning techniques for guiding their audience through dialogue whereby they become open to listening to one another for understanding rather than holding on to old beliefs and maintaining a posture of defense.
Readers will learn how the dynamics of race show up in cross cultural spaces, including the unique challenges faced by facilitators of color and white facilitators. In addition, we explore how to identify and counter white privilege in the dialogue between participants.
Both novice and experienced facilitators will learn helpful strategies for leading conversation that result in people recognizing their role as change agents in ending oppression.
“This is a groundbreaking and eye-opening study because it does what few studies of high school truly do: get inside the hearts and minds of teen-agers and show what their experience of school looks and feels like to them. The analysis of students who fail is revealing and powerful. There are poignant and revealing stories of just how a few student mistakes or teacher insensitivities lead to unfortunate and long-lasting results. More importantly, these case studies, their nuances, and their implications take us beyond the clichés and simplistic theories about schools and reform. Most importantly, we read of tangible and intelligent solutions that can be instituted, based on the facts on the ground. I highly recommend this book to everyone interested in getting beyond the typical talking points of school reform.”
—Grant Wiggins, Authentic Education
“Camille Farrington details how high schools trap students along developmental trajectories distorted by structural factors—resources, values and practices—beyond their control. Grounded firmly in research, she describes a better way forward. This book is an important contribution to the re-visioning of American high schools.”
—Ronald F. Ferguson, faculty director, Achievement Gap Initiative, Harvard University
"Why is there such a pattern of failure in urban high schools? This is a vital issue for every city in America. Camille Farrington’s analysis of the roots of this problem and suggestions for structural changes to break this cycle is the best I have seen. This book combines research and practitioner wisdom with common sense and heart, and for those of us engaged in this work, presents concrete directions for positive change.”
—Ron Berger, chief academic officer, Expeditionary Learning
Book Features:Offers concrete strategies for redesigning high schools based on four dimensions of student achievement—structural, academic, developmental, and motivational. Highlights the voices of students to illustrate fundamental problems with the way we currently “do school.” Addresses the new Common Core State Standards and the potential of this major reform effort to move us toward equity and excellence.
Camille A. Farrington is a research associate (assistant professor) at The University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration and the Consortium on Chicago School Research and director of curriculum, instruction, and assessment for the Network for College Success.
This book draws on extensive research by the author and others on the actions needed to turn around low-performing schools. First, however, the book examines the personal qualities needed to undertake the turnaround process. Following chapters provide guidelines on diagnosing the school-based causes of low achievement and developing a school turnaround plan. The author focuses on the importance of continuous planning – a departure from standard practice. A major portion of the book is devoted to examples of first-order and second-order strategies for raising achievement. Specific recommendations for launching the turnaround process and sustaining gains beyond the first years of turnaround are provided. The concluding chapter addresses the role of school districts in supporting school-based turnaround efforts.
Contributors: Sue Abplanalp, Cynthia Alexander, Alfredo J. Artiles, David R. Garcia, Dorothy F. Garrison-Wade, JoEtta Gonzales, Taucia Gonzalez, Cristina Santamaría Graff, Donna Hart-Tervalon, Jack C. Jorgensen, Elaine Mulligan, Sheryl Petty, Samantha Paredes Scribner, Amanda L. Sullivan, Anne Smith, Sandra L. Vazquez,Shelley Zion
“If you truly care about the serious, research-based pursuit of equity and inclusivity in urban schools, you must read this book. Using researcher-practitioner co-author teams and a case study of national urban reform, Kozleski, King Thorius, and their chapter team authors show how to go successfully to scale with systemic reform.”
—James Joseph Scheurich, Professor, Indiana University School of Education, Indianapolis
Elizabeth B. Kozleski chairs the Special Education program at the University of Kansas. She received the TED-Merrill award for her leadership in special education teacher education in 2011. Kathleen King Thorius is an assistant professor of urban special education in Indiana University’s School of Education at IUPUI. She is principal investigator for the Great Lakes Equity Center, a Regional Equity Assistance Center funded by the U. S. Department of Education.
This book will help public school educators understand that turnaround efforts are based on sound leadership principles – nothing more, nothing less. It also provides school leaders with the critical skills to turn around failing schools and, more importantly, prevent their schools from failing in the first place.
Individual chapters address topics such as setting institutional priorities, establishing a positive school culture, improving communications, developing classroom leadership, putting the school on a sound financial footing, and using data to guide the school turnaround. In essence, this book serves as a practical guide for instructional and institutional leaders on how to make a "real” difference in the success of our nation's schools.
The portfolio strategy creates interesting new bedfellows: people who think that government should oversee public education align with those advocating choice, competition, and entrepreneurship. It cuts across political lines and engages city governments and civic assets (e.g., philanthropies, businesses, universities) much more deeply than earlier reform initiatives. New York and New Orleans were portfolio pioneers, but the idea has spread rapidly to cities as far-flung as Los Angeles, Denver, and Chicago.
Results have been mixed overall but generally positive in places that implemented the strategy most aggressively. Reform leaders such as New York's Joel Klein have been overly optimistic, however, assuming that the strategy's merits would be so obvious that careful assessment would be unnecessary. Serious policy evaluation is still needed.
Leaders must push to challenge the status quo, convey a high sense of urgency, and have the courage needed to intervene. But they need to also pull together to create a commonly-owned strategy, develop professional power, and attend to sustainability. Examining three major cities—New York, Toronto, and London—through the decade of 2002–2012, this book weaves case studies with careful analysis and recommendations to hone in on which policies and strategies work best to raise the bar for all students and reduce the gap for the disadvantaged. Big-City School Reforms offers invaluable advice to those leading the next phase of school reform in cities around the world. This is an eminently practical book that focuses on big problems and big solutions.
“This encouraging book draws on the recent experiences of New York, London, and Toronto to identify what it takes to transform big-city school systems. It recognises their complexities without being overawed by them. By concentrating on the factors that seem to matter most, it offers real hope that we can now tackle some of the key issues that have frustrated reform efforts in the past.”
—Geoff Whitty, director emeritus, Institute of Education, University of London, UK
"Fullan and Boyle present a compelling framework for motivating and sustaining improvement in large urban school districts. The authors’ premise that system leaders must optimally balance push and pull strategies serves as an important lesson to school-level leaders as well.”
—Sandra J. Stein, education and leadership consultant
“In this important new book, Fullan and Boyle answer the most important question facing the leaders of the world's major cities: what will it take to significantly improve the quality of public education? Through a sophisticated analysis of the policies pursued in New York, Toronto, and London, the authors make it possible for us to see why some cities are making more progress than others. Their clear and compelling insights couldn't be more relevant and timely.”
—Pedro A. Noguera, Peter L. Agnew Professor of Education, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Development, Executive Director, Metropolitan Center for Urban Education, New York University
Michael Fullan, Order of Canada, is professor emeritus of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. Alan Boyle is director of Leannta Education Associates where he designs professional learning for education leaders.
Book Features:Specific recommendations for creating a healthy, high-functioning school. A detailed account of what school choice actually looks and feels like to the people who experience it. A vivid description of the modern classroom and what it’s really like to teach in public school. An important focus on the humanity of teachers (their personal histories, their reasons for entering the profession, their day-to-day challenges). An intimate look at the inner lives of children (their biggest fears and needs, their moments of triumph and understanding).
Sam Chaltain is a national educator and organizational change consultant based in Washington, DC. He was the National Director of the Forum for Education and Democracy and the founding director of the Five Freedoms Project. Visit his blog at samchaltain.com.
“What Our School shows with passion and precision is that education is about real people leading real lives in real places. If school doesn’t engage them, it doesn’t work, no matter what the accountants and policymakers may say. That’s what this book is really about and why it’s so important for anyone who genuinely cares about schools, communities, and their children.”
—From the Foreword by Sir Ken Robinson, world-renowned author and educator
“This is an important book. Our School is vibrant and alive. Sam Chaltain’s keen insights and warm, readable prose invite readers to experience the complex, challenging, often frustrating, and occasionally triumphant lives of four caring teachers and their students. I urge you to accept the invitation.”
—John Merrow, education correspondent, PBS NewsHour, and president and executive producer, Learning Matters , Inc.
“Sam Chaltain is one of the most important voices in public education today, and he writes wonderfully well. In Our School, Sam puts a human face on urban education, showing us what it’s like to be a teacher, student, or parent in the Brave New World of school choice. Parents, educators, and policymakers should read this book. The result will be a more informed and creative conversation about what public education ought to be, and how to make it that way.”
—Parker J. Palmer, author of Healing the Heart of Democracy, The Courage to Teach, and Let Your Life Speak
Kathleen Gallagher and Barry Freeman bring together nineteen playwrights, actors, directors, scholars, and educators who discuss the role that theatre can – and must – play in professional, community, and educational venues. Stepping back from their daily work, they offer scholarly research, artists’ reflections, interviews, and creative texts that argue for theatre as a response to the political and cultural challenges emerging in the twenty-first century. Contributors address theatre’s contribution to local and global politics of place, its power as an antidote to various modern social ailments, and its pursuit of equality. Of equal concern are the systematic and practical challenges that confront those involved in realizing theatre’s full potential.
ALL DAY is a behind-the-bars, personal glimpse into the issue of mass incarceration via an unpredictable, insightful and ultimately hopeful reflection on teaching teens while they await sentencing.
Told with equal parts raw honesty and unbridled compassion, ALL DAY recounts a year in Liza Jessie Peterson's classroom at Island Academy, the high school for inmates detained at New York City's Rikers Island. A poet and actress who had done occasional workshops at the correctional facility, Peterson was ill-prepared for a full-time stint teaching in the GED program for the incarcerated youths. For the first time faced with full days teaching the rambunctious, hyper, and fragile adolescent inmates, "Ms. P" comes to understand the essence of her predominantly Black and Latino students as she attempts not only to educate them, but to instill them with a sense of self-worth long stripped from their lives.
"I have quite a spirited group of drama kings, court jesters, flyboy gangsters, tricksters, and wannabe pimps all in my charge, all up in my face, to educate," Peterson discovers. "Corralling this motley crew of bad-news bears to do any lesson is like running boot camp for hyperactive gremlins. I have to be consistent, alert, firm, witty, fearless, and demanding, and most important, I have to have strong command of the subject I'm teaching." Discipline is always a challenge, with the students spouting street-infused backtalk and often bouncing off the walls with pent-up testosterone. Peterson learns quickly that she must keep the upper hand-set the rules and enforce them with rigor, even when her sympathetic heart starts to waver.
Despite their relentless bravura and antics-and in part because of it-Peterson becomes a fierce advocate for her students. She works to instill the young men, mostly black, with a sense of pride about their history and culture: from their African roots to Langston Hughes and Malcolm X. She encourages them to explore and express their true feelings by writing their own poems and essays. When the boys push her buttons (on an almost daily basis) she pushes back, demanding that they meet not only her expectations or the standards of the curriculum, but set expectations for themselves-something most of them have never before been asked to do. She witnesses some amazing successes as some of the boys come into their own under her tutelage.
Peterson vividly captures the prison milieu and the exuberance of the kids who have been handed a raw deal by society and have become lost within the system. Her time in the classroom teaches her something, too-that these boys want to be rescued. They want normalcy and love and opportunity.
A Fight for the Soul of Public Education takes into account two overlapping, parallel, and equally important stories. One is a grassroots story of worker activism told from the perspective of rank-and-file union members and their community supporters. Ashby and Bruno provide a detailed account of how the strike became an international cause when other teachers unions had largely surrendered to corporate-driven education reform. The second story describes the role of state and national politics in imposing educational governance changes on public schools and draconian limitations on union bargaining rights. It includes a detailed account of the actual bargaining process revealing the mundane and the transcendental strategies of both school board and union representatives.
This book is the definitive resource to help high-achieving, low-income students access the best possible college. The author draws from her extensive experience in education to provide advice on important aspects of the path to college such as pursuing a strong high school curriculum, preparing for standardized exams, complementing learning at school, developing leadership, and finding expert help and role models—all through affordable strategies. In the book, the author also guides students through the college application and selection processes, as well as the steps to obtain enough financial aid.
From the very first page, the author sheds light on her own journey to college through deeply personal vignettes, demonstrating by example that students with few resources can reach and succeed at the top universities in the United States.
California the charter school movement has generated much controversy. It has been praised for its accomplishments, and criticized for its creaming of students.
Over 130,000 students attend nearly 250 charter schools in the city of Los Angeles. This
book presents an in-depth look at seventeen of those schools – urban schools that are making a difference in the lives of the students and families they serve.
Readers will encounter a group of dedicated educational pioneers who are committed and passionate about their schools. These are people who have sacrificed much, and put their lives on hold to develop and implement schools that meet the needs of all students regardless of economic circumstance or background. From people who have mortgaged their homes toattain financing for their dream, to some that have changed careers to improve the quality of education for children and young adults.
While many textbooks support how teachers should teach students in urban settings, this book asserts individuals can be effective teachers in these settings only if they first develop an understanding urban schools and the students who attend them. As readers progress through the chapters, they will realize they don’t know what they don’t know.
Within a framework of cognitive dissonance, readers will continuously examine and reexamine their personal beliefs and perceptions. Readers will also investigate new information and varied perspectives related to urban schools. When readers finish this book, they will be on their way to becoming effective teachers in urban environments.
More than just educational institutions, Catholic schools promote the development of social capital—the social networks and mutual trust that form the foundation of safe and cohesive communities. Drawing on data from the Project on Human Development in Chicago Neighborhoods and crime reports collected at the police beat or census tract level in Chicago, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles, Margaret F. Brinig and Nicole Stelle Garnett demonstrate that the loss of Catholic schools triggers disorder, crime, and an overall decline in community cohesiveness, and suggest that new charter schools fail to fill the gaps left behind.
This book shows that the closing of Catholic schools harms the very communities they were created to bring together and serve, and it will have vital implications for both education and policing policy debates.