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Public education in the United States does not fulfill either the educational needs or the social needs of children. Its deficiencies have serious negative consequences in our political system, our economy, and within our social and cultural affairs. We must seek to improve education through research, policy analysis, and the development of alternatives to existing policies and practices. Educational reform should include promoting greater parental choice in education, a competitive educational industry, and other policies that address the problems of both public and private schools. The ultimate goal is improved student achievement, especially in our nation's cities, where large numbers of students, are not reaching the levels of achievement they need in order to live successful lives as adults. This book explores some of the unique characteristics of school reform and focuses on the role of poverty in reform, including the negative effects of low-income neighborhoods on the youth who reside there, concluding that reducing poverty can lead to more positive academic behavior and success. Reform Can Make a Difference enables readers to look at different reform programs that are available for schools and determine which model, if any, will fit their needs. The book assists schools in designing their own reform model that will help address issues students and families have with public schools.