From David Osborne, the author of Reinventing Government--a biting analysis of the failure of America's public schools and a comprehensive plan for revitalizing American education.
In Reinventing America's Schools, David Osborne, one of the world's foremost experts on public sector reform, offers a comprehensive analysis of the charter school movements and presents a theory that will do for American schools what his New York Times bestseller Reinventing Government did for public governance in 1992. In 2005, when Hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, the city got an unexpected opportunity to recreate their school system from scratch. The state's Recovery School District (RSD), created to turn around failing schools, gradually transformed all of its New Orleans schools into charter schools, and the results are shaking the very foundations of American education. Test scores, school performance scores, graduation and dropout rates, ACT scores, college-going rates, and independent studies all tell the same story: the city's RSD schools have tripled their effectiveness in eight years. Now other cities are following suit, with state governments reinventing failing schools in Newark, Camden, Memphis, Denver, Indianapolis, Cleveland, and Oakland.
In this book, Osborne uses compelling stories from cities like New Orleans and lays out the history and possible future of public education. Ultimately, he uses his extensive research to argue that in today's world, we should treat every public school like a charter school and grant them autonomy, accountability, diversity of school designs, and parental choice.
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About the Author
Table of Contents
Preface and Acknowledgments xi
Part I New Orleans: Katrina Wipes the Slate Clean
Chapter 1 The Revolution 21
Chapter 2 The Schools 34
Chapter 3 The Results 54
Part II A Tale of Two Systems: Education Reform in Washington, D.C.
Chapter 4 The Birth of Charter Schools in D.C. 83
Chapter 5 Michelle Rhee Brings in Her Broom 95
Chapter 6 The Charter Board Gets Serious About Quality 103
Chapter 7 Comparing the Charter and Traditional Sectors 113
Part III Denver: An Elected School Board Adopts a 21st Century Strategy
Chapter 8 The Mile-High City Embraces Charter Schools 141
Chapter 9 Delivering Results 161
Chapter 10 Denver's Remaining Challenges 184
Part IV The Revolution Spreads
Chapter 11 Other Cities Embrace the 21st Century Model 199
Part V The Keys to Success
Chapter 12 The DNA of 21st Century Systems 223
Chapter 13 You Get What You Measure: Defining School Quality in 21st Century Systems 249
Chapter 14 Strategy: Getting from Here to There 278
Appendix A Measuring School Performance in New Orleans, Washington, D.C., and Denver 299
Appendix B What We Should Learn from Denver's Experience with Performance Pay 315
Appendix C Other Districts Pursuing 21st Century Strategies 319