Bringing School Reform to Scale looks in detail at five school districts that have been honored in recent years by The Broad Foundation, whose annual award is granted “each year to the urban school districts that demonstrate the greatest overall performance and improvement in student achievement while reducing achievement gaps among poor and minority students.”
Heather Zavadsky examines five Broad Prize winners—Long Beach Unified School District, Garden Grove Unified School District, Norfolk Public Schools, Boston Public Schools, and Aldine Independent School District. As she notes, “the successes highlighted in this book do not represent one-year positive performance blips in these districts, and this book does not provide a list of ‘best practice’ silver bullets that sound effective but cannot be applied outside a unique context. Rather, the book describes the paths these districts have taken over years of intentional, sustained, patient focus on improving teaching and learning that fully aligns instructional practices across all organizational levels of a school system—something that can be done in any district given the right knowledge and tools.”
Bringing School Reform to Scale is a volume in the Educational Innovations series.
This book offers an unusually detailed look inside some of our best run school districts. Heather Zavadsky offers honest assessments, highlighting not only the inspiring successes, but also the many daunting challenges that remain. Very enlightening! — Ronald F. Ferguson, faculty cochair and director of the Achievement Gap Initiative, Harvard University
Bringing School Reform to Scale highlights the practices in five districts that won the prestigious Broad Prize—and shows how important fundamentals of good practices (including rigorous standards, aligned curriculum, and smart investments in human capital) can lead to great schools and successful districts. — Mark Schneider, vice president, American Institutes for Research; former commissioner of the National Center for Education Statistics
The media are good at spotlighting random school successes, education reforms that subsequently seem to evaporate. Why is it so difficult to sustain and spread productive change from school system to school system? The answers to these questions are crucial, and Bringing School Reform to Scale is a powerful contribution to an accumulation of knowledge regarding these issues. — James W. Guthrie, Patricia and Rodes Hart Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy, Vanderbilt University
The analysis of the five high-performing districts points to practices, beliefs, systems, and structures that have led to dramatic turnarounds. The compilation of this work provides a road map toward scalable reform. — William R. Hite, superintendent, Prince George’s County Public Schools, Maryland