Death By A Thousand Cuts: Racism, School Closures, and Public School Sabotage

Children and Youth, Education and Literacy

Death By A Thousand Cuts: Racism, School Closures, and Public School Sabotage

The members of Journey for Justice, are comprised of thousands of youth, parents, and other concerned citizens from comĀ­munities of color across the United States. They wrote this report because they need the American people to know that the public education systems in our communities are dying. More accurately, they are being killed by an alliance of misguided, paternalistic "reformers," education profiteers, and those who seek to dismantle the institution of public education. Some are being killed quickly; others are still in the early stages. But it is, at this point, quite clear that there will soon be little to nothing left of our public school systems -- and many more like ours -- unless current trends are disrupted.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Midwestern)-Illinois-Cook County-Chicago, North America-United States (Midwestern)-Michigan-Wayne County-Detroit, North America-United States (Midwestern)-Minnesota-Ramsey County-St. Paul, North America-United States (Northeastern)-Massachusetts-Suffolk County-Boston, North America-United States (Northeastern)-New Jersey-Essex County-Newark, North America-United States (Northeastern)-New Jersey-Hudson County-Jersey City, North America-United States (Northeastern)-New Jersey-Passaic County-Paterson, North America-United States (Northeastern)-New York-New York County-New York City, North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Allegheny County-Pittsburgh, North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia, North America-United States (Southern)-District of Columbia-Washington, North America-United States (Southern)-Louisiana-Orleans Parish-New Orleans, North America-United States-Puerto Rico-Caguas

Making the Most of Interim Assessment Data: Lessons from Philadelphia

Education and Literacy

Making the Most of Interim Assessment Data: Lessons from Philadelphia

Under No Child Left Behind, urban school districts have increasingly turned to interim assessments, administered at regular intervals, to help gauge student progress in advance of annual state exams. These assessments have spawned growing debate among educators, assessment experts, and the testing industry: are they worth the significant investment of money and time? In Making the Most of Interim Assessment Data: Lessons from Philadelphia, Research for Action (RFA) weighs in on this issue. The School District of Philadelphia (SDP) was an early adopter of interim assessments, implementing the exams in 2003. Unlike teachers in some other regions, Philadelphia elementary and middle grades teachers rated these 'Benchmark' assessments highly. However, the study found that enthusiasm did not necessarily correlate with higher rates of student achievement. What did predict student success were three factors -- instructional leadership, collective responsibility, and use of the SDP's Core Curriculum. The report underscores the value of investment in ongoing data interpretation that emphasizes teachers' learning within formal instructional communities, such as grade groups of teachers. This research was funded by the Spencer Foundation and the William Penn Foundation.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia

Building Community Partnerships in Support of a Postsecondary Completion Agenda

Education and Literacy

Building Community Partnerships in Support of a Postsecondary Completion Agenda

This report highlights key lessons from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's Community Partnerships portfolio evaluation. It assesses the communities' progress over the course of the investment, and describes their work in the areas of building public commitment, using data, building and sustaining partnerships, and aligning policies and practices. The OMG Center served as the national evaluator of this initiative and the report also discusses the steps these communities can take to sustain their programs.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Southern)-Florida-Duval County-Jacksonville;North America-United States (Southern)-North Carolina-Mecklenburg County-Charlotte;North America-United States (Southern)-Kentucky-Jefferson County-Louisville;North America-United States (Western)-California-San Francisco County-San Francisco;North America-United States (Southwestern)-Texas-Cameron County-Brownsville;North America-United States (Southern)-North Carolina-Wake County-Raleigh;North America-United States (Southwestern)-Texas-Potter County-Amarillo;North America-United States (Northwestern)-Oregon-Multnomah County-Portland;North America-United States (Western)-California-Riverside County-Riverside;North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia;North America-United States (Northeastern)-New York-New York County-New York City;North America-United States (Northeastern)-Massachusetts-Suffolk County-Boston;North America-United States (Southwestern)-Arizona-Maricopa County-Phoenix;North America-United States (Southwestern)-Arizona-Maricopa County-Mesa;North America-United States (Midwestern)-Ohio-Montgomery County-Dayton

Links to Learning and Sustainability: Year Three Report of the Pennsylvania High School Coaching Initiative

Education and Literacy

Links to Learning and Sustainability: Year Three Report of the Pennsylvania High School Coaching Initiative

At the request of the Accountability Review Council, Research for Action identified effective organizational practices used by better performing schools serving substantial numbers of low income middle and high school students in the School District of Philadelphia. These practices are organized into three spheres: Conditions for Teaching, Student-Centered School Community, and Instructional Program. For each sphere, the report offers broad strategies and specific practices to enact the strategies. Nuanced school case studies show how the practices can work synergistically and coherently in schools to help students succeed.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia

Millennials in Philadelphia: A Promising but Fragile Boom

Crime and Safety, Education and Literacy, Employment and Labor

Millennials in Philadelphia: A Promising but Fragile Boom

The growth of Philadelphia's young-adult population in recent years has been hailed as one of the more positive developments in the city's recent history and a possible key to its future.Since 2006, when the city's population reached its lowest point in a century, no major city has experienced a larger increase in 20- to 34-year-olds than Philadelphia, as measured by the change in their percentage of each city's overall population.

This boom, however, appears to be as fragile as it is promising. Young adults -- members of the nation's vast millennial generation -- are drawn to the city by its vibrancy, diversity, culture, and nightlife. But many of them voice a familiar set of concerns about life in the city, bemoaning the dirty streets, the crime, and the perennially troubled school system. And they are contending with a local job market that many consider to be lacking in the kinds of opportunities that lead to careers.

In a Pew Charitable Trusts poll, half of the 20- to 34-year-olds questioned said they definitely or probably would not be living in Philadelphia five to 10 years from now, compared with about 3 in 10 for the rest of the city's adult population. The millennials cited job and career reasons, school and child-rearing concerns, and crime and public safety as the primary reasons for their potential departures. Using demographic data, focus groups, and polling results, Pew took a close look at Philadelphia's young adults, a group that has brought the city a renewed sense of vitality and hope and has enlivened its streets, day and night.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia

College Access and Success in Philadelphia: Part II: College Enrollment Activity

Education and Literacy

College Access and Success in Philadelphia: Part II: College Enrollment Activity

Presents a scan of Philadelphia public high school graduates' characteristics and their college enrollment, retention, and completion rates. Outlines implications and recommendations for local institutions and supports for college access and success.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania;North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia

Help Wanted: Research Brief

Community and Economic Development, Education and Literacy, Employment and Labor

Help Wanted: Research Brief

This brief provides original research demonstrating the growing gap between the workforce literacy skills of the working-age population and the needs of businesses in Philadelphia. In-depth information is available on: the definitions for prose, document, and quantitative literacy; literacy levels by demographics; comparisons between literacy levels in Philadelphia and the surrounding region; qualitative employer surveys; and projections of future literacy levels.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Philadelphia County-Philadelphia

More Districts Adopt Innovative Teacher Pay Plans

Education and Literacy

More Districts Adopt Innovative Teacher Pay Plans

In 2009 the Committee for Economic Development called on district and state education officials to revamp the way that teachers are paid. New compensation systems are needed to attract highly qualified individuals into teaching under labor market conditions that have changed substantially since the typical framework for teacher salaries was adopted.

Geographic Focus: North America-United States (Southern)-Maryland-Baltimore, North America-United States (Northeastern)-Pennsylvania-Allegheny County-Pittsburgh, North America-United States (Southern)-Florida-Hillsborough County

See More Reports

Go to IssueLab