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no excuses schools
August 20, 2018
Behind the scenes, Success Academy’s first high school spent last year in chaos. Can Eva Moskowitz turn it around?
Worried about students’ grades and behavior, Eva Moskowitz sidelined the school’s principal and pushed staff to strictly enforce the dress code. It didn't go smoothly.
April 20, 2018
Do charter schools suspend students more? It depends on how you look at the data.
Charters have a higher overall suspension rate than traditional public schools. But when you break down suspensions by race, charters actually post slightly lower rates.
March 28, 2018
Can top charters truly ‘replicate’? In Boston, yes — elsewhere, it’s not so clear
A new study finds that Boston charters maintained their high performance as they rapidly grew — perhaps because they closely emulated their original schools’ practices.
charter kids go to college
August 29, 2017
Do ‘no-excuses’ charter schools lead to success after high school? At one high-profile network, the answer seems to be yes
A new study offers evidence that attending the Chicago-based Noble charter network does help students succeed after high school.
October 21, 2016
First Person: What the shift to restorative justice looked like in my KIPP school
When a student defaced our school with angry graffiti, we asked him direct questions in more than a dozen conferences. "Soft"? We ask to be judged by results.
July 6, 2016
Without ‘grit’ or ‘no excuses,’ how one charter high school is preparing to send high-needs students to college
With their vision newly approved, the founders of Brooklyn Laboratory Charter High School join a growing number of charter school leaders branching out into high school.
March 8, 2016
Beyond the viral video: Inside educators’ emotional debate about ‘no excuses’ discipline
The discipline question finds individual students, teachers, and parents pulled between two poles of a heated, high-stakes, and very personal debate. Here's a primer.
October 8, 2013
Bloomberg stumps for his schools legacy at “Education Nation”
Speaking this morning at NBC’s “Education Nation,” Mayor Bloomberg recapped three terms of his efforts to improve New York City’s schools. He also signaled that even as “no excuses”-style education advocates have softened on acknowledging the serious challenges that poverty poses for schools, his own thinking has not changed much: “They said: ‘We will never improve schools serving low-income students until we end poverty.’ And I think they could not have been more wrong. “The truth of the matter is we will never end poverty until we improve the schools – and that’s what we set out to do 12 years ago. And today, I am glad to report that high school graduation rates have risen 39 percent. Read Bloomberg’s full comments at “Education Nation,” as distributed by the city, below.
June 25, 2013
"Remarkable" seniors show resolve to make it to graduation day
During their high school years, they lost loved ones, dealt with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, lived in homeless shelters, and raised children on their own. These are just a few of the obstacles that 178 graduating seniors from across the city overcame to earn the Chancellor's Award for Remarkable Achievement, which has been awarded to students since 2006. “I am truly awestruck by these students’ commitment to education, including their capability to stay focused on graduation and move on to college even through times of extreme difficulty and stress," said Chancellor Dennis Walcott during a reception at Tweed Courthouse on Monday evening that Mayor Bloomberg also attended. GothamSchools spoke with some of the honorees at the event to find out about the challenges they overcame to get to graduation — and what they credit for their success. Demetrius Johnson has lived in more than 30 foster care homes and ended up in juvenile detention when he was 16. That's when he decided to change his life around. He enrolled at Freedom Academy High School, a Brooklyn high school that the city is closing this year, where he excelled in math. Johnson will attend SUNY Jefferson this fall and eventually wants to attend Columbia Law School to become a lawyer.
October 10, 2008
Newark’s “new paternalism” reduces teacher to tears
NorthStar Academy students with author R.L. Stine Remember those “paternalistic” schools — since rechristened “no excuses schools” — that David Whitman wrote…
September 12, 2008
American-style "no excuses" schools cropping up in England
Since the beginning of this decade, the British government has allowed private “sponsors” to manage state-funded “academies” in an initiative to create innovative, bureaucracy-free…
August 22, 2008
Imagining accountability in the "no excuses society"
Tucked in at the end of Elizabeth Green’s Sun story about Obama’s education orientation, Obama advisor Jonathan Schnur argues that dividing education policy into two camps — those who side with the “Broader, Bolder” platform and those who prefer the Education Equality Project’s — “presents a ‘false choice.’” Philissa hinted at the same point in her post about “total schools.” The more I read posts accusing "Broader, Bolder" supporters of making excuses or "Education Equality" supporters of scapegoating schools and teachers, the more I tend to agree. As an educator, it makes no sense to sit around and wait for society to level the playing field so that all your kids come into school healthy, prepared to learn, and fully supported at home. You see that you have kids who didn't benefit from good prenatal care, nutrition, early childhood education, or clean air, and who face physical and developmental challenges as a result - but what are you going to do about it? You throw yourself into your teaching, and, if you're lucky, your school comes together to tackle the other issues to the extent possible. You can work some wonders this way, but you know, deep down, that while it's not an excuse, you could do more if the background issues were addressed. As a policymaker evaluating schools, it makes no sense to ignore context.
August 21, 2008
Total schooling: Is that what KIPP offers?
The education blogosphere is abuzz this week with responses to Jay Mathews' most recent Washington Post column, in which he issued a call for a term other than "paternalistic schools" to describe the wave of schools, mostly charters, featured in "Sweating the Small Stuff: Inner-City Schools and the New Paternalism," a new book out of the Fordham Institute. Mathews considers several terms — including "tough love schools," "achievement-focus schools," "high-intensity schools," and "tough little schools" — but says none of them successfully conveys to parent and policymakers alike all of the schools' characteristics. Other suggestions have popped up around the internet, from "relentless schools" to "elite charters." Over on her blog, Joanne Jacobs is toying with "total schooling," suggesting that the term comprises both the academic and "values" approach these schools employ. I have to take issue with Jacobs' nomenclature, because I've actually been thinking recently about the term as well, but in a somewhat different way: as an education counterpart to the notion of "total war." Total war is a modern iteration of warfare in which one side marshals all of its resources, both military and civilian, to defeat the enemy. World War II is widely considered a total war, for example, because civilians contributed to the war effort and were considered legitimate targets for military action. The theory translates imperfectly to the education world, of course, but in my mind, "total schools" would be those that marshal all of the resources of the community to defeat the "enemy" of low achievement.
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