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GovernanceSelected Research & Readings (Additional Resources)
What States Are Doing
Selected Research & Readings
 Deregulation/Waivers/Home Rule
 Local/Mayoral Takeovers
 School Boards
 Site-Based Management
 State Boards/Chiefs/Agencies

Choice of Schools
Choice of Schools--Charter Schools
Choice of Schools--Charter Schools--Charter Districts
Choice of Schools--Choice/Open Enrollment
Choice of Schools--Magnet or Specialized Schools
Choice of Schools--Vouchers
Governance--Deregulation/Waivers/Home Rule
Governance--School Boards
Governance--Site-Based Management
Instructional Approaches--Homeschooling
Postsecondary Governance and Structures

What's Hot in School Governance: Takeovers, Charter Schools and P-16 Systems PDF - State and districts leaders are rethinking and redesigning how they govern public education – they are changing who makes what decisions about public education. The National Center on Governing America's Schools has been tracking a number of school governance issues: takeovers, charter schools and P-16 systems. For each of these issues, this report examines state activity in 2001 and early 2002, explores recent research findings and provides key questions for state policymakers. (ECS, Kirstin Craciun and Todd Ziebarth, June 2002)...

Effective School Governance: A Look at Today’s Practice and Tomorrow’s Promise MS Word - This report examines the role of the school board in raising academic performance. It looks at the basic and unique functions of local school boards in American education, as well as their effectiveness in meeting the needs of a changing society. It identifies the National School Board Association’s fundamentals of good board operations, and suggests how the state can strengthen the capacity of local school boards to govern and lead for effective results. (Michael Resnick and Hal Seamon, Education Commission of the States, January 1999)...

Emerging Strategies for Private-Sector Governance MS Word - This report delineates five governance strategies – reform of corporate boards, organization improvement, developing team-based organizations, establishing independent sub-units and creating organization networks – that have emerged in the private sector over the last two decades. The author offers case examples, including the results obtained upon implementation of each strategy, and also draws analogies between changes that have occurred in the private sector and those that could occur in public education. (Cristina Gibson, Education Commission of the States, January 1999)...

Governing America's Schools: Changing the Rules PDF - The time is right for state and local policymakers and educators to rethink and redesign how we govern our schools. This report, which The Wall Street Journal commended for "sweeping away decades of cobwebs surrounding previous reform proposals" and setting "a high standard for future debate on the subject," outlines two potential approaches for governing the nation's schools. Both of the proposed approaches seek to build on the strengths of the prevailing governance system while infusing it with a greater capacity for adaptability, flexibility and accountability. An Executive Summary of this publication is available. (National Commission on Governing America's Schools, Education Commission of the States, November 1999)...

Recent Changes in Public-Sector Governance MS Word - This report provides an overview of the forces that have prompted changes in public-sector governance over the past two decades, and contrasts new patterns of governance with traditional patterns of governance. It also identifies six different models representing new patterns of governance and discusses the governing challenges posed by these new patterns. Finally, it draws analogies between the examples of new governance and public education governance. (Anne Khademian, Education Commission of the States, January 1999)...

State Education Leader (Winter 1999), Education Governance Issues Taking Center Stage MS Word PDF - Much activity is occurring in education governance. For some, this threatens the very existence of the public education system. To others, it is forcing education leaders to deal with problems that have gone unresolved for too long. This is a critical time for education governance and public education. (State Education Leader, Education Commission of the States, vol. 17, no. 1, Winter 1999, 24 pages)...

The Changing Landscape of Education Governance MS Word - There is a trend in the United States, and in other countries throughout the world, toward the devolution of authority in public education to those most closely involved with students. This report examines these decentralizing structures, which include a variety of deregulation strategies, site-based management, open-enrollment initiatives, charter schools and tax credits, tax deductions and vouchers. An exception to this tendency, however, is found in a number of the nation’s largest districts, where states are aggressively intervening to establish central control and authority over systems that are chronically underperforming. (Todd Ziebarth, Education Commission of the States, January 1999)...

The Invisible Hand of Ideology: Perspectives from the History of School Governance MS Word - According to this provocative history of school governance, written by prominent education historians Thomas Timar and David Tyack, when Americans grow dissatisfied with public schools, they often blame the way they are governed. The authors walk the reader through the four major governance shifts that have occurred over the past 150 years, and examine the ideological underpinnings of these shifts. (Thomas Timar and David Tyack, Education Commission of the States, January 1999)...

Urban Schools: Emerging Governance Models MS Word - This document provides a brief history of urban school governance and summarizes some of the unique governance structures that have emerged in six American cities and one Canadian province over recent years. A profile of each city's (or province's) governance structure is provided. Each profile is organized around a common framework: legal basis for reform, district demographics, district leadership, parent/community involvement, changes to collective bargaining, evaluation, costs and results to date. (Education Commission of the States, September 1997)...

Engaging Cities: How Municipal Leaders Can Mobilize Communities to Improve Public Schools - Mayors are in a unique position to rally civic and community stakeholders around a compelling common interest – the future of their cities' children. The visibility and authority of the mayor's office provide opportunities to: (1) place public education high on the city's list of priorities; (2) work toward ensuring adequate funding and resources; (3) forge partnerships that enrich and sustain schools; and (4) build public will and support to improve outcomes for the city's children and youth. This report looks at five cities – Denver, Akron, Long Beach, Nashville and New York – where mayors have engaged the public and built civic capacity around education reform, using the leverage of their office in strategic ways. (Michael Grady, Robert Rothman and Hal Smith, Annenberg Institute for School Reform, July 2006) ...

Put Learning First: A Portfolio Approach to Public Schools - This brief argues for a portfolio approach to public schools. A portfolio-based system would allow school boards to customize schools to their students’ diverse needs within the framework of public education. Such a system would have eight key features: (1) public oversight; (2) public funding; (3) concentration of resources near the student; (4) strategic use of community resources; (5) rewards for high performance; (6) openness to promising ideas, people, and organizations; (7) free movement of dollars, students and educators; and (8) An environment of support for both new and existing schools. (Paul T. Hill, Progressive Policy Institute, February 2006) ...

Mayoral Leadership and Involvement in Education: An Action Guide for Success - This guide is intended to provide useful information to mayors no matter what role they currently have or are considering in education, with the goal of assisting them in making choices in how they may get involved in the school systems of their cities. The purpose of the guide is to: (1) help mayors understand the range of education issues and problems they may find themselves facing; (2) provide ideas and strategies for potential involvement in education; (3) convey specific information about school finance, management and education reform issues; and (4) give mayors advice on what to do and what not to do when becoming engaged. (Fritz Edelstein, The United States Conference of Mayors, January 2006)...

Who's in Charge Here? - Who's in Charge Here? examines who is and who should be responsible for American schools and the consequences these decisions have for our children. (Noel Epstein and ECS, Brookings Institution Press, October 2004)...

The New Patterns of American Educational Governance: From Local Control to State and Federal Direction of Education Policy - This paper explores many of the changing realities of educational governance, including the rapidly increasing federal influence and the increasing amount of state control over education policy. It also examines the challenges and possibilites that lie ahead, and presents the outlines of a new governance system that is aligned with key values, goals and purposes. (David T. Conley, ERIC Clearinghouse on Educational Management, 2002)...

Effective School Boards: Strategies for Improving Board Performance - This book provides clear-cut guidance for school board members who wish to improve their effectiveness. It addresses two fundamental questions: What does an effective board look like? How can a board, with the support of its superintendent and community, become more effective? In answering these questions, it offers a range of helpful strategies for improving board performance, including a presentation of a model for success – the Model for School Board Effectiveness – that is based on real-life experience. This document is not available on the Web, but can be ordered for $30.00 by calling 800-956-7739. (Eugene Smoley, Jossey-Bass Publishers, 1999) ...

Selected Research & Readings Current

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