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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 1999): Education - Overseas

EDUCATIONAL VOUCHERS: EFFECTIVENESS, CHOICE AND COSTS

H. M. Levin
Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, vol. 17, no. 3, Summer 1998, p. 373-392

An analysis of empirical evidence on the effects of educational vouchers shows that such choice systems lead to "cream-skimming", and greater socioeconomic and racial segregation of students. The weight of the evidence suggests that differences in student achievement in state and private schools are small. Evidence does not support the contention that costs of private schools are considerably lower than those of state schools in the US, but the costs of a voucher infrastructure exceed those of the present system.

GOVERNANCE AND REFORM OF PUBLIC EDUCATION IN THE UNITED STATES

J. Hochschild and B. Scott
Public Opinion Quarterly, vol. 62, no. 1, Spring 1998, p. 78-120

Public opinion polls show that Americans are concerned about state schools, but find the schools they know best generally satisfactory. They claim to be willing to pay for many expensive reforms. Teachers see parents as the chief source of the problems they face; parents do not see themselves in this way. The validity of some of these survey results, such as those showing support for school desegregation, national standards, and for greater public spending on schools, are questionable, since in these cases survey results and actual behaviour tend to diverge. The public is divided over the legitimacy of publicly funded vouchers for private and parochial schools.

INSIDE-IN AND OUTSIDE-IN SUPPORT FOR RESTRUCTURING: THE EFFECTS OF INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL SUPPORT ON CHANGE IN THE NEW AMERICAN SCHOOLS

L. Bol and others
Education and Urban Society, vol. 30, no. 3, May 1998, p. 358-384

Study investigates teachers' perceptions of the support provided for the implementation of the New American Schools (NAS) restructuring models. Article focuses on three broad categories of support: professional development opportunities as a source of external support; teacher collaboration within the school as a source of internal support; and resources such as money, time, materials and equipment, considered to be both internal and external sources of support. Findings show that opportunities for external professional development, provision of adequate resources and enhanced internal collaboration positively influence reform implementation.

THE MEMPHIS RESTRUCTURING INITIATIVE: ANALYSIS OF INITIATIVES AND OUTCOMES THAT AFFECT IMPLEMENTATION SUCCESS

L. Smith and others
Education and Urban Society, vol. 30, no. 3, May 1998, p. 296-325

Examines eight school reform designs being scaled up in one urban, high poverty district. The rate and quality of design implementations depend on type of design, quality of professional development and training, availability of resources, principal leadership and teacher support.

SCALING UP SCHOOL RESTRUCTURING IN MULTICULTURAL, MULTILINGUAL CONTEXTS: EARLY OBSERVATIONS FROM SUNLAND COUNTY

S. Stringfield and others
Education and Urban Society, vol. 30, no. 3, May 1998, p. 326-357

Article presents early observations of 13 culturally and linguistically diverse schools which are in the process of implementing an externally developed school restructuring design. Concludes that schools need to be able to make educated choices of models; that multidimensional leadership is needed from design teams, district personnel and school site educators; that educators must ensure that all students receive the benefits of reform designs and that high academic standards are universally maintained, and that forethought and sensitivity are required.

SUCCESS FOR ALL: IMPROVING THE QUALITY OF IMPLEMENTATION OF WHOLE SCHOOL CHANGE THROUGH THE USE OF A NATIONAL REFORM NETWORK

R. Cooper, R. E. Slavin and N. A. Madden
Education and Urban Society, vol. 30, no. 3, May 1998, p. 385-408

Data suggest that participation in national and local network activities can affect the quality of implementation of whole school change.

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