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ERIC Number: ED431855
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997
Pages: 52
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Eye of the Storm: Ten Years on the Front Lines of New Futures. An Interview with Otis Johnson and Don Crary.
Walsh, Joan
In 1987, the Annie E. Casey Foundation invited 10 medium-sized U.S. cities to apply to be part of the "New Futures" project, a program designed for cities that showed willingness and capacity to experiment with comprehensive, collaborative, public-private approaches to the multiple problems of at-risk children. Eventually, five cities were chosen: Savannah (Georgia); Little Rock (Arkansas); Dayton (Ohio); Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania); and Lawrence (Massachusetts). These sites set out to test the premises of New Futures: that strong political leadership, interagency cooperation, case management, and other innovations could reduce teen pregnancy and dropout rates and improve school achievement and youth employment within 5 years. The initiative was not successful in three cities, but in Savannah and Little Rock, the projects became catalysts for innovation and reform. This interview with Don Crary from Little Rock and Otis Johnson from Savannah explores the successes and failures of the New Futures initiative in these cities. The key insight drawn from these experiences is that systems reform is about changing relationships. A result of the New Futures initiative is a change in the way that foundations and community builders think about and provide technical assistance and evaluation. Requirements for more and better technical assistance, more attention to collaboration, increased opportunities for peer learning and support, and new thinking about how to help sites develop their internal capacities for improvement are lessons from New Futures. (SLD)
Annie E. Casey Foundation, 701 St. Paul Street, Baltimore, MD 21201; Tel: 410-547-6600; Fax: 410-547-6624; Web Site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Annie E. Casey Foundation, Baltimore, MD.