ERIC Number: ED451305
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Jan
Reference Count: N/A
School Instructional Program Coherence: Benefits and Challenges. Improving Chicago's Schools.
Newmann, Fred M.; Smith, BetsAnn; Allensworth, Elaine; Bryk, Anthony S.
This report is part of a series of special topic reports developed by the Chicago Annenberg Research Project to document key issues and problems affecting the Chicago Annenberg Challenge and the improvement of Chicago public schools in general. The report introduces the concept of instructional program coherence and explains why schools whose improvement efforts show strong coherence are more likely to advance. It presents research showing that students in Chicago elementary schools with stronger program coherence have higher gains in academic achievement. It also shares observations on how, in specific schools, principals, external partners, and other agencies direct, or fail to direct, key school resources toward more coherent instruction. It ends by discussing factors within the educational system that discourage instructional program coherence, suggesting ways that school leaders, school improvement partners, and policymakers can bring about instructional coherence that will reward their school improvement efforts. Five chapters present: (1) "The Problem: Too Many Unrelated, Unsustained 'Improvement' Programs"; (2) "What Is Instructional Program Coherence?" (3) "Is Instructional Program Coherence Related to Student Achievement: Survey Results"; (4) "Organizing Instructional Program Coherence in Schools: Field Study Results"; and (6) "Interpretive Summary." Overall, research shows that schools ranking high on instructional program coherence have stronger principal leadership, while lower ranking schools allow teachers more individual autonomy and the discretion to select their own curriculum materials and strategies for instruction and assessment. An appendix presents the statistical analysis. (Contains 43 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Coherence, Educational Improvement, Educational Quality, Elementary Education, Instructional Leadership, Principals, School Restructuring, Urban Schools
Consortium on Chicago School Research, 1313 East 60th Street, Chicago, IL 60637 ($10.00). Tel: 773-702-3364.
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Consortium on Chicago School Research, IL.
IES Cited: ED565615