ERIC Number: ED469529
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
Scaling Up First Things First: Site Selection and the Planning Year.
Quint, Janet C.
First Things First is a comprehensive intervention to transform low-performing public schools with high percentages of non-White and at-risk students. It encompasses major changes in school structure, instruction, and accountability and governance. The program model, which is grounded both in research and the best practices of schools serving high-risk youth, was developed by the Institute for Research and Reform in Education (IRRE) and was initially mounted in the Kansas City, Kansas, school system in 1998. New schools were phased in in Missouri, Mississippi, and Texas. This report highlights an early stage in the scaling-up effort: selection of new sites and planning within them for the initiative's implementation. Data from surveys, interviews, and observations involving teachers, students, and administrators indicated that setting up a whole-school reform initiative in multiple locations stretched the capacities of program developers and staff; whether developers should be prescriptive about important matters or give teachers the freedom to make their own choices was a difficult decision, but trying to do both at once was more difficult; and commitment to the initiative was stronger among less experienced teachers, teachers who considered their principals responsive to their concerns, and teachers who believed they played an important decision-making role. Non-White teachers were generally more positive about the initiative than Whites. Two appendices contain the correlation matrix of early outcome measures at the expansion schools and a comparison of staff responses in expansion schools and in Kansas City, Kansas. (Contains 19 references.) (SM)
Descriptors: Academic Achievement, Accountability, Educational Change, Elementary Secondary Education, Governance, High Risk Students, Participative Decision Making, Program Development, Public Schools, Site Selection, Teaching Methods
Manpower Demonstration Research Corporation, 16 East 34th Street, New York, NY 10016-4326. Tel: 212-532-3200; Fax: 212-684-0832; Web site: http://www.mdrc.org.
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, Kansas City, MO.; Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Manpower Demonstration Research Corp., New York, NY.