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ERIC Number: ED528905
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Jan
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Reflections on a Half-Century of School Reform: Why Have We Fallen Short and Where Do We Go from Here?
Jennings, Jack
Center on Education Policy
Over the past fifty years, U.S. school reform has been dominated by three major movements, aimed at promoting equity, increasing school choice, and using academic standards to leverage improvement. These reforms are equity-based reform, school choice, and standards-based reform. While all three have changed schooling in notable ways, none has brought about the needed level of general improvements because they mostly sought to improve education from the outside rather than the inside. To make real progress, individuals will have to think and act much more audaciously. The next round of reform must focus on the essentials of education--the quality of teaching and curriculum, and the means of funding them. Moreover, if individuals truly want to improve schools sooner than later, then they must declare a good education to be a civil right for every child. This article explains the shortcomings of the three major reforms and proposes a bolder approach for future school reform. The current campaign for the presidency presents an opportunity to discuss this improvement agenda.
Center on Education Policy. 1001 Connecticut Avenue NW Suite 522, Washington, DC 20036. Tel: 202-822-8065; Fax: 202-822-6008; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: George Gund Foundation; Phi Delta Kappa International
Authoring Institution: Center on Education Policy
Identifiers - Location: United States