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ERIC Number: ED547418
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 32
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-0-923993-48-1
"Will It Be on the Test?" a Closer Look at How Leaders and Parents Think about Accountability in the Public Schools
Johnson, Jean
Public Agenda
Over the past 15 years, federal, state, and local officials have pursued a broad range of reforms aimed at ensuring that the nation's public school system is more accountable--that it delivers a rich, full education for children in communities across the country. New research from the Kettering Foundation and Public Agenda suggests that there are important differences between the way most leaders and most parents define and think about accountability in public education. It will be shown in these pages that most parents--and most Americans generally--applaud the goals of the accountability movement, and they support some of what it has accomplished. At the same time, many see it as profoundly incomplete because it provides so few answers to problems they see as pivotal--too many irresponsible parents, too many unmotivated students, too little support from the community, and messages from society that undermine learning and education. The research also suggests that there may be a fundamental divide between leaders and parents on whether it is more important to preserve neighborhood public schools, even those that are struggling, or whether it is more important to give parents more choice. "Will It Be on the Test?" is a summary of this research, which included focus groups held in Washington, DC; Detroit; New Orleans; Westchester County, New York; Birmingham; and Denver. Although this is a small-scale, qualitative study, its findings are buttressed by recent survey research from Public Agenda and others. The results here suggest that it might be useful to examine how teachers, administrators, employers, community leaders, and others think about accountability in public schools and the degree to which their definitions mesh with either leadership or parental views. Even more important, "Will It Be on the Test?" raises important questions about the trajectory of education reform and whether the way we think and talk about "education" is too narrow. [Jeremy Hess assisted in the preparation of this report.]
Public Agenda. 6 East 39th Street, New York, NY 10016. Tel: 212-686-6610; Fax: 212-889-3461; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Public Agenda; Kettering Foundation
Identifiers - Location: Alabama; Colorado; District of Columbia; Louisiana; Michigan; New York