Education policymakers and reform advocates increasingly expect state governments to provide specialized assistance and support to districts and schools, especially those with the lowest levels of student performance. To fulfill this role, they must develop wise policies and operate effective programs. Yet it is quite clear that most state officials are not yet ready to execute the responsibilities that reformers have envisioned for them. Despite this, state education agency responsibilities have become clearer than ever. Among other things, they must operate a greatly expanded, several billion dollar program of federal funds to turn around low-performing schools.
Please join us as we examine the issue of state assistance to low-performing school districts. We will be releasing a paper by William Slotnik that analyzes state education agency efforts to date and recommends they use three levers for change—educational, organizational, and political—that if used together can achieve better results for students.
William J. Slotnik, Executive Director, Community Training and Assistance Center
Mitchell D. Chester, Massachusetts Commissioner of Education
Randolph E. Ward, San Diego County Superintendent of Schools and former state-appointed administrator of both Oakland and Compton Unified School Districts in California
Cynthia G. Brown, Vice President for Education Policy, Center for American Progress
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