When Schools Compete: A Cautionary Tale
By: Dorothy Shipps
Published: 2001
Uploaded: 03/23/2007
Uploaded by: Pocket Masters
Pockets: Dorothy Shipps Collection, Gottesman Libraries Archive, Organization & Leadership, Teachers College Faculty

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Description/Abstract: "Choice" and "decentralization" are two popular solutions to the problems of urban education widely promoted in recent decades. Along with "accountability" and "standards," they form the core of our contemporary reform rhetoric. Yet, too often, their invocation has more symbolic than substantive meaning. Edward Fiske and Helen Ladd have found substantive bedrock under these concepts. They have written a clear-headed, compelling and skillful analysis of New Zealandís recent experience with school choice and decentralization. And, although they never directly address it, the implications of their study have much to say about the issue of accountability. Their book should be this summerís required reading for every education policy maker in the United States. When Schools Compete follows in a long tradition of looking abroad for guidance about our own school reform efforts. Fiske and Ladd sought out New Zealand in 1998 because its experiment with parent governance, combined with nation-wide open enrollment and school competition, was a "laboratory" in which to study how "self-governing schools operate in a competitive environment...

Source: Teachers College Record
Volume: 103
Number: 1
Pages: 77 -80