This week 140+ local school district leaders and members of the business and philanthropic communities gathered in northern Ohio to take part in two Doing More with Less in K-12 Education events. The events, one held at Cleveland State University and the other at Lorain County Community College, were intended to help local education, business, and community leaders identify ways to think smart about cuts to schools spending while still staying focused on student achievement.? The event was moderated by our own Chester E. Finn, Jr. and featured three panelists: Nate Levenson (co-founder of District and Community Partners- a consulting group that helps district improve their special needs programs while reducing costs); Steven Wilson (founder and president of Ascend Learning- a charter school management organization); and Paolo DeMaria (principal at Education First Consulting and former executive vice chancellor of the Ohio Board of Regents). All three panelists brought a unique and different viewpoint, helping attendees grasp what it means to do more with less in K-12 education. These events could not have been timelier as school districts around the state have to learn how to operate with fewer resources.? The event can be watched in its entirety here and the presentation can
Duxberry Park Arts IMPACT Alternative Elementary is an arts magnet program in Columbus that delivers impressive academic results for its students, 84 percent of whom are economically disadvantaged, and 16 percent of whom have disabilities. Part of what makes Duxberry Park unique ??? beyond its emphasis in art, music, and drama throughout the curriculum???is the extent to which such programming fosters intense collaboration among staff across all subjects. Check out our video here to see what the school's leaders and teachers believe are the keys to its success.
Duxberry Park Arts IMPACT Alternative Elementary and seven other Ohio schools will be featured in Needles in a Haystack: Lessons from Ohio's high-performing, high-need urban schools, due May 25th from the Thomas B. Fordham Institute.
Just a reminder that today is the last day to vote for the White House's Race to the Top Commencement Challenge. The winning high school will receive a visit from President Obama where he will speak at their commencement.
Despite Mike's urging to send Obama back to Denver, our Ohio staff is rooting for Clark Montessori Junior and Senior High School in Cincinnati. You could call us somewhat biased ??? but as we've mentioned before the school boasts some pretty darn amazing stats. (100% of their 2010 graduating class is going on to college.)
The top three schools with the most votes will advance to the final round, where the President himself will select the winning school. A final announcement is expected Tuesday.
Online voting closes tonight at midnight. You can vote for your school of choice here.
-Fordham's Ohio Team
Congratulations to Andrew Boy, the co-director and founder of Columbus Collegiate Academy, one of the six charter schools Fordham authorizes. Andy was just selected as a 2010 recipient of Columbus Business First's highly prestigious ???40 under 40' award. The award recognizes outstanding Columbus area leaders under the age of 40 who have demonstrated a high measure of success and are making a positive contribution to the community.
Andy stands among the few leaders in Ohio urban education committed and able to give disadvantaged students what they deserve ??? a top-notch education that prepares them for success in college. As a young teacher in Cincinnati, Andy improved the science proficiency scores of his fourth and sixth graders by 60 and 80 percentage points in three years, respectively. Today, Columbus Collegiate Academy ranks as one of the top performing schools in Columbus while serving a student body that is 94 percent economically disadvantaged.
Andy has achieved this success despite the serious challenges his charter school faced from the outset (opening in a time of budget cuts to charter schools, encountering obstacles related to school facilities, and dealing with tough student transportation issues). His school's recent selection as a New Leaders for New Schools?? EPIC silver award for dramatic gains in student achievement is evidence that the national charter school community identifies Andy as a nationwide leader from whom other schools can learn.
Additionally, Andy makes the time to serve as a
About the Editor
Michael J. Petrilli
Executive Vice President
Mike Petrilli is one of the nation's foremost education analysts. As executive vice president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, he oversees the organization's research projects and publications and contributes to the Flypaper blog and weekly Education Gadfly newsletter.
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