Posts tagged "Useable Knowledge"
December 3, 2012
The Useable Knowledge series brings education research to GothamSchools readers. In this installment, Madeline Pérez presents her research into how families approach the high school admission process. Eighth-graders must submit high school applications by Dec. 10, a week from today.
A public high school admissions process that serves mostly low-income people of color but is based on white, middle-class assumptions must be redesigned. Providing school choices — such as by creating more small high schools or welcoming charter schools — is not enough to improve the prospects of students’ high school placements. (more…)
August 20, 2012
It’s a maxim touted often by city officials, even in the face of mounting criticism: Small schools that serve entirely low-performing, high-need populations can work.
In the Community section today, Lehman College education professor Rosa Rivera-McCutchen says her research supports that claim. But she says the success of small schools is often hampered by inexperienced teachers and ineffectual policies.
Rivera-McCutchen’s Community section contribution is part of “Useable Knowledge,” a GothamSchools feature that aims to promote policy based off of educational research. In the series, researchers present their research and findings, as well as policy implications that could inform education policy locally and elsewhere. And readers are invited to join the conversation.
Rivera-McCutchen studied “Bridges Institute,” a small, pseudonymous Bronx high school that opened in the mid-1990s in the model of progressive educator Deborah Meier’s Central Park East Secondary School. She found that the progressive pedagogy yielded impressive results, but that city policies that fostered new small schools ironically hurt Bridges, by causing overcrowding and increasing staff turnover.
With the rapid-fire creation of (and subsequent demise) of small schools in NYC, particularly in the Bronx, understanding how to successfully implement small school reform is critical. … Small size is not a sufficient reform strategy to improve urban schools in low-income black and Latino communities. It has to be coupled with strong school leaders and teachers who understand their students have been historically underserved, and who are committed to educating students as matter of social justice.
Read Rivera-McCutchen’s complete research report in the Community section, then leave a comment to ask her about her work. She’ll respond to questions in a future Useable Knowledge post.
August 20, 2012
In 1994, Bridges, along with three other small high schools, was founded to replace a failing comprehensive high school in one of the poorest sections of the Bronx. I wondered, to what extent was Bridges Institute actually aligned with the tenets of critical small school reform? How did the policy and community contexts influence the vision and implementation of the reform agenda? How did the leadership and staff respond to threats? And, most importantly, was it a good school? (more…)
July 5, 2012
The comments posted in response to my recent GothamSchools Q&A on gentrification and schools were very helpful in pushing my thinking, and I greatly appreciate those readers who took the time to engage with my work. For those who read my interview but did not follow the back and forth in the comments section, let me quickly summarize what I heard from readers. (more…)
June 7, 2012
New York City neighborhoods that undergo gentrification don’t always wind up with diverse schools.
In the Community section today, Jennifer Stillman explains her research into why — and her suggestions for how the city could tip the scales toward school integration in changing neighborhoods.
Stillman’s Community section contribution is part of “Useable Knowledge,” a GothamSchools feature that aims to promote policy based off of educational research. In the series, researchers present their research and findings, as well as policy implications that could inform education policy locally and elsewhere. And readers are invited to join the conversation.
Stillman studied the relationship between neighborhood gentrification and school integration as a doctoral student in politics and education at Columbia University’s Teachers College. She found that public schools in gentrifying neighborhoods offer the perfect opportunity for social mixing between people of different backgrounds — but that getting “gentry parents,” her term for upper-middle-class, white newcomers, to send their children to those schools is difficult. (more…)
June 7, 2012
The Useable Knowledge series brings education research to GothamSchools readers. In the second installment, Jennifer Stillman presents her research into racially diverse schools in gentrifying neighborhoods. Stillman, a research analyst for the Department of Education’s Office of Innovation, earned a doctorate in politics and education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She lives in Harlem.
Leave questions for Stillman about her (more…)
March 20, 2012
Education research is supposed to inform education policy, but it’s not always the case.
Sometimes the policy agenda isn’t supported by research. But sometimes researchers haven’t asserted themselves. Education research can be difficult to find — hidden away in academic journals or unpublished dissertations. Even when it’s available, it is often presented in technical language that is perfect for academia but ill-equipped to inform public dialogue.
A new feature on GothamSchools, which we’re calling “Useable Knowledge,” aims to change that situation. In the series, researchers will present not only their research and findings but also policy implications that could inform education policy locally and elsewhere. They’ll also seed future research by outlining the questions that their studies raised. And they will solicit and answer questions from readers about just what is known and what isn’t about each research topic.
The first contributors to Useable Knowledge are Janice Bloom and Lori Chajet, two former city high school teachers who as CUNY Graduate Center students set out to investigate the impact of social class (Bloom) and small school environments (Chajet) on students’ college decisions and experiences. (more…)
March 20, 2012
The Useable Knowledge series brings education research to GothamSchools readers. In the first installment, Janice Bloom and Lori Chajet present their research into the college application and transition process in New York City Schools. Bloom and Chajet both taught in small city high schools that mostly serve low-income students of color before enrolling in CUNY (more…)