Can U.S. high schools be saved? Answering this question with a qualified yes, Becky Smerdon and Kathryn Borman in this new, thoughtfully organized volume explore six of the major U.S. high school reforms that have been implemented in the past few years. Highlighting the challenges, successes, and failures, Smerdon and Borman supply a prescription for educators and policymakers as they contemplate the next steps for improving our schools. --Barbara Schneider, John A. Hannah Chair in Education and Sociology, Michigan State University
With high school reform at the top of the education policy agenda, Becky Smerdon and Kathryn Borman provide a much-needed summary of the strengths and limitations of leading strategies for improving our lowest performing schools. Building on a platform of small schools and accountability, each chapter provides nuanced insights into the daunting challenges of improving the curricular and instructional core, supporting good teachers, and driving reform initiatives with formative and summative data on student outcomes. Policymakers and practitioners should find this a valuable resource as they plan and implement the next generation of high school improvement strategies. --James J. Kemple, Executive Director, The Research Alliance for New York City Schools at New York University
About the Author
Becky A. Smerdon is a principal research scientist, vice president and deputy director, U.S. Education and Workforce Development, AED, where she leads the development of a research and development agenda on disadvantaged youth and education reform with a particular focus on successful transition to college and work. Prior to joining AED, Dr. Smerdon was a senior research associate at the Urban Institute, where she led a formative and summative evaluation of Baltimore's high school reform initiative, a study of the math/science pipeline in North Carolina's reforming high schools funded by the National Science Foundation, and a project developing indicators of high school reform implementation funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. She is a nationally recognized expert in high school reform and has conducted a number of research studies, many of which have been presented at national conferences and published in academic journals.
Kathryn M. Borman is a professor of anthropology and is affiliated with the Alliance for Applied Research in Education and Anthropology in the Department of Anthropology at the University of South Florida. She has extensive experience in educational reform and policy as well as evaluation studies. She has served as principal investigator of four major National Science Foundation research projects, including Assessing the Impact of the National Science Foundation Urban Systemic Initiative, investigating systemic reform in four cities. This study resulted in the book, Meaningful Urban Education Reform: Confronting the Learning Crisis in Mathematics and Science in 2005. Dr. Borman is currently studying a science program in elementary schools in Pasco County, Florida. She has authored or edited more than 25 books, chapters, and series in educational policy and reform and is a past editor of several journals.