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A new report by the National Governors' Association has brought together the lessons being drawn by many of those involved in attempts to redesign the roles of schools and school districts.

"Early Experiences in Restructuring Schools: Voices from the Field" is based on a March 1988 nga meeting, which convened experts working on restructuring projects within individual schools, districts, and states. The report was written by Richard F. Elmore, a professor of educational administration at Michigan State University.

According to the report, states must face a number of questions in designing restructuring projects, such as:

Should they focus their efforts on individual schools or school districts?

How can state departments of education learn to be more supportive in assisting the schools?

How should states deal with the broader consequences of pilot programs, as they begin to expand?

The 23-page brochure also identifies obstacles to restructuring and possible strategies for getting started.

Copies of the report are available for $7.50 each from the National Governors' Association, Publications, 444 North Capitol Street, Suite 250, Washington, D.C. 20001-1572.

States "are making little headway" towards meeting the growing demand for safe, affordable child care, according to the Children's Defense Fund.

In its sixth annual "State Child Care Fact Book," the group links such "faltering efforts" to a decline in the real level of federal assistance as well as to a lack of resources and quality control at the state level.

With inflation taken into account, the c.d.f. found, 26 states spent less in 1988 than in 1981 for child care funded through the federal Social Services Block Grant. The report also indicates that 23 states are serving fewer children now than they did seven years ago.


Too many school districts are building 1950's-style schools for use in the 21st century, according to a new report by the National School Boards Association.

In "Tomorrow's Learning Environment, Planning for Technology: The Basics," the school-facilities planner Franklin Hill argues that school buildings today should be designed to adapt to future technological innovations in education.

Mr. Hill offers advice on planning for such new school components as the "media center," which the report calls the "bionic heart" of an electronic school, as well as computer-aided instruction, two-way interactive and one-way instructional television, electronic mail and information systems, and videodisc workstations.

Copies of the report are available for $35 each from nsba's Institute for the Transfer of Technology to Education, 1680 Duke St., Alexandria, Va. 22314; (202) 838-6722.

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