Urban Reviews Take Close Look at Instruction
Deborah Jewell-Sherman’s first year as the superintendent of the troubled Richmond, Va., schools was barely over, and though she had reason to rejoice, she felt she needed to call for help.
The superintendent could have been fired if she hadn’t led 20 or more of the district’s 55 schools to full accreditation in that first year. But she exceeded that goal by three. Happy and relieved, but far from satisfied, Ms. Jewell-Sherman wanted to lay the groundwork for sustained improvement.
And she knew whom to call: the Council of the Great City Schools. She asked the Washington-based organization to send a team of fellow urban educators to analyze the district’s curriculum and instructional programs. Within a few months, the nonprofit group had flown in experts for an intensive review and delivered a report. Not only would the report prove pivotal in shaping the district’s goals, but it also would be accepted by Virginia as the official set of guideposts for...
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