Seven California superintendents, representing some of the state’s largest school systems, are teaming up as a nonprofit organization to push changes in education that previously failed to gain widespread traction with districts and unions across the state.
Their group, called the California Office of Education Reform, is being launched with $3 million in donations from foundations to pursue changes such as accountability and review procedures for teachers, common standards for English and math instruction, more effective sharing of data, and collaborative work to turn around struggling schools. It also will work with state lawmakers to pursue school reform legislation, said Michael E. Hanson, the superintendent of the Fresno Unified School District and the president of the new group.
The seven districts—Los Angeles, San Francisco, Long Beach, Fresno, Sanger, Clovis, and Sacramento—agreed to pursue the improvement measures as part of California’s failed entry in the federal Race to the Top grant competition.
A version of this article appeared in the October 20, 2010 edition of Education Week as Calif. District Chiefs Team Up for Reform