School & District Management News in Brief

Ford Foundation Targets H.S. Reform

By Catherine Gewertz — November 10, 2009 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

The Ford Foundation has committed $100 million to improving high school education in seven cities over the next seven years.

The initiative, announced Nov. 4, will focus on four areas: encouraging high-quality, collaborative teaching; ensuring “robust” state funding for education; designing accountability systems based on “more meaningful” methods of assessment than standardized tests; and making good use of an extended school day or year, according to the New York City-based philanthropy. The targeted cities are Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Newark, N.J., New York, Philadelphia, and Los Angeles.

Jeannie Oakes, who oversees the initiative as the director of the foundation’s education and scholarship unit, said the foundation chose its four areas of focus because it sees money, teachers, and time as key resources that must be well managed to improve high schools. In addition, a good accountability system can “pull those resources in a direction that produces very high quality,” she said.

The foundation is interested in supporting assessments of student learning that are more comprehensive and performance-based than standardized tests, she said. It is also interested in helping develop measures of the “alterable” school conditions under which students are learning, such as whether their teachers are well trained and whether their science labs are well outfitted, so that those examining a school’s performance can not only see its students’ outcomes, but also understand the conditions under which they were studying.

Some grants under the initiative have already been made. The American Institutes for Research won a grant to develop equitable new finance models. Stanford University professor Linda Darling-Hammond is using one grant to write a series of papers on new assessments. Generation Schools, a New York City-based nonprofit organization, won money to refine and test its extended-day high school model, the foundation said.

One of the grants also helps support the American Federation of Teachers’ Innovation Fund as it scales up new methods of teacher bargaining, recruitment, evaluation, and compensation.

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the November 11, 2009 edition of Education Week as Ford Foundation Targets H.S. Reform


Commenting has been disabled on edweek.org effective Sept. 8. Please visit our FAQ section for more details. To get in touch with us visit our contact page, follow us on social media, or submit a Letter to the Editor.


Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Teaching Webinar
6 Key Trends in Teaching and Learning
As we enter the third school year affected by the pandemic—and a return to the classroom for many—we come better prepared, but questions remain. How will the last year impact teaching and learning this school
Content provided by Instructure
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Curriculum Webinar
How Data and Digital Curriculum Can Drive Personalized Instruction
As we return from an abnormal year, it’s an educator’s top priority to make sure the lessons learned under adversity positively impact students during the new school year. Digital curriculum has emerged from the pandemic
Content provided by Kiddom
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Equity & Diversity Webinar
Leadership for Racial Equity in Schools and Beyond
While the COVID-19 pandemic continues to reveal systemic racial disparities in educational opportunity, there are revelations to which we can and must respond. Through conscientious efforts, using an intentional focus on race, school leaders can
Content provided by Corwin

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

School & District Management Opinion Best Ways for Schools to Prepare for the Next Pandemic
Being better connected to families and the community and diversifying the education workforce are some of the ways to be ready.
14 min read
Images shows colorful speech bubbles that say "Q," "&," and "A."
iStock/Getty
School & District Management From Our Research Center Educators' Support for COVID-19 Vaccine Mandates Is Rising Dramatically
Nearly 60 percent of educators say students who are old enough to receive COVID vaccines should be required to get them to attend school.

4 min read
Mariah Vaughn, a 15-year-old Highland Park student, prepares to receive a COVID-19 vaccine during the vaccine clinic at Topeka High School on Monday, Aug. 9, 2021.
Mariah Vaughn, 15, a student at Highland Park High School in Topeka, Kan., prepares to receive a COVID-19 vaccine at her school in August.
Evert Nelson/The Topeka Capital-Journal via AP
School & District Management 10 Ways to Tackle Education's Urgent Challenges
As the school year gets underway, we ask hard questions about education’s biggest challenges and offer some solutions.
2 min read
Conceptual Image of schools preparing for the pandemic
Pep Montserrat for Education Week
School & District Management Reported Essay Principals Need Social-Emotional Support, Too
By overlooking the well-being of their school leaders, districts could limit how much their schools can flourish.
7 min read
Conceptual Illustration
Pep Montserrat for Education Week