School Choice & Charters

New KIPP Schools Seen as Faithful to Model, Despite Variations

April 11, 2006 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

As the Knowledge Is Power Program pursues plans for further expansion, a recent study takes a closer look “under the hood” of KIPP’s model for educating disadvantaged students.

See Also

The first report from a three-year independent evaluation suggests that five relatively new KIPP charter schools in the San Francisco Bay area appear to be operating in keeping with the KIPP mission, even as their approaches vary.

The five pillars that help define the KIPP school network—such as high expectations for students and extended learning time—were “evident across the schools,” says the report by SRI International, a Menlo, Calif.-based research institute.

“From classroom work to student behavior, all five Bay Area KIPP schools have translated high expectations into actions with visible results,” finds the report, released last month and underwritten by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, also in Menlo Park.

“San Francisco Bay Area KIPP Schools: A Study of Early Implementation, First Year Report 2004-05" is posted by SRI International.

“You walk into a KIPP school and you know it’s a KIPP school,” said Jane L. David, the director of the Bay Area Research Group, who is helping to conduct the SRI study. “We were impressed by what we knew in advance and saw firsthand.”

While emphasizing that the results are preliminary, the report says two sets of test-score data suggest the schools are posting gains beyond what would be expected in most subjects and grade levels, given the student demographics.

Room for Improvement

The report does suggest areas for improvement, including for principals.

“Given the demands of the job and the KIPP emphasis on culture and discipline, academic leadership varies widely across the five schools,” the study notes. “As a result, teachers are mostly on their own to develop their academic programs.”

KIPP officials downplayed that finding, saying the variation is far less than across public schools generally. They also note that, under California’s annual “similar schools” ranking, which compares schools with similar demographics, the five Bay Area schools have high ratings.

Ms. David seconded that assessment.

“The KIPP folks are absolutely right,” she said. “If you go into any urban school, especially an urban middle school, strong instructional leadership is an extreme rarity. … Compared to urban schools, then, there are no grounds for concern at all.”

Related Tags:

A version of this article appeared in the April 12, 2006 edition of Education Week as New KIPP Schools Seen as Faithful to Model, Despite Variations

Events

School & District Management K-12 Essentials Forum Get a Strong Start to the New School Year
Get insights and actions from Education Week journalists and expert guests on how to start the new school year on strong footing.
Reading & Literacy Webinar A Roadmap to Multisensory Early Literacy Instruction: Accelerate Growth for All Students 
How can you develop key literacy skills with a diverse range of learners? Explore best practices and tips to meet the needs of all students. 
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
College & Workforce Readiness Webinar
Supporting 21st Century Skills with a Whole-Child Focus
What skills do students need to succeed in the 21st century? Explore the latest strategies to best prepare students for college, career, and life.
Content provided by Panorama Education

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 Choice & Charters Opinion The Biden Administration Is Right: Charters Need to Be More Accountable
The proposed changes to the federal Charter School Program are just common sense, write Jitu Brown and Randi Weingarten.
Jitu Brown & Randi Weingarten
3 min read
Illustration of students and teachers holding puzzle pieces.
<b>F. Sheehan/Education Week and iStock/Getty</b>
School Choice & Charters What's Behind the Fight Over the Biden Administration's Stance on Charter School Funding
Proposed new rules for federal charter school funding have drawn the ire of many in the charter school community.
8 min read
Publish Charter school parents stage a counter protest as thousands of public school teachers, administrators and supports march through the streets of Sacramento during a protest held at the California State Capitol urging state legislators to provide more funding for public schools in Sacramento, Calif., on May 22, 2019.
Publish Charter school parents stage a counter protest during a march in Sacramento, Calif., that advocated for more funding for public schools in 2019.
Jessica Christian/San Francisco Chronicle via AP
School Choice & Charters Opinion Families May Like Their School But Want More Options. That’s Where Course Choice Comes In
Educational choices have grown inside each school as a result of the pandemic. Families should take advantage of this.
3 min read
Image shows a multi-tailed arrow hitting the bullseye of a target.
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
School Choice & Charters Mich. Public School Advocates Launch Effort to Stop DeVos-Backed Proposal
The former secretary of education is backing an initiative that advocates say would create an unconstitutional voucher system.
Samuel J. Robinson, mlive.com
4 min read
Student with backpack.
surasaki/iStock/Getty