A new report outlines strategies to help more students make use of the school choice provision in the federal No Child Left Behind Act.
The strategies include targeting choice to students in the lowest-performing schools, establishing new, high-performing schools, and providing financial incentives for academically strong schools to accept transfer students.
Under the NCLB law, students in schools designated as “in need of improvement” may transfer to another, higher-performing school, with the district providing free transportation.
The report by Erin Dillon, a policy analyst at Education Sector, a Washington think tank, suggests that expanding interdistrict choice would be an especially promising avenue that would be advanced by many of the strategies discussed in the report.
It suggests allowing federal dollars to immediately follow low-performing students into their new schools and offering financial bonuses for higher-performing schools for enrolling a certain number of transfer students.
A version of this article appeared in the December 03, 2008 edition of Education Week