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Denver Expands Choice and Charters

Denver Expands Choice and Charters

EducationNext - "Some of the most dramatic gains in urban education have come from school districts using what’s known as a “portfolio strategy.” Under this approach, districts negotiate performance agreements with public ...
Springfield Empowerment Zone seeks to launch stepped-up turnaround efforts at 2 city middle schools

Springfield Empowerment Zone seeks to launch stepped-up turnaround efforts at 2 city middle schools

Mass Live  - In an effort to quicken the pace of turnaround efforts at two of the city's nine struggling middle schools, the 
Chris Gabrieli on Why Lawrence Matters (Video)

Chris Gabrieli on Why Lawrence Matters (Video)

In November 2011 when the MA Board of Elementary and Secondary Education declared Lawrence Public Schools a Level 5, Chronically Underperforming district, the Commissioner called education innovator Chris Gabrieli to help figure out how to pull ...
New Haven Residency Program for School Leadership panel talks school turnaround

New Haven Residency Program for School Leadership panel talks school turnaround

New Haven Register - "When schools under-perform, experts often are called upon to transform educational outcomes for the students. The Residency Program for School Leadership, a collaborative program between
Blog: Denver School Leaders Propose Innovation Zone to go from Good to Great

Blog: Denver School Leaders Propose Innovation Zone to go from Good to Great

How can districts create the flexibility and culture of innovation and continuous improvement often associated with charters with the commitment to serving all students and engaging democratic voice of traditional districts to increase student ...
Denver’s Mary Seawell Talks Innovation Zones, Empower Schools and the SEZP

Denver’s Mary Seawell Talks Innovation Zones, Empower Schools and the SEZP

Education Post - "There has been no education leader more critical to the progress and stability of the Denver Public Schools (DPS) than Mary Seawell. She was a strong and steady hand as president of a sharply-divided Denver Board of ...
District in Turnaround

District in Turnaround

Harvard Graduate School of Education - "New research by Ed.D. candidate Beth Schueler, co-authored by Associate Professor

Baker singles out Lawrence Schools, Riley in State of the Commonwealth speech

Eagle-Tribune - "Gov. Charlie Baker singled out Lawrence Schools and its leader, Jeff Riley, as an example of the good things going on in Massachusetts. Here's an excerpt from his speech Thursday night at the Statehouse in ...
A middle school in Springfield to be reformed into first of its kind in WMass.

A middle school in Springfield to be reformed into first of its kind in WMass.

WWLP News - "The John F. Kennedy Middle School is scheduled to make its debut as western Massachusetts’ first UP Education Network school in the 2016-17 school year. The decision to transform the soon-to-be UP Academy Kennedy Middle ...
Springfield board selects Kennedy Middle School to be managed by UP Education Network

Springfield board selects Kennedy Middle School to be managed by UP Education Network

Mass Live - "The Springfield Empowerment Zone board decided Wednesday to select the
Springfield board sets vote on middle school to be managed by Boston-based UP Education Network

Springfield board sets vote on middle school to be managed by Boston-based UP Education Network

Mass Live - "A meeting will be held at Van Sickle Middle School this afternoon to determine which underperforming middle school will be managed by UP Education Network in the fall. The decision will be made and voted on by the ...

Blog: Autonomy Leads to Academic Success for Bentley Academy

During the 13-14 school year, Empower worked with Salem Public Schools to design a new pathway to autonomy for its lowest performing school- Bentley Elementary. Bentley, originally using a transformation model turnaround, slid to the 4th ...
Gov. Baker Briefed On Springfield School Turnaround Efforts

Gov. Baker Briefed On Springfield School Turnaround Efforts

WAMC Northeast Public Radio - "Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker, who is a strong advocate for more charter schools, recently visited a charter school-like program operated by a public-private partnership in Springfield. The ...
UP Education Network, to take over Springfield middle school, gets top marks for narrowing achievement gaps

UP Education Network, to take over Springfield middle school, gets top marks for narrowing achievement gaps

Mass Live  -  "A Boston-based school management organization that will take over a chronically under-performing Springfield school in fall ...
President Obama Signs Education Reform Bill

President Obama Signs Education Reform Bill

The Hill - "President Obama on Thursday signed a sweeping rewrite of the controversial No Child Left Behind (NCLB) education law. Obama called the proposal “a Christmas miracle” during a signing ceremony at the Eisenhower Executive ...
Scott Given: School restart is change from within

Scott Given: School restart is change from within

Michael & Susan Dell Foundation - "Are we effectively supporting all of our students and their wide range of needs? Are we authentically engaging our families and partnering with them in ways that are meaningful and actionable? Are ...
Chris Collins lines up votes for second term as Springfield School Committee vice-chairman

Chris Collins lines up votes for second term as Springfield School Committee vice-chairman

Mass Live - "School Committee vice-chairman Christopher Collins said he has lined up the votes necessary to win a second ...
Founders Fellowship Opportunity with SEZP!

Founders Fellowship Opportunity with SEZP!

What if you could found, design and lead a school that had the best of districts (integral supports enabling your team to serve all students) and the best of charters (essential autonomies to set forth your vision for advancing student ...
Massachusetts education board approves new hybrid test

Massachusetts education board approves new hybrid test

"Approval of the hybrid test came on an 8-3 vote Tuesday after two years of debate over whether to replace the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System test with the PARCC test. PARCC -- which stands for Partnership for Assessment of ...
Riley’s turnaround effort bigger than schools

Riley’s turnaround effort bigger than schools

CommonWealth - "A FEW YEARS AGO, Lawrence’s schools were considered some of the worst in the state.  Only half of their students were finishing high school.  Test scores were abysmal.  Beyond the school walls, there was distress in the ...
Springfield schools turnaround plan: Chestnut South Principal Daniel Sullivan pushes literacy

Springfield schools turnaround plan: Chestnut South Principal Daniel Sullivan pushes literacy

Mass Live - "Daniel Sullivan, principal of Chestnut Accelerated Middle School South, said boosting student literacy in reading and writing is the centerpiece of his school's turnaround strategy. Sullivan is one of nine middle-school ...
Root for Springfield Empowerment school plan to succeed: Editorial

Root for Springfield Empowerment school plan to succeed: Editorial

Mass Live - "It's much too early to judge results from Springfield's in-house attempt at lifting middle school performance, but not too early to root for its success.
Has the Lawrence school receivership run out of steam?

Has the Lawrence school receivership run out of steam?

Commonwealth - "TEN YEARS AGO, engulfed by Katrina, New Orleans was the site of almost unimaginable loss of life, with entire neighborhoods, including the city’s entire network of neighborhood schools, laid low. To stand up new schools ...
UP Education Network will Take Over Springfield Middle School Next Year

UP Education Network will Take Over Springfield Middle School Next Year

Mass Live - "Boston-based UP Education Network will take over a chronically under-performing Springfield middle school next ...
Springfield Schools Turnaround Plan: Duggan’s Principal Michael Calvanese Makes Way for Longer Day

Springfield Schools Turnaround Plan: Duggan’s Principal Michael Calvanese Makes Way for Longer Day

Mass Live - "John J. Duggan Academy Principal Michael Calvanese and a band of teacher leaders spent the last few months "ripping up" the school's old schedule and replacing it with an extended-day schedule for the 2015-16 school year in
Springfield schools turnaround plan: Forest Park’s Principal Thomas Mazza pushes student community service

Springfield schools turnaround plan: Forest Park’s Principal Thomas Mazza pushes student community service

Mass Live - "Forest Park Middle School Principal Thomas Mazza feels right at home as the chief executive of the school where his mother was a special education teacher and his mentor and former school principal, Carol Fazio, taught him ...
Springfield schools turnaround plan: Kennedy’s Principal Ryan Kelly focuses on discipline, collaboration, excellence

Springfield schools turnaround plan: Kennedy’s Principal Ryan Kelly focuses on discipline, collaboration, excellence

Mass Live - "When Ryan Kelly became principal at John F. Kennedy Middle School a year ago, suspensions were up and teacher morale was so low that he was faced with filling more than a dozen vacancies. As Kelly, a former assistant ...
Massachusetts education officials announce Holyoke Public Schools turnaround plan

Massachusetts education officials announce Holyoke Public Schools turnaround plan

Mass Live - "An extended school day, more individualized education plans and bringing in outside partners. These are some of the steps education officials will take to turnaround Holyoke Public Schools. Commissioner of Elementary and
Springfield schools turnaround plan: Kiley’s Principal Chris Sutton sees strength in collaboration

Springfield schools turnaround plan: Kiley’s Principal Chris Sutton sees strength in collaboration

Mass Live - "M. Marcus Kiley Middle School Principal Chris Sutton believes the key to improving student performance is to to ...
State Compares MCAS, PARCC Exam Results

State Compares MCAS, PARCC Exam Results

NECN - Public school students in third through eighth grades who took the PARCC exams last spring were less likely to perform well on that test than those who took the traditional MCAS exams, the state education department said Monday ...
New Chestnut, Van Sickle Schools in Springfield Assessed

New Chestnut, Van Sickle Schools in Springfield Assessed

Mass Live - "An official of Boston-based Empower Schools Inc., the private firm assisting in the turnaround of nine
Springfield Teachers Prepare for a Momentous Year

Springfield Teachers Prepare for a Momentous Year

Mass Live - "City teachers and school staff are preparing for what promises to be a momentous year in the Springfield school system with nine unperforming middle schools aiming for a historic turnaround with the help of the newly ...
Collins Brothers Fight for Springfield from Different Sides

Collins Brothers Fight for Springfield from Different Sides

Mass Live - "Timothy and Christopher Collins didn't just fall into their civic activists and leadership roles in the Springfield's public school system – they were born into them. 
Springfield Empowerment Zone Partnership Board OKs Agreement with UP Academy

Springfield Empowerment Zone Partnership Board OKs Agreement with UP Academy

Mass Live - "The board of the Springfield Empowerment Zone Partnership voted on Tuesday to approve a contract with Boston-based 

Blog: How District Redesign Demonstrates Dramatic Results for Students

Empower Schools prepared a case study last year about Lawrence Public Schools and their Open Architecture approach. One of the exciting things about the work ...

Blog: Turning to Turnaround: An Option for Schools Seeking Improvement

The Center for American Progress recently released a report naming five key principles present in ...

Blog: Empowerment Academies In Session This Week!

This Spring Break offers a different experience for 400 of Springfield’s students. Seventh graders in need of additional support have the time for intensive and focused math instruction with the launch of the Empowerment Academies. Over 40 ...

Blog: “Charter-Like Flexibilities” Offer Opportunity to All School Types

We previously discussed an Indiana law which allows for the creation of new “innovation schools.” These are autonomous public schools contracted by