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Fall 2003 Vol. 11 No. 1 Focus on Understanding School Choice

School choices: numerous . . . but often unavailable

By by Paul Socolar

On one level, choice is the commonsense concept of offering educational options - families should not be trapped in a neighborhood school that is not meeting their needs.

On another level "school choice" is a controversial political agenda - a code word for school vouchers or other measures which offer government funding to help families pay for tuition at private or church-run schools.

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For many, the choice is another neighborhood's high school

By by Amy Rhodes

Latoya Shuler's only complaint about her experience at Lincoln High School was the travel time.

Most mornings, she was out the door of her West Oak Lane home at 5:30 a.m. in order to catch the three buses that would get her to Lincoln by the time her 7 am "zero" period started.

One of thousands of Philadelphia high school students, most of them African American, who travel to comprehensive high schools outside of their neighborhood, Shuler said the early mornings and long SEPTA trips were worth the effort.

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Five Things to Know: If you stay in a school that is "needing improvement"

By by Beandrea Davis

But in a district where few schools - public or charter - meet or exceed state standards, not many thriving alternatives really exist.

For the thousands of families who remain in these schools deemed "needing improvement," here are five things to consider.

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