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Stories tagged: school choice

Story reveals an underlying conflict

By the Notebook on Nov 21, 2012 12:08 PM

Response to the October 2012 edition article “Painful choices” 

Commentary: Parents deserve a better measure of school quality

By Helen Gym on Nov 2, 2012 05:03 PM

by Helen Gym

Every once in a while, it becomes apparent just how differently parents view high-quality education than do the reformers out there who are defining it purportedly for our own good. The GreatPhillySchools website (GPS) is just one example of this difference in viewpoints. 

Commentary: GreatPhillySchools is about empowering families

By the Notebook on Nov 2, 2012 05:03 PM

by Sharmain Matlock-Turner

For many years, I have witnessed how parents and caregivers in Philadelphia truly crave more information about our city’s schools. As evidence, in just two weeks, more than 10,000 Philadelphians have visited GreatPhillySchools, a new website for families to learn more about nearly all  of our city’s K-12 schools. As part of our longtime commitment to empowering families, the Urban Affairs Coalition is proud to be a partner in this citywide effort with the Philadelphia School Partnership and many others.

NYC study: 10 years of choice has not altered link between demography, destiny

By Dale Mezzacappa on Oct 25, 2012 04:24 PM

With Philadelphia firmly committed to creating a "portfolio" of schools as a way to improve outcomes for all students, it seems worthwhile to take note of a study just released by the Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University.

Neighborhood associations hold first annual school fair Wednesday night

By the Notebook on Oct 17, 2012 02:11 PM

by Charlotte Pope

Parents looking for information to help them choose an elementary school for their children now have a new resource.  

Center City Residents Association (CCRA), Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA), and South of South Neighborhood Association (SOSNA) have collaborated to produce their first annual school fair.

The new face of a district

By by Dale Mezzacappa on Oct 10, 2012 12:15 PM

For the School District of Philadelphia, 2012-13 is shaping up as one of its most challenging school years ever.

The School Reform Commission must close dozens of schools, borrow $300 million to stay afloat, and begin a challenging negotiation with the teachers’ union on a new contract. The District will seek big financial concessions from teachers but also changes in seniority practices and how teachers are evaluated and compensated.

Through the Great Schools Compact, the SRC is setting a goal for creating more “high-performing seats” and more choice for parents through “portfolio management” of schools, a strategy that assumes the continued expansion of charters. But its careful planning to manage that expansion without running out of money for District-managed schools is threatened by charter legislation pending in Harrisburg.

‘Portfolio districts’ promise responsiveness to student needs – but is there accountability?

By by Judith Gran on Oct 3, 2012 09:39 AM

Philadelphia’s current restructuring plan is based on the “portfolio school district” model, where there is an array of public, charter, and other schools operated by independent organizations. Parents have choices among a “menu” of schools, including schools that are not operated by the District. District administra­tion manages the portfolio of schools based on perfor­mance, closing poor-performing schools, expanding capacity in those that are doing better, and opening new ones designed to meet community needs.

Quicktakes: Should there be more charter schools in Philadelphia?

By Interviews and photos by Charlotte Pope on Oct 2, 2012 03:53 PM









A resource to help parents choose

By David Limm on Oct 1, 2012 02:02 PM

Many Philadelphia parents want to take advantage of the city’s varied school options but feel they need better information.

The Philadelphia School Partnership (PSP) wants to help.

This October, PSP will launch GreatPhillySchools. The goal is to provide parents with a one-stop shop for information and quality ratings on the vast majority of Philadelphia’s District, charter, and private schools, which number close to 500 (see graph).

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