Education

Small Schools, Large Districts: Small School Reform and New York City’s Students

Small Schools, Large Districts: Small School Reform and New York City’s Students
Teachers College Record,

Iatarola, P. & Schwartz, A.E., Stiefel, L., Chellman, C.
01/01/2008

High school reform is currently at the top of the education policy making agenda after years of stagnant achievement and persistent racial and income test score gaps. Although a number of reforms offer some promise of improving U.S. high schools, small schools have emerged as the favored reform model, especially in urban areas, garnering substantial financial investments from both the private and public sectors. In the decade following 1993, the number of high schools in New York City nearly doubled, as new "small" schools opened and large high schools were reorganized into smaller learning communities. The promise of small schools to improve academic engagement, school culture, and, ultimately, student performance has drawn many supporters. However, educators, policy makers, and researchers have raised concerns about the unintended consequences of these new small schools and the possibility that students "left behind" in large, established high schools are incurring negative impacts.

Teaching Reflective Practices in the Action Science/Action Inquiry Tradition: Key Stages, Concepts, and Practices

Teaching Reflective Practices in the Action Science/Action Inquiry Tradition: Key Stages, Concepts, and Practices
Handbook of Action Research, 2nd Ed. Sage Publications,

Taylor, Rudolph & Foldy, E.G.
01/01/2008

This chapter describes an approach for teaching reflective practice in the action science/action inquiry tradition. We offer a theoretical background for our approach and then break it down into three key stages: (1) understanding the social construction of reality; (2) recognizing one's own contribution to that construction; and (3) taking action to reshape that construction. We articulate key concepts (e.g. the ladder of inference and competing commitments) and tools (e.g. the change immunity map and the learning pathways grid) for each stage. We end with suggestions for assignments that integrate learning across stages and concepts. In short, we offer a conceptually grounded set of concrete practices for teaching reflective practice.

From districts to schools: The distribution of resources across schools in big city school districts

From districts to schools: The distribution of resources across schools in big city school districts
Economics of Education Review Oct 2007, Vol. 26 Issue 5, p532-545, 14p

Rubenstein, R. & Schwartz, A.E., Stiefel, L., Bel Hadj Amor, H.
10/01/2007

While the distribution of resources across school districts is well studied, relatively little attention has been paid to how resources are allocated to individual schools inside those districts. This paper explores the determinants of resource allocation across schools in large districts based on factors that reflect differential school costs or factors that may, in practice, be related to the distribution of resources. Using detailed data on school resources and student and school characteristics in New York City, Cleveland and Columbus, Ohio, we find that schools with higher percentages of poor pupils often receive more money and have more teachers per pupil, but the teachers tend to be less educated and less well paid, with a particularly consistent pattern in New York City schools. We conclude with implications for policy and further research.

The Effects of Acculturation on Asthma Burden in a Community Sample of Mexican American Schoolchildren

The Effects of Acculturation on Asthma Burden in a Community Sample of Mexican American Schoolchildren
American Journal of Public Health, Jul 2007, Vol. 97 Issue 7, p1290-1296, 7p.

Martin, M.A., Shalowitz, M.U., Mijanovich, T., Clark-Kauffman, E., Perez, E. & Berry, C.
07/01/2007

We sought to determine whether low acculturation among Mexican American caregivers protects their children against asthma. Methods. Data were obtained from an observational study of urban pediatric asthma. Dependent variables were children's diagnosed asthma and total (diagnosed plus possible) asthma. Regression models were controlled for caregivers' level of acculturation, education, marital status, depression, life stress, and social support and children's insurance. Results. Caregivers' level of acculturation was associated with children's diagnosed asthma (P=.025) and total asthma (P=.078) in bivariate analyses. In multivariate models, protective effects of caregivers' level of acculturation were mediated by the other covariates. Independent predictors of increased diagnosed asthma included caregivers' life stress (odds ratio [OR]= 1.12, P=.005) and children's insurance, both public (OR=4.71, P=.009) and private (OR = 2.87, P=.071). Only caregiver's life stress predicted increased total asthma (OR = 1.21, P=.001). Conclusions. The protective effect of caregivers' level of acculturation on diagnosed and total asthma for Mexican American children was mediated by social factors, especially caregivers' life stress. Among acculturation measures, foreign birth was more predictive of disease status than was language use or years in country. Increased acculturation among immigrant groups does not appear to lead to greater asthma risk.

The Political Economy of School Choice: Support for Charter Schools Across States and School Districts

The Political Economy of School Choice: Support for Charter Schools Across States and School Districts
Journal of Urban Economics, July 2007, Vol. 62 Issue 1, p27-54, 28p.

Stoddard, C. & Corcoran, S.P.
07/01/2007

Public charter schools are one of the fastest growing education reforms in the US, currently serving more than a million students. Though the movement for greater school choice is widespread, its implementation has been uneven. State laws differ greatly in the degree of latitude granted charter schools, and-holding constant state support-states and localities vary widely in the availability of and enrollment in these schools. In this paper, we use a panel of demographic, financial, and school performance data to examine the support for charters at the state and local levels. Results suggest that growing population heterogeneity and income inequality-in addition to persistently low student outcomes-are associated with greater support for charter schools. Teachers unions have been particularly effective in slowing or preventing liberal state charter legislation; however, conditional on law passage and strength, local participation in charter schools rises with the share of unionized teachers.

Immigrant and Native-born Differences in School Stability and Special Education: Evidence from New York City

Immigrant and Native-born Differences in School Stability and Special Education: Evidence from New York City
International Migration Review, June 2007, Volume 41, Number 2, pp. 403-432(30).

Schwartz, A.E., Conger, D. & Stiefel, L.
06/02/2007

Using the literature on achievement differences as a framework and motivation, along with data on New York City students, we examine nativity differences in students' rates of attendance, school mobility, school system exit, and special education participation. The results indicate that, holding demographic and school characteristics constant, foreign-born have higher attendance rates and lower rates of participation in special education than native-born. Among first graders, immigrants are also more likely to transfer schools and exit the school system between years than native-born, yet the patterns are different among older students. We also identify large variation according to birth region.

Closing the Access Gap for Health Innovations: an Open Licensing Proposal for Universities

Closing the Access Gap for Health Innovations: an Open Licensing Proposal for Universities
Globalization and Health 2007, Vol. 3, no. 1. DOI:10.1186/1744-8603-3-1

Chaifetz, S., D. Chokshi, R. Rajkumar, D. Scales, and Y. Benkler
02/01/2007

Background: This article centers around a proposal outlining how research universities could leverage their intellectual property to help close the access gap for health innovations in poor countries. A recent deal between Emory University, Gilead Sciences, and Royalty Pharma is used as an example to illustrate how 'equitable access licensing' could be put into practice.

Discussion: While the crisis of access to medicines in poor countries has multiple determinants, intellectual property protection leading to high prices is well-established as one critical element of the access gap. Given the current international political climate, systemic, government-driven reform of intellectual property protection seems unlikely in the near term. Therefore, we propose that public sector institutions, universities chief among them, adopt a modest intervention – an Equitable Access License (EAL) – that works within existing trade-law and drug-development paradigms in order to proactively circumvent both national and international obstacles to generic medicine production. Our proposal has three key features: (1) it is prospective in scope, (2) it facilitates unfettered generic competition in poor countries, and (3) it centers around universities and their role in the biomedical research enterprise. Two characteristics make universities ideal agents of the type of open licensing proposal described. First, universities, because they are upstream in the development pipeline, are likely to hold rights to the key components of a wide variety of end products. Second, universities acting collectively have a strong negotiating position with respect to other players in the biomedical research arena. Finally, counterarguments are anticipated and addressed and conclusions are drawn based on how application of the Equitable Access License would have changed the effects of the licensing deal between Emory and Gilead.

What Happens to Potential Discouraged? Masculinity Norms and the Contrasting Institutional and Labor Market Experiences of Less affluent Black and White Men

What Happens to Potential Discouraged? Masculinity Norms and the Contrasting Institutional and Labor Market Experiences of Less affluent Black and White Men
Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Vol. 609 no. 1, January 2007. pp. 153-180. 10.1177/0002716206296544

Royster, D.
01/01/2007

Though less affluent black and white boys and men adhere to similar gendered norms and aspirations and begin with similar labor market potential, they are often sorted into very different and unequal educational and labor market trajectories. Using national-level descriptive data and key qualitative studies of institutional processes, this article contrasts less affluent black and white men’s educational, labor market, and criminal justice system experiences and elucidates the processes of differentiation that reproduce those unequal patterns. In each institutional arena, less affluent black males pay a disproportionate price for enacting masculinity norms in comparison to white males. White boys and men are also presented with more desirable labor market options (and second-chance opportunities when they need help) that are denied their black male counterparts. This article suggests that only a complex strategy, which requires less affluent black men to resist more constructively while citizen groups hold institutions more publicly accountable, can enhance the labor market trajectories of black men.

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