Questions We Wish the Feds, States, Districts (and CEP) Would Ask

Yesterday, we chastised the Center on Education Policy for asking questions about turnaround that don’t mean much. Wouldn’t we all be better off if we had answers to questions like:

  1. Which states and districts have changed their staffing policies (inc. collective bargaining) to give turnaround school leaders true autonomy over hiring, firing, budgeting, and culture?
  2. What percentage of district SIG applications have been rejected as more of the same turnaround-light approaches that have been failing for years (more coaches, webinars and PD, etc.)?
  3. Are external partners required to sign performance contracts before getting the jobs? If so, what are they being held accountable for in year 1,2 and 3? Has anyone lost a contract yet for non-performance?
  4. What percentage of external partners have a 5-day-a-week presence in the schools they’re supposed to be transforming?
  5. What percentage of grants are being used to establish coherent feeder patterns of high schools, middle schools and elementary schools … instead of giving one-off grants to individual schools?
  6. How will states and districts know if they’re successful? How will the public hold them accountable for keeping their promises? Are these promises even public?

These are questions with answers worth knowing.