No. 1 for Some:
Opportunity and Achievement in Massachusetts
25 years after MERA, Black, Latino, and low-income students continue to have dramatically different experiences in Massachusetts schools than their White and higher-income peers — and these disparities have real consequences for students, their communities, and our state’s economy and democracy. If Massachusetts truly wants to be No. 1, the next phase of educational improvement must focus on confronting and addressing these inequities.
Urgency of Excellence:
Considerations for the School Committee and New Superintendent of Schools in Worcester
In the winter of 2016, the WPS began a search for a new Superintendent of Schools. In response, WEC and the Worcester Regional Research Bureau (WRRB) hosted a forum and produced a paper, The Urgency of Excellence calling for a review of the status of the district and the development of a multi-year strategic plan.
RAISING READERS: The Importance of Early and Sustained Literacy for School Success
A substantial body of research points to the importance of early language development, early mastery of reading, and the ongoing development of reading skills for academic success. The purpose of this document is to serve as a primer, a brief introduction to the topic of early language development and reading mastery for academic success. This brief is a compilation of information relevant to the interested layman.
A Primer on the FY11 Worcester Public Schools Budget
The 319 page Worcester Public Schools budget can be an intimidating document. However, its pages lay out in a logical way the vast set of services provided by the Worcester Public Schools, focusing on what they cost, and from where the money to support them comes. Overall, the budget tells a story about public education in Worcester – a story of education and career goals and dreams, as well as barriers and potholes on the road to achieving those dreams. It shows that funds are scarce, and that a great deal of effort has already been made to identify cost savings.
The purpose of this Primer to provide a guided tour of the budget. It offers insight into the ways that the monies from federal, state, and local resources support our schools. It highlights those areas that are affected by increasingly tight budgets. This Primer is also an invitation to look more closely at the current education picture, and perhaps to formulate some suggestions about what Worcester as a community could do better to continuously improve our schools.
Who is Running our Schools?: A Primer on School Governance and Management in Worcester
The purpose of this document is to serve as a primer, a brief introduction to the topic of school governance in Massachusetts and Worcester in particular. This brief does not strive to be an exhaustive look at models of governance nor does it analyze the research on what works. It is, rather, a compilation of information culled from secondary sources including the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, the Rennie Center, the US Department of Education, Bridgestar, the National Association of Independent Schools and the Massachusetts Association of School Committees. It seeks to identify the major
actors and stakeholders affecting the schools in Worcester and the roles that they play in supporting schools and educating children.
A Primer on Education Reform in the Commonwealth: Federal and State Policy
For nearly twenty years, state and federal policy have played an increasingly important role in education at the local level as we work to prepare all students for the opportunities and challenges of life in a rapidly changing world. As interested citizens concerned about what works in the education of our children, it is important for us to have an understanding of the policies, laws, assumptions, and ideals that inform our current circumstances. The purpose of this document is to serve as primer, a brief introduction to the topic of education reform both at the federal level and in Massachusetts. This brief does not strive to be an exhaustive look at reform efforts, nor does it probe deeply into the nuances of policy decisions or their effects. It is a compilation of information culled from secondary sources, public presentations, and individual interviews. It is the first in a series of documents that seek to serve as a point for thoughtful, civil, and critical discussion around educating our children and to bringing each and every student to a level of proficiency for the security of their individual futures and our community life.