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Focus Area:
Portfolio Strategy

The portfolio strategy is a problem-solving framework through which education and civic leaders develop a citywide system of high-quality, diverse, autonomous public schools.

It moves past the one-size-fits-all approach to education. Portfolio systems place educators directly in charge of their schools, empower parents to choose the right schools for their children, and focus school system leaders – such as in a district central office or school authorizer – on overseeing school success.

We Need to Prepare A New Generation of Education Systems Leaders

For more than a year, the U.S. Secretary of Education and the president of the American Federation of Teachers have been engaged in a bitter dispute about the public and private purposes of education in...

Reflecting on the Portfolio Strategy and School Improvement in San Antonio

A 15-minute drive from the Alamo, Ira C. Ogden Elementary School is in its first year of an ambitious turnaround effort. At the beginning of March, as part of CRPE’s 15th Portfolio Network Meeting, I...

Wanted: District Leaders Who Can Make Tough Choices

The many big cities now looking for school superintendents—Houston, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Newark, Seattle, and Washington, D.C., among them—need to pay attention to what has happened in Chicago. Like Chicago, these districts face big...

New CREDO Report Shows System-Level Supports, Turnaround Expertise Critical to School-Level Improvements

CREDO at Stanford University published a new report today, examining the impact and implementation of nonprofit charter management organization (CMO)-led school turnarounds under Louisiana’s Recovery School District (RSD) in New Orleans and Tennessee’s Achievement School...

Passing Notes: Learning from Efforts to Share Instructional Practices Across District-Charter Lines

This report examines recent efforts of districts and charter schools to share key instructional practices and offers recommendations for education leaders to move forward.

Proposal: The Future of the Charter School Movement Requires a New Political Strategy

The national charter movement grew because people from diverse perspectives agreed on the need for a new form of public school free of bureaucratic and union constraints. As political scientist Stephen Page observed, the movement...

Clearing the School Choice Fog for Parents

School choice proponents argue that choice creates equitable access to quality schools and results in the shuttering of schools that perform poorly since few families choose them. However, this is based on families having the...

How Superintendents Can Be Effective In Local Politics

This commentary by Paul Hill originally appeared on the School Superintendent Association’s website in The Leading Edge Blog. We at CRPE have been working with superintendent-led initiatives for nearly three decades. We’ve seen a lot...

Denver’s Storied Portfolio District Is Starting to Act Like Just Another City School System

Denver Public Schools hosts endless visits from civic and district leaders looking for ways to reinvent public education. It has been a star portfolio district and a leader in charter-district collaboration. Over the course of...

Three Ways Superintendents Can Increase Their Influence

Some years ago CRPE published An Impossible Job? A View from the Urban Superintendent’s Chair. It detailed the many things stacked against a district superintendent’s success, including politics, bureaucracy, union dominance of school boards, and...

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