Stories from the Field

Chattanooga, known by an older generation for The Andrew Sisters song “Chattanooga Choo Choo,” is now becoming known as the leading U.S. community addressing digital equity. The effort is multi-layered and comprehensive, and its leadership starts at the top with its young mayor, Andy Berke. The school system, Hamilton County...
Henriette Taylor has only been the community school coordinator at The Historic Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Elementary School (HSCT) in Baltimore for a little over a year, but she works hard to make sure the school’s “467 amazing little souls” understand the legacy behind the school they attend. She reminds them to...
The halls of Boaz Middle School are buzzing with energy. Students walk past bulletin boards displaying their work, as a visitor stops to browse the examples of graphic organizers and short essays. Teachers stand in the open classroom doorways, discussing students, strategies and the day's successes. Students stop to ask...
Both legend and history, dating back to when the area was settled in the early 1600s, surround Sleepy Hollow (NY) High School. Sleepy Hollow and its sister village, Tarrytown, bring to mind an idyllic vision of American life. Located on the banks of the Hudson River 20 miles north of...
"There's not a minute to be lost." That's the mantra in many high-needs schools today, where the pressures of high-stakes accountability have reduced the time spent on "untested" subjects and activities like art, music, drama and physical education. And perhaps no brand of school fun has taken the drubbing given...
When the University of Pennsylvania decided to revitalize their surrounding West Philadelphia neighborhood of University City in the late 1990s, they knew they had to start with an outstanding neighborhood school. Together with the Philadelphia school district and the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers, Penn designed and created the Sadie Tanner...
As superintendent of the ABC Unified School District in Southeast Los Angeles, Ron Barnes knew that averages can be deceiving. Home to one of the highest-performing schools in California, his school district's test score averages stood up well against state scores. Yet this small, urban district's overall high performance rate...
Vancouver, Washington, is a city of around 165,500, located just north of Portland, Oregon. About 22,500 children attend the city’s public schools. But as elsewhere, not all of those schools perform equally – and students affected by poverty often attend the lowest-performers. In the Vancouver district, approximately 54 percent of...