Not for the Timid: Breaking Down Barriers, Creating Breakthrough High Schools in Ohio

March 2007

In 2005, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation asked attorneys at the University of Washington's Center on Reinventing Public Education (CRPE) to explore legal and policy issues affecting high school reform and redesign efforts in a select number of states, including Ohio.

To identify legal, regulatory, and policy barriers to the creation and successful operation of redesigned high schools in Ohio, CRPE attorney Mitch Price interviewed high school principals, teachers, union officials, state and district policymakers, reform advocates, and others involved in high school redesign work. Both state and federal laws were analyzed, including the Ohio Revised Code and the federal No Child Left Behind statute. Collective bargaining issues, as well as policy statements by state education officials, also were examined.

Written by Donald Van Meter, an Ohio-based education policy and strategic communications consultant, this report presents the results of the analysis of perceived barriers to high school redesign and real impediments embedded in federal and state statutes and regulations, as well as in local district policies.

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