As National School Choice Week comes to a close, Christine Campbell reflects on the Portfolio Network meeting in Memphis on school choice and the fact that school choice can mean different things to different people.
This past September, MPS announced the advent of a second Compact: a one-on-one partnership between the district and Hiawatha Academies. Though this second agreement lacks the robust list of signatories and ambitious tone of the first compact, it demonstrates a simple and targeted strategy of exchanges. MPS offers Hiawatha inclusion in their enrollment process and access to MPS facilities. In return, Hiawatha offers MPS access to their professional development programs and permits the district to absorb Hiawatha’s test scores.
Cleveland is the newest District-Charter Collaboration Compact city. While the collaboration between CMSD and 14 charter partners focuses on similar challenges as other compact cities—low-performing schools, special education services, and facilities use—the city of Cleveland has given the Compact limited time to make meaningful progress. Dire performance statistics coupled with steadily declining enrollment have catalyzed a homegrown and collaborative effort to transform all Cleveland public schools.