Title: Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools: Activities and Accomplishments, 1990-1996. Final Report.
Author: Newmann, Fred M.
Publication Information: Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools, Madison, WI.; Wisconsin Center for Education Research, Madison. Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC
ERIC number: ED412626
Abstract: From 1990 to 1995, the Center on Organization and Restructuring of Schools at the University of Wisconsin-Madison examined questions about the effects of school restructuring on student performance. Center researchers analyzed data from more than 1,500 elementary, middle, and high schools throughout the United States and conducted field research in 44 schools in 16 states. The Center studies how organizational features of schools can be changed to increase the intellectual and social competence of students. The 5-year program of research focused on restructuring in four areas: the experiences of students in school; the professional life of teachers; the governance, management, and leadership of schools; and the coordination of community resources to better serve educationally disadvantaged students. The studies also focused on critical issues for elementary-secondary education: student achievement, educational equity, decentralization, communities of learning, and change through support. The research was carried out through 18 different studies that gathered data through literature reviews and analysis of the following sources of empirical evidence: School Restructuring Study, National Educational Longitudinal Study of 1988, Study of Chicago School Reform, Longitudinal Study of School Restructuring, and exploratory field studies on social capital. The findings show that school restructuring can improve student learning, but must be clearly focused on four key areas: student learning, authentic pedagogy, school organizational capacity, and external support. The research also underscored the importance of building social capital. Information is provided about the Center's deliverable products; research dissemination; publications; and workshops, conference presentations, and consulting services. (Contains 13 references.)