Activities & Outcomes

The Center for School Change works at the school, community, and policy levels to increase student achievement, raise graduation rates, improve student attitudes, and to strengthen communities.  To accomplish these goals we lead or assist in many activities, working with educators, parents, business people, students, policy-makers and other concerned people throughout the United States.  

Activities

The following are a list of some past activities we have lead or participated in to accomplish our goals:

  • Helped to write the original Post-Secondary Enrollment Options Legislation in MN in 1985 and then helped to expand the law to include 10th graders in 2012
  • Help successfully challenge the NCAA in a 3 year battle over appropriate course work for college bound students
  • Appeared on more than 400 television and radio programs, including “The Today Show”, “ABC Nightly News,” “Good Morning America”, “McNeil/Lehrer News Hour”
  • With assistance from Minnesota Department of Education and US Department of Education, helped produce 17 You-Tube Videos on the value of Dual (High School/College) credit courses
  • Invited by ECM/Sun/Current newspaper group to write weekly columns (that reach up to 650,000 families/week).  From 1989 to 2004, wrote weekly columns for the St. Paul Pioneer Press
  • During our more than 20 years of working to improve education, we have received over $25 million in grant funding from the Annenberg, Blandin, Bradley, Bremer, Carnegie, Cargill, Carlson, Frey, Bill and Melinda Gates, General Mills, Minneapolis, Joyce, Peters, Pohlad, St. Paul, Travelers, and Wallin Foundations, and also from the Minnesota and U.S. Departments of Education
  • Had more than 1,500 newspaper columns published by a variety of papers, including the Wall Street JournalUSA TodayDetroit News, Philadelphia Inquirer, Sacramento Bee, plus a number of “on-line sites” including Huffington Post, MinnPost, TC Daily Planet, Education News and Education Views

 

Outcomes

The following are examples of some of the measurable outcomes that have been produced as a result of our projects and collaborations:

  • Key in writing the nation’s first charter law. Today there are nearly 150 charter schools enrolling over 39,000 MN students. More than 20 state legislatures and several Congressional Committees have asked us to testify about this idea
  • Directed a project in which Cincinnati (district) Public Schools increased overall high school graduation rates by more than 25 points, and eliminated the graduation gap between white and African American students.  More information on that project here.
  • Over a two-year period, helped 11 Minneapolis district and charter schools show “above average” gains in reading, math and family involvement
  • With financial support from Frey, St. Paul and Travelers Foundations, assisted several district and charter schools increase from 23% to 38% the number of students participating in some form of dual credit course, during the first year of a projected four-year project
  • Worked with Target, Minneapolis and St. Paul district & charter public schools to distribute more than 2,000 books to families, along with information about the value of reading with/to young children