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Educational policy analysis archives
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1 of 24 Education Policy Analysis Archives Volume 9 Number 44October 25, 2001ISSN 1068-2341 A peer-reviewed scholarly journal Editor: Gene V Glass, College of Education Arizona State University Copyright 2001, the EDUCATION POLICY ANALYSIS ARCHIVES Permission is hereby granted to copy any article if EPAA is credited and copies are not sold. Articles appearing in EPAA are abstracted in the Current Index to Journals in Education by the ERIC Clearinghouse on Assessment and Evaluation and are permanently archived in Resources in Education .Local Flexibility within an Accountability System Benjamin Scafidi Andrew Young School of Policy Studies Georgia State University Catherine Freeman Andrew Young School of Policy Studies Georgia State University Stan DeJarnett Morgan County (GA) Public SchoolsCitation: Scafidi, B., Freeman, C., and DeJarnett, S. (2001, October 25). Local flexibility within an accountability system. Education Policy Analysis Archives 9 (44). Retrieved [date] from http://epaa.asu.edu/epaa/v9n44.html.Abstract Over the past decade, several states have created c omprehensive accountability systems designed to increase student learning in public schools. These accountability systems are based on "high-stakes" standardized testing of a state curriculum. Rewards and interventions for local educators are based largely upon students' pe rformance on these tests. Using the recent accountability reforms in G eorgia as a backdrop,

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2 of 24this article considers the role of local flexibilit y within such an accountability system--flexibility over paperwork, resources, personnel, and curriculum for local educators. Increased flexi bility for local educators is not merely an option in a world where local educators are subject to a comprehensive accountability system im posed by a state--it is a requirement for success. We make a case for pr oviding local flexibility and provides a discussion regarding typ es of flexibility, vehicles for granting flexibility, and who should r eceive flexibility. I. Introduction Over the past decade, several states have created c omprehensive accountability systems designed to increase student learning in pu blic schools. These accountability systems are based on "high-stakes" standardized tes ting of a state curriculum. Local educators face consequences based on how well their students do on these exams. They receive rewards for good student performance and ar e subject to interventions to rescue children from low-performing schools. Using the rec ent accountability reforms in Georgia as a backdrop, this article considers the r ole of local flexibility within an accountability system--flexibility over paperwork, resources, personnel, and curriculum for local educators. This increased flexibility involves a decentralizat ion of authority that is broader than, but inclusive of, school-based management. To implement the increased flexibility for local educators contemplated in this article wo uld require profound decreases in the dizzying array of state and federal regulations gov erning local districts, schools, and personnel. Increased flexibility for local educators is not me rely an option in a world where local educators are subject to a comprehensive acco untability system imposed by a state--it is a requirement for success. Failure to provide local educators with flexibility to meet statewide learning goals for students would le ad to blurred lines of accountability, and would not capitalize on the unique talents of l ocal educators and other unique local circumstances, both of which would ultimately preve nt accountability systems from realizing their full potential. In addition, this f ailure will likely prevent accountability systems from surviving the political battles that p eriodically surround public education. This article makes a case for providing local flexi bility within an accountability system and provides a discussion regarding the granting of flexibility, types of flexibility, vehicles for granting flexibility, and who should r eceive flexibility. To those ends, section II provides an overview of c omprehensive accountability systems that measure school and student performance and hold local educators accountable for this performance. Section III descr ibes the appropriate role for local flexibility within such an accountability system. T ypes of local flexibility and vehicles for granting this flexibility are presented in sect ions IV and V. Section VI discusses who should get flexibility, including guiding principle s for state policymakers. Section VII contains concluding remarks.II. Overview of Accountability Several states, including Florida, Kentucky, North Carolina, and, most recently, Georgia, have created comprehensive accountability systems designed to increase

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3 of 24student learning in public schools. A "comprehensiv e" accountability system has each of the following three components: Goals for student learning at all grade levels. 1. Accurate measurement of student learning outcomes. 2. Rewards for local educators (superintendents, principals a nd other administrators, and teachers) for good student outcomes and interventions to rescue children from failing schools. 3. We served on the staff of the Governor's Education Reform Study Commission (GERSC) that led to the creation of the comprehensi ve accountability system for Georgia's public schools. 1 At the first Commission meeting in June 1999, Geor gia Governor Roy E. Barnes announced the "charge" for G ERSC: Let us come to the table and pool our best ideas, l et us bring our best-hearted intentions, and let us steel up our be st resolve to ensure for our children tomorrow a better system of public educati on than we find today. --Georgia Governor Roy E. Barnes 2 In his speech, Governor Barnes announced the format ion of four committees, the most ambitious of which was titled "Accountability. 3 In describing the role of the Accountability Committee, the Governor said he want ed an end to "excuse-based education" in Georgia public schools. The committee members included business executives, legislators from both major political p arties, retired educators active in education policy circles, and a retired college pre sident (who is currently a professor). 4 The Accountability Committee heard testimony from s everal local, regional, and national researchers and professional educators abo ut accountability approaches in other states and important conceptual issues in designing an accountability system. Many of the individuals who made presentations were veteran s of the standards and accountability movement and recommended comprehensi ve standardized testing on public school students in several subjects. 5 The committee members were told that these exams should be curriculum-based exams called crite rion-referenced tests, and these exams could be used as an important measuring stick for evaluating the performance of individual students, educators, schools, and distri cts. Using such exams for accountability purposes is commonly known as "high stakes testing." Although the Accountability Committee made no forma l recommendations, the committee members coalesced around the following id eas: Students in grades 3 and above should take curricul um-based exams at the end of each school year, based on the state of Georgia's Q uality Core Curriculum. There should be threshold scores on these exams tha t indicate how well each student has mastered the material. Local districts, schools, and educators should be h eld accountable for how well their students performed on these exams by a system of rewards for good performance and interventions for persistently low levels of student learning. These rewards and interventions should be based on levels of student learning and improvements. There should be a new, agency, independent of the s tate's Department of

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4 of 24Education, created to monitor performance of the ex ams and other educational outcomes and to administer rewards and intervention s. House Bill 1187, passed by the Georgia General Asse mbly in the Spring of 2000 and signed into law by Governor Barnes set up a sta te accountability system for public education in Georgia that closely followed the thin king of the members of the Accountability Committee (Chapter 20 Section 14 of the Georgia Official Code). For the first time, Georgia had an accountability s ystem based on the end product of education--student learning. The state Departmen t of Education, which prior to the formation of the education commission had already b egun refining the state curriculum (QCC) and creating curriculum-based exams, would ad minister statewide exams to students in grades 3 and above. These exams were fi rst administered in some grades and subjects in the Spring of 2000, and they will be fu lly implemented in all grades and subjects by 2002. For both schools and educators, t he law provides several rewards for good performance and interventions for persistently low performance--performance defined in terms of student learning of the state's curriculum and other, currently unspecified, student outcomes. Rewards and interven tions will be implemented once the exams are fully implemented. The rewards and interv entions passed under the new accountability law include 6 : 1) Two grades (A through F) will be awarded to ea ch school, where one grade will based on levels of stu dent learning outcomes and the other grade will be based on improvements in student lear ning outcomes; 2) All certified personnel at a school will be given a $1,000 bonus for each "A" grade the school receives and a $500 bonus for each "B" grade. "If a school has received a grade of D or F for a p eriod of two consecutive years or more, the State Board of Education could appoint a school master or management team to oversee and direct the duties of the principal o f the school in relation to the school until school performance improves and the school is released from intervention by the director, with the cost of the master or management team to be paid by the state." 7 "If a school has received a grade of D or F for a p eriod of three consecutive years or more, the State Board of Education shall impleme nt one or more of the following interventions or sanctions, in order of severity: (A) Removal of school personnel on recommendation o f the master or the school improvement team, including the principal and perso nnel whose performance has continued not to produce student achievement gains over a three-year period as a condition for continued receipt of state funds for administration (B) Allow for the implementation of a state charter school through the designation by the State Board of Education; (C) Mandate the complete reconstitution of the scho ol, removing all personnel, appointing a new principal, and hiring all new staf f. Existing staff may reapply for employment at the newly reconstituted school but sh all not be rehired if their performance regarding student achievement has been negative for the past three years; (D) Mandate that the parents have the option to rel ocate the student to other public schools in the local school system to be chosen by the parents of the student with transportation costs borne by the system; or (E) Mandate a monitor, master, or management team i n the school that shall be paid by the district." 8

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5 of 24 Although the newly created Office of Education Acco untability (OEA), independent of the state's Department of Education, has not yet determined what student learning outcomes will determine these school-level grades that will drive the rewards and interventions. Nevertheless, it is mandated in HB 1187 that student performance on the curriculum-based exams, both levels of performa nce and improvements, will be the main determinant of each school's grades. The cash bonuses to teachers and the potential inte rventions, especially public school choice and opening a state-funded charter sc hool in the neighborhood of a failing school are not widespread across the U.S. 9 Although the issues involved are extremely importan t, our purpose here is not to discuss the merits or demerits of accountability sy stems based on high stakes testing and state mandated rewards and interventions.10 This article considers the appropriate role of local flexibility within a comprehensive account ability system and several implementation issues, including what kind of flexi bility to grant, how to grant it, and to whom should flexibility be granted.III. Flexibility Within An Accountability System In this section, a case is made for providing local educators and schools with flexibility--if and only if the local educators are held accountable for their performance by an outside entity. 11 At the end of this section, we discuss the issues of negative unintended consequences that may be present in syst ems of comprehensive accountability and governance in a decentralized sy stem. The argument for flexibility under a system of acco untability has been made before (Hanushek, 1994; Hannaway, 1996). We reitera te their claims and discuss implementation and political economy concerns as we ll. Comprehensive accountability means three things: go als for student learning, student learning outcomes are accurately measured, and local educators (school boards, superintendents, principals and other administrator s, and teachers) are subject to rewards for good student outcomes and interventions to resc ue children from failing schools. If truly held accountable for student learning outcomes local educators have strong incentives to do whatever it takes to achieve the specified student learning goals. Without a significant degree of control over the me ans for education improvement, such as budgets, personnel, and curric ulum, local educators cannot ultimately be held accountable for achieving the as signed end of improving and achieving a high level of student learning. This po int is best demonstrated by considering two polar opposite forms of "accountabi lity." Accountability over Inputs, Process, and Program Im plementation Suppose the state were to give each school student learning targets and a prescription for how to achieve those targets. If a particular school obediently implemented the state's prescription and the level of student learning was low and was not improving, then this failure belongs to the sta te--not the school. This school would be responsible for properly implementing the state' s prescription; the school would not be ultimately responsible for student learning. Loc al educators, who possess better information about their own unique talents and the local circumstances, including the types of students, resources, and environment, may wish to deviate from the centrally prescribed education formula because they deem such changes as beneficial in their local

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6 of 24situation. Local educators who acted on those wishe s would be subject to sanctions for not following the script they were given. This approach to "accountability" makes state polic ymakers responsible for student learning outcomes and local educators respo nsible for implementing the state's prescription. This blurs the lines of accountabilit y, because lawmakers, parents, and other citizens will inevitably blame local educator s for any low performance by students. In addition, the unique talents of local educators and circumstances of local schools are not exploited to best achieve the state's goals. Ta ken together, these two problems will frustrate local educators and could lead to poor im plementation of state education policy, higher teacher and administrator attrition, and eve n a reversal of state education policy regarding standards and accountability as local edu cators make credible arguments that state policy inhibits local creativity and misplace s blame for any failures. (Results-Based) Comprehensive Accountability A second approach is to have state and local educat ion authorities articulate the desired standards for student achievement and hold schools and educators accountable, through rewards and interventions, for meeting or f ailing to meet the standards. Choosing the second path, the path of accountabilit y for student learning and flexibility on "how to" meet the goals, local educators are enc ouraged and empowered to pursue their own paths for success, and, thus, they would be ultimately responsible for the results of their own initiative. The purpose of flexibility within a results-based a ccountability system is to allow educators and schools to create their own roadmaps for educational success given their unique student populations, circumstances, and pers onnel. Although local school systems, schools, administrators, and teachers acro ss the nation have varying degrees of flexibility, even when there is little or no local accountability, the level of flexibility that is desirable under a results-based accountability s ystem is much larger than that which is desirable under the typical notion of "accountabili ty"--accountability over on inputs, process, and program implementation. 12 School-based management plans (flexibility plans) i mplemented in various states across the nation do not typically provide much loc al flexibility, and there is not any evidence that school-based management alone leads t o better student outcomes (Summers and Johnson, 1996). In fact, an Education Commission of the States report cites a RAND study that concluded that no school-ba sed management effort "has yet created the hoped-for dramatic improvements in scho ol quality (Education Commission of the States, 2000)." State policymakers in Georgia, and in other states as well, are reluctant to give local educators more autonomy. This reluctance is u nderstandable given the lack of true accountability in most states. In a world without r esults-based accountability, many education rules and regulations are absolutely nece ssary: Relative to a world with no accountability over process or results, such rules and regulations promote good student outcomes. The goal of rules and regulations is to e licit good school performance, students learning beyond expectations. However, mos t local educators believe that many of the current laws and rules, through unintended c onsequences, hinder them from offering the best possible education to each child. However, eliminating such rules is not necessarily warranted--local educators have little incentive to act in the best interest of children without the rules if they are not held acc ountable for student outcomes--it is human nature. This is not a characteristic of educa tors, but one of humans in general. 13

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7 of 24 If given autonomy, what incentive does a local educ ator have to pursue whatever it takes to make sure that students achieve if they are not held accountable for student learning outcomes? If given autonomy over hiring de cisions, what is to stop a principal from hiring a relative or friend who may not be com petent as a teacher? Nothing unless there are certification rules and other regulations to drastically mitigate the chance of this occurring. (Of course, no set of rules can com pletely eliminate all corruption or well-intentioned, but misguided, policies). However these rules limit the principals' flexibility over who he or she can hire to teach. T hese rules are desirable if the principal is not held responsible for student learning outcom es. If principals are held responsible, such rules may not be necessary, and may even harm student learning by denying some good teachers the ability to teach in our public sc hools. Given the reluctance of state lawmakers and officia ls to grant local flexibility, local educators, who desire more flexibility over r esources, personnel, and curriculum, because they believe that their students will benef it from doing things in different ways, will have to accept results-based comprehensive acc ountability (student learning goals, measurement of progress toward the goals, and rewar ds for success and interventions to rescue children from persistent failure) in exchang e for the increased flexibility. But there is another side to that coin: State policymak ers who wish to impose results-based comprehensive accountability systems on local educa tors may have to grant increased flexibility to see their accountability reforms rea lize their full potential and to make their accountability reforms "stick" politically. Failure to judiciously increase flexibility may lead to a gradual erosion of accountability measure s. If local educators who have little or no flexibility to improve schools are blamed for an y school failures, then such a situation is not likely to be politically tenable. Those wron gly blamed will make the arguments that they are held responsible for things beyond th eir control, and the end result could be the erosion of accountability based on student lear ning--and any benefits that would come from such an incentive system. There are opportunities for obtaining flexibility a vailable to local schools under current Georgia laws and regulations, and, by and l arge, local educators are not taking advantage of them. These opportunities include the waiver process, charter school conversions, and demonstration schools. Although th ere are many waiver petitions to the state's Department of Education to gain relief from state regulations, the vast majority of them are for the same two or three things (e.g. blo ck scheduling). Charter school conversion opportunities have been available since 1993, and there have been less than 30 conversions (out of 1,887 schools). The similar demonstration school process has been available since the mid-1980s, and, to our kno wledge, there has been only one application. Georgia has recently begun implementat ion of a results-based accountability system, and this new era will likely result in a la rge increase in the interest of local educators in utilizing the existing flexibility to do things in different ways--because they are now held accountable for student learning. If l ocal educators under a system of accountability do not wish to increase their autono my over resources, personnel, and curriculum, then we suspect that the rewards for go od performance and/or the consequences for failure are not providing strong i ncentives or motivation. That is, the accountability system would not be comprehensive be cause it does not contain adequate rewards and interventions.Negative Unintended Consequences and Increased Loca l Flexibility Many education policymakers and researchers have ex pressed concerns about negative unintended consequences that may result fr om inaccurate measurement of

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8 of 24student and school performance--which may cause sch ools with low and high average student performance from being incorrectly sanction ed or rewarded; measuring only some student outcomes--which will likely lead to to o much emphasis on what is easily measurable; and incentives--which may distort educa tors' efforts in unintended, undesirable ways, such as a decline in collegiality which decreases inter-teacher professional development. Hannaway (1996) suggests that parents, the actors in a child's education closest to the situation, can be empowere d, via decentralization, to act as monitors of the education process to minimize the h arm caused by any negative unintended consequences of incentives and flexibili ty (decentralization). Through local (individual) school councils or via some form of pa rental school choice, parents will be empowered to make their voices heard regarding the actions of individual schools. Under its 2000 accountability reforms, Georgia crea ted local school councils composed of two parents, two "businesspeople," two teachers, and the school principal--the majority is non-school employees. Legally, these sc hool councils have almost no power, but it will be interesting to see the impact of the ir mere existence on school and district-level decision-making. 14 Governance Under regimes of centralized decision-making in pub lic education, citizens exert their influence by electing school board members an d/or federal, state, and local lawmakers who in turn make decisions regarding scho ol policy. Providing increased autonomy to un-elected local educators would disenf ranchise parents and other citizens from a large degree of the education policymaking p rocess. Therefore, it is likely that any increase in decentralized authority would not s urvive politically if parents and other taxpayers did not have some mechanism of exercising their political rights over their children's schools, or the schools they finance. As stated above, two ways to implement this mechanism include local school councils and en hanced school choice. Given this line of reasoning, one may include "parents and oth er citizens" in the list of local educators who receive increased autonomy under incr eased local flexibility. This issue is not necessarily one of giving parents and other cit izens more direct decision-making authority; the issue is at what level do the citize ns' representatives make education policy decisions. 15 Issues for State and Federal Policymakers The first issue facing policymakers is whether ther e is a comprehensive accountability system that is solid enough to conte mplated large increases in local flexibility. If yes, then the second issue is wheth er existing, perhaps largely unused, flexibility under current laws and regulations is e nough to empower local educators to make whatever changes are necessary to increase stu dent learning, which makes local educators ultimately responsible for student learni ng. A third issue is whether parents and other citizens are empowered to participate in education decision-making and to monitor their local schools to minimize the harm ca used by any negative unintended consequences. This next section discusses areas in which states may consider granting increased flexibility to local educators.IV. Types of Flexibility

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9 of 24 Under a comprehensive accountability system focused on student learning outcomes, state and federal laws and/or regulations can be repealed to provide local educators with flexibility over four broad areas: R eporting Requirements; Financial Resources; Human Resources; Curriculum. We briefly discuss decentralizing authority in order to increase local flexibility over these f our areas, and then we list specific examples of increased flexibility that could be gra nted to local educators, where these examples come from the flexibility offered to publi c schools that currently operate under a high degree of accountability: charter schools.Reporting Requirements Local educators, in both district offices and indiv idual schools, must complete a lot of reports for both the state and federal gover nments. This paperwork is typically in the form of reports that must be completed before a nd after the receipt of funds from federal and state education programs. The pre-fundi ng reports are typically plans on how the particular pot of money would be spent, and the post-funding reports tend to be assessments of how successful the particular progra m was at implementing the program--the program's effect on student learning i s all too often amorphous or nonexistent in post-funding reporting. Thus, the pu rpose of this oversight is to ensure that the money is spent in ways the state or federa l government deems best for the students. Under the new comprehensive accountabilit y system in Georgia, the Office of Education accountability will conduct results-based assessments. These will be formal assessments and performance measurements for studen t learning such as standardized curriculum-based exams. Given that these assessment s directly measure--student outcomes--what the current oversight measure indire ctly, much of the current reporting requirements may be superfluous. Filling out paperwork is arduous for local schools and systems, especially for smaller school systems. One associate superintenden t of a small school district who we spoke with said that he spends about 30% of his tim e on filling out reports--time that he feels could be better spent on instructional and pr ogrammatic improvements. In addition, the time and resources previously devoted to fillin g out and monitoring paperwork could be used to train local educators to be better manag ers of their increased flexibility. 16 Reduced paperwork has practical flexibility benefit s as well. For example, some school districts have directors of technology. Thes e directors must fill out a lot of paperwork on how state technology monies are spent. Any time these directors spend filling out paperwork is time not spent training te achers how to use the technology. We list two alternative ways for the state to reduc e reporting requirements on local educators: Have state education departments satisfy much of th e reporting requirements imposed by the federal government; under accountabi lity reporting requirements, state departments of education have the information necessary to fill out much of this paperwork. If the state assumed this reporting burden, local educators--the educators closest to the students--would have more time to focus on teaching and learning. 1. Give local schools systems and schools more flexibi lity over financial resources. Having flexibility over financial resources would a llow local educators to spend less time reporting (to the state) how each dollar is spent. 2.

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10 of 24Financial Resources Many public school districts receive monies from st ates through foundation grants and categorical grants. Individual public schools, in turn, receive monies from school systems. Superintendents and principals could be em powered to spend more state monies in the ways they deem most appropriate to be st educate their unique student populations. In addition, any state regulations, ex plicit or implicit, of local money could be repealed as well. The purpose of flexibility ove r financial resources is to empower those closest to the children to try new things, to augment existing programs that are working, and reduce or eliminate programs that are not working for their particular students (such programs may work in other places fo r idiosyncratic reasons). A by-product of this flexibility would be to reduce p aperwork for system and school administrators and teachers, which would allow them to spend more time focusing on doing whatever it takes to improve their schools. A good way to demonstrate flexibility over financia l resources is through an extended example. Individual school districts in Ge orgia typically get English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) dollars from the state. Many small school districts have only a small number of ESOL students, so the s tate money they receive for the ESOL program does not cover a full teacher's salary School districts that have such scale issues must use locally generated funds or ot her state funds for personnel to pay the balance of an ESOL teacher's salary. In addition, t he district would have to use local funds for ESOL materials. Authority to use other st ate funds to purchase ESOL materials would free up the local money for other programs th at local educators deem most important given their particular student population s, faculty, staff, and environment. Where would "other state funds" come from? Wouldn't those other state funds be better spent on the programs for which they were ea rmarked by the state? Perhaps, but consider an additional scenario. School districts i n Georgia often receive money from the state based on the system's "needs," needs as d etermined by the state, and these needs tend to be drive by overall FTE counts and FTE coun ts for various student sub-groups that are calculated to the hundredth decimal place. For example, a system may receive state funding for 2.35 guidance counselors. Per sta te regulations, the system that received funding for 2.35 guidance counselors must hire two guidance counselors. Under Georgia law, the remaining 35% of a guidance counselor must be spent on guidance counselors or direct teaching personnel, o r else the money reverts back to the state. That is, the local system must use all that state money for guidance counselors or direct teaching personnel or lose it. Allowing loca l schools and systems to use the guidance counselor money for guidance counselors or direct teaching personnel is an example of flexibility over resources available und er current laws and regulations. However, there could be increased flexibility over that state taxpayer money. Suppose local educators believe that because of their super ior guidance counselors or students (of for any other idiosyncratic reason) that the money that was originally intended to hire 35% of a guidance counselor does not need to be spe nt on guidance counseling or direct teaching personnel. Suppose the school system would rather use those state funds for a competing, albeit worthy, program. Suppose the scho ol system wants to use those funds for ESOL materials. Under current Georgia law, this money must be spent on hiring a third guidance counselor or part of a teacher, and this requirement may not lead to the highest and best use of those funds. Another good example is maximum class size restrict ions. 17 Without a comprehensive accountability system, such class siz e restrictions may be necessary to

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11 of 24ensure that the state money is spent wisely. Howeve r, under incentives from a comprehensive accountability system, can states tru st local educators to spend that money wisely? Are smaller classes always the best u se of those funds? Alternatives to give local educators flexibility ov er financial resources include having fewer state programs and give the monies for merly earmarked for programs to local schools on a foundation basis, and allowing l ocal educators to spend monies earmarked for less than 50% of a position in any wa ys they deem necessary. Human Resources Regarding what types of individuals may be hired fo r some tasks and how much individuals are paid, systems and individual school s in Georgia are bound by three major state laws: teacher certification, "fair dismissal" (tenure), and the salary schedule. The purpose of certification is to ensure that only individuals of a sufficient competency are permitted to be teachers. Under cert ification laws and regulations, sufficient competency of potential teachers is dete rmined centrally, not by local systems and schools. This is in contrast to higher educatio n and private K-12 education where potential teachers are evaluated by individual scho ols and departments within schools. An unintended consequence of certification requirem ents is that some prospective teachers feel that they face too large of a barrier to offering their services to schools. How many prospective educators are deterred is unkn own. Individual schools and systems could be granted fle xibility over who is permitted to teach. The elimination of certification requirem ents, including alternative certification requirements, would open the doors to teaching to i ndividuals who are not willing to go through the process of obtaining certification. For example, programs such as Teach for America carefully screen recent college graduates a nd place them as teachers in schools. These new college graduates typically did not study education, and many of them wish to teach for only a short period of time. Local sys tems and schools could be empowered to decide for themselves if they wish to screen new college graduates, older folks looking for second careers, or others who are not c ertified to see if any or many of them would make good teachers. Thus, the issue is not on e of teaching quality; it is a question of who decides whether an individual is competent t o teach. In addition, states could recruit and screen exceptional college graduates wh o did not study education as undergraduates and any others interested and market these potential teachers to local systems and schools. Such a state program would pro vide local educators with flexibility by expanding the pool of possible teachers. 18 Flexibility over "fair dismissal" (tenure) provisio ns could be granted to local schools or school systems--individual school system s or schools could be granted the authority to design their own "fair dismissal" poli cies. Held accountable for results, individual systems and schools would have the incen tive to create fair dismissal policies that allow them to maximize student learning. Georg ia decentralized its statewide tenure provisions, by severely weakening them, as part of its 2000 education reform law. Only the Clayton County school district, so far, has cre ated its own tenure provisions that provide more protections than the new state law. Ne vertheless, these provisions are weaker than the previous state fair dismissal prote ctions (Sansbury, 2000). Many southern states have a minimum teacher salary schedule that is based on years of service and training. Elimination of a sta te-mandated salary schedule for teachers would allow individual schools or systems to decide whether they want to pay less to some teachers so that they may pay more to teachers they deem as important

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12 of 24contributors to the overall mission of the school. Used judiciously, such policies could help schools retain good teachers, and provide ince ntives for bad teachers to find something else to do. An additional form of flexibi lity would be to allow for schools to lure teachers by offering to start them at a higher step on the schedule than their years of service and training would dictate. This flexibilit y would allow schools to pay more to better teachers, which may enhance retention of the se superior teachers. Curriculum In the new standardized testing in Georgia, student s will take exams designed to test Georgia's Quality Core Curriculum (QCC). The Q CC is designed to be the minimum amount that students should learn in the various gr ade levels and subjects. Local educators could remain free to augment the QCC in n ew and creative ways. Of course, mandating statewide curriculum-based testing severe ly restricts local educators' autonomy over curricular decisions. Therefore, stat es are responsible for the quality of the curriculum, and, under flexibility, local educa tors are responsible for whether students' master the curriculum.What specific flexibility ought to be granted? One level of flexibility is the current level of st ate and federal regulation applied to private schools, which is minimal. A less extrem e level of local flexibility is the flexibility requested or the flexibility actually g ranted to "traditional" and "conversion" charter schools. Traditional charter schools that a re public schools that are not neighborhood public schools; traditional charter sc hools are schools of choice. Traditional charter schools face a stronger set of incentives than other public schools; two outside actors hold them accountable for result s, a central authority and parents. Traditional charter schools are, in theory, able to gain a large degree of autonomy in exchange for the possibility of a death sentence--i f the charter school does not meet performance goals specified in their charter, a loc al school district or a state may revoke the charter, which means the school closes. In addi tion, traditional charter schools are held accountable by parents who may or may not deci de to enroll their child in the charter school. Where traditional charter schools e xist, parents have the option of sending their child to their neighborhood public sc hool or the charter school. Typically, before central authorities have closed failing char ter schools, there have been dramatic drops in student enrollments at these schools. Given these strong incentives to provide a high qua lity education to its students, traditional charter schools have the incentive to s eek to free itself from any rules and regulations that hinder teaching and learning. Ther efore, any state or federal entity that seeks to identify any rules and regulations that ma y hinder teaching and learning in neighborhood public schools should look to rules an d regulations that charter schools seek to escape, and the rules they actually escape. Conversion charter schools are neighborhood public schools that have received increased flexibility from the state. These schools are different than traditional charter schools in that they are not schools of choice. Acc ording to officials in the Georgia Department of Education, conversion charter schools ask for, and receive, far less local autonomy than traditional charter schools. Conversi ons have maintained most of their previous organizational structure and curricular go als, but asked to be exempt from such things as report cards regulations, how they handle d certain categorical funds, and when

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13 of 24they tested their students. It is likely that these schools could not obtain even more flexibility, and do not seek to do so, because they are not schools of choice. That is, they do not operate under the strong accountability face d by traditional charter schools. Perhaps the change in school governance in Georgia via school councils will provide the accountability and citizen authority necessary for conversion charter schools to ask for and receive increased flexibility. For the research reported here, we interviewed seve ral individuals about their experiences with flexibility and the flexibility gi ven to charter schools: Beverly Shrenger, Coordinator, Georgia Charter Scho ols, Georgia Department of Education; Deborah McGriff, Edison Schools, Inc.; Rich O'Neill, Edison Schools, Inc.; Greg Giornelli, Principal, Drew Elementary School, a traditional charter school in Atlanta, GA; Regina Merriweather, Principal, Druid Hills High Sc hool, a conversion charter school in DeKalb County, GA; Jeffrey Williams, Georgia School Superintendent's A ssociation; Paul Hill, University of Washington, RAND Corporati on. Based on telephone interviews, we compiled a list o f rules of regulations that charters typically seek to avoid. Any central autho rity considering whether to abolish rules and regulations facing local educators should look to the relief given to charter schools because, under comprehensive accountability for results, all neighborhood public schools will have at least one important cha racteristic of charter schools--responsibility for student outcomes and co nsequences based on those outcomes. Salary Schedules Many charters want relief from salary schedules i n order to have the capability to pay what Edison Schools, Inc. ref ers to as "comparable and competitive" salaries. These salaries are made up o f an hourly rate, a yearly percentage increase, incentives and bonuses, and st ock options. 1. Curriculum Schools want the ability to develop the criteria for their own lesson plans. Some charters use such prescribed curriculum s as Core Knowledge while others are totally innovative and use curriculums p articular to that school. For example, Edison schools prefers to use its own curr iculum for at least 70% of class times, and the state or district can dictate the remaining 30%. 2. Non-Categorical Use of Funds Traditional charters typically receive complete freedom over their budget allocations at the school site. Conversion schools typically ask for only limited flexibility or one-t ime flexibility. For example, conversion charter schools may ask to use some fund s ear-marked for extra-curricular activities to buy technology. 3. External Reporting. The type and amount of process reporting to charte ring agencies, school boards, and the Georgia State Depa rtment of Education is often less than what is required of traditional public sc hools. 4. Grading Many charter schools want to have the ability to deviate from traditional grading scales. Druid Hills Charter, a conversion, changed its grading scale so that the letter grade "D" was inclusive of the 60th to 69th percentile. Some schools want to implement a policy of no grading, checklist reports, or even rely strictly on portfolio's to show students achievement. 5.

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14 of 24Seat Time and Scheduling Charters have asked to be exempt from the states requirement of 150 hours of clock time per year. Ed ison Schools have a longer school year than most public schools, while some ch arters opt for longer school days. This coincides with the request to alter the daily schedule for students (i.e. block schedule) that require different time configu rations than most districts currently operate under. 6. Textbooks Since many charters wish to fully implement their school design, they request the ability to choose textbooks that may or may not be approved by the local school board. 7. Certification Teacher certification has not been a large issue for many charters thus far, as most charters have hired primarily cer tified teachers. Charters do exercise their ability to hire non-certified teache rs in hard to fill subjects such as math, science, and world language. Additionally, so me charters allow teachers certified for grades k-3 to teach 4th grade, for example. 8. Promotion and Retention Charters want the opportunity to choose which stu dents are promoted and retained each school year. Charter s feel that this exemption is imperative if they are going to be held accountable for each student's eventual success or failure. 9. Assessment instruments. Some charter schools like to perform their own assessments, and request waivers from assessments, such as norm referenced testing, that are notused for accountability purpos es. 10. Technology. Charter schools like to use technology in a way th at is consistent with their instructional goals. According to the U.S. De partment of Education, 96% of charter school classrooms nationwide were equipped with computers. However, charters like the capability of choosing their own software, the amount of time each student uses a computer and the ability to buy computers with multi-media capabilities. 11. Service Providers. Charter schools are typically allowed to choose wh at non-educational (maintenance, janitorial, insurance purchasing, legal, health, social, before/after school, transportation, athlet ic, etc.) services are offered and who will be the provider of those services. More th an two thirds of charter schools nationally either provided the service themselves o r used outside providers. 12. Suppose a state government decides to provide local educators with flexibility over at least some of these areas. This local flexi bility raises a governance issues regarding consent of the governed. Parents and othe r citizens, through their influence on the political process, may permit schools of choice more latitude over their resources, personnel, and curriculum because no parents are fo rced to send their children there. Since traditional charter schools are schools of ch oice, all parents who choose one for their children have revealed they support what the school is doing differently than the neighborhood public school. This argument would sug gest that flexibility given to conversion charter schools is the appropriate amoun t of flexibility to provide, in exchange for accountability. However, under Georgia 's new accountability law, individual school councils were created. Although t hese councils do not currently have much authority, they would surely be megaphones for parents' and other citizens' voices to be heard in school-level discussions of how to b est use any increased flexibility. Therefore, under the stronger consequences facing l ocal educators under Georgia's new accountability reforms and the presence of the loca l school councils, the wider latitude given to traditional charter schools is possible fo r neighborhood public schools. Another mechanism to solve the governance problem would be some form of public school

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15 of 24choice.V. What are the vehicle(s) for granting flexibility ? Once a state, or federal, government decides to gra nt increased local flexibility because of heightened accountability for local educ ators, how can it complete that task? Alternative vehicles for granting flexibility inclu de: An entity that analyzes each and every state, or fe deral, rule and regulation and decides which ones are not needed, and which ones m ay be abolished without changing a law. This entity would be analogous to t hen Vice-President Gore's National Performance Review that was created in 199 3. This new entity, or a piece of an existing entity, could be charged with analyzing each and every state (federal) regulation of local systems and schools. Regulations deemed to be impediments to teaching and learning would be elimi nated by the entity. 1. A legislature and executive could analyze each and every state law and decide which are no longer needed under a comprehensive ac countability system. Only the legislature and executive can change existing s tate (federal) laws. The legislature could devote some portion of a legislat ive term to reviewing existing laws regarding education and deciding which laws ar e antiquated given an environment of results-based accountability. Perhap s a one-time bipartisan committee could be formed to begin the task. This v ehicle for granting flexibility was used in Texas and Florida. 19 2. A permanent entity that has the sole responsibility of hearing petitions from individual schools and decides whether to grant a l arge degree of autonomy to individual schools in exchange for a promise of inc reased student learning beyond normal expectations. This is similar to the Georgia waiver process. The difference is that flexibility will be granted for a whole ran ge of items at one time, in exchange for tangible, measurable promises of incre ased student learning. A permanent new entity, or piece of an existing entit y, whose sole mission is to hear petitions from local systems and schools for large degrees of flexibility in exchange for accountability would provide a permane nt vehicle for enhancing flexibility and accountability. Creating an entity that has hearing these petitions as its sole mission would expedite the waiver process, and one of its goals would be to become less arduous than the current waiver proc ess. Agreements between this entity and individual schools or systems would be a kin to performance contracts. Failure by the local educators to live up to the in creases in student learning specified in the agreement could result in the loss of the flexibility. Any significant regression in student learning after re ceiving the new flexibility could result in a state-mandated intervention, which woul d mean less local autonomy than was initially present. 3.VI. Who Gets Flexibility? Under comprehensive accountability based on student learning (results), flexibility could be granted in three ways: as a feasible alter native, in a world of accountability based on results, to empower all local principals and teachers find their own roadm aps for success given their unique student populations, circumstances, and personnel; as a reward to a school or system for high levels and/or improvement in student learning; as

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16 of 24an opportunity to low performing schools to improve Thus, differing degrees of flexibility may be grant ed all schools, only schools that demonstrate a high level of performance, and/or onl y schools that demonstrate a low level of performance. Texas, for example, dramatica lly reduced the regulations that the Texas Education Agency imposed on local systems and schools. After the passage of their accountability law in 1993, the Texas House a nd Senate Education Committees met jointly to eliminate all state laws and policie s that addressed "how" local educators should provide schooling to children. At that time, the chairs of each committee were from different political parties, and the "scrubbin g" of their state laws and policies went very well and was bipartisan. The flexibility law t hat subsequently passed stated that local systems had to abide by the accountability co de and the funding code. The law also contained specific language to prevent the Texas Ed ucation Agency from making any policies that did not pertain to the accountability or funding portions of the Texas state code. The relationship between the state and local school systems in Texas is one of "if it is not in the accountability or funding code, th en you can do it. No questions asked." Examples of regulations that were eliminated in Tex as include: the length of the school day and year, seat time for specific subjects, and the minimum required number of library books per pupil. Texas has not yet been able to document to what ext ent the increase in flexibility led to its recent increases in student achievement. (We obtained all information about Texas from a phone interview with Dr. Criss Cloudt, Associate Commissioner, Office of Policy, Planning, and Research, Texas Education Age ncy. Dr. Cloudt made a presentation to GERSC 1999.) Schools who demonstrate a high level of performance and/or improvement have demonstrated that they have "what it takes" to mana ge a school under the current rules and regulations. Such successful leadership could b e entrusted with even greater flexibility, to see if they could increase school p erformance even higher. However, one could argue, "Why rock the boat?" if the school is already high performing. We want to "rock the boat" because we suspect that added flexi bility, under accountability, will allow high achieving schools to do even better. Tex as provides additional flexibility to schools that receive an "exemplary" rating from the state. Schools whose students are persistently low perform ing may credibly suggest that state laws and regulations are due part of the blam e for this low performance. Some suggest that these schools should be given added fl exibility, above what is given to other schools, in order to see if they can improve. Other s argue that giving these schools added flexibility would reward failure.Guiding Principles of Granting Flexibility Based on the arguments made here, we offer three gu iding principles for any state or federal policymakers deciding whether to grant f lexibility to local schools, systems, and educators: Keep your eyes on the prize. The purpose of flexibility is to allow educators t o better organize their systems, schools, and personn el in order to increase student learning. 1. Trust but verify. Flexibility should only be granted in exchange for accountability, a promise that student learning would increase beyo nd normal expectations. Failure to meet the terms of the promise should res ult in loss of flexibility. If under the flexibility, student learning in the scho ol significantly regresses, the 2.

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17 of 24school should receive help, which would leave the s chool with less flexibility than it had initially. Under this principle, flexibility could be given to all schools, including low performers.Remove existing barriers to creativity that strives for excellence. Any system or school that wants to improve should be allowed to t ry, in exchange for accountability for results. 3.VII. Conclusion With the passage of HB 1187 in the year 2000, Georg ia's educational system has entered a new era of comprehensive accountability-results-based accountability. The state will set expectations and measure student lea rning outcomes; systems, schools, and local educators will be rewarded for exceeding the standards; and the state will intervene to rescue children from schools that are persistent ly falling below the standards. Given the movement toward comprehensive, results-based, a ccountability systems in several states, it is time to revisit the issue of decentra lization in public education. Education researchers and policymakers should carefully consi der the issue of decentralization within such accountability systems. To the extent t hat the rewards for success and interventions to rescue children from low performin g schools prove to be significant in state accountability systems, local educators, in t hese states and in other states implementing similar incentives, should be given in creased flexibility over paperwork, resources, personnel, and curriculum. The purpose of flexibility within a results-based a ccountability system is to allow educators and schools to create their own roadmaps for educational success given their unique student populations, circumstances, and pers onnel. The level of flexibility that is desirable under a results-based accountability syst em is much larger than that which is desirable under the typical way of doing things, wh ich in Georgia pre Y2K reforms meant accountability based on inputs, process, and program implementation. Within a results-based accountability system educators and s chools have strong incentives to do whatever it takes to achieve the specified student learning goals. Any increase in flexibility is only possible becaus e of the new era of accountability. The more that systems, schools, and personnel are rewarded for successes and subject to interventions for any fail ures, the more flexibility that may be granted to local educators. The combination of empo werment through local flexibility and consequences through rewards and interventions would give local educators the motivation and incentives to do whatever it takes t o make sure the students in their care succeed. State-imposed comprehensive accountability systems are dramatic increases in state regulation of curriculum and assessment coupl ed with incentives for increased student learning. By themselves, these new state re gulations may lead to better student outcomes, just as many centrally imposed regulation s perhaps lead to better outcomes--in the absence of accountability based on student outcomes. Nevertheless, without increased flexibility for local educators-flexibility over paperwork, resources, and personnel--these standards and accountability r eforms will not achieve their full potential because they fail to capitalize on the in itiative and industry of local educators and they better information they have about unique local talents and circumstances. In addition, failure to empower local educators while holding them ultimately responsible for student learning outcomes will lead to an exodu s from public education among local educators at best and political pressure from withi n to emasculate accountability reforms. For these reasons, we recommend large incr eases in autonomy for local

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18 of 24educators under comprehensive accountability system s. Potential negative unintended consequences from hig h stakes testing, incentives, or local flexibility can be mitigated by school gov ernance changes such as school councils and school choice.Agenda for Policy Research As noted by Hanushek (1995) and Hannaway (1996), ho w well students learn under comprehensive accountability systems coupled with local flexibility will determine the success of this, and any, education r eform. In particular, a system of incentives and/or local flexibility may cause unint ended harm to student learning by focusing too much attention on what is easily measu rable and/or allowing autonomy to be misused without responsibility. Therefore, educa tion research must increase efforts to evaluate the effects of these reforms on student le arning. In addition, given that the basis for increasing local flexibility is premised on acc urate measurement of student outcomes and significant incentives through rewards and inte rventions, education research must also analyze the extent to which measurement of stu dent outcomes is accurate and incentives are meaningful. Without these conditions present, states and the federal government should be wary of going down the path, d espite its promise, of increased flexibility for local educators.Notes 1 Scafidi and DeJarnett served on the staff of GERSC in 1999 and 2000, and Freeman served on the GERSC staff in 2000. 2 The full text of this speech is available on-line at http://ganet.org/governor/edreform/speech.html 3 The other three committees were: Funding: which studied ways to increase equity of s chool funding across the state. School Climate: which, in the wake of the Columbine (Colorado) and Heritage High (Georgia) violence, studied ways to make schools sa fer. Seamless Education: which studied ways to make the transitions from k-12 to technical colleges, and k-12 to two-year colleges easier. 4 None of the accountability members were officials i n teachers' unions or professional organizations or any of the other professional orga nizations for educators (school board, school superintendents, etc.). 5 For example, Georgia State University Professor Gar y Henry made several presentations to the accountability committee very early in the process. Previously, he served as an education official in Virginia and con sulted with the state of North Carolina when they set up a testing and accountability syste m. Gwinnett County (GA) School Superintendent Alvin Wilbanks, who instituted high stakes testing in his district's schools, served as a Committee member as well. Thes e individuals, as well as education

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19 of 24officials from Texas and North Carolina who also ma de presentations to the accountability committee, seemed to support very st rongly the "Standards and Expectations" recommendation of the 1983 "A Nation at Risk" report, which called for "rigorous and measurable standards, and higher expe ctations, for academic performance and student conduct." 6 Many states that have implemented accountability sy stems such as Georgia's have rewards and interventions. For example, Kentucky an d North Carolina give bonuses to teachers at schools deemed successful (based on the ir students' outcomes). Florida allows students at schools deemed failing to transf er to other public schools in the district, at the district's expense and offers them a modest scholarship to attend a private school (the private school portion of thes school c hoice option is currently under litigation). 7 Georgia Official Code 20-14-14 8 Georgia Official Code 12-14-41 9 Examples of these consequences around the nation in clude cash bonuses to teachers in schools deemed successful in Kentucky and North Car olina and public school choice for students in schools deemed persistently failing in Florida. For schools deemed failing, many states have reconstitution and removal of scho ol personnel at the behest of the state, but these provisions are rarely implemented. Failure to utilize interventions leads to an elimination of any motivational benefits that come from having consequences. 10 Helen Ladd has wondered, "whether the undesirable s ide effects of accountability and incentive systems can be kept to a tolerable level (Ladd, 1996)." Issues surrounding standards and accountability include the accuracy a nd quality of curriculum-based exams, whether such exams and incentives in general cause too many unintended consequences that harm teaching and learning, and w hether all children benefit from these exams and from comprehensive accountability s ystems. Good references on these debates over accountability and the validity of hig h stakes testing include, Behn (1997), Betts (1998), Hannaway (996), Kohn (1999), Ladd (19 99), Koretz, et al (1996), Grissmer, et al (2000), Klein, et al (2000), and th e contents of the volumes Holding Schools Accountable (1996), edited by Ladd, and Improving America's Sc hools: The Role of Incentives edited by Hanushek and Jorgensen. 11 Thus, federal government efforts to provide local e ducators more flexibility over federal taxpayer resources could be made contingent upon the existence of comprehensive state-level accountability systems. 12 While working for GERSC, we heard several Georgia s tate employees suggest that it was "impossible" to have local flexibility and acco untability at the same time. Their comments suggest that the culture of state monitori ng of local inputs, process, and program implementation is alive and well--despite t he passage of a results-based comprehensive accountability system the previous ye ar. Examples of "accountability" for inputs, processes, and implementation include s tate regulations on maximum class size, state prescribed curricular programs, and tea cher salary schedules. For each of these examples, many states hold local educators "account able" for adhering to and

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20 of 24implementing these state mandates. These examples a re in contrast to states holding local educators accountable for results--student le arning outcomes. 13 Surely college professors would love to avoid annua l reviews of their research productivity, student evaluations of their teaching and deans watching the number of students signing up for their courses and the natio nal rankings of their departments. Each of these output measures is used to determine annua l pay increases. In the absence of these measures of productivity, strong rules and re gulations would be needed to govern professors' activities. Similar analogies can be ma de for all occupations, inside and outside of education. 14 Chicago public schools have school councils that ha ve real power--each school council hires its school's principal. See Bryk, et al (1998) for more details of the school governance structure in Chicago. Given the vast dif ferences in authority, it is likely that the impact of Georgia's school councils will be muc h smaller, under existing legislation, relative to the Chicago experience. 15 Under a school choice regime principals and teacher s would be the local educators who directly make educational decisions, while pare nts vote to give local educators power to make decisions for their children through their school choice decisions. 16 Hannaway (1996) suggests that local educators who a re given, for the first time, a large degree of autonomy need training in "the rang e of production possibilities in education" as well. If empowered to make changes, h eld sufficiently responsible for their decisions, and skilled in management, local educato rs will take it upon themselves to discover and create "possibilities in education." 17 In its 2000 education reform law, Georgia began to enforce decreased maximum class sizes. 18 The Massachusetts Institute for New Teachers (MINT) is such a state program. MINT recruits college graduates to enter its summer prog ram. MINT students teach summer school in the morning and take teacher preparation courses in the evening. Individual public schools in Massachusetts are permitted to hi re MINT graduates and grant them full certification. By expanding the pool of availa ble teachers, the state has given local educators more flexibility over personnel (Scafidi, 2000). 19 Interview with Texas education official Dr. Criss C loudt and documents from the Florida Department of Education and Florida Senate Bill 1770.Acknowledgement This original version of this article was prepared for the Governor's Education Reform Study Commission 2000 (GERSC 2000) in the st ate of Georgia. All views expressed here are the authors' and do not necessar ily reflect the views of GERSC 2000, the state of Georgia, Morgan County Public Schools, or Georgia State University. The authors thank Gary Henry, Rob Watts, Martha Wigton, Tom Wagner, and David Watts for helpful comments and suggestions.

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21 of 24ReferencesBehn, Robert. (1997) "Linking Measurement and Motiv ation: A Challenge for Education," Educational Administration Betts, Julian. (1998) "The Two-Legged Stool: The Ne glected Role of Educational Standards in Improving America's Public Schools" Federal Reserve Bank of New York Economic Policy Review Bryk, Anthony S., Sebring, Penny Bender, Kebrow, Da vid, Rollow, Sharon, and Easton, John Q. (1998). Charting Chicago School Reform: Democratic Localism as a Lever for Change Report from the Consortium on Chicago School Rese arch, Chicago. Education Commission of the States. (2000). Governi ng America's School: Changing the Rules. Denver, CO: ECS.Georgia Official Code 20-14.Grissmer, David W., Flanagan, Ann E., Kawata, Jenni fer H. & Williamson, Stephanie. (2000). Improving Student Achievement: What State N AEP Test Scores Tell Us. Santa Monica, CA : RAND.Hannaway, Jane (1996) "Management Decentralization and Performance-Based Inentives: Theoretical Consideration for Schools," in Improving America's Schools: The Role of Incentives Eric A. Hanushek and Dale W. Jorgensen, eds. Nati onal Academy Press, Washington, D.C.Hanushek, Eric (1994) Making Schools Work Brookings, Washington D.C. Klein, Stephen P., Hamilton, Laura S., McCaffrey, D aniel F. & Stecher, Brian M. (2000). What Do Test Scores in Texas Tell Us? A RAN D Issue Paper. Santa Monica, CA : RAND.Koretz, Daniel M., Barron, Sheila I., Mitchell, Kar en J. & Stecher, Brian M. (1996). Perceived Effects of the Kentucky Instructional Res ults Information System (KIRIS). Santa Monica, CA : RAND.Kohn, Alfie. (1999) The Schools Our Children Deserve: Moving Beyond Tra ditional Classrooms and Tougher Standards Houghton Mifflin, Boston. Ladd, Helen F. (Ed.). (1996) Holding Schools Accountable Brookings, Washington D.C.Ladd, Helen F. (1999) "The Dallas School Accountabi lity and Incentive Program: An Evaluation of its Impacts on Student Outcomes" Economics of Education Review National Commission on Excellence in Education (198 3) A Nation At Risk : The Imperative For Educational Reform : A Report To The Nation And The Secretary Of Education Washington, D.C.: The Commission: [Supt. of Docs. U.S. G.P.O. distributor].Sansbury, Jan (December 12, 2000) "Clayton Adopts U nique Tenure Policy," The

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22 of 24 Atlanta Journal-Constitution Scafidi, Benjamin (September 22, 2000) "Follow Mass achusetts model: Embrace Teachers from Other Fields," The Atlanta Journal Summers, Anita A. and Amy W. Johnson. (1996) "The E ffects of School-Based Management Plans." in Improving America's Schools: The Role of Incentives Eric A. Hanushek and Dale W. Jorgensen, eds. National Acade my Press, Washington, D.C.About the AuthorsBenjamin Scafidi is an Assistant Professor of Economics and Public Administration and Urban Studies in the Andrew Young School of Pol icy Studies at Georgia State University. His research interests include educatio n and urban policy. For the past two years he has served on the staff of the Governor's Education Reform Study Commission for the state of Georgia. Before joining the facult y at Georgia State, he served as a research associate at the Center for Real Estate an d Urban Policy in the New York University School of Law, and as an analyst with th e Center for Naval Analyses. He holds a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Virginia.Catherine Freeman is Senior Research Associate in the Fiscal Researc h Program of the Andrew Young School of Policy Studies at Georgia St ate University. Her primary research work has been in school finance and educat ion reform, and she has served on the staff of the Governor's Education Reform Study Commission for the state of Georgia. She holds a M.Ed. from The University of T exasAustin and a Ph.D. in Public Policy from Vanderbilt University.Stan DeJarnett is the Associate Superintendent of Morgan County, Georgia Public Schools. For the past two years he has served on th e staff of the Governor's Education Reform Study Commission for the state of Georgia. H e has over 20 years experience in public education, and he holds a Ph.D. from the Uni versity of Georgia in Educational Leadership.Copyright 2001 by the Education Policy Analysis ArchivesThe World Wide Web address for the Education Policy Analysis Archives is epaa.asu.edu General questions about appropriateness of topics o r particular articles may be addressed to the Editor, Gene V Glass, glass@asu.edu or reach him at College of Education, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 8 5287-0211. (602-965-9644). The Commentary Editor is Casey D. C obb: casey.cobb@unh.edu .EPAA Editorial Board Michael W. Apple University of Wisconsin Greg Camilli Rutgers University

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23 of 24 John Covaleskie Northern Michigan University Alan Davis University of Colorado, Denver Sherman Dorn University of South Florida Mark E. Fetler California Commission on Teacher Credentialing Richard Garlikov hmwkhelp@scott.net Thomas F. Green Syracuse University Alison I. Griffith York University Arlen Gullickson Western Michigan University Ernest R. House University of Colorado Aimee Howley Ohio University Craig B. Howley Appalachia Educational Laboratory William Hunter University of Calgary Daniel Kalls Ume University Benjamin Levin University of Manitoba Thomas Mauhs-Pugh Green Mountain College Dewayne Matthews Education Commission of the States William McInerney Purdue University Mary McKeown-Moak MGT of America (Austin, TX) Les McLean University of Toronto Susan Bobbitt Nolen University of Washington Anne L. Pemberton apembert@pen.k12.va.us Hugh G. Petrie SUNY Buffalo Richard C. Richardson New York University Anthony G. Rud Jr. Purdue University Dennis Sayers California State University—Stanislaus Jay D. Scribner University of Texas at Austin Michael Scriven scriven@aol.com Robert E. Stake University of Illinois—UC Robert Stonehill U.S. Department of Education David D. Williams Brigham Young University EPAA Spanish Language Editorial BoardAssociate Editor for Spanish Language Roberto Rodrguez Gmez Universidad Nacional Autnoma de Mxico roberto@servidor.unam.mx Adrin Acosta (Mxico) Universidad de Guadalajaraadrianacosta@compuserve.com J. Flix Angulo Rasco (Spain) Universidad de Cdizfelix.angulo@uca.es Teresa Bracho (Mxico) Centro de Investigacin y DocenciaEconmica-CIDEbracho dis1.cide.mx Alejandro Canales (Mxico) Universidad Nacional Autnoma deMxicocanalesa@servidor.unam.mx

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24 of 24 Ursula Casanova (U.S.A.) Arizona State Universitycasanova@asu.edu Jos Contreras Domingo Universitat de Barcelona Jose.Contreras@doe.d5.ub.es Erwin Epstein (U.S.A.) Loyola University of ChicagoEepstein@luc.edu Josu Gonzlez (U.S.A.) Arizona State Universityjosue@asu.edu Rollin Kent (Mxico)Departamento de InvestigacinEducativa-DIE/CINVESTAVrkent@gemtel.com.mx kentr@data.net.mx Mara Beatriz Luce (Brazil)Universidad Federal de Rio Grande do Sul-UFRGSlucemb@orion.ufrgs.brJavier Mendoza Rojas (Mxico)Universidad Nacional Autnoma deMxicojaviermr@servidor.unam.mxMarcela Mollis (Argentina)Universidad de Buenos Airesmmollis@filo.uba.ar Humberto Muoz Garca (Mxico) Universidad Nacional Autnoma deMxicohumberto@servidor.unam.mxAngel Ignacio Prez Gmez (Spain)Universidad de Mlagaaiperez@uma.es Daniel Schugurensky (Argentina-Canad)OISE/UT, Canadadschugurensky@oise.utoronto.ca Simon Schwartzman (Brazil)Fundao Instituto Brasileiro e Geografiae Estatstica simon@openlink.com.br Jurjo Torres Santom (Spain)Universidad de A Coruajurjo@udc.es Carlos Alberto Torres (U.S.A.)University of California, Los Angelestorres@gseisucla.edu


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