For decades, changes to California's public education system have been adopted piecemeal. The result is an illogical, ineffective and inefficient system that impedes educators from doing their jobs and serves no one as well as it should. Tinkering will not do; it is time for important changes that will make a real difference in the power of our schools to unlock children's potential.
The recommendations of the Committee center on the vision of creating a school system that prepares every child for success. These recommendations propose a systematic overhaul; taken together, they will reduce the achievement gap and create a constantly escalating cycle of continuous improvement in California's education system. Therefore, it is essential that the proposed reforms be considered as a coherent, comprehensive package; Singling out and implementing individual recommendations on their own could make the current situation even worse. Instead, policy makers and the public should commit to a systematic and consistent approach to reform that rejects business as usual.
Changing the system to focus on student success means simultaneously addressing the following four inter related priorities and a fifth key foundation:
- Strengthen Teaching and Leadership
A students-first philosophy means that all schools must have a steady supply of highly effective teachers and administrators.
- Ensure Fair Funding that Rewards Results
Funding must support the attainment of our educational goals for all students, recognizing students have differential needs.
- Streamline Governance and Strengthen Accountability
Transform the system from a culture of compliance to aculture of continuous improvement against rigorous state standards, through clarification of local and state roles and responsbilities.
- Improve Data Systems and Use them Wisely
A student-centered system is driven by reliable, timely and valid information about performance and outcomes, resources, and opportunities - analyzed to promote improvement.
- Create a Foundation for Continuous Improvement
A student-centered system recognizes that many learning needs are developed before students reach the classroom. committee members, research.