Many factors contribute to the strength of our public education system, but without a doubt, state policies provide the strong foundation on which great school systems are built. State policies must empower parents to make the best choices for their children, and they must enable schools to recognize, reward, and retain the best educators. States must provide school and district leaders with opportunities to truly lead, innovate, and reform schools so they work well for all the kids they serve. StudentsFirst created the State Policy Report Card to evaluate each state’s education laws and policies and determine what states are doing to create a better education system — one that meets the needs of all children and puts them on a path toward success. The report card does not assess student achievement, school quality, or teacher performance, but rather the policy environments that affect those outcomes. StudentsFirst believes — based on experience, research, and evidence — that education reform at the state level can have the most powerful impact on schools and students. Therefore, StudentsFirst advocates that state leaders do away with antiquated policies that obstruct progress and fail to help children learn. States must then adopt new principles and policies focused on ensuring student needs come before any other special interests. These new policies should emphasize high standards, robust educational options for families, transparency, and accountability. It is through this lens that the report card assesses each state and whether it is fulfilling its essential role in improving schools by putting student centered laws and policies in place. (Via StudentsFirst.)
Click here to see the Executive of the National Report Card.
Click here to download the full Report.