If we are to have a vibrant system of public education in this country, including strong chartered schools, we need strong institutions of higher learning committed to making that happen. That is the case with Johns Hopkins University School of Education in Baltimore. I was pleased to participate in two conferences at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore last week to talk about the origins of chartering, and how we can shape charter school policies and leadership for the next 20 years. Pictured with me is James Campbell, Senior Communications Associate at Johns Hopkins who previously chaired the Education Policy Committee in the Maryland House of Delegates.
I loved the theme of the first day’s conference with chartered school leaders from all over the country: What can a university School of Education do to further public education and school choice in this nation? The answers? Develop effective teachers and education leaders; create better assessment practices; insure that teachers understand digital literacy; and create “intrapreneurs” –entrepreneurial teachers who areskilled in operations. The second day’s conference included leaders and educators from the DC area and Baltimore. Over 40% of the students in the District of Columbia attend a chartered school! There are now about 36 chartered schools in Baltimore. After a morning discussion devoted to sharing best practices led by JHU Visiting Fellow Peter Groff, I shared the pioneering story of charter schools from my book, Zero Chance of Passage. Here’s the morning in pictures from the JHU website.