New Orleans has had what amounts to a learning revolution for the children there. The sort of revolution many schools need here.
In the decade since then, things have really turned around. ¬†Most students are¬†black (90¬†percent) and low-income (80¬†percent). The quality of graduation rates have¬†dramatically improved¬†from 54¬†percent¬†in 2004 to 80¬†percent¬†today, as well as gains in math and reading. Why? Because it‚Äôs not about the schools, it‚Äôs about the kids.
Local autonomy is the key to the success of charter schools. Roemer Shirley emphasized the importance of ‚Äúmaking decisions as close to kids as possible,‚ÄĚ rather than leaving decisions up to distant bureaucrats: ‚ÄúWhen we empower parents and teachers, we can create a better outcome.‚ÄĚ This means fighting the status quo ‚Äúevery day to continue to innovate.‚ÄĚ