Components of the Annenberg Challenge
As an immediate priority for 1994, the Annenberg Challenge will secure the work of the two principal agencies charged with forwarding the challenges.
- $50,000,000 to the New American Schools Development Corporation, in honor of David Kearns, to complete the design and development work of its nine teams (NASDC Phase II);
- $50,000,000 to fully establish the National Institute for School Reform at Brown University, thereafter to be called the Annenberg National Institute for School Reform.
As a specific early priority for 1995:
- $15,000,000 to the governors of the 50 states and the four territories for a unified program to be developed and coordinated by the Education Commission of the States (ECS) in association with NASDC and the Annenberg National Institute for School Reform, to disseminate the nine NASDC designs as well as one or two other well-established, proven national designs as ECS determines. ECS is a non-profit public policy organization created by the governors for purposes precisely such as the Annenberg Challenge.
For the detailed action program which is to follow, the Board of Overseers of the Annenberg National Institute for School Reform will set forth detailed plans for presentation to the Annenberg Foundation before June 1994, for the several interconnected specific programs consistent with the philosophy represented by the Challenge.
I. The National Schools
The Annenberg National Institute for School Reform, in close collaboration with the four or five nationally well-established school redesign projects, will identify exemplary redesigned and demonstrably effective public elementary and secondary schools to bear witness--through the accomplishment of their students--to the shape and benefits of reform. Non-public schools clearly serving the public interest could be included in this network. These schools would be awarded financial resources in the form of challenge grants to accelerate their own path-breaking work and to arrange for the professional development of their faculties. They will receive the designation "National Schools."
From the start, these schools would be protected by firm commitments from state and local governmental and private leaders consistent with the Annenberg Challenge. Annenberg Schools will be sited only in districts where there is clear, publicly announced financial and political support of this nature.
At least 30 percent of the schools would be situated in the nation's nine school districts with the largest student populations: the New York City Public Schools; the Los Angeles Unified School District; the Chicago Public Schools; the Dade County Public Schools (Florida); Houston Independent School District; the Philadelphia City School District; the Broward County Public Schools (Florida); the Detroit City Schools; and the Dallas Independent School District.
II. The National School Reform Faculty
The National School Reform Faculty, drawn primarily from the leading National Schools, would be selected by a committee from the National Institute, and would be assembled, trained and deployed to expand the scope of reform nationwide.
This would be a corps of the most experienced and talented school people, with personal involvement with reform who are prepared to work not only in their own school systems but also in schools just launched upon reform.
These veterans--legitimate in the eyes of even their most skeptical colleagues as they are people who have engaged in successful redesign themselves--would continue in their existing school roles while released at appropriate times to work individually or in teams with other schools.
Membership in the National School Reform Faculty would be an honor, one which recognizes able people, spurs them toward further examination of their craft, uses them wisely in the national effort at reform, and retains their expertise to benefit the entire profession.
III. Coordinated Support within the "System"
- An invitation to each of the states and territories to join, on a matching basis proportional to their school population, the national effort at serious school reform.
- A special grant for a program focused on urban schooling, especially as it bears on the concerns of low-income families.
- A challenge grant to focus on policy and especially alternative designs for public finance which will improve federal and state practices and enhance school-level reform; and for the identification and training of the high level leaders required to implement these policies.
- A special grant to energize a national effort of school-university cooperation in support of serious school reform.
- A challenge grant for the launching of a national electronic library for American public schools. The electronic library will provide public schools access to the major libraries of our country, to the rich "texts" of our nation's literary, artistic, historical and scientific heritage. Such a library will bridge the gap between rich and poor schools in their ability to tap into our cultural heritage. (To make this possible, a compact between the public schools, institutions of higher learning, telecommunications, publishing and computer industries and the State and Federal Governments must be forged.)
IV. Accountability of the Annenberg Challenge
The five-year Annenberg Challenge will require annual review. During the life span of NASDC and the next years of the Annenberg National Institute for School Reform, annual accountings from these two organizations will be expected.
The Annenberg Foundation will contract with an independent agency to provide two in-depth studies of the Challenge, one at the end of three years and one at the end of five years. Each will measure the success of the Annenberg Challenge involving federal and state governments and private philanthropies.
V. Governance of the Annenberg Challenge
The governance of the Annenberg Challenge will be through the Board of Directors of the New American Schools Development Corporation (during the life of that organization), and the Board of Overseers of the Annenberg National Institute of School Reform, these reporting to the Annenberg Foundation.######