Thursday, December 15, 2011

Edison Schools

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Edison Schools


The birth of the Edison School is one of the results of the influence that the business community has had in the education system during the last 0 years. Founded in 1 as The Edison Project, Edison schools is the countrys leading private manager of public schools? It is anything else than a form a cooperative o major organization for charter schools.


What The Edison Schools project says?


The philosophical groundings of the Edison schools are based in a two axis extended research of the experience of successful education all over the world and the practical use of its result in creating an innovative school.


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The Primary Research was accomplished by sending the staff around the world to visit exemplary schools. The also came in contact with the latest technology systems and software programs, and they reviewed other financial management systems as well.


The Secondary research aimed to assemble the best scientific evidence of the effects of potential reform in every area of school design. This process led them to consider the work of renowned social scientists around the world.


As a result of those researches, they brought a wide range of cutting-edge perspectives on how to improve education through the reform of curriculum, school organization, and most other elements of education.


Furthermore, The Edison Schools have the so called “Ongoing Research”, that is an extension of the two first researches and aims to keep educators up to date on effective practices, innovative curricula, and whatever information is necessary for them to do the best possible job for their students.


Ten fundamental behind Edison Schools Design


· Schools are organized for Every Students Success. Each Edison school consists of smaller groups, called academies.” A team of teachers stays with the same house of students for the duration of their academy experience. This organization ensures that students are better known and more closely attended to by adults


· A better use of time, translated into a longer school day and a 10% longer school year than public schools.


· A rich and challenging curriculum. Basically the same than public schools.


· Teaching methods that motivate. Since students learn in different ways, the school implements four instructional methods (a) project-based learning, (b) direct instruction, (c) cooperative learning and (d) differentiated instruction.


· Assessments that provide accountability. Custom performance assessments to measure student progress.


· A professional environment for teachers. They are organized into teams, have more access to technology, are better paid and have two periods every year for professional development.


· Technology for an information age. It is the target of the Edison schools that every student, teacher and principal has access to classroom computers and other technologies and that every family receives technology for use in the home.


· A partnership with families The Edison schools encourages volunteerism among parents; try to bring parents to the school on a regular basis for conferencing and to appreciate their children’s success.


· Schools tailored to the community. They try to adapt the academic programs to the community’s needs


· The advantages of system and scale. The Edison schools are connected through a network and cooperate as a part of a nationwide system of partnerships schools.


What to consider?


From the lecture of the documentation that the Edison Schools Project has given out to the public, everything seems perfect. For the administrators of the Education System, the parents and even the students, it looks like a dream. But what this dream has that makes it so different than public schools?


The aim of the Edison schools does not differ from the goals of the public schools system. Every single principle or research is just a copy of what our educators have being trying to achieve, with the difference that the combination of bureaucracy and lack of resources has limited them from accomplishing their goals.


Several educational institutions around the country struggle to form teachers of the best quality, including in their programs the best compilation of the theory and practice of the experience of teaching all around the world. The Department of Education both at Federal and State level as well as professional organizations invest a share of their resources to continually improve the quality of education and keep a pace to meet the requirements of our technological era.


Now, how can The Edison project make such a fuss of its philosophical groundings? Even when the intentions of the project are so ideal, we must await for the results in order to evaluate the effectiveness of their work. Until now they still receive support from the official institutions nationwide, since their program is considered as a promising alternative.


Some voices have been raised against the project. The California based organization Teachers for Change, reported in 001 about two Edison School in Texas which drift cost was higher than the non-privatized schools. Likewise they informed how the students of San Francisco’s Edison Schools were outperformed even by pupils from economically disadvantaged areas.


Another study conducted by the Western Michigan University shows that Edison has been no more successful at boosting student achievement than the districts that hired it. The study states that it can be the consequence of certain limitations as the youth of the charter initiative, not having enough time to demonstrate their ability to improve student achievement. At the same time it says that, in most cases, no data is available from the schools in order to measure their results.


In September last year, Parents Advocating School Accountability reported to the Assessment Reform Networks discussion list, that San Francisco’s Edison Charter Academy had exaggerated the results of standardized tests, in 16 categories from to percentile points.


Two years earlier, in San Francisco also, was reported by The San Francisco Bay New’s Guardian about a group of disgruntled teacher that threatened to quit the Edison Charter Academy, due to the extremely long workday and year.


Compilation data and official reports are missing about the expected achievements of the Edison Schools. The organization is still young and we need time to se either the success or the fiasco reflected in serious and reliable sources such as the Department of Education.


The philosophical groundings of the Edison schools create great expectations, and if they can accomplish them in the way they pretend we must applaud their initiative, due to the must important issue in teaching the proper and high quality education of our children.


Cooper, Ryan, Those who can, teaches. Houghton Mifflin Company


http//www.edisonschools.com, the official site for the Edison Schools Association


http//www.ed.gov U.S Department of Education


http//www.teachers4change.org Teachers for change, a broad-based coalition founded to create change in California’s educational system. Press release at http//www.teachers4change.org/Articles/0-0-01_PASA_Press_Release.htm.


http//www.nclb.gov/ The official site for the “No Child Left Behind” program


http//www.wmich.edu Western Michigan University. Resource Autonomy in exchange for accountability An Initial Study of Pennsylvania Charter Schools http//www.wmich.edu/evalctr/edison/edison_eval_exec_summ.htm


http//www.firn.edu/doe/schoolgrades/ Florida Department of Education. Schools Grades.


http//www.interversity.org/lists/arn-l/ Assessment Reform Networks discussion list is sponsored by FairTest, The National Center for Fair and Open Testing


http//pasaorg.tripod.com/ Parents Advocating School Accountability


http//www.sfbg.com/ The San Francisco Bay New’s Guardian on the Internet


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