A ‘No Excuses’ Look at Education Reform
Pioneer Institute held a forum December 19, 2003, with the authors of No Excuses: Closing the Racial Gap in Learning. Abigail Thernstrom is a former member of Pioneer’s Board of Academic Advisors and Stephan Thernstrom is a professor of government at Harvard University. Arguing that the poor academic performance (on average) of black and Hispanic students is a civil rights crisis, the Thernstroms call for the replication of charter and other innovative schools “with great leaders and great teachers who have high academic and behavioral standards.” Two respondents, Brett Peiser, founder and executive director of South Boston Harbor Academy Charter School, and Michael Contompasis, chief operating officer of the Boston Public Schools, gave their perspectives. The remarks of each speaker are excerpted below.
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