Center for American Progress provides an interactive map of educational investment. "To spark a national dialogue about educational productivity, we've attempted to evaluate the return on investment (ROI) of almost every major school district in the country. By productivity, we mean how much learning a district produces for every dollar spent, after controlling for factors such as cost of living and students in poverty."

American Education Review was created by
Catherine Bellinger, a student at Princeton University, to provide an online news source for Students For Education Reform. In December 2009 AER expects to moves to its new site at Until the new site is up,students can find updates and information on current issues in education policy at the blogspot link above.

The George Lucas Educational foundation sponsors Edutopia: What works in public education. A wide ranging site with many perspectives:
After-School Learning, Arts Education, Collaboration, Digital Generation, Financial Literacy, Global Learning, Green Education, Physical Education, Predictions for Public Education, Schools That Work: YES Prep, The Waldorf Way, and more.

Excellent Education for Everyone (E3) is a 501(c) 3 non-profit organization devoted to improving urban public education through the powers of parental school choice.

SchoolMatters is a service provided by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). It is a nationwide organization of public officials in elementary and secondary education in the states, the District of Columbia, DOD Education Activity, and extra-state jurisdictions. CCSSO provides leadership, advocacy, and technical assistance on major educational issues.

Politicker NJ is a website where political insiders find out what is going on inside politics. It is an excellent place to learn about political agendas and interests around the state -- and to publish useful information and influential opinion.

The Broad Prize is awarded each year to honor urban school districts that demonstrate the greatest overall performance and improvement in student achievement while reducing achievement gaps among low-income and minority students.

The Center for Public Education (Center) is a national resource for accurate, timely, and credible information about public education and its importance to the well-being of our nation. The Center provides up-to-date research, data, and analysis on current education issues and explores ways to improve student achievement and engage public support for public schools.

Great Schools is a website where parents can find nation-wide ratings and descriptions of schools they will find their children attending.

The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) collects, analyzes and makes available data related to education in the US and other nations. It includes the What Works Clearinghouse, a central and trusted source of scientific evidence for what works in education.

Books and Articles

Schools That Succeed, Students Who Achieve

by James Deneen

Rowan and Littlefield Education, 2009 
1607093413 | 978-1607093411

One Day, All Children:
The Unlikely Triumph of Teach For America and What I Learned Along the Way

By Amy Kopp
President of Teach For America.

Public Affairs, Perseus books, 2001, 2003

What Makes a Great Teacher
by Amanda Ripley
, an article in The Atlantic, January/February 2010, under Education

Great teachers constantly reevaluate what they are doing. They also have four other tendencies in common: they avidly recruit students and their families into the process; they maintain focus, ensuring that everything they do contributes to student learning; they plan  exhaustively and purposefully—for the next day or the year ahead—by working backward from the desired outcome; and they work relentlessly, refusing to surrender to the combined menaces of poverty, bureaucracy, and budgetary shortfalls.

At US High Schools, Good News is Scarce (no URL available)
by Amanda Paulson, Staff writer, The Christian Science Monitor, Jan 10 2010
This is an informative and important summary of problems in secondary education that should be made
available to a wider public, who are increasingly concerned with getting our schools into better shape.

The Fordham Foundation examined the question of school choice from a different perspective, in which
they studied the in-school demographics of public schools in states and major cities. The primary finding
is that many public schools do not provide access to all, especially poor and minorities. Their report on
on "America's Private Public Schools" is thought provoking.

Educational change efforts in Jacksonville, Florida

The Jacksonville Community Council Inc. (JCCI) in Jacksonville, Florida, has a similar mission to that of CSS. The main website URL is

Since 1985, JCCI has annually published a citizen-based Quality of Life Progress Report, a set of indicators of the community's quality of life. Education is consistently ranked the most important indicator. The 2008 report can be found at The Achieving Educational Excellence indicators are on pages 13 to 21.  (When the 2009 report is released the URL may change slightly.

JCCI's companion Race Relations Progress Report contains similar indicators but focuses on disparities based on race.  The 2008 report is found at  The Education indicators are on pages 10-13. The URL for the 2009 report (about May 2010) may change slightly.

JCCI also does annual citizen-based studies on significant community issues with conclusions, recommendations, and advocacy follow-up. The list, by category, of all of JCCI's studies, with links to a .pdf file for each study, can be found at  Among the education studies, the most relevant for our project is the 1993 study called Public Education: The Cost of Quality.