Beth Lief


In recent years education has evolved into the country's number one public concern. Presidential, gubernatorial, mayoral, and legislative candidates all claim to care about educating our children. Successful schools should be used by educators and policy-makers as models. In order to reproduce the success of these schools, the reasons for their success must be identified. A school's achievement data gives important indications of why it succeeds. There are also innumerable studies and reports listing factors enabling school success. The Children's School in Brooklyn, New York is a school worthy of study. The leadership is superb; teachers know their students and fellow educators well; parents genuinely feel part of their children's education. The teachers form a robust professional learning community that thrives throughout the year. At the Children's School, children achieve at high levels and learn to appreciate and respect differences among themselves. The school is also a model for understanding how to successfully educate children with disabilities. These lessons are important for understanding how to provide a standards-based education to the ten to twelve percent of students in special education nationally.

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