To search for model legislation, research, reports, and more, type your area of interest into the search bar above. You can filter your search by state, level of government, document type, and policy area to match the info you need to your unique community’s progressive goals.
In this paper, the 21st Century School Fund and the Center for Cities and Schools at the University of California Berkeley provide a conceptual frame for the joint use of PK-12 public schools. There is a growing conversation about and demand for joint use as a way to provide services to children and families in convenient locations, improve opportunities for physical activity by increasing use of school recreational and outdoor spaces, leverage capital investments, and more. However, engaging in joint use, particularly intensive sharing of space or use by multiple parties, presents ongoing challenges to school and community leaders. In this paper, we frame the basic challenges and opportunities for joint use to facilitate better conversations and planning for these type of collaborations.
The Multi-State Shale Research Collaborative, of which Policy Matters Ohio is a member, has released case studies examining the impacts of shale oil and gas drilling on four active drilling communities — Carroll County, Ohio; Greene and Tioga counties, Pennsylvania; and Wetzel County, West Virginia.
Instead of investing in education, job training, infrastructure and innovation, Ohio and many Ohio municipalities are giving away revenue needed to make those investments in the form of incentive packages. The incentive bidding pits states and cities against each other in a “race to the bottom.” It was on full display with the Amazon HQ relocation. As incentives continue to expand, the patchwork of oversight laws leaves too many accountability gaps. This allows corporations and developers to leverage not just states or cities against each other to get generous tax deals even to the point of locating in different abated areas within the same city. This was demonstrated most recently in the CoverMyMeds abatement negotiations in Columbus, during which it was reported that the software company suggested it would move to an area of Columbus, where it could receive an abatement that would not require school board approval, if the school wouldn’t accept the agreement.
Early child development and education programming have proven to be effective investments in both young children and the communities in which they live. An international body of research points to strong evidence that high-quality early child development and early education policies, with appropriate standards and accountability, yield many more benefits than costs through the use of finite community resource dollars. Not only do young children acquire important social-emotional skills that yield long term benefits to both society and individual families, but the early years are the greatest opportunity to develop cognitive skills for optimal brain development, healthy habits, and lay a foundation for years of future academic success. Employers also capture short and long-term benefits for their local firms when early care and education is supported. Yet many communities, including Nashville-Davidson County have not made concentrated, comprehensive efforts to support robust and aligned early care and education efforts to ensure the sustained healthy development and success of their youngest citizens.
Those seeking to reduce deficits and strengthen the economy should make significant investments in early childhood education. Professor Heckman's ground-breaking work with a consortium of economists, psychologists, statisticians and neuroscientists shows that early childhood development directly influences economic, health and social outcomes for individuals and society. Adverse early environments create deficits in skills and abilities that drive down productivity and increase social costs - thereby adding to financial deficits borne by the public.
Quality preschool improves children’s educational outcomes into the elementary grades. Good programs with wraparound childcare anchor family financial stability today by enabling parents to work. Yet too few Cincinnati children have access to a good preschool or any preschool at all. A levy on this November’s ballot seeks to change that by adding new local funding source to available resources for both preschool and K-12 education.
For the past eight years, UC Berkeley's Center for Cities & Schools (CC&S) has engaged in action-oriented research focused on the challenges and promise of integrated and inclusive planning practices and policies. The Center has learned by doing that overcoming a century of siloed institutional practices is no small task. However, the benefits of bringing together city and regional planning agencies, on the one hand, and school districts/local educational agencies (LEAs), on the other, far outweigh the costs of maintaining the status quo. In any given case the challenges are multiple: high concentrations of poverty and racial segregation in schools as well as neighborhoods; a growing achievement gap as reflected in test scores and high school graduation rates between more affluent, mostly white and Asian students and African American and Latino students; years or even generations of systemic neglect in infrastructure investments in school facilities and neighborhoods; and well-intended educational and planning policies that in many cases did more harm than good.
School District Resolution adopting Berkeley's 2020 Vision plan to provide all Berkeley children with equitable education outcomes regardless of race, ethnicity, or income by 2020.
Based on a review of the most advanced city efforts to align education for young children from birth through third grade, the National League of Cities (NLC) Institute for Youth, Education and Families (YEF Institute) identified 10 common elements of effective systems alignment. This report contains case studies of local efforts in Boston, Hartford, San Antonio, San Jose and Seattle that provide examples of how cities are incorporating each of the following elements into their alignment strategies.
The District of Columbia has provided funding for prekindergarten programs since the 1960s. The D.C. Public Pre-Kindergarten program as it now exists serves students in schools run through D.C. Public Schools (DCPS), community-based organizations (CBOs), and charter schools authorized by the D.C. Public Charter School Board (PCSB). The Pre-Kindergarten Enhancement and Expansion Amendment Act, passed in 2008, aims to provide high-quality, universally available prekindergarten education services through a mixed delivery system across all education sectors. The distribution of program funds by the D.C. Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) is based on a per-pupil funding formula with additional funds for serving children who receive special education services or are English Language Learners. Charter schools receive a separate facilities allowance per child. DCPS piloted blended classrooms that enroll pre-K students funded through various sources in the pre-K program during the 2010-2011 school year. Additional freedom was also granted to non-public providers to manage their own contracts for technical assistance and comprehensive health service consultations. The PCSB provides oversight to participating pre-K programs.