By Benjamin Herold, Education Week
In little more than two years, the Philadelphia school district has stripped $400 million out of its annual budget, closed 30 schools, eliminated nearly 7,000 jobs, and lost more than 20,000 students.
The teetering city system, said Superintendent William R. Hite Jr., desperately needs “to show a win.”
So Mr. Hite is placing a controversial bet: Although scores of schools opened here this month without regular guidance counselors, nurses, or basic supplies, the superintendent is pouring millions of dollars into expanding what he considers to be three of the city’s most innovative schools. They include Science Leadership Academy, an acclaimed magnet high school at the forefront of the national effort to marry educational technology with so-called “deeper learning.”