The University of Chicago
Critical Issues in Urban Education
The University of Chicago

Critical Issues in Urban Education

Taught in English

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11,379 already enrolled

Course

Gain insight into a topic and learn the fundamentals

Sara Ray Stoelinga

Instructor: Sara Ray Stoelinga

4.7

(71 reviews)

22 hours to complete
3 weeks at 7 hours a week
Flexible schedule
Learn at your own pace

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Assessments

7 quizzes

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There are 10 modules in this course

As we launch the course, we will explore the history of public schooling and school reform in the United States. The approach to public education in the United States is unique, with governance, quality, and approach residing at the state and local level. As a result, efforts to improve and reform public schools in the United States are complex. Together, we will unpack these critical foundational characteristics of American public schooling, and explore the ways in which these contextual factors influence topics explored throughout the course.

What's included

5 videos3 readings1 quiz1 discussion prompt

This week, we will examine federal strategies to improve public schooling, beginning with the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). NCLB is the 2001 reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Enacted during the presidency of George W Bush, NCLB emphasized accountability, choice and flexibility. Discussion of the goals and intentions of NCLB will naturally lead us to consider the controversies around federal involvement in public education given the nature of the locally controlled approach to the American system. We will explore divergent opinions about NCLB theory of action and effectiveness.

What's included

6 videos5 readings1 quiz2 discussion prompts

As we continue our exploration of federal involvement in public education, we will discuss the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), the creation of a shared set of common standards and assessments for public education. We will examine the history of the creation of standards in the United States, revealing the fact that the concept of standards has been evident for decades. What can we learn from this history? How is the Common Core like or not like these previous efforts? We will consider the goals and intentions behind the Common Core, as well as the divergent opinions about its effectiveness.

What's included

5 videos5 readings1 quiz2 discussion prompts

We had the pleasure of interviewing several experts in the education space from around Chicago and the Urban Education Institute. Listen as they discuss topics surrounding NCLB and CCSS. They will have a variety of perspectives from that of a researcher to a practitioner. Which do you identify with? Did any of the participants resonate with you?

What's included

7 videos4 discussion prompts

School choice includes a set of practices and policies that aim to provide new educational options for students, to improve individual, school and school system outcomes. The concept on the surface sounds simple and logical and yet school choice is complex in implementation and has sparked much debate. What are the reasons for this controversy? Together, we will examine the history, types of school choice, the debates about effectiveness, and the ways in which this theory of action has become highly politicized and controversial.

What's included

5 videos3 readings1 quiz2 discussion prompts

This week, we will focus our attention on charter schools. We will explore the history of charter schools in the United States, examining fundamental questions about their theory of action and effectiveness. In these lectures, we will gain critical knowledge about how charter schools came to be, whether they are effective, and why they are so controversial.

What's included

5 videos4 readings1 quiz2 discussion prompts

We had the pleasure of interviewing several experts in the education space from around Chicago and the Urban Education Institute. Listen as they discuss issues surrounding School Choice and Charter Schools. They will have a variety of perspectives from that of a researcher to a practitioner. Which do you identify with? Did any of the participants resonate with you?

What's included

6 videos4 discussion prompts

The idea of accountability, or holding students, teachers, schools and school districts responsible for school performance, has become a key focus for practitioners, policy makers, and citizens. Why did the concept of accountability emerge and why has it become so central, so controversial? This week, we will learn about the concept of accountability in schools, which emerged in the United States in the 1990s. We will examine the history of the accountability, and the many forms this idea has taken. In doing so, we will consider pressing questions about how we ensure high quality schooling while not making accountability an ends in itself.

What's included

5 videos4 readings1 quiz2 discussion prompts

This week, we will dig more deeply into the concept of accountability, by examining teacher effectiveness and evaluation. In the process, we will learn about efforts to define and measure teacher effectiveness, and the push nationally to integrate teacher evaluation into individual teacher, school, school system and state accountability systems.

What's included

4 videos5 readings1 quiz2 discussion prompts

In the last week, we interviewed several experts in the education space from around Chicago and the Urban Education Institute on their view of accountability. As a summary of your learning in this class, we ask you to write a short response paper.

What's included

4 videos2 readings1 peer review2 discussion prompts

Instructor

Instructor ratings
4.6 (10 ratings)
Sara Ray Stoelinga
The University of Chicago
1 Course11,379 learners

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