A work group has been convened to develop a program of whole school reform (WSR) in secondary schools in Abbott districts. The group — the “Colloraborative Work Group on Middle and High Schools” — is operating under a directive contained in the NJ Supreme Court’s June 2003 Abbott X ruling.

The work group is charged by the Abbott X ruling with examining successful secondary schools; data on student achievement and actual dropouts; research on WSR models and other school improvement initiatives; and current implementation of Abbott supplemental programs for middle and high schools (PDF).

The work group must make recommendations to the State Commissioner of Education by March 6, 2004, and the Commissioner is then required to adopt regulations to implement a WSR program in Abbott middle and high schools in 2004-05.

The work group addresses a significant “missing piece” in the Abbott framework for education improvement. The 1998 Abbott V decision required WSR in elementary schools, but postponed action on such efforts in secondary schools.

For information on the work group, contact:

David Sciarra
Executive Director, ELC
Phone: 973-624-1815, ext. 16


Collaborative Work Group on Middle and High Schools
Stan Karp, Teacher, JFK High School
Willa Spicer, Coordinator, NJ Principals & Supervisors Association
Mary Jo Kapalko, Director, Academy Charter High School
Dr. Ruth Palmer, School of Education, The College of New Jersey
Dr. Michelle Fine, CUNY Graduate Center
Dr. Sharon Powell, President, Princeton Center for Leadership Training
Dr. John Mucciolo, Principal, Ridgewood High School
Mary Bennett, Executive Director, Project Grad, Newark
Wilhemena Holder, Secondary Parents Council, Newark
Paul Smith, Talent Development Schools, Johns Hopkins University
James P. Connell, President, Institute for Research & Reform in Education
Greg Farrell, President & CEO, Outward Bound USA
Dr. Gene Bottoms, Southern Regional Education Board
Dr. R. Stephen Green, Director, NJ Teaching & Learning Collaborative
Maxine E. Bleich, Chief Executive Officer, Ventures In Education, Inc.
Dr. David Keiser, School of Education, Montclair State University
David G. Sciarra, Executive Director, Education Law Center
Dr. James H. Lytle, Superintendent of Schools, Trenton Public Schools
Gordon MacInnes, Assistant Commissioner, NJ Department of Education, Division of Abbott Implementation
Annette Castiglione, Special Assistant, NJ Department of Education, Division of Abbott Implementation
Dr. Penelope Lattimer, Special Assistant to Commissioner for Academic Achievement, NJ Department of Education

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Press Contact:
Sharon Krengel
Director of Policy, Strategic Partnerships and Communications
973-624-1815, x240