Accountability, Markets, and the Philanthropic Agenda

Sarah Reckhow

in Follow the Money

Published in print December 2012 | ISBN: 9780199937738
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780199980734 | DOI:

Series: Studies in Postwar American Political Development

Accountability, Markets, and the Philanthropic Agenda

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Three key trends have shaped the context for foundation involvement in urban education politics. First, the accountability system mandated by No Child Left Behind has heightened the importance of test-score data as a metric to evaluate student, teacher, and school performance. These tests highlight urban schools and districts that fail to meet annual standards. Second, the largely successful advocacy for market-based reforms in education, such as charter schools, has created new levers for influence in local districts and further undermined the control of traditional school leaders. The third trend is the changing nature of philanthropy, and the extraordinary amount of wealth being disbursed by living philanthropists, such as Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, and Eli Broad. A sizable share of this giving has targeted K-12 education. The convergence of these trends sets the stage for major foundations to exercise substantial influence within urban school districts.

Keywords: foundations; philanthropy; accountability; education reform; charter schools; testing

Chapter.  9665 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: US Politics

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