Connect with us


The 5 Best Run Large City School Districts In America

Running a large school system is one of the most complex and daunting challenges an organizational leader can undertake, but many US city school systems are proving they are up to the challenge. The following school districts are recognized among the best-run large city school districts in America for their ability to raise student achievement, for winning large awards and grants, and for per dollar performance in difficult economic times.
1) Miami-Dade County Public Schools, Miami, Florida
M-DCPS is the nation’s fourth largest public school system and the 2012 winner of the coveted Broad Prize for Urban Education. Alberto Carvalho has been the superintendent since 2008. Through a data driven approach to instructional reform, the district reduced its number of “F” state-graded schools from 13 to zero. He secured $700 million in Race to the Top funding and was able to get voter approval for a $1.2 billion dollar general obligation bond. Graduation rates are at an all-time high of 76%.

2) Charlotte-Mecklenberg Schools, Charlotte, North Carolina
Under the three year leadership of Dr. Heath E. Morrison, CMS has seen a 14 point increase in high school graduation rates, to a total of 70%, with rates increasing across all schools and student groups. The achievement gap is closing and enrollment in Advanced Placement scores is seeing significant increase. CMS won the Broad Prize for Urban Education in 2011 and Heath Morrison recently won the AASA National Superintendent of the Year.
3) Houston Independent School District, Houston, Texas
On the watch of Superintendent Terry B. Grier, HISD has seen its graduation rates increase to an all-time high of 78.5% and the amount of scholarships procured by high school seniors triple in amount to a total of $180 million dollars. The district’s Apollo 20 program aimed at turning around failing schools has received national recognition and the district was a 2012 Broad Prize finalist. Dr. Grier is a recipient of the American Association of School Administrators’ prestigious Effie H. Jones Humanitarian Award for his support of women and minorities in education.
4) Denver Public Schools, Denver, CO
Although not yet a winner of the coveted Broad Prize, Denver Public Schools is catching the eye of education reformers and earning respect for its achievement gains and ability to bring together all stakeholders. Superintendent Tom Boasberg has posted record enrollment increases and cut the number of its lowest performing state rated schools by two-thirds during his three years running the schools. Denver’s performance-pay system (ProComp) is a national role model in reform circles. All eyes are also on DPS’s new LEAP system of teacher evaluation, funded by a $10 million dollar Gates grant and being held up as a model of teacher union-district administration collaboration in tough teacher evaluation reforms. The system requires teachers to be held accountable for student performance and to meet tough standards of frequent classroom observations.
5) Marin County Public Schools, California
Finally, Marin County earns a spot on the list for its fiscal conservancy. Though this district outside San Francisco is not quite as large as the others, it is ranked first in Forbes magazine’s “Best School Districts for the Buck” and that is something that can’t be ignored in a time of economic challenge. With per pupil spending of just over $6,000, the district manages to graduate 96% of its students and earn some of the highest college entrance exam scores in the country. Something can be learned from Marin County in terms of how to get the most student achievement bang for your buck.

Featured images:
  •  License: Creative Commons image source

Hilde Brandt is a school district administrator and guest author at Best Education Degrees, where she contributed to the guide to the Top Online Masters in Education Programs.

Continue Reading

Recent Posts

Home Improvement3 months ago

How To Add More Value To Your Home

If you have some spare cash in the bank, it is likely you would like to spend it on your...

Lifestyle3 months ago

What is a Deep Plane Facelift

Cosmetic surgery is a choice that needs a lot of research and when it comes to thinking about a facelift...

Entrepreneur3 months ago

Unveiling the Demand for Digital Marketing Courses: A Comprehensive Analysis

In recent years, the realm of marketing has undergone a seismic shift propelled by the digital revolution. As businesses increasingly...

Home Improvement3 months ago

What Does an Effective Wardrobe Spring Clean Entail?

Spring is upon us which means one thing and one thing only. It is time for the annual purge of...

Business5 months ago

Your Basic Guide To Creating A Unique Investment Blog

Starting your own blog is great and once you get the ball rolling, it can be a good passive income...

Business5 months ago

3 Low-Risk Ways To Get Your New Business Started

Once you’ve got an initial business idea and believe that it will be a success, there are some basic things...

Lifestyle5 months ago

Conquering the Co-free Zone: Tips for Thriving as a Remote Worker

Adjusting to an office environment can come with its downfalls in the sense that it might be a shock to...

General6 months ago

3 Ways To Take Control Of Your Finances Starting Now

If your finances have taken over and are bringing stress to your life, we understand just how overwhelming it can...

Travel8 months ago

Best Places To Visit In The North Of England

If you live in England, you will know there are many different places to visit for the weekend. There are...

General8 months ago

Green Home Improvement Ideas

In a world where environmental concerns are growing, the concept of “green” has gone beyond a trendy catchphrase and is...

Lifestyle8 months ago

How to Host an Unforgettable House-Warming!

The time has finally come. You have moved into your dream pad, and are officially adulting in your very own...

Autos8 months ago

A Guide to Parking Lot Striping

The journey to a well-striped parking lot begins with the right paint. In this brief guide, we’ll unravel the mystery...

Business11 months ago

Business Tips For Protecting Your Finances During A Recession

In 2023, taking the necessary steps to protect your finances for your business is now more important than ever. The...

Lifestyle11 months ago

Tips For Cleaning Your Trainers

If you’re into your trainers and streetwear, you’re likely to be very conscious of keeping them looking their best! So,...

Marketing12 months ago

Branding Trends For Start-Ups in 2023

Branding is incredibly important as it impacts how your business reaches and connects with its target market. If you’re branding...