Getting Started: A First Look at Annenberg Schools and Networks

June, 1998
Mark A. Smylie, Diane King Bilcer, Julie Kochanek, Karen Sconzert, Dorothy Shipps, and Holly Swyers
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This report is the first of a series by the Chicago Annenberg Research Project, which studies the activities of schools and networks participating in the Chicago Annenberg Challenge. The report provides baseline data and identifies patterns of characteristics, activities, and accomplishments across Chicago Annenberg Challenge schools during their first 12 to 18 months of support. It also identifies important issues to be considered as the Challenge continues its work.

Specifically, the report addresses six major questions:

  1. What are the characteristics of schools that participate in the Chicago Challenge and the student population they serve?
  2. What types of implementation networks did the Chicago Challenge initially support and how have these networks functioned?
  3. What have the implementation networks begun to accomplish during this early stage of work?
  4. What challenges do these networks and schools face?
  5. What sources of support are available to Annenberg schools and networks?
  6. How is the Chicago Challenge perceived in its external institutional environment?

To assure quality information and to protect the integrity of the Research Project, all work is conducted in strict confidence. The names and identities of schools, external partners, and individual persons are not used in communications to schools or Challenge administrators, nor are they part of any documents or reports. The activities of the Research Project are distinct and entirely separate from the monitoring activities of the Challenge, school principals, and Chicago Public Schools officials. They do not affect grant funding or any other decisions.

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