School Instructional Program Coherence: Benefits and Challenges

January, 2001
Fred M. Newmann, BetsAnn Smith, Elaine Allensworth, and Anthony S. Bryk
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This report is one of a series of special topic reports developed by the Chicago Annenberg Research Project. It discusses an important reason why schools involved in multiple improvement initiatives do not always improve their students' achievements. It introduces the concept of instructional program coherence and presents new evidence that students in Chicago elementary schools with stronger program coherence show higher gains in student achievement. The report suggests ways in which school leaders, school improvement partners, and policy makers can act to bring about the instructional coherence that will reward their school improvement efforts.

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