Key Questions

This chapter is about the salience of social trust in urban schools and its implication for school reform. Specifically, we discuss the idea of social trust as a resource for school improvement. We elaborate the nature of this trust, the factors which facilitate its development and maintenance, and some key organizational consequences associated with it.


Do trusting relationships among adults in a school help children learn? In an era of widespread distrust of educational institutions and their ability to educate children, Chicago attempted to expand local control in order to improve its schools, calling on parents, teachers, and administrators to "join together in sustained cooperative efforts around school improvement." This report reveals that a trusting school climate is an important resource for improving teaching and learning. 

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