Strong Foundation, Evolving Challenges: A Case Study to Support Leadership Transition in the Boston Public Schools

Year of publication
2006
Publication
Annenberg Institute

While most urban school districts face rapid turnover in leadership and limited results, Boston has won national attention for its stability and success. This study from AISR and the Aspen Institute examines Boston's accomplishments and challenges and provides lessons for other large urban school districts. This study examines what the Boston Public Schools’ 10-year-long focus on instructional improvement accomplished and provides lessons for other districts on the challenges a district faces during a transition in leadership. “This report shows how a city can use the process of superintendent transition to take stock of successes and chart a course to confront challenges,” said Judy Wurtzel, a senior fellow in the Education and Society Program at the Aspen Institute 

At a time when urban school districts face rapid turnover in leadership and limited results, Boston has stood out and won national attention for its stability and success. As the city prepares to make the transition to new leadership (Superintendent Thomas W. Payzant, who was appointed in 1995, retired in June 2006) this report examines the district's accomplishments over the past decade and the challenges it faces under a new superintendent. 

“The report provides a fair and accurate portrait of what we have accomplished and what we have yet to do,” said Payzant. “I think it will prove enormously helpful as the Boston community determines what it wants and needs for the next decade of reform.” 

Suggested Citation:

(2006). Strong Foundation, Evolving Challenges: A Case Study to Support Leadership Transition in the Boston Public Schools. Annenberg Institute