Academy for Urban School Leadership

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AUSL (Academy for Urban School Leadership)
AUSL Logo
Founded 2001 (2001)
Founder Martin Koldyke
Type School Management Organization and Teacher Preparation Program
Location
Coordinates 41°56′31″N 87°46′35″W / 41.9419°N 87.7763°W / 41.9419; -87.7763Coordinates: 41°56′31″N 87°46′35″W / 41.9419°N 87.7763°W / 41.9419; -87.7763
Key people

Donald Feinstein, Ph.D., Executive Director

Shana Hayes, Managing Director, External Affairs

Scott Macdonald, Managing Director, Strategy and Operations

Jarvis Sanford, Managing Director, Managing Director, AUSL Network Schools
Mission AUSL creates schools of excellence by developing highly effective teachers and transforming educational outcomes for students in the lowest performing schools.
Website auslchicago.org

AUSL (Academy for Urban School Leadership) is a Chicago nonprofit school management organization founded in 2001. Today, it manages 32 Chicago Public Schools serving more than 18,000 students. Over 850 teachers have graduated from the AUSL Chicago Teacher Residency.[1]

History[edit]

Former Chicago Public Schools (CPS) President Arne Duncan met with financier Martin Koldyke and CPS educator Dr. Donald Feinstein and developed the idea of creating a specialized training program for teachers in urban schools. That led to the development of the Chicago Teacher Residency.[2]

Chicago Teacher Residency Program[edit]

The Chicago Teacher Residency Class of 2012

The centerpiece of AUSL's efforts is the Chicago Teacher Residency program, a year-long urban teacher training program in Chicago's Public Schools. The 12-month, full-time, paid training program combines teacher preparation, licensure, and a master's degree.

After the training year, graduates commit to teach in an AUSL-managed Chicago Public School for at least four years.[3]

Network of Schools[edit]

AUSL Network of Schools Map
AUSL Network of Schools Map

AUSL manages 32 Chicago Public Schools serving over 18,000 students. AUSL schools operate within the CPS system.[4]

The Chicago Academy, housed in the former Wilbur Wright College building, is AUSL’s first teacher training site.
School Name Neighborhood Grades
Bradwell School of Excellence South Shore Pre K-8
Carter School of Excellence Washington Park Pre K-8
Casals School of Excellence Humboldt Park Pre K-8
Chalmers School of Excellence North Lawndale Pre K-8
The Chicago Academy Dunning Pre K-8
Chicago Academy High School Dunning 9-12
Collins Academy High School North Lawndale 9-12
Curtis School of Excellence Roseland Pre K-8
Deneen School of Excellence Greater Grand Crossing Pre K-8
Dewey School of Excellence New City Pre K-8
Dodge Renaissance Academy East Garfield Park Pre K-8
Dulles School of Excellence Greater Grand Crossing Pre K-8
Dvorak School of Excellence North Lawndale Pre K-8
Fuller School of Excellence Grand Boulevard Pre K-8
Gresham School of Excellence Auburn Gresham Pre K-8
Harvard School of Excellence Greater Grand Crossing Pre K-8
Herzl School of Excellence North Lawndale Pre K-8
Howe School of Excellence Austin Pre K-8
Johnson School of Excellence North Lawndale Pre K-8
Lewis School of Excellence Austin Pre K-8
Marquette School of Excellence Chicago Lawn Pre K-8
McNair School of Excellence Austin Pre K-8
Morton School of Excellence East Garfield Park Pre K-8
National Teachers Academy Near South Side Pre K-8
O'Keeffe School of Excellence South Shore Pre K-8
Orr Academy High School Humboldt Park 9-12
Phillips Academy High School Douglas 9-12
Piccolo School of Excellence Humboldt Park Pre K-8
Sherman School of Excellence New City Pre K-8
Solorio Academy High School Gage Park 9-12
Stagg School of Excellence Englewood Pre K-8
Tarkington School of Excellence Chicago Lawn Pre K-8

Results[edit]

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  • U.S. News & World Report Education ranked Chicago Academy High School in the top ten best public high schools in the city of Chicago.[5]
  • Morton School of Excellence has maintained Level 1 status since school year 2010-11. In 2012, Morton School of Excellence surpassed the district ISAT average, the first school to achieve this milestone.[6]
  • In 2013, Phillips Academy High School achieved Level 1 status for the first time in its history.[7]
  • Every year since 2008, AUSL elementary schools, on average, have surpassed the district's growth on ISAT gains.[8]

Independent Research[edit]

The University of Chicago Consortium on Chicago School Research and American Institutes for Research in 2012 released a summary from their independent research evaluating the effect of reform including AUSL schools[9] The study concluded the following:

  • Four years after intervention, the gap in test scores between reformed elementary/middle schools and the school system average closed by almost half in reading and by two-thirds in mathematics.
  • The teacher workforce after intervention across all models was more likely to be white, younger, and less experienced, and were more likely to have provisional certification than teachers who were at those schools before the intervention.
  • Without intervention, the comparison neighborhood schools saw minimal to no increases in average test scores.
  • Furthermore, these significant results were achieved serving the same students as before intervention.
  • Transformation of an elementary school is a process, not an event. The gains seen in the fourth year vs. the comparison schools are higher than those seen in the first year.
  • High schools that underwent reform did not show significant improvements in absences or ninth grade on-track-to-graduate rates over matched comparison schools, but recent high school efforts look more promising than earlier ones.

Criticism[edit]

A Chicago Tribune article on AUSL from February 2012 entitled "School reform organization gets average grades" [10] stated that,

Most of AUSL turnarounds score below CPS averages on the percentage of students meeting or exceeding state benchmarks on standardized testing. Those schools that beat district averages have been accused of pushing out their lowest-performing students or those with discipline problems to artificially inflate their test scores.

References[edit]