In the U.S. today there are almost 100,000 traditional public schools and just over 5,000 publicly funded but privately run charter schools. When the idea of charter schools was born almost thirty years ago they were envisioned as incubators, testing grounds where traditional schools could try out new ideas. Unfortunately, that vision never took hold. Today, charter schools are most often seen as competitors, battling traditional schools for students and scarce education dollars.
What would happen if the hostilities suddenly ceased and the two began to work together as originally envisioned? John Merrow looks at a school district in Houston, Texas where a courageous school superintendent has decided to find out.
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