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The School District of Philadelphia
School Reform Commission
Declaration of Education
The academic achievement of all students in the School District of Philadelphia must improve. We believe all children can reach their learning potential and that the achievement gap can be eliminated. The School Reform Commission is responsible for that improvement and is obligated to prepare, ensure, and empower all students of diverse backgrounds to achieve their full intellectual and social potential in order to become lifelong learners and productive members of society. The Commission commits itself to raising student achievement through District-wide reforms and restructuring measures. We have done much but we have a long way to go. As a significant step on the continuing journey, the SRC issues this "Declaration of Beliefs and Visions."
1.We believe all children can learn at high levels.
The School District of Philadelphia has the responsibility to provide the quality of education and a safe environment that allows every child to learn at high levels. The capacity to learn is not determined or limited by race, family income, native language, gender or area of residence.
2.We believe all children can reach their learning potential and that the achievement gap can be eliminated.
The School District of Philadelphia must provide equal access to quality education regardless of race, family income, gender, native language, special needs or area of residence. Providing equal access to high quality education for every child may require the investment of unequal resources to ensure an equitable outcome.
3.We believe schools have an enormous impact on children's lives.
To improve educational outcomes for all students, a qualified teacher must be in every classroom, and every school must have a qualified principal who is an instructional leader. Improving the educational outcomes for our students will require support from all of segments of our community including parents, caregivers, businesses, elected and appointed officials, civic and faith-based
organizations, along with the District's leaders, staff, and students.
Parents and caregivers are responsible for sending their children to school ready to learn, but the School District is responsible for educating all children regardless of family support or involvement. Children have an obligation to come to school ready to learn, but the District cannot abandon those who do not and must search for ways to reach them.
4.We believe the School District of Philadelphia can become a high performing organization.
Sustainable reforms are possible only if parents have meaningful choices.
The School District of Philadelphia must develop effective partnerships with parents and caregivers - based upon trust and respect - that engage the District and the parent/caregiver in a plan of action to promote the ??? ? best interest??? ? of the child.
All District activities will be measured by their ability to increase the academic achievement of students across the District in the most efficient and effective manner.
The District will launch, continue or expand only those efforts proven to raise student achievement here or demonstrated elsewhere. There are no "sacred cows."
To be sustainable, any reform must conform to a realistic strategic and financial plan.
5.We believe that all children should be educated in a safe and orderly environment.
Success is the only option.
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