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The Magnet School Option

The purpose of Vision 2020 by 2020 is to study what happens when a random sampling of students are given more control over their learning. This is the top priority, but some compromise may be needed.

There could be students in neighboring schools who would like to participate in pilot programs, but the overall interest is insufficient to run a program in both schools. In these situations a temporary magnet school could be established. One school could run the program with students from the other joining in.

Magnet schools, like charter schools, are not ideal. They make choice more difficult, they work against community, and they can have a ghettoizing affect on some schools, but they can allow for studies that would otherwise not take place.

Using the idea of magnet schools in this way serves as an example of how change efforts need to be flexible. Trying to accomplish too much all at once can be self-defeating. Compromise can produce desired results sooner. If early results of pilot projects are encouraging, then more people will become interested. This would allow temporary magnet schools to be disbanded as individual schools gain the numbers they need to run their own programs.

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