100 Tips & Insights for Opening Great New Schools

Authored by Getting Smart

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Ten thousand new schools opened in the last two decades – both a literally and physically groundbreaking development in American education. New schools helped boost U.S. graduation rates and college enrollment rates during that time.

So what’s most important when opening a new school? We asked two dozen experts who have collectively opened more than a thousand schools. They shared 100 hard-won lessons.

Opening a good, new school is a huge challenge. It is complicated under the best of circumstances. It involves real estate, construction, financing, logistics and marketing – many tasks outside the experience of even veteran educators.

Most of this toolkit addresses the post-approval pre-opening checklist, but given this historic opportunity to create powerful new learning environments, the toolkit starts with important advice on school design (including two great podcasts). It concludes with a summary of rules for great new schools and includes a list of resources and contributors.

Have more to add or questions to ask? Join the #NewSchools conversation.

Download “100 Tips & Insights for Opening Great New Schools

This publication was produced with support from the Walton Family Foundation. Getting Smart produced this toolkit in partnership with eduInnovation, an education nonprofit. This publication includes mentions of Getting Smart partners. For a full list of partners, affiliate organizations and all other disclosures please see our Partner Page.


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