State Policy Brief Series

This series of briefs will highlight state policies, regulations, practices, laws, or other tools intended to create the necessary conditions for school and/or district turnaround. Each brief will include a tool overview, its development process, its impact, and lessons learned that could assist other education agencies interested in enacting something similar.


MississippiThis brief highlights Mississippi’s Children First Act of 2009, which permitted the creation of a Recovery School District and state takeover of chronically underperforming school districts. The brief includes an overview of the policy, a description of the development process of the policy, explanation of the impact of the policy’s implementation to date, and lessons learned from Mississippi that may support other states interested in implementing similar policies and structures.

New Mexico

New MexicoThe focus of this brief is the New Mexico Public Education Department’s Principals Pursuing Excellence (PPE) program that was launched in 2013. The program was designed to develop a cadre of strong turnaround principals. The brief includes an overview of the program, a description of the program with stakeholder roles and responsibilities, the program’s impact and lessons learned from the program’s implementation.


FL smallThis brief highlights a 2012 Florida state policy that requires the 100 elementary schools (called the Low-100) with the lowest reading scores to add an additional hour of literacy instruction to their regular school day. The statute requires that the additional time be used for literacy, and the schools and districts have considerable flexibility in how they implement the policy, including the timing, approach, and professional development of staff. The state recently expanded the program to the 300 lowest-performing (in reading) elementary schools, but this brief focuses on the design and impact of the initial policy.