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School me: What works in a building or district you know about?

I need your help.

Something that's been missing in the overall conversation about education here in Buffalo is a discussion about what's working in various schools and districts.

I keep wanting to spend some time looking at districts across the country, as well as schools locally or elsewhere, that have had successes -- whether it's in getting more kids to come to school, improving the school climate, making time for recess, doing a better job teaching kids to read, engaging parents, or anything else that makes school better for kids.

SchoolkidsBut this keeps getting preempted by other things, as news keeps happening faster than I can stay on top of.

I know plenty of you know about things that are working in schools, whether it's the school you work in or send your kids to, or a school you've heard about from an old friend or a district where you used to live.

Here's my invitation: Take a few minutes to write up maybe 200 to 300 words about a specific aspect of the school or district you have in mind that is yielding positive results. The more specific you can be, the better.

Send it to me by email ( or via Facebook (

Make sure you include your name and the name of the school or district you're writing about.

The idea is to spark a larger conversation about approaches that might be replicated locally to make the schools better for kids. Not everything works in every school or district, of course, but it can't hurt to start talking about what is working in various places.

I'm planning to highlight one school or district every week here at the School Zone blog.

In the two years I've been covering the Buffalo schools, readers have been getting more and more interested and engaged every week -- certainly a positive sign. Let's continue building on that as you all school me.

- Mary Pasciak

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