Where Teachers Rule

By Sarah Carr, Journal Sentinel 

As a freshman at Vincent High School, Trinisa Johnson didn't even know the name of the principal and would never have considered taking her questions or concerns there.

But as a sophomore last year at Milwaukee's Community High School, Johnson was well-connected to people in high places.

That's largely because Community High lacks a traditional hierarchy. The school is one of a rapidly growing number of so-called "teacher-led" schools that operate without administrators - including principals and assistant principals. The teachers make decisions about the curriculum, the budget and student discipline. They perform peer evaluations of each other. Often, they come to decisions through discussion and debate, taking a vote if a consensus is not reached. The buck stops with them, not in the principal's office...

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