Magnet Schools


Por acaso e ao contrário do que se pode fazer crer, a maioria das charter e magnet schools são direccionadas para os grupos sociais economicamente mais desfavorecidos ou para as minorias étnicas e não para grupos privilegiados. Por lá, o sector puramente privado da Educação não se encosta ao Estado como cá.

E a ideia é atenuar desigualdades, não agravá-las ou dar almofadas financeiras a quem já está em situação mais favorecida.

Estes quadros são retirados do relatório linkado em post mais abaixo.

The Forgotten Choice?

Rethinking Magnet Schools in a Changing Landscape –
A Report to Magnet Schools of America

Magnet schools are the largest set of choice-based schools in the nation and today enroll twice as many students as the rapidly growing charter school sector. The intent of magnet schools was to use incentives rather than coercion to create desegregation. Magnet schools, then, represent a compromise between individualism (choosing one’s school) and achieving community goals (diversity). Magnet schools were originally designed to incorporate strong civil rights protections (such as good parent information/outreach, explicit desegregation goals, and free transportation) and most were designed not to have selective admissions processes. This differs from more recent schools of choice that have been designed without these mechanisms. Today, in the aftermath of federal court decisions limiting race-conscious efforts by school districts, magnets comprise a diverse set of schools serving a variety of functions. Many have lost their desegregation mechanisms, which, as we will show, have made a difference in their racial diversity.

Uma forma diferente de autonomia da que é decretada e que se usa por cá.

What is a Magnet School?

A Magnet school is part of the public school system. Usually students are zoned into their schools based on location. Students mostly go to the school which they are closest to (this may not always be true since boundaries can seem arbitrary). With Magnet schools, the public school system has created schools that exist outside of zoned school boundaries. The point of them is that they usually have something special to offer over a regular school which makes attending them an attractive choice to many students, thereby increasing the diversity of the student population within them (in theory).

Magnet schools are different from private or parochial schools in that they remain part of the public school system. They differ from Charter schools in that they remain part of the public school system bureaucratically. Charter Schools have a different organizational model (i.e. they have a charter that releases them from the regular school administration). Magnet schools operate under the same public school administration (they don’t operate on their own).

Distinguishing them from other public schools, Magnet schools usually have alternative or otherwise compelling modes of instruction. For example, you might find a Montessori Magnet school. A school doesn’t have to be a Magnet school to be a Montessori School. There are also public schools that aren’t Magnet schools which still offer fine academic experiences. Magnet schools differ from other public schools in that they receive additional funding to enable them to spend more money on their students, supplies, teachers, programs, etc.

No Expresso de ontem (p. 22):

  • A escola mais pequena do país, sobre a escola do 1º ciclo de Vila Fernando, por Isabel Leiria.

Na Público de hoje (pp. 20-21):

  • Liberdade para escolher uma escola vai inspirar-se nos EUA e Reino Unido, de Clara Viana com comentário de Bárbara Wong sobre as magnet schools.

… porque eu não gosto apenas de guardar os pdf e as ligações ou de consultar o Google Books. Vai daí e nasceu mais uma pilha, bem fornida, de livrinhos de que estes são apenas uma amostra.

Porque convém tentar perceber as coisas – na falta de viagens patrocinadas pela FLAD – antes de falar muito delas.

Algo que está muito para além das autonomias decretadas.

Magnet schools are elementary and secondary theme-based public schools of choice.

Magnet schools plan and develop programs using local, state, and federal funds, specifically the federal Magnet Schools Assistance Program (MSAP). (…) The goal is to provide students with a valuable educational and personal experience, prepare them to function in a diverse society, and assist districts to eliminate, reduce or prevent long-standing patterns of racial isolation. Magnet schools serve as models for school improvement and “turnaround schools” for students in low-performing schools, and provide students an opportunity to succeed academically while learning in a racially diverse environment. [1]


[1] Robert Brooks e Doreen Marvin (2011), HISD Comprehensive Magnet Program Review. Materiais: http://www.magnet.edu/modules/info/related_articles_and_resources.html

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