A community of practice dedicated to sharing and developing knowledge to improve urban public school facilities and the communities they serve.


In regular meetings, BEST partners identify areas within our policy agenda where more information, knowledge and understanding are needed. With support from academic researchers we work together to design research questions that we expect will generate answers that will increase the effectiveness of our work to improve public education for children from low income urban communities. These questions are listed in the column to the right.

Research Partners

Research support to BEST from 2002-2006 was provided by Mark Schneider, PhD, Political Science Professor and researcher at the State University of New York (SUNY), Stony Brook and Jack Buckley, PhD, also from SUNY, Stony Brook.

From 2006 to present, research support is being provided by the Center for Cities and Schools, University of California, Berkeley.

Project specific collaboration has included work with the Brookings Institution and the Urban Institute.

The 21st Century School Fund coordinates research planning and design for BEST. Through BEST, practitioners are an integral part of the research process.

Research Tools

BEST is dedicated to bridging the information gap on school facilities. Included in the web site are databases, as well as survey and other tools that can be adapted by researchers to expand the knowledge base of this field.

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Research Areas