The plight of low-performing students dominates our education news and policies. Yet America’s high flyers demand innovative, rigorous schooling as well, particularly if the country is to sharpen its economic and scientific edge. Motivated, high-ability youngsters can be served in myriad ways by public education, including schools that specialize in them. In a new book from Princeton University Press, Exam Schools: Inside America's Most Selective Public High Schools, co-authors Chester Finn and Jessica Hockett identify 165 such high schools across America.

In this Fordham LIVE! conversation, they and others will examine some of the issues that selective-admission public high schools pose. Who attends them? How are their students selected? Are such schools the future of gifted education or do they unfairly advantage a select few at the expense of most students? Just how different are they, anyway?

On August 24, authors Finn and Hockett will be joined by a pair of educators instrumental in the creation of two of the "exam schools" profiled in the book: Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president emeritus of George Washington University and a key player in the establishment of D.C.’s selective School Without Walls, and Geoffrey Jones, founding principal of Alexandria's Thomas Jefferson High School for Science and Technology. Register now to participate in this important discussion, in person or via webcast, from 9 to 10:30 AM EDT.

Jessica HockettJessica Hockett, education consultant specializing in differentiated instruction, curriculum design, and lesson study.

Chester E. Finn, Jr., president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute

Stephen Trachtenberg

Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president emeritus and university professor of public service, George Washington University

Geoffrey JonesGeoffrey Jones, head of the Potomac School, served as founding principal (1988-2000) of the Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology 
Michael J. PetrilliMichael J. Petrilli, executive vice president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute