MassINC education center changes name in honor of education reform pioneer

BOSTON — February 12, 2004 — The Rennie Center for Education Research and Policy at MassINC is announced

The Center for Education Research and Policy at MassINC has changed its name to the Rennie Center for Education Research and Policy at MassINC, effective immediately, Paul Reville, executive director of the Center announced today.

The Center is named in memory of business and community leader Jack Rennie, who died in January of 2001. Rennie was the founder and chairman of the Massachusetts Business Alliance for Education (MBAE), which developed the vision and blueprint for Education Reform in Massachusetts entitled “Every Child a Winner.” That study served as the foundation for the Education Reform Act of 1993. Rennie was also the Chairman & CEO of Pacer Systems, Inc.

“Jack’s rigorous intellectual curiosity and his commitment to civil discourse made the impossible possible. By renaming the Center, we not only honor Jack’s legacy, but we recommit ourselves to his mission of excellent schools for every child and his inclusive approach to achieving that mission,” said Reville, co-founder with Rennie of MBAE. “Jack believed in letting the evidence guide the process, and he believed in spirited, respectful conversation among educators, advocates, and policymakers.”

MassINC launched the Center in October 2002 to address the critical challenges of reforming education in Massachusetts. The Center recently published a study outlining the best practices of successful urban high schools. Its current work includes developing new approaches to labor-management relations and focusing state attention on value added accountability as a measure of educational impact.

“MassINC is proud to associate itself with the memory and spirit of Jack Rennie. His consensus-building approach to public policy problems and his commitment to a respectful civic dialogue continue to shape our work,” said Ian Bowles, President & CEO of MassINC.

Rennie was a founding board member of MassINC when it was established in 1996.

“Naming MassINC’s education center for Jack is an ideal tribute to a man whose vision and sense of purpose inspired our state’s education reform movement,” said Mark Roosevelt, co-author of the Education Reform Act of 1993 and current vice-chairman of MBAE. “Jack would be pleased to know that such a place exists, and that we are still pursuing excellence and equality for every child.”

About the Rennie Center for Education Research and Policy at MassINC: The Center’s mission is to develop a public agenda that informs and promotes significant improvement of public education in Massachusetts. Our work is motivated by a vision of an education system that creates the opportunity to educate every child to be successful in life, citizenship, employment and life-long learning. Applying nonpartisan, independent research, journalism and civic engagement, the Center is creating a civil space to foster thoughtful public discourse to inform and shape effective policy.

About MassINC: MassINC is a nonpartisan, evidence-based organization. Our mission is to develop a public agenda for Massachusetts that promotes the growth and vitality of the middle class. Our governing philosophy is rooted in the ideals embodied in the American Dream: equality of opportunity, personal responsibility and a strong commonwealth.

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