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In simple terms, an educational performance contract is an agreement between a school district and a learning system contractor for the education of a selected group of students, with the contract payment determined by the measured educational achievement of the students. About 100 programs are under way this year. Each program involves remedial reading; many teach mathematics, but only three cover other subjects. Most contractors are profit-oriented educational firms, and are directly involved in the teaching and learning process. Most programs are based on highly individualized instruction and employ a wide spectrum of teaching techniques, materials, and general approaches. It is important that the 1970-71 experience be evaluated with an eye to all the activities involved in the program and the many different impacts they might conceivably exert. HEW has contracted with Rand to conduct one such evaluation.

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