Twenty struggling public schools in Houston are part of an experiment called Apollo 20 to test whether longer school days, professional tutoring and other techniques used at high-performing charters can help boost achievement at their schools as well. The three-year experiment, conceived by Harvard University researcher Roland G. Fryer, incorporated many charter practices and produced mixed results at the high schools involved during the first year. "We got close, but we didn't get there completely," Houston superintendent Terry Grier said.

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