As educators try to make schools more responsive to the diverse needs of today's students, public alternative schools are being increasingly investigated as viable and necessary options. This book offers a timely and much needed overview of public alternative education in the United States. With the rising interest among American educators about educational alternatives, a book surveying the topic is even more pertinent, especially as no overview of this rapidly changing and expanding field has been written since the 1970s. The author defines and describes alternative education, outlining its historical context, and includes case studies of noteworthy alternative high school programmes throughout the country. He makes a compelling case that such programmes, having proved successful with otherwise neglected at-risk students, can and must be expanded in the coming years. This book will serve as a supplemental text in foundations and secondary education courses. It will also be a valuable resource for administrators of and teachers in alternative schools, and for educators and administrators interested in exploring alternative schools.