Education: Experts on Call

For years, teachers have beseeched parents to lend a hand in schools. Lexington, Mass. has found a way to put them to work. Last week, when Art Teacher Paul Ciano wanted technical advice, all he had to do was flip open a fat new directory of citizen volunteers. He picked out a professional painter, a package designer and an M.I.T. professor of sculpture—all enrolled in a unique campaign to prod outside talent into the town's classrooms.

Like almost every U.S. community, Lexington (pop. 23,500) is full of skilled specialists and passionate hobbyists. Last year Richard Woodward, 36, director of audio-visual education in...

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