Weekly Education News Brief
In the news
The end is near for No Child Left Behind
“The nation’s embattled key education policy may soon meet its administrative death. The White House today is detailing requirements for states that want to apply for waivers from essential components of No Child Left Behind, a law all sides call out-of-date and impossible. Its central provision requires every student to test at grade level in math and reading by 2014. But now, the Obama administration is providing a way to let states off the hook and hoping all states will take advantage…Several states have already indicated they plan to apply.“ http://www.usnews.com/news/articles/2011/09/23/the-end-is-near-for-no-child-left-behind
Teachers ratify deal ending strike in Washington
“Jubilant teachers in Washington state’s third-largest school district voted overwhelmingly on Thursday to ratify a contract deal that ended their weeklong strike and staved off proposed pay cuts.“http://news.yahoo.com/teachers-ratify-deal-ending-strike-tacoma-wash-010510718.html
Kansas City School District loses accreditation
“Missouri education officials revoked the accreditation of the Kansas City School District on Tuesday after it failed for several years to meet most of the state’s academic performance standards, an embarrassing blow to the beleaguered district that is also trying to find a new superintendent. The decision by the Missouri State Board of Education means the district has more than two years to improve and regain accreditation before it could face state takeover. The decision was approved without dissent and is effective Jan. 1.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/20/456333mokansascityccreditation_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Kansas City families scramble to transfer to suburban schools: http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/21/456835mokansascityccreditationtransfers_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Newark creates Teacher-Innovation Fund from $100M Facebook donation
“Newark teachers will have access to $600,000 in grant money meant to encourage innovative teaching methods that can be replicated district-wide, education officials announced Wednesday. Money for the creation of the Newark Teachers Innovation Fund comes from a $100 million donation by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, given to Newark schools exactly one year ago. An additional $47 million in philanthropic donations have been raised so far toward matching Zuckerberg’s grant.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/21/456710njnewarkschoolsgrant_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
CMS named country’s top urban school district
“After three grueling years, staff, students and supporters of Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools basked in national attention and community pride after claiming the nation’s top award for urban education Tuesday. The 2011 Broad Prize brings $550,000 in scholarships, bragging rights for the district’s 17,750 employees and a surge of educators and policymakers eager to see what CMS has done to help low-income and minority students succeed and graduate.” http://www.charlotteobserver.com/2011/09/21/2624792/cms-named-countrys-top-urban-district.html
Spotlight: Single-Sex Classrooms
Wake County expands school choice, OKs single-sex schools
“Wake County students, who have long enjoyed a wide array of public school options, are poised to get several more. For the past three decades, they could attend a base school, which offers a general education. Or they could choose from magnet schools that offer lots of electives — from archery to classes in rap music and architecture. On Tuesday, that menu got bigger — but not without some political resistance.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/21/05mct_ncschoolchoice.h31.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Class distinctions: where boy doesn’t meet girl
“Inside Barbara Noone’s sixth-grade classroom at Willard School, educational posters hang on the walls and books are stacked on shelves. But the seats are filled only with girls. The class is part of a single-gender classroom program the school launched three years ago with two single-gender sixth-grade classes, one for boys and one for girls. This year, the program expanded to the fifth grade, with one all-boys and one all-girls classroom. The students say it works for them.” http://www.pressherald.com/news/where-boy-doesnt-meet-girl_2011-09-19.html
Single-sex education is assailed in report, ineffective
“Single-sex education is ineffective, misguided and may actually increase gender stereotyping, a paper to be published Friday asserts. The report, “The Pseudoscience of Single Sex Schooling,” to be published in Science magazine by eight social scientists who are founders of the nonprofit American Council for CoEducational Schooling, is likely to ignite a new round of debate and legal wrangling about the effects of single-sex education.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/23/education/23single.html?partner=rss&emc=rss
Single-sex schools have negative impact on kids, study says
“Boys and girls may be opposites, but new research shows that in the classroom, separating the two sexes may not be the best way for either gender to learn and grow. A new report, published in the journal Science, states that students who attend single-sex schools are no better educated than those who attend co-ed schools. Plus, children are more likely to accept gender stereotypes when they go to an all-boys or all-girls school.” http://abcnews.go.com/Health/single-sex-schools-negative-kids-study/story?id=14581023
Policy and Politics
Too much GI Bill money going to for-profit schools?
“The nation’s for-profit colleges and universities have reaped a windfall from the Post-Sept. 11 GI Bill. The top for-profit companies brought in around $1 billion in benefits in the last year alone. And some lawmakers say federal regulations encourage these schools to target current and former members of the military.” http://www.npr.org/2011/09/22/140712378/too-much-gi-bill-money-going-to-for-profit-schools?ft=1&f=1013
Education impact of Jobs Bill under debate
“Educators and analysts are taking a hard look at whether the $55 billion K-12 portion of President Barack Obama’s nearly $450 billion jobs plan will provide the jolt to schools still feeling the pinch of a sputtering economy that the administration hopes. The plan faces long odds on Capitol Hill, where lawmakers are struggling to trim at least $1.2 trillion from the deficit over the next 10 years in a climate hostile to tax increases. But, if the plan does pass, some sympathetic analysts argue it would help school districts cover the cost of long-delayed school repairs and avert big layoffs and program cuts.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/21/04jobs_ep.h31.html?tkn=ZOCFSoDD1eQhBnDI32LWKVtzuX0PO4%2BnB4dH&cmp=clp-sb-ascd
Textbook adoption the new face of banning books
“Book-banning used to take place most often at a very local level. Even then it would make headlines if a classic work of literature was banned or removed from a school’s curriculum or library. In more recent years, curriculum rules for public schools have been established at the state level, often by elected officials or board members appointed by elected officials. Many of them are reluctant to be associated with book-banning or other broad curriculum changes that might attract the attention of the press and more moderate voters, as what happened with the Kansas State Board of Education in the run-up to the 2006 election. Instead, many states have instituted a textbook adoption system in which school books must be on a state-controlled and -approved list before any public schools in the state can purchase them. http://news.yahoo.com/textbook-adoption-face-banning-books-223600744.html
Half Philadelphia School Reform Board resigns after Ackerman buyout
“Signaling another major change in Philadelphia School District leadership even while it is about to search for a new superintendent, two members of the School Reform Commission resigned Monday, one of them its chairman. Both Chairman Robert L. Archie Jr. and Johnny Irizarry were appointees of Mayor Michael A. Nutter, who is charged with replacing them.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/20/05mct_paoverhaul.h31.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Watch more: http://abclocal.go.com/wpvi/video?id=8345641
Census: Recession takes big toll on young adults
“ Young adults are the recession’s lost generation. In record numbers, they’re struggling to find work, shunning long-distance moves to live with mom and dad, delaying marriage and raising kids out of wedlock, if they’re becoming parents at all. The unemployment rate for them is the highest since World War II and risk living in poverty more than others. Data released Thursday from the 2010 census show the wrenching impact of a recession that officially ended in mid-2009. There are missed opportunities and dim prospects for a generation of mostly 20-somethings and 30-somethings coming of age in a prolonged period of joblessness.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/22/457019uscensusrecessionsimpact_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
In the Courts
Minnesota AG sues over aid to for-profit
“The Minnesota attorney general has joined a lawsuit against Education Management Corp., alleging that two of its schools in the state illegally collected taxpayer-financed financial aid. [Attorney General Lori] Swanson’s office joined the U.S. Department of Justice and five other states in the lawsuit filed this summer against EMC in federal court in Pennsylvania. “http://news.yahoo.com/minnesota-ag-sues-over-aid-profit-colleges-201746638.html
Judge orders desegregation help for Tucson schools
“A federal judge has ordered that a desegregation expert help resolve a decades-long battle to end racial disparity in the Tucson Unified School District. U.S. District Judge David Bury asked the district and Latino and black plaintiffs to find eligible individuals who could serve as a “special master” to make sure the district eliminates all vestiges of segregation.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/17/455575ztucsonschooldesegregation_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Federal court reviewing Arkansas desegregation funding case
“A federal appeals court began reviewing a lower court order on Monday that would end state payments to Arkansas public schools that began over two decades ago to aid in desegregation efforts. Arkansas has one of the nation’s largest remaining court-ordered desegregation systems in a state where President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1957 summoned the National Guard to allow nine black students to attend Central High School after Governor Orval Fabus denied them access.”http://news.yahoo.com/federal-court-reviewing-arkansas-desegregation-funding-case-021905960.html
Judge: State can’t withhold taxes after overpaying
“A judge has ruled that the Arkansas Department of Education cannot withhold property tax funds from two districts that were overpaid in state school funding, the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported Wednesday. Education officials weren’t immediately ordered to return the money. The newspaper reported that Circuit Judge Tim Fox issued the ruling Tuesday, saying property taxes are controlled by the state but that current Arkansas law doesn’t allow the state to withhold property tax money from local school districts.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/21/456742rschooldistrictspayback_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
N.C. appeals court rules in charter school case
“A North Carolina school district must distribute money from a specific account to charter schools, even if some funds are restricted for a special purpose, the state Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday. The judges agreed unanimously with a trial court decision that the Rutherford County Schools owed Thomas Jefferson Classical Academy about $731,000 in back per-pupil funding over three years, based on funding levels in an account that all districts must keep for normal operating expenses.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/20/456256nccharterschoolfunding_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Public school choice pushed in Michigan
“At a time when many states are adopting controversial measures to launch or expand private school vouchers, Republicans in Michigan are taking a different direction, moving ahead with a plan that would greatly expand the menu of public school choices for students and parents. GOP lawmakers, who control both state legislative chambers, have introduced a series of proposals that would give students more freedom to attend schools outside their districts, increase options for taking college classes while in high school, and encourage the growth of charter schools and online education offerings.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/21/04choice.h31.html?tkn=NWCCbuckQPFxgmFVhk%2Fw6ZcE8Kv1fLn%2Flx6T&cmp=clp-sb-ascd
Teaching and Learning
Twenty states named to help craft new science standards
“A cadre of 20 states will lead the development of a new set of common standards in science, according to an announcement today from Achieve, a Washington-based nonprofit managing the effort. Participating states span the country, from California and Arizona to Michigan and Maryland. They will help craft what have been dubbed the Next Generation Science Standards based on a frameworkdevelopedby a panel of the National Research Council earlier this summer.” http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/curriculum/2011/09/twenty_states_to_develop_new_n.html
Read the announcement:http://www.nextgenscience.org/states-lead-effort-write-new-science-standards
California district to defy state law, allow unvaccinated students to stay
“Fresno Unified officials announced Wednesday they will defy a state law that bars students who haven’t provided proof of a whooping cough vaccination from attending school. District officials say they are keeping with their mission to teach. But also at stake are hundreds of thousands of dollars in state subsidies.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/22/05mct_cavaccines.h31.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Detroit Public Schools to cut 1,5000 teachers despite lower student attrition
“Detroit Public Schools plans to cut 40 percent of its current teaching staff by fall 2015. Deep staffing cuts are part of a deficit-reducing effort by Gov. Rick Snyder’s newly formed Education Achievement Authority. The cuts will save $74 million in salaries and $15 million in pensions, to be used toward the DPS’s $372 million budget deficit. Remaining staff will have greatly increased student loads. Of the 1,500 teachers who will lose their jobs, 1,100 are slated to be gone next fall. Detroit’s poorer performing schools will see the most staff cuts.” http://news.yahoo.com/detroit-public-schools-cut-1-500-teachers-despite-221800229.html
NYC to open 50 new middle schools in next 2 years
“New York City’s schools chief vowed Tuesday to tackle the persistent problem of lagging student achievement in middle school by opening 50 new middle schools, closing failing schools and recruiting good teachers and principals for the middle school years. “ http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/20/456274nynycmiddleschools_ap.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Public schools face the rising cost of serving lunch
“The federal government is making school meals more nutritious this year, but also more expensive. Under a little-noticed provision of the child nutrition bill signed by President Obama in December, which brought more fresh produce and less whole milk to cafeterias nationwide, school districts are required to start bringing their prices in line with what it costs to prepare the meals, eventually charging an average of $2.46 for the lunches they serve.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/20/education/20lunch.html?partner=rss&emc=rss
Read the nutrition bill press release: http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2010/12/13/president-obama-signs-healthy-hunger-free-kids-act-2010-law
In Brazil, a plan to send students to world’s top colleges
“With their economy booming, their currency at a level that makes even London prices seem cheap and their foreign policy one of the world’s most ambitious (President Dilma Rousseff this week will to be the first woman ever to open debate at the U.N. General Assembly), Brazilians have gotten used to going abroad for tourism, business, shopping and diplomacy. Now their students are finally getting an incentive to see the world, thanks to a major government program that aims to award 75,000 scholarships to attend the world’s top universities. Available only to Brazilians studying subjects of strategic national importance, like engineering, they reflect “an effort by the government to take a quantum leap in the formation of a scientific and technological elite,” says Aloizio Mercadante, Brazil’s Science and Technology Minister. “ http://news.yahoo.com/brazil-plan-send-students-worlds-top-colleges-091006495.html
Carnegie Mellon plans to build campus in Rwanda
“Carnegie Mellon University, based in Pittsburgh, will open a campus in Kigali, Rwanda, with the first group of 40 students to begin classes in fall 2012. The university made the announcement Thursday and also said the campus hoped to have up to 150 students by 2017.” http://www.nytimes.com/2011/09/21/world/americas/carnegie-mellon-plans-to-build-campus-in-rwanda.html?_r=1&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss
Syrian students increasing join protest
“Syrian students chanting for revolution marched outside the capital and other areas after class Thursday in a new tactic that brought a swift response from security services, who beat up or detained many of the young protesters, activists said. Children as young as 10 have been taking to the streets since the new school year started on Sunday, according to witnesses and online videos posted by activists. It appears to be the first major attempt to bring out the country’s schoolchildren to join the 6-month-old uprising.” http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/09/22/457038mlsyria_ap.html?r=1903474989
Weekly Education News Update – May 13, 2011
Compiled by the Penn State University Education Policy Studies Student Association (EPSSA)
Questions or comments, please contact Sarah Eckert (email@example.com)
Hot TopicsAll kids, legal or not, entitled to school
On Friday the U.S. Department of Education sent a letter to districts across the country to remind them that all students are entitled to a public education, regardless of status. These letters came out in the wake of reports that schools are checking the immigration status of new students. The Letter reminds districts that they “may not request information with the purpose or result of denying access to public schools on the basis of race, color or national origin”.
**Obama vows to keep fighting for the DREAM Act: http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/learning-the-language/2011/05/president_obama_vows_to_keep_f.html?cmp=ENL-EU-NEWS2Times updates value-added ratings for Los Angeles elementary school teachers
The LA times has updated their value added rankings and they now include data for about 11,500 teachers. This group of results also reflects changes in the way that scores were calculated. Analysis of these rankings highlights large disparities regarding instructor’s abilities to raise student test scores. The results are already being challenged by the teachers union.
**http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-utla-challenge-20110508,0,3954012.storyIn Pennsylvania, activists pour millions into the fight for school vouchers
In Pennsylvania, last year’s elections gave a big boost to voucher proponents. The Pennsylvania proposal would give public school students (originally only poor students, but now includes middle income students) thousands of dollars for tuition. Students in the School District of Philadelphia, for example, could get up to $7,500 per year in “opportunity scholarships”.
**PA governor links teachers’ unions to failing schools: http://www.forbes.com/feeds/ap/2011/05/09/business-us-corbett-schools-pennsylvania_8457858.html
Continued coverage of ESEA renewal
“Renewal of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act is still moving slowly in the U.S. Senate, but the House Education and the Workforce Committee seems ready to act on Rep. John Kline, R-Minn.’s plan to move a series of smaller, more targeted bills, advocates say.”
**http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/05/13/31esea_ep.h30.html?tkn=MSMFcj5E97KFPrZzf7jszHofMJRAPxmSdtfC&cmp=ENL-EU-NEWS1CA teachers launch ‘week of emergency’ to help avert cuts to education
“Public school teachers, school employees and labor unions across California launched a week long “State of Emergency” campaign on Monday aimed at raising public awareness about the local effects of the state legislature’s failure to resolve a budget crisis that threatens deeper cuts in public school education.”
**Teachers arrested: http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_18056940?nclick_check=1
New York in Focus
Lost in the school choice maze
This is the time of year when 8th graders across New York City find out where they will go to high school. In 2004 the NYC Education Department instituted a controlled choice program to match students with schools in an attempt to give parents a choice to avoid the large neighborhood high schools. Students rank schools and schools rank students and elaborate computer matching process determines where the student will spend their next four years. Over the past three years the number of students who have not matched has increase.
Bloomberg to lay off thousands of teachers
As reported last week, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg presented his budget at City Hall on Friday. This particular budget called to lay off 5,400 city workers–including 4,100 teachers. This is the first significant teacher layoff in New York since the 1970s.
**New teachers at risk for layoffs: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/11/nyregion/new-idealistic-teachers-face-layoffs-in-bloomberg-budget.html?_r=1&nl=todaysheadlines&emc=tha29
In Queens neighborhood, schools are bursting
16 years ago portable classrooms were set up outside P.S. 19 to hold the growing number of students in the neighborhood. Those portable classrooms are still there, and they hold double the number of students they were intended to hold. What is more, they are starting to show their age.
Walcott names two deputies
“Walcott, the new city schools chancellor, made his first senior appointments on Wednesday, selecting a Philadelphia school official to oversee labor issues, and promoting a local superintendent supervisor to lead efforts to teach at-risk students and reduce the achievement gap between students of different races and economic classes.
Joel Klein: The failure of American schools
Changing of the Guard
Newark’s new school superintendent in her own words
Cami Anderson, the new superintendent of Newark schools, shares some of the lessons that she has learned over the course of her career. Among the other lessons she shares, she focused on giving children a full range of life choices.
Detroit schools still struggling as Bobb leaves
Two years ago, Robert Bobb was hired to help save Detroit public schools, but the school continues to lose students and money.
Louisiana Schools Chief Resigns
Paul Pastorek, Louisiana Schools Chief, will end his four year term on Friday. Pastorek, a former attorney, had a rocky tenure–but he does boast a list of improvements including higher graduation rates and increased test scores.
Rahm Emanuel outlines transition plan for CPS
On Tuesday Chicago Mayor-elect, Rahm Emanuel, released a plan for the upcoming transition. 14 pages of the 72-page report were devoted to his plans for Chicago Public Schools. Among other things, Emanuel Plans to lengthen the school day and focus on teacher evaluation.
**Also in Chicago: http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/05/11/31catalyst_social.h30.html?utm_source=fb&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=mrss
Kasich proposal would close schools that stay in the bottom percent for three years
“Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s education adviser has told school officials that schools that remain in the state’s bottom 5 percent for three years will be closed if the governor’s proposals pass the legislature.”
Illinois education overhaul at risk
A state overhaul bill, a compromise on some divisive issues, is about to be derailed by claims that it was altered at the last minute. The bill has already passed the state Senate, and had the support of teachers and unions. The bill would make it easier to dismiss teachers and toughen tenure rules. The union argues that the mayor has made a last-minute change, lengthening the school day.
The bill passes the House: http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/education/ct-met-illinois-legislature-0513-20110512-53,0,6101492.story
And Duncan loves it: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/05/13/illinois-house-passes-law_n_861439.html
NEA Leader: Tenure should be earned
On Wednesday, the leader of the National Education Association (one of the country’s largest teachers unions), Dennis Van Roekel, released a policy statement that tenure should be earned, and that those who fail to earn tenure should be counseled out of the profession. Van Roekel articulated that “no incompetent teacher should remain in a classroom”.
Bill introduced to create office of rural education
Jefferson Parish school board members weight in on substitute teaching bill
Louisiana State Representative Tim Burns is sponsoring a bill that would require Louisiana school board members to teach for three school days each year of their term. They could teach whatever grade or subject they prefer, and they would be prohibited from being paid.
A civil rights class could be a model for a statewide program
Alabama’s department of education is considering expanding a black history course that is taught at one school to schools across the state.
Back to school for billionaires
Newsweek investigates how much of an impact big money from Bill Gates, Michael Dell, Eli Broad and the Walton family has had on education. Together these actors have injected almost $4.4billion into education–much of it going to poor urban districts. The results reveal that 9 of the 10 districts still are substantially below the state average for both graduation rates and test scores. Although many districts did report impressive improvements–the spikes were not enough to shrink the “gulf between poor, inner-city schools, where bit givers focused, and their suburban and rural counterparts”.
**and they are still handing out money: http://www.edweek.org/ew/articles/2011/05/12/31pioneer.h30.html?tkn=VXWF498whiTLI%2FQPswaajsZzcrtKwPABKRxk&cmp=ENL-EU-NEWS2
Blogs and Opinion
Gingrich to throw his hat into the presidential ring
Students chime in with ideas to improve college completion
Let’s focus on gaps in opportunity, not achievement
Governor Christie on unions, presidential politics, and NCLB
How to unite squabbling education wonks
Weekly Education News Update
Compiled by the Penn State University Education Policy Studies Student Association (EPSSA)
Questions or comments, please contact Sarah Eckert (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Hot Topics Judge blocks contentious Wisconsin union law
On Friday a judge temporarily blocked the recent law intended to curb collective bargaining law in Wisconsin. The lawsuit was filed by the local Democratic district attorney, who alleges that Republican lawmakers violated the state’s open meetings law.
**http://lacrossetribune.com/news/local/article_3cd50d3e-52aa-11e0-8763-001cc4c03286.htmlSystem in works to grade N.Y. teachers moving too fast?
New York State is currently fast tracking a new system to “better evaluate teachers”. In this system, which is being designed by a 50-person task force, teachers will be graded on a 100 point scale. The original goal was to have the system up and running for Math and English teachers in grades 4 trough 8 by this fall, but Cuomo wants to be able to include all teachers in the 2011-2012 school year. Many think that the system will fail if sufficient time is not taken to build the evaluations thoughtfully.
**Read about continued coverage of D.C.’s IMPACT evaluations: http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/teacherbeat/2011/03/scrutiny_increases_as_dcs_impa.html
**Read about Teacher Evaluations in Boston: http://www.boston.com/news/education/k_12/articles/2011/03/25/visit_classrooms_early_and_often_and_give_new_tools_to_principals/U.S. Education Secretary calls for a revision of NCLB
Arne Duncan, speaking in Los Angeles, urges Congress to rewrite the law to measure how much students improve on standardized tests. He also says L.A. school management and teachers union leaders should negotiate a new contract that bolsters teacher evaluations.
http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-0323-duncan-20110323,0,6591297.storyTeachers in Michigan lash back at proposed strike fines
“On Tuesday, state Rep. Bill Rogers, R-Genoa Township, introduced House Bill 4465, which would require the state superintendent of public instruction to suspend or revoke the certificates of public schoolteachers who break the state’s existing laws against striking. Teachers could request a hearing to keep their certificates, but if they fail ask for one or are proven to have participated in a strike, their certificates could be removed.”
Financial Concerns Continue CA: Worst-case budget could shorten school year
In California some students may finish the school year in April next year, just after Easter–as much as six weeks early–under an extreme cost-cutting measure. Governor Kerry Brown has claimed that this possibility is more and more likely if his proposed tax extension does not pass.
http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/mar/20/school-year-could-end-weeks-early-under-worst-case/CO: Colorado schools strive to spare instruction as deep cuts loom
Colorado school districts are all coping with the budget cuts in different ways–Denver is trimming administration, transportation and support services, other schools are increasing class sizes and other schools will have even less materials.
Who are the deficits hitting hardest?
Budget shortages are occurring in schools and districts across the country, and are causing problems for students in affluent areas…
in special education classes…
and in poor neighborhoods in California…
Let’s Move! Can it make a dent in the childhood obesity problem?
“Michele Obama’s public awareness program aims to improve the health of the nation’s children, and maybe even their parents’ health. Experts weigh in on its chances and the hurdles it must overcome.”
**Not if Virginia has anything to say about it: http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/politics/virginia-gov-mcdonnell-vetoes-pe-bill/2011/03/24/ABzY8USB_story.html
Michelle Rhee’s Bipartisan School Reform
“Once deified, now demonized, teachers are under assault from union-busting Republicans on the right and wealthy liberals on the left. And leading the charge from all directions is a woman most famous for losing her job: the former Washington, D.C., schools chancellor Michelle Rhee.”
Diplomas and uncertainty for Japanese students
“Schools in Kesennuma, Japan begin class in April and hold graduation ceremonies in March; like spring, they represent renewal and rebirth. On Tuesday morning, in a school meeting hall in this tsunami-ravaged seaport, it became something else: an act of defiance.”
Madonna’s charity fails in bid to finance school
“A high-profile charitable foundation set up to build a school for impoverished girls in Malawi, founded by the singer Madonna and fellow devotees of a prominent Jewish mysticism movement, has collapsed after spending $3.8 million on a project that never came to fruition.”
Higher Education In Focus
Gains, and drawbacks, for female professors
Twelve years ago, MIT admitted to “subtle but perverse” discrimination against female faculty members. In their efforts to address these inequities, MIT has become a model for promoting gender equity. A recent study indicates several unintended consequences, among them a growing sense that women have an unfair advantage.
At mining championship, winning might mean a job
Last weekend the Intercollegiate Mining Championship took place in Reno, Nevada. The competitions involve eight events, “each tied to a bygone era of prospecting” (gold-panning, using a jackhammer and sawing through a six-by-six inch timber).