A new study finds that the best performing schools have principals who have been there for at least six years. The study examines how school leadership impacts student achievement. Education Next
Despite debates on teacher pensions and performance evaluations, teacher retention is rising in New York City. New data shows that more than 80% of public schoolteachers have at least five years of experience, compared to two-thirds of educators with the same amount of experience in 2002. Wall Street Journal
The Georgia Department of Education will begin assigning number grades to schools in an effort to move beyond standardized tests and give parents the more information possible. They’re calling the new system the College and Career Ready Performance Index. The grades range from zero to 100. Education Week Read Entire Post
Happy Tuesday! Did you know that on this day in 1990, Microsoft released Windows 3.0? This was the first version of Windows that included Solitaire. Just a little trivia for you to think about as you navigate the work day!
Yesterday’s big news was the Department of Education’s announcement of a school district-level Race to the Top contest. This round of RTTT will focus on individualized instruction as well as on evaluating district superintendents and school board members. Two takes on this development, first from Education Week and then the New York Times.
Bad news for school budgets in the Golden State. As the Sacramento Bee reports, California State Superintendent Tom Torlakson said yesterday that school districts covering 2.6 million of the state’s 6 million K-12 students are in “financial jeopardy.”
Read Entire Post
Happy Friday! Take in some education news before your afternoon nap.
For the fourth day in a row, Virginia’s Senate put off voting whether to eliminate teacher tenure. According to the Washington Post, the continued delay is because the Senate suggests that Governor Robert F. McDonnell may not yet have secured enough votes to pass the measure.
One-fifth of new principals leave within a year or two, and their schools continue on a downward academic slide, according to the RAND Corp. As Education Week reports, the study suggests that quick principal turnover bodes poorly for schools overall.Read Entire Post
Empowering Teaching and Promoting Innovation Through the Digital Learning Day Campaign: Sign Up Today to Learn More!
I am pleased to share details about the first-ever Digital Learning Day, scheduled for February 1, 2012. Alliance President Bob Wise is leading this campaign to celebrate teachers and spotlight innovative strategies that effectively incorporate instructional technology to improve student learning.
Digital Learning Day is a flagship project of the Alliance's newly created Center for Secondary School Digital Learning and Policy (the Center) where leaders within industry, education, and policy fields will focus on the effective uses of technology in the entire education system. The Center will address issues and cultivate models to highlight topics including online- and blended-learning opportunities, robust digital content and the common core state standards, models for funding and investment, innovative practice and pedagogy, teacher continuing education, STEM education, and much more.
But Digital Learning Day isn't just a day-it's a year-round campaign that highlight teachers, schools, districts, and states that are implementing effective approaches that personalize instruction, increase teacher effectiveness, streamline resources, increase rigor, and expand learning opportunities for all students.Read Entire Post
The Huffington Post recaps last Monday night’s Republican primary debate: “There were 15 questions (and answers) on tax reform, 2 on energy and jobs, one heated back-and-forth on health care, 12 questions and responses on immigration, 5 on the home-mortgage crisis, 3 on the "Occupy Wall Street" movement, 4 on religion and values, 4 on the budget deficit, one on terrorism, 4 on foreign policy and a final question on who is the best candidate in general to win the race. How many questions and responses were there on the public education crisis and education reform? Zero.”
The New York Times reports on new A-through-F high school report card that finds only one in four students who enter high school in New York City are ready for college after four years, and less than half enroll.
Education Week reports that in less than three weeks, states will begin turning in their applications for waivers under No Child Left Behind, and then it will be up to a cadre of peer reviewers to help Education Secretary Arne Duncan decide who gets a waiver, and who doesn’t.Read Entire Post
Senior Senate Democrat Tom Harkin of Iowa released a draft of a sprawling revision of the No Child Left Behind education law on Tuesday that would dismantle the provisions of the law that used standardized test scores in reading and math to label tens of thousands of public schools as failing. The 865-page bill, filed by Senator Harkin, who heads the Senate education committee, became the first comprehensive piece of legislation overhauling the law to reach either Congressional chamber since President George W. Bush signed it in 2002. Mr. Harkin made his draft bill public 18 days after President Obama announced that he would use executive authority to waive the most onerous provisions of the law, because he had all but given up hope that Congress could fix the law’s flaws any time soon. Read Entire Post
The New York Times writes about a new framework for improving American science education that calls for paring the curriculum in order to focus on core ideas and teaching students more about how to approach and solve problems, rather than just memorizing factual nuggets.
Yesterday, the Common Education Data Standards Initiative released its first draft of the second stage of its core data definitions, which is intended to get state data systems talking the same language, as reported by Education Week.
A new study Chicago study finds that when given the authority, principals make dismissal decisions that put a premium on teacher effectiveness and student achievement, reports Education Next.Read Entire Post
Education Week reporter Stephen Sawchuk writes about the District of Columbia school system’s online database to help principals make determinations about which teacher candidates to ask in for a formal interview. The system is scheduled to be unveiled this summer.
Washington Post reporter Donna St. George explains why more schools are rethinking their zero-tolerance discipline policy.Read Entire Post
Last Friday PBS Newshour aired a segment on Mooresville school district in North Carolina and how it has turned almost completely digital. Mark Edwards, the Mooresville Schools Superintendent, explains, “There is a disconnect for a lot of kids when in their world, they are seeing a whole array of technology, and it might be with games, or it might be with music, or it might be with a variety of things in their home, and they go to school and it’s like going back in time.”
The school district has given every teacher as well as every student in fourth grade through high school a laptop as well as made several other investments in technology including ongoing teacher training and help desks in each school. So far, the results have included gains in content areas across the board, higher graduation rates, and dramatic drops in the number of student suspensions.
According to Superintendent Edwards the cost is about $200 per student a year but much of that money comes back and they have experienced savings in textbooks, print costs, and paper costs. When interviewer John Tulenko asked, “Do you buy textbooks anymore?” Superintendent Edwards responded, “I will quote our high school principal, ‘divorce proceedings are underway.’”
During the segment, teachers in Mooresville explain how they use technology to engage students and offer more creativity in assignments and the middle school principal discusses how they address the challenge of keeping students on task.
“For years we would tell students we are going to prepare you for your future but their experience in school didn’t have much to do,” said Superintendent Edwards. “I’d say that would be the same to telling a student, we are going to prepare you to drive a car so get on this horse and the kids say ‘but that doesn’t make sense, I’m not going to be riding a horse.’ And so a lot of kids in school said let’s get off that horse.”
Click on the video below, to watch the full segment:Read Entire Post
Roadmap for Ensuring America’s Future from Edexcelencia. This report is a tool for stimulating and facilitating dialogue in communities across the nation about action needed to increase college degree attainment generally, and Latino degree attainment specifically.
Principals’ Approaches to Developing Teacher Quality from the Center for American Progress. This report is focused on principal leadership and based on in-depth interviews with 30 principals in two states.
Acceptable Use Policies in a Web 2.0 & Mobile Era: A Guide for School Districts from the Consortium for School Networking. This guide was designed to help school district leaders develop Internet usage policies that prevent students from accessing harmful content.
The MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Preparing Students for College and Careers from MetLife. This survey examines the priority that all students graduate from high school prepared for college and careers, what being college- and career-ready entails, and the implications of this goal for teaching.Read Entire Post