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Newswire – September 5, 2018

HAPPY SEPTEMBER!  It’s hard to believe we are here, again. Most of us experienced a uniquely-September barrage of incoming communication, demands and work post Labor Day’s annual lull, not to mention the reality of hearings, strikes, educational conflict and more. Here’s just a smidgeon that we’re watching this week. What’s on your mind? Let us know by dropping us a noteWe’ll follow up on the stories and angles we are all least likely to read elsewhere, as is our motto. To wit….

KAVANAUGH, KYL & KEVIN SPACEY.  The media frenzy around Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s potential ascent to #SCOTUS overshadowed the fact that Detroit kids don’t have drinking water and DC special ed students don’t have reliable transportation, the replacement of the late Honorable John McCain by the former and once again Senator Jon Kyl, while important, dwarfed news about November initiatives on education; and the LaLa Land prosecutor declining to charge Kevin Spacey for sexual assault trounced the most important story – that unions may soon force teachers to walk out on Los Angeles kids (and why they should not be collateral damage…)

Hundreds of stories paving the way for more better lives made possible from better education could solve much of what we are frenzied about these days. Just read this story if you don’t believe that we can overcome anything!

More important stuff you should know…

RURAL AL + CHARTER = NEW DIVERSITY.  A new school in Alabama is teaching residents what great results can occur when you break segregated zoning patterns and give parents an opportunity out of what NPR calls long “floundering” schools. (That’s right, Hechinger Report. Despite your efforts to tarnish the pathway of millions of minority kids whose only chance for success lies in new kinds of public schools, states like Alabama are moving forward to educate kids, rather than just talk about it.) University Charter School in Alabama’s Sumter County made news not only because its only one of two schools, but it breaks the mold of almost entirely segregated schools. Integration follows great education, the late State Rep Polly Williams, author of Milwaukee’s voucher plan, once said in our company. She was right. If only Alabama lawmakers would strengthen their D-rated charter law so thousands more students might have a great education, too.

SPEAKING OF TRANSFORMATION…  The structural difference between charter and traditional public schools is well-documented. For almost 3 decades charters were the innovators, the transformers, almost alone. But transforming learning no longer simply about the governance model, but about what happens inside. Enter iNACOL, which is helping to carve the next policy frontier of learner-centered education, which can happen agnostic of space or place, with a focus of ensuring competency, not time on task, is the outcome we seek. Read about new learning models and what state policies are most promising. While you’re there, sign up for the annual INACOL Symposium.  After Nashville, come on down to Miami….

The Center for Education Reform | INACOL Graph


LOOKING FOR YOU ON EDUCATION’s ROUTE 66– THE ROAD TO INNOVATION FOR ONE AMERICA.  You won’t want to miss CER’s 25th Anniversary (yes you can come to that too!) featuring governors, legislators, university presidents, innovators, thought leaders, entrepreneurs and more! Get on the road today.

GETTING PERSONAL.  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see that education needs to look differently today than it did 180 years ago. And yet, despite the fact that we know more about the brain, that we have unprecedented access to information, technology, and learning, most the nation’s students are back to school in traditional ways, in schools or programs that are based not on how they learn or whether they succeed but on whether they put in the time. Gisele Huff explains why and what we can do to truly personalizes education this week’s Reality Check w/Jeanne Allen, the best contemporary podcast you’ll hear on all things education. Dr. Huff has helped redefine learning and education through her work at the Jaquelin Hume Foundation and the groups she advises. Tune in now for a primer. You won’t be disappointed.

Founded in 1993, the Center for Education Reform aims to expand educational opportunities that lead to improved economic outcomes for all Americans — particularly our youth — ensuring that conditions are ripe for innovation, freedom and flexibility throughout U.S. education.

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