Home » Edspresso (Page 4)

Why the Federal Covid Funding Package Must Incorporate Religious Schools

Commentary by: Jeanne Allen, Founder and CEO of CER

Hundreds have written about and people from all religious backgrounds have celebrated and shared the data-based fact that Religious schools save lives

Since Sociologist James Coleman and his colleagues first documented Catholic schools’ academic successes in 1982, as Education Next puts it succinctly, “A variety of studies… by scholars at the University of Chicago, Northwestern, the Brookings Institution, and Harvard, have all supported the conclusion that Catholic schools do a better job educating children, especially the poor and minorities, than public schools.” 

No matter who they serve, students emerge not only successful but disciplined. Catholic schools have a 99% graduation rate, according to the National Catholic Education Association. Says Hudson Valley News, “Five of the current U.S. Supreme Court Justices went to Catholic schools, and one third of U.S. Senators and one quarter of those serving in the House of Representatives are Catholics.

‘Public service is at the heart of the Catholic ideology, and the combination of academic success and civic responsibility translates into students’ desire to serve their fellow men and women,’ says Catherine Merryman, principal at Our Lady of Lourdes High School in Poughkeepsie, NY. “Every one of our graduates earns a New York State Regents diploma, more than 70 percent of them earn an Advanced Regents’ diploma, and 99 percent of our students go on to college – and 86 percent of them are accepted by their first choice college. All students take college preparatory classes, and 98 percent of our students achieve success in

Read More …

Choosing a college during Covid?

Commentary by: Carolyn Manion, Special Assistant for External Affairs of CER

Were you or someone in your family planning on attending college this fall?

Has COVID-19 affected travel, finances and financial aid, and educational  stability in such a way that your plans are suddenly up in the air? 

You are not alone–it’s a scary time to be a high school senior. Thousands of students are seeing tests canceled or restructured, and as college admissions letters start pouring in and the pressure is on for the next month to decide, it can truly be a time of confusion. Bets are off for campus visit road trips, and admissions committees are overworked and delayed with a new influx of responsibilities. But thanks to the internet, you can probably find a way to learn about your top colleges and make a confident, informed choice. 

Given the fast upending of normal routine and the different speeds at which different institutions are adapting to the new way of life under COVID-19, it isn’t as easy as a google search of “virtual college fairs” – many results are outdated or geared toward participating universities, not students. 

Fortunately, a few organizations and individuals have dedicated themselves to aggregating solutions for students specifically in this novel situation. The best in-depth look at the resources available for a myriad of contingencies to the college application and acceptance process is this Forbes Article, which covers testing dates and college essays in addition to college visits. 

Two specific online resources to highlight are the massive databases for virtual college events. Here you can find the National Association for College Admission Counseling’s list of colleges

Read More …

Keeping it Basic at Home

Commentary by: Mary Ann Shapiro, Administrator at Ocean Grove Charter School in California

I read this article that offers tips to parents and thought – as a veteran educator and once home-schooling parent –  I would also share some thoughts.


First, please do not be fearful that children being out of the formal classroom are going to somehow die on the vine. They will very quickly readjust when they finally get back in the classroom and come back ‘up to speed’ grade wise. 

Take this time to get to know your kids better. Interact with them and do things with them. Find some great games to play. We just found Chameleon and had a great evening of fun and learned a lot. 


Remember that they are not going to spend 6 hours a day working on school work. That six hours in the classroom calculates time for teacher duties, moving the class from one subject to another, lunch, recess, etc. A normal kindergartener will finish the exact same amount of ‘learning’ in one hour of one-on-one instruction with you as they did all day (and in some cases all week) in the classroom.


 If you work on phonics and word recognition for 10 minutes a day with your child, they will make progress. If they are a little older and are reading, have them read out loud to you for 10 minutes a day. You will be amazed by their progress. The same for math. 

For science, walk around your yard or block and discuss what you see. Take a picture with your phone and have them draw the specimen when

Read More …

Follow us on twitter, FB and instagram, and email edspresso@edreform.com to tell us your stories/solutions. Whatever we get from you on social media — or directly via an email — will be shared, utilized in tele-townhalls, conferences and provided to the media. So please keep us informed by sending us what you know — so we can keep everyone informed.