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Daily Headlines for October 6, 2011

Economic Inequality
Chicago Tribune, IL, October 6, 2011
America’s urban public schools are in trouble: Student test scores are low and dropout rates are high. Recent remedies proposed include everything from reducing the power of teachers unions and opening more charter schools to ending test-based accountability. But what if education critics are focused on the wrong problem?

It’s Time To Leave School Law Behind
Portland Tribune, OR, October 6, 2011
The notion that a child, a classroom or an entire school could be judged by the results of a standardized test finally seems to be discredited. From our point of view, this era in education will pass none too soon.

FROM THE STATES

Alumni Make Difference In Charter Schools
The Tufts Daily, MA,October 6, 2011
In the period leading up to graduation, many Tufts seniors think about applying to programs like Teach for America or the Peace Corps. Last year, three recent grads chose to pursue a similar option right across the river in Boston.

As School Layoffs Loom, City Points Finger at Union Chief, Who Points Right Back
New York Times, NY, October 6, 2011
With more than 700 school aides facing their last day at work on Friday barring a last-minute deal, the Bloomberg administration is blaming the school aides’ powerful labor union, District Council 37, for not doing enough to prevent the layoffs.

Charters Are No Panacea
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, October 6, 2011
The New Jersey Department of Education approved four new charter schools last week, one in Camden , boosting the total approved this year to 27, the most ever in a year.

Three Charter-School Firms In Philadelphia To Share $2.4 Million Grant
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, October 6, 2011
The Philadelphia School Partnership is celebrating its first anniversary by announcing $2.4 million in grants to three local charter-school operators that have

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Daily Headlines for October 5, 2011

NATIONAL

Obama Right To Give Schools Flexibility
Orlando Sentinel, FL, October 5, 2011
In addition to cutting through the confusion and frustration that has reigned in the decade since Bush signed No Child Left Behind into law, the new flexibility will give districts and teachers more breathing room to do what they must: teach.

FROM THE STATES

Merit Pay For Teachers Is No Magic Bullet
Standard Times, MA, October 5, 2011
Combatants in the war to improve public education arrive at the front with two vastly differing arsenals. The battle currently raging is whether merit pay for teachers linked to high-stakes testing will narrow the achievement gap. One camp seeks the truth and supports it with data and common sense; the other camp seeks a profit margin from its distortion.

City Makes Moves To ‘Stabilize’ Schools
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, October 5, 2011
IN THE LATEST example of expanding oversight of the Philadelphia School District by the city and state, Mayor Nutter yesterday announced two efforts to help “stabilize” district operations.

New Evaluations Run Off Tennessee Teachers
The Tennessean, TN, October 5, 2011
Sherrie Martin, former teacher of the year at a Metro school, is questioning whether she really belongs in the classroom after scoring low on the state’s new teacher evaluation.

Despite Impressive Gains, Hamilton High Gets No Promise For Future
Commercial Appeal, TN, October 5, 2011
It was dinnertime and a Tuesday and several hundred people were streaming into Hamilton High School , wanting to prove that if it’s support that’s needed, this South Memphis institution can pack a hall.

Fearing Full State Takeover, Community Rallies at Hamilton High School
WREG, TN, October 4, 2011
Fearing for the future of Hamilton High School, alumni, parents and school and community leaders rallied in the school’s auditorium Tuesday. It was an effort to brainstorm ideas

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Daily Headlines for October 4, 2011

Does Signing a Petition Give Parents a Voice in Schools?
Berkley Daily Planet, CA, October 3, 2011
Many teachers believe parent trigger laws are a way for charter schools to gain a bigger share of the education system. For McGinity, that’s not a bad idea. The Broad Foundation promotes the proliferation of charter schools, which he says simply offer parents “a different way for a school to operate.” Teachers, however, are alarmed. They see the expansion of a privatized education system, and view parent trigger laws as a means for rushing the process forward.

An Apple For The Teachers’ Unions
Modesto Bee, CA, October 4, 2011
Some presidents will time major speeches on education to signal the start of the school year. Barack Obama did it to signal the start of his effort to polish the apples of the teachers unions in time for them to donate to his 2012 re-election campaign.

Middle School Improvements Credited For Big Gain In Denver Public Schools Enrollment
Denver Post, CO, October 4, 2011
Preliminary enrollment numbers for Denver Public Schools show that for the first time, the district is educating more than 80,000 students.

New School Flexibility Welcome In No Child Left Behind Reprieve
Sun Sentinel, FL, October 4, 2011
It has long confounded education officials struggling to meet proficiency benchmarks in this era of high-stakes testing: Schools that excel under Florida’s Sunshine State standards can very often fall dangerously short under the federal No Child Left Behind guidelines.

Miami-Dade Recognizes Top Teachers With Big Checks
Miami Herald, FL, October 3, 2011
Superintendent Alberto Carvalho handed out checks to teachers who ranked as top math and reading instructors, according to the district’s performance pay plan for the past school year. Federal money financed the program.

Most Charter Applicants Fail, but

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Daily Headlines for September 29, 2011

Fighting the Feds: 2012 Candidates Want States to Control Education
ABC News, September 29, 2011
So when it comes to education policy debates, whether it’s the Democratic incumbent or the array of Republican challengers, all eyes – and talking points – are on two things: the federal government’s role and the overall cost.

Obama Tells Students: Discover New Passions
Washington Post, DC, September 28, 2011
For an incumbent president facing a tough reelection campaign, no public appearance is completely free of political content. But President Obama’s annual back-to-school speech to the nation’s students, delivered Wednesday at Benjamin Banneker Academic High School in Northwest Washington , was about as close as it gets.

No Child Waivers Make Sense For Now
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, September 29, 2011
Members of Congress railing against the Obama administration’s decision to grant waivers from the sweeping No Child Left Behind education law have little ground to stand on.

Coming Together to Dismantle Education Reform
TIME, September 29, 2011
A new consensus is emerging in education politics. But can the center hold? And would reformers even want it to? Bipartisanship is supposed to be a good thing — except for when Republicans and Democrats come together to try to paper over our education problems.

Teachers Union Launches Ad Campaign Supporting Obama Jobs Bill
The Hill, DC, September 28, 2011
The National Education Association (NEA) launched a multistate television ad campaign Wednesday in support of President Obama’s American Jobs Act.

Romney’s Race From the Top
American Spectator, September 29, 2011
The GOP field would rather ignore education altogether, even to the point of dismissing sensible, conservative ideas that could get better bang for taxpayers’ buck. This was particularly clear when Texas Gov. Rick Perry took aim at Romney for praising President Barack Obama’s school reform agenda.

FROM THE STATES

CALIFORNIA

Whitman Returns to Her Valley Roots

Wall Street Journal, September 29,

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Daily Headlines for September 28, 2011

Promoting Jobs Bill In Denver, Obama Highlights $60 Billion For Schools
Washington Post, DC, September 28, 2011
As he has barnstormed the country to promote the American Jobs Act, President Obama has made the case that spending money now will pay off later for the United States ’ global productivity and competitiveness. And one of the biggest investments he is proposing comes in education.

The President’s Plan For The Economy And Education
Denver Post, CO, September 28, 2011
Imagine Steve Jobs trying to design the next generation of tablet computers using mainframe hardware from the Eisenhower administration. Or American automakers trying to out-engineer foreign competitors on an assembly line with equipment from the 1960s.

Don’t Let Learning Fall Victim To Politics
Minneapolis Star Tribune, MN, September 27, 2011
During last week’s GOP presidential debate, several candidates drew applause by calling for the elimination of the federal Department of Education.

FROM THE STATES

CALIFORNIA

Horizon Opens New Charter Program in Roseville
Rossville Press Tribune, CA, September 28, 2011
In a seventh-grade science class, student Joel Reedy demonstrates how magicians use light refraction for optical illusions by dipping a test tube filled with oil into a beaker of oil.

State Should OK Smarter Ways To Judge Schools
Sacramento Bee, CA, September 28, 2011
Any family looking to move into a neighborhood with good schools knows the magic “800″ number.

FLORIDA

School District Could Add 2 Charter Schools
Tallahassee Democrat, FL, September 28, 2011
Leon County could be looking at the addition of two charter schools opening as early as next summer.

Seminole Nixes 3 Proposed Charter Schools
Orlando Sentinel, FL, September 27, 2011
Plans for three new charter schools in Seminole County were rejected Tuesday by the School Board, which agreed the proposed charters were poorly planned and not needed.

More Orange County Teachers Will Get Low Ratings Under

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Daily Headlines for September 27, 2011

Better Way to Fix No Child Left Behind
New York Times, NY, September 27, 2011
Last week President Obama, citing a failure by Congress to act, announced a procedure for handing out waivers for the federal mandates under the No Child Left Behind law. Unfortunately, these waivers come with a series of new federal rules, this time without congressional approval, and would make the secretary of education the equivalent of a national school board.

Some in GOP back Obama on NCLB
Washington Times, DC, September 26, 2011
Over objections from Republicans on Capitol Hill, President Obama is making it clear he will proceed with his blueprint education reform and an overhaul of the Bush-era No Child Left Behind law. And this time, Mr. Obama will have some bipartisan cover, as many Republican governors are backing his approach.

No Child Left Behind Option Meets Praise And Caution
USA Today, September 26, 2011
President Obama is offering to free public schools from many of the requirements of a controversial federal education law. But as states consider whether to take him up on it, they’re realizing the offer comes with some costs.

Lofty Goals
Topeka Capital-Journal , KS, September 26, 2011
No Child Left Behind has itself been left behind, slightly more than two years ahead of the date by which it was to meet its mandated goal of having all U.S. schoolchildren proficient in reading and mathematics.

A Larger Role for the States
Commercial Appeal, TN, September 27, 2011
Education takes a turn: Governors who wanted a larger say in the process will have a chance now to show what they can do.

FROM THE STATES

ALABAMA

More Than 500 Mobile County Students Transfer To Better Schools
Press Register, AL, September 26, 2011
So, Luciana became one of 542 of Mobile County’s public school students to take advantage

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Daily Headlines for September 26, 2011

Obama Presses Education Plan
Wall Street Journal, September 24, 2011
President Barack Obama in his weekly radio address on Saturday said a strong education system is key to the nation’s economic future and touted his efforts to let schools replace key planks of the No Child Left Behind education law.

Obama Turns Some Powers of Education Back to States
New York Times, NY, September 24, 2011
With his declaration on Friday that he would waive the most contentious provisions of a federal education law, President Obama effectively rerouted the nation’s education history after a turbulent decade of overwhelming federal influence.

NCLB Flexibility For States
Washington Post, DC, September 25, 2011
JUST ABOUT EVERYONE agrees on the need to update the No Child Left Behind law. Nearly a decade of experience as well as new research underscores shortcomings that are becoming increasingly untenable for local school districts.

Improving Our Schools
The Intelligencer, WV, September 26, 2011
After a decade in which it became apparent federal school reform efforts were leaving millions of children behind, it appears Washington has given up and dumped the problem back on the states, where it belonged in the first place.

Keep the Pressure on Schools
The Oregonian, OR, September 25, 2011
No doubt Oregon will be among the first to rush to the Obama administration for one of the waivers the president offered last Friday to states eager to avoid the tough requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act.

Race to the Top Projects Are Slow-Moving In States
Keene Sentinel, NH, September 25, 2011
But after a lengthy planning process in legislatures around the country, many states only now are implementing the changes that won them money in the program’s first two rounds, and not everyone is happy with the results.

Parent Trigger Law Gives Parents Real Power: When Schools Fail, Convert Them Into Charters
New

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Daily Headlines for September 23, 2011

Obama Rewrites ‘No Child’ Law
Wall Street Journal, September 23, 2011
President Barack Obama is set to replace key planks of former President George W. Bush’s signature No Child Left Behind education law, allowing many schools to escape looming punishment if their states adopt a new set of standards.

U.S. May Spare Schools From Harsh Penalties In Exchange For Reforms
Los Angeles Times, CA, September 23, 2011
The Obama administration plan would relieve school districts from requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act if they implement reforms such as linking teacher evaluations to student test scores.

Study: Single-Sex Education May Do More Harm Than Good
Washington Post, DC, September 22, 2011
The push for more single-sex instruction in public schools is based on weak, “misconstrued” scientific claims rather than solid research and may do more harm than good, according to a study published in the journal Science on Thursday.

FROM THE STATES

CALIFORNIA

Charter School Plans Move Forward In Banta
Tracy Press, CA, September 22, 2011
Plans to build a technology charter school in the Banta Elementary School District are moving forward, and on Tuesday night officials announced they hope to eventually expand it to include a four-year college.

 

COLORADO

DPS, Union To Seek Arbitrator’s Ruling On Teacher-Effectiveness Law
Denver Post, CO, September 22, 2011
Denver Public Schools and the teacher’s union have announced they will go to an arbitrator to get an outside opinion on how to implement Senate Bill 191 – last year’s teacher-effectiveness bill.

ILLINOIS

Chicago Mayor Celebrates Opening Of Health Sciences Charter School At New Southwest Side Site
Chicago Tribune, IL, September 23, 2011
Chicago’s first public charter school focusing on health sciences careers has embarked on its first year in a new $24 million building on the city’s Southwest Side.

Charter Schools Plan Rally At UIC
Chicago Tribune, IL, September 23, 2011
Chicago’s

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