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Daily Headlines: November 9, 2011

NATIONAL

Bipartisan Rewrite of Education Law Sparks Debate
Associated Press, November 9, 2011
In a divided Washington , there’s widespread agreement that the sweeping No Child Left Behind education law needs fixing. But finding a fix hasn’t been easy.

Education Belongs in GOP Debates
Orange County Register, CA, November 8, 2011
School and broader education reform should be one focal point of the debate because it is an issue most Americans consider when voting and because a functional education system is inextricably connected to economic stability and job creation.

Reports On Charter Schools Expose New Problems
Washington Post Blog, DC, November 9, 2011
Two new reports about public charter schools expose serious issues about the way they are run and their effectiveness.

Race to More Ineffective Ed Spending
National Review Online, November 8, 2011
We spend nearly $600 billion each year on education in this country. This is more than the entire national budgets of India, Russia, South Korea, Singapore, and Finland combined, and some of these countries are the leading scorers on international education tests.

STATE COVERAGE

Bentley Wants Vote On Education Standards
Decatur Daily, AL, November 9, 2011
Gov. Robert Bentley wants the state Board of Education to undo a 2010 decision to adopt core standards for public education.

School Retrofits Make Megawatts Of Good Sense
Sacramento Bee, CA, November 9, 2011
Aging school infrastructure is a challenge, but also a great opportunity. Done right, it could reduce operating costs to school districts, create local jobs and get students, teachers and parents engaged in science learning.

No Charter School, Mt. Diablo District Tells Clayton Valley Organizers
Contra Costa Times, CA, November 8, 2011
After hearing from nearly 40 parents, principals, teachers and others speaking for and against converting Clayton Valley High to a charter school, trustees on Tuesday voted 4-1 to deny the petition.

Charter

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Daily Headlines: November 8, 2011

Public School Teachers Aren’t Underpaid
Wall Street Journal, November 8, 2011
Our research suggests that on average—counting salaries, benefits and job security—teachers receive about 52% more than they could in private business.

Charter Schools Have Accountability
Wall Street Journal, November 8, 2011
Marla Sole recognizes the positive success stories of many charter schools (“approximately four times as likely as public schools to be ranked in the top 5%”), but then she comments that charter schools “were approximately two-and-a-half times as likely as public schools to be ranked in the bottom 5%” (Letters, Oct. 31).

Teaching With the Enemy
New York Times, NY, November 8, 2011
Last month, Randi Weingarten held a book party for Steven Brill, the veteran journalist and entrepreneur who had just published “Class Warfare: Inside the Fight to Fix America’s Schools,” his vivid account of the rise of the school reform movement.

STATE COVERAGE

Speakers at DPS Hearing Support Elementary in Merrill Middle School
Denver Post, CO, November 8, 2011
Concerned community members from southeast Denver have been talking to the Denver school board for months about a recommendation that was made formal Thursday to co-locate a new elementary school in Merrill Middle School.

Forty Percent of Children in D.C. Public Schools Now in Charters
Washington Post, DC, November 7, 2011
Charter school enrollment in the District, which made up a scant 5 percent of the total public school population in 1998, has broken the 40 percent mark, according to preliminary figures released Monday.

Occupy D.C. Schools
Washington Times, DC, November 7, 2011
Washington’s public schools have their problems, but the lack of iPads and iPhones isn’t anywhere near the top of the list.

Charter Schools Are A Costly Extravagance
Florida Times Union, FL, November 8, 2011
When it comes to examining a charter school’s

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Daily Headlines: November 7, 2011

NATIONAL

Overhaul of School Policy In Jeopardy
Washington Times, DC, November 6, 2011
Key lawmakers and educators are growing increasingly pessimistic that a massive overhaul of federal school policy can get through Congress before the 2012 election-year battles could doom the hopes for major bipartisan legislation.

Small Elections Drawing Big Money In Some States
NPR, November 6, 2011
It’s not just in North Carolina. All over the country, small-scale, local school board races are attracting big money and big media attention.

Education Law Reform
New York Times, NY, November 5, 2011
Re “The Wrong Fix for No Child Left Behind” (editorial, Oct. 27):The bipartisan bill passed by the Senate education committee overhauls current education law, which has not significantly closed achievement gaps or increased student achievement.

Backsliding on School Reform
Los Angeles Times, CA, November 5, 2011
When it comes to federal school reform, the overriding lesson is to be careful what you wish for. The No Child Left Behind Act, signed into law in 2002, ushered in an era of badly needed educational accountability, requiring schools to improve the lot of disadvantaged, black and Latino students who up to that point had been shorted academically in almost every way.

STATE COVERAGE

Stupid In America
Fox News Blog, November 6, 2011
School spending has gone through the roof and test scores are flat.
While most every other service in life has gotten faster, better, and cheaper, one of the most important things we buy — education — has remained completely stagnant, unchanged since we started measuring it in 1970.

Charter Bill Watered Down by General Assembly
Richmond Times Dispatch Blog, VA, November 4, 2011
Bob McDonnell lamented during his 2009 campaign that there were not enough charter schools in Virginia , and he promised to do something about it

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Daily Headlines: November 4, 2011

New Grades On Charter Schools
TIME, November 3, 2011
In order to create some good ones, we’re going to have to live with some lemons: The two most common criticisms about charter schools are that A) many of them aren’t that good and B) the good ones can’t be replicated to serve enough kids to really make a difference.

STATE COVERAGE

New Rules For Charter Schools Refine Funding Issues
Bangor Daily News, ME, November 3, 2011
The Department of Education on Wednesday released a new set of rules to govern charter schools in Maine. Mostly the rules surround finances and fill in holes left in the recently adopted charter school statute.

School Has a Charter, Students and a Strong Opponent: Its District
New York Times, NY, November 4, 2011
Charter schools, publicly financed but independently operated, have encountered fierce resistance in many suburban communities, criticized by parents and traditional educators who view them as a drain on resources.

Reform School: A Change Agent Makes Points Most Can Agree On
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, PA, November 4, 2011
Michelle A. Rhee, a controversial figure in American education, came to Pittsburgh Wednesday and, regardless of what one thought of her work as head of the District of Columbia public schools system, she left her audience with much to think about.

Program Aims To Revamp How Teachers Are Rated
Pittsburgh Tribune Review, PA, November 4, 2011
Pittsburgh Public Schools teacher Allison McLean was skeptical at first about Arsenal PreK-5’s decision to try a new method of evaluating teachers last year. She and her fellow teachers worried it would be the same old process with a new name.

Approval Sought for Charter School on Outer Banks
Virginia Pilot, VA, November 4, 2011
A new school on the Currituck Outer Banks could be open by 2012.

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Daily Headlines: November 3, 2011

Experienced Teachers Aren’t The Problem
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, November 3, 2011
Rhee insisted that LIFO is getting rid of our best teachers, arguing that layoffs should be based on job performance instead of seniority. In an Inquirer commentary, Rhee cited an Urban Institute study to support her view that scrapping LIFO is a matter of “common sense.”

Confused Over ‘Accountability’ And ‘Flexibility’
Washington Times, DC, November 2, 2011
Accountability. Everyone is for it. It’s by far the most popular word used in refer- ence to No Child Left Behind (NCLB) reauthorization discussions this week and state efforts this month to get federal waivers to avoid NCLB sanctions for missing proficiency targets in reading and math.

The Problem With Paying Teachers Less Money
TIME, November 3, 2011
It’s not often that you hear teachers should be paid less. In fact, it’s almost always the exact opposite. From teachers unions to education reformers to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, the refrain that teachers are underpaid is a constant.

STATE COVERAGE

Six Charter Schools In NYC Face Shutdowns For Poor Performance, Officials Announce
New York Daily News, NY, November 2, 2011
The city is threatening to shut down six poor-performing charter schools, officials said Wednesday.

Cuomo Dangles Money for District Performance and Ideas
New York Times, NY, November 2, 2011
School districts across New York State could win as much as $75 million in grant money if they can prove to state education officials that they have been able to raise performance and have new ideas for further gains, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced on Wednesday.

NYC Charter Schools Don’t Crowd Out Public Schools Advocates’ Study Says
New York Daily News, NY, November 2, 2011
Public School buildings where charter schools share space are the least crowded in the city, a new

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Daily Headlines for November 2, 2011

NATIONAL

Math Gains Add Up on National Exams
Wall Street Journal, November 2, 2011
Elementary-school students notched the highest scores ever on national math exams this year, continuing a 20-year trend of improvement, but reading scores remained lackluster, according to data released Tuesday.

U.S. Students’ Scores Go Up But Racial Gaps Persist
Washington Times, DC, November 1, 2011
U.S. students are making progress in reading and math, but the advances continue to be clouded by stubbornly high gaps between scores for white children and their black and Hispanic counterparts, according to a major new survey Tuesday from the National Center for Education Statistics.

Education Report Card: Flat Reading Scores Are ‘Deeply Disappointing’
Christian Science Monitor, MA, November 1, 2011
Math scores inched up – barely – in the latest National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), otherwise known as the ‘nation’s report card.’

Educator Not Always Voucher Advocate
Pittsburgh Post-Tribune, PA, November 2, 2011
School voucher advocate Michelle Rhee says she doesn’t buy claims that using tax money to send children to private schools will worsen the experience for students who remain in low-performing schools.

Study: Public School Teachers Aren’t Underpaid
Daily Caller, DC, November 1, 2011
Despite Education Secretary Arne Duncan’s consistent calls for increased teacher salaries, a new study says that most public school teachers aren’t actually being underpaid.

STATE COVERAGE

National Report: Mesa District Sees Big Jump In Charter School Enrollment
East Valley Tribune, AZ, November 1, 2011
Among the largest school districts in the country, Mesa Unified saw the fourth-biggest jump in students enrolling in neighborhood charter schools last school year, according to a recent report.

Suit Filed To Make L.A. Teacher Evaluations Include Student Data
Los Angeles Times Blog, CA, November 1, 2011
Advocates went forward Tuesday with a lawsuit alleging that the Los Angeles Unified

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Daily Headlines for November 1, 2011

‘Voucher’ A Red-Flag Word For School-Choice Advocates
Washington Times, DC, October 31, 2011
For both supporters and opponents of school vouchers, the very mention of the term stirs emotions and generates heated debate in the public education arena.

Experts: Half of Foster Kids Quit High School
Associated Press, October 31, 2011
When Carey Sommer entered foster care in California, he left his mom, his high school and his friends. Bounced from home to home, he changed high schools nine times until the disheartened teen finally dropped out.

Out from under NCLB
Bennington Banner, VT, October 31, 2011
Early in 2002 a Republican Congress, responding to the urging of their “compassionate conservative” president, adopted what has rightly been described as “the most intrusive federal education law in American history.”

STATE COVERAGE

After Praise, School Chief More Noted For Missteps
Boston Globe, MA, November 1, 2011
She has been unable to wrap up teacher contract negotiations and has struggled to get school buses to run on time. Last week, she abandoned a proposal to move Boston Latin Academy to the recently closed Hyde Park High School after a barrage of protests from students, parents, and teachers.

Allegations of Exam-Tampering Soar
New York Times, NY, November 1, 2011
While it is unclear how many of the allegations were ultimately proven, the steep rise in complaints itself is notable at a time when cheating scandals have engulfed other districts and state officials are acknowledging a failure to adequately detect and prevent cheating.

Plans for a New Charter School in Cobble Hill Are Getting Mixed Reviews From Neighborhood Parents
New York Daily News, NY, October 31, 2011
Success Charter Network CEO Eva Moskowitz’s plan to bring a new charter school to Brownstone Brooklyn is getting mixed reviews.

Lights to Stay on at

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Daily Headlines for October 31, 2011

Evidence Isn’t Good On Charter Schools
Wall Street Journal, October 31, 2011
Perhaps the NAACP opposes replacing public schools with charter schools because the data are not as clear-cut as your editorial “Charters and Minority Progress” (Oct. 21) suggests.

Rethinking Education Reform
San Diego News Tribune, CA, October 30, 2011
The simple answer is yes. A high-quality education might be priceless in today’s economy. But it doesn’t have to be overly expensive to provide.

Congress in the Classroom
Chicago Tribune, IL, October 31, 2011
Illinois’ latest school report cards are dismal. Of 666 public high schools, only eight — that’s not a misprint, eight — met federal standards for reading and math. Scores declined to a record low. Elementary and middle schools fared better than the high schools, but six in 10 still missed the mark.

STATE COVERAGE

Survey: Alaskans Approve of School Choice Program
Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, AK, October 30, 2011
A recent survey suggests Alaskans approve of the idea of school choice, which would provide state tuition vouchers for families whose students try alternatives to regular public schools.

MIT Charter School Plots Course Toward Renewal
Times Herald, CA, October 30, 2011
Indeed, MIT is technically also Vallejo’s second charter school, as two separate charters were approved for its middle and high school programs. Now, a dozen years after its creation and several temporary locations, MIT’s charter is again up next week for re-authorization.

Charter School Debate Sparks Power Struggle on Mt. Diablo School Board
Contra Costa Times, CA, October 30, 2011
A power struggle between Mt. Diablo school board President Gary Eberhart and trustee Cheryl Hansen appears to be unfolding as tensions related to the Clayton Valley High charter proposal continue to rise.

California Teachers Lack The Resources And Time To Teach Science
Los Angeles Times,

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Daily Headlines for October 28, 2011

Proposed Fixes Will Cripple Education Law
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, October 28, 2011
Legislation that is supposed to fix what’s wrong with the federal No Child Left Behind education law would instead water it down to the point that it would not do an adequate job.

School Choice Making Inroads In Blue States
Daily Caller, DC, October 27, 2011
If you have any doubt that real school choice can reach practically every state in this country, cast those apprehensions aside. School choice is making inroads in big, blue states, and it’s likely coming to a community near you. Need proof? Take a look at the news that just broke last night in Pennsylvania.

Who’s Minding the Gap?
TIME, October 27, 2011
Ah, the achievement gap. So much trouble to fix, so why bother trying? That seems to be the attitude in Washington, where pundits have spent the last several months ripping the current focus on improving the low end of student performance in our nation’s schools.

STATE COVERAGE

Charter Lesson: High Goals, Accountability Turn Schools Around
Hartford Courant, CT, October 28, 2011
The problem is that the success of several of these Connecticut charters — independent, publicly funded, non-union operations — is too irresistible to ignore.

Legality of Schools’ Takeover in Doubt
Connecticut Post, CT, October 27, 2011
The state Supreme Court is not expected to announce its decision for some days but if Thursday’s comments and questions from the justices are any indication, then the members of the state-appointed Bridgeport Board of Education probably shouldn’t get too comfortable in their seats.

True to Your School! Cobble Hill Parents Fight Charter
Brooklyn Paper, NY, October 28, 2011
The city wants to give one third of a formerly-struggling Cobble Hill high school to a high-performing charter school — but parents are

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Daily Headlines for October 27, 2011

The Wrong Fix for No Child Left Behind
New York Times, NY, October 27, 2011
The revised No Child Left Behind Act that passed out of the Senate education committee last week goes too far in relaxing state accountability and federal oversight of student achievement. The business community, civil rights groups and advocates of disabled children are rightly worried that the rewrite of the law would particularly hurt underprivileged children.

Andre Agassi Focuses On U.S. Education Efforts After Las Vegas Success
Las Vegas Sun, NV, October 26, 2011
Tennis champion and hometown hero Andre Agassi will see his ultimate dream come true at Saturday night’s 16th Grand Slam charity event with a superstar celebrity lineup.

STATE COVERAGE

Teacher Unions’ Double Standard
Fosters Daily Democrat, NH, October 27, 2011
If Laura Hainey, president of American Federation of Teachers-New Hampshire, wants to cite scholarly studies to attack the handful of private school voucher programs in the nation, she ought to include all the facts. (“School vouchers offer false hope; kids need a quality education agenda,” Oct. 24)

Parents Get Rating Role
Wall Street Journal, October 27, 2011
New York City schools will soon be rated based on how well they work with parents, Chancellor Dennis Walcott said Wednesday night, announcing an overhaul of how the city’s education system engages with families.

You Call This Choice?
New York Times, NY, October 26, 2011
She listed the schools she wanted in order of preference. She brought her list home and someone signed off on it, perhaps without taking the time to double check the schools selected, or without understanding the magnitude of this little piece of paper.

Controversial Cobble Hill Charter School Raising Eyebrows
Brooklyn Daily Eagle, NY, October 26, 2011
The announcement of a planned charter school to be called Success Academy

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