June 16, 2004

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Though their school is in one of the nation’s richest areas, Los Alamitos Elementary in San Jose, Calif. has such a bare-bones budget that it can’t afford such basic supplies as paper.
Biology and art class, and nearly every other subject, could be left behind for now for hundreds of 9th and 10th graders at one California high school.
Students taught by Teach For America recruits learned more in mathematics over the course of a school year than schoolmates whose teachers were hired through more traditional routes, a new study shows. Includes a chart, "Comparing Types of Teachers."
As a strategy for reforming secondary education in America, small schools have gotten big. Includes a table, "Major Gates Foundation Grants to Support Small High Schools."

After a pitched battle that exposed a deep rift in management philosophy, the Los Angeles school board took a budget ax to the district’s regional administrative zones last week.
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  • New Orleans Board Blocked From Firing Superintendent
  • Mass. School Trustees Charged With Failure to Report Abuse
  • Houston Settles Lawsuit Filed By Whistleblower Administrator
  • New Yorkers Invited to Donate Belongings to Help Schools
  • N.C. School Board Chairman Resigns Over Plagiarism
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New York City school leaders have endured months of withering criticism for a new policy that they projected could force 15,000 3rd graders to repeat the grade. Even when the test results that drive those decisions turned out better than anticipated, the heated opposition cooled not one degree.
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Ted Landsmark canceled trips to China and Bermuda when the mayor called on him to lead a task force that will provide Boston’s school committee with alternatives to the city’s student-assignment policy.
Politics Page With a long list of accomplishments and identities—author, scholar, pundit, federal humanities chief, and wife of Vice President Dick Cheney—perhaps it is the status awarded her by her young granddaughter that Lynne V. Cheney cherishes most these days.
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Sandra Taylor might have viewed a new requirement laid on her by the federal government as a threat and a burden. Instead, she sees it as a recipe for respect. Includes the accompanying story, "Teachers Fret Over Potential Loss of Aides."
While paraeducators cope with a new federal mandate intended to ensure they’re qualified, a kindred group stands in the background worrying. Many teachers say their classrooms and their work would be seriously compromised should they lose the services of those assistants.
When the Miami-Dade County school district recently agreed to help incoming Superintendent Rudolph F. Crew get a home loan backed by private donations, the sweet deal left a sour taste in the mouth of school board member Marta Pérez.
The Rochester Teachers Association in New York and the Toledo Federation of Teachers in Ohio have both become approved supplemental-service providers in their states and are working with their districts to tutor children from low-income families and those who are struggling academically. Both are known for their innovative leadership.
High school exit exams, which are required by nearly half the states, measure skills that students are usually taught in middle school or the first year of high school. That finding, according to a new report, should lay to rest concerns that the tests set too high a standard.
Participants in a new U.S. government-financed exchange program for youths from the Muslim world jumped at the chance last week to question a U.S. Department of State official about foreign policy and American culture during a visit to the nation’s capital.
The Federal Communications Commission last week decided to leave a valuable chunk of the nation’s airwaves in the hands of school districts and other educational agencies that currently hold licenses for it.
  • Arkansas Study Raises Questions on Child Obesity
  • Vision Screening
  • Technology Spending Stalls Survey Finds
  • After School
  • Education Overseas
  • School Spending
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The most striking differences between the Teach For America recruits and regular teachers were in their educational backgrounds, according to a Mathematica study.
Place-Based Grants | Network, Replication, and Early-College Grants

Of the $2.2 billion in education-related grants made by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in the past five years, about $647 million has gone to support the creation of smaller, more personalized high schools. The following list does not include $66.3 million the foundation has spent on policy, research, and evaluation projects related to the reform of secondary education. The grants listed do not add up to the total, partly due to overlap between the two categories of awards.

Maine voters last week approved a school funding increase of roughly $245 million a year, but state leaders may spend several years trying to find ways to generate the extra money.
All Brittany Booth wanted to do was graduate with her classmates at Lyons Township High School in La Grange, Ill.
Departments
Dennis Bakke, the head of the country’s second-largest charter school manager, may have lost his recent fight to expand charter schools in South Carolina, but his battle is far from over.
  • Mississippi
  • South Carolina
  • Mass. Sees Rise in Explusions, Suspensions
  • Colorado Districts Seek Record Help From Senate
  • California High Schools Come Up Short, Says Report
  • Case Against Federal Law Opens in Pennsylvania
  • Paterson, N.J., Chief Steps Down Amid Probe
The gymnasium at the Glassmanor Community Center echoed with the orchestrated "hee-ya!" of 100 young voices practicing karate kicks. Leaning against the wall of the gym were a mix of teenage girls, 6-year-olds in pigtails, and gangly boys in baggy pants.
A charismatic icon of conservatism who argued against big government, former President Ronald W. Reagan left an education legacy marked by his advocacy of vouchers and school prayer and by his hopes of keeping federal control over classrooms from growing.
Departments
There's a broad, $68 million effort across the 210,000-student Houston district to improve high schools and personalize learning..
Fewer—but better— tests could give 'accountability' real meaning, writes Connecticut Commissioner of Education Betty Sternberg.
Public universities and K-12 schools must face their problems together, writes Russell Olwell, an assistant professor of history at Eastern Michigan University.
Research shows that quality teaching matters. We’ve got to stop treating quality teachers as if they don’t, says former North Carolina Gov. James B. Hunt Jr.
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