February 20, 2008

This Issue
Vol. 27, Issue 24
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Concerns about the foundering economy are helping to highlight the need to improve students’ understanding of money matters.
Starting with the 2008-09 school year, individual districts must meet new size caps in each classroom.
More students are taking Advanced Placement tests, but the proportion of tests receiving what is deemed a passing score has dipped.
The likely Republican nominee has said little on the campaign trail about education.
News in Brief
Report Roundup
News in Brief
Clarification
Finance & Facilities
A federal appeals court has turned away a lawsuit that said the No Child Left Behind Act was in conflict with requirements of the main federal special education law.
U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings called the request “an unprecedented partnership” between the city and federal governments.
Giving struggling readers an extra literacy class can boost their reading-comprehension skills, but not dramatically enough to get them up to grade level, a federal study says.
While a relatively arcane part of school finance, bond insurance is an important part of borrowing money and building schools for many districts.
According to a new survey, 77 percent of students and more than 80 percent of teachers and parents say homework is important or very important.
Just five of the teacher contracts in the nation’s largest school districts grant school leaders the kind of flexibility they need to run schools well.
Edward J. McElroy, the head of the 1.4-member union since 2004, intends to step down at the AFT’s convention in July.
Few of the hundreds of failing state schools are able to pull up test scores enough to exit restructuring.
State Journal
Statewide improvement is the aim of 100-school effort set to roll out in the fall.
State of the States
Federal File
Democratic lawmakers have sponsored a spate of bills aimed at providing federal resources for school construction, including so-called “green schools.
Observers fear that a recent government announcement will drain money from a federal program intended to serve academically advanced students.
By dividing the Montgomery County, Md., district into two zones, and addressing needs in both, its leaders are conquering achievement gaps.
Patrick F. Bassett outlines what we could learn from their success.
Kevin G. Welner & Alex Molnar question whether we should buy what think tanks are selling.
What is most important about recess is that it is the only unstructured time in a long day for most children, Vicky Schippers writes.
Letters
Letters
Michael Maccoby suggests "viewing schools as social systems with essential interacting elements."

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