April 9, 2008

This Issue
Vol. 27, Issue 32
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Photo Gallery
Teachers’ unions are rarely seen as hands-on school reformers, but the Tom Mooney Institute for Teacher & Union Leadership thinks they should be.
The Center for Benefit-Cost Studies of Education specializes in calculating and comparing the long- and short-term costs—and probable payoffs—of different educational strategies that promise to improve students’ lives.
Under the NCLB law, states must publish graduation rates, but they choose their own formulas for calculating the rate.
More middle and high school students than in the past have mastered the formal “basic” writing skills needed to express ideas or share information, national assessment results released today show.
News in Brief
Report Roundup
Retired U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor says that federal mandates are squeezing some subjects out of the curriculum, and she is working on a project that has a goal of restoring one of them: civics education.
The NAESP recently released two new publications designed to help its members create and lead learning communities.
A new report concludes that student achievement at eight inner-city schools in Tenn. seems to be linked to the rising effectiveness of teachers who had been at the schools when performance was dismal.
Charter schools, traditional teacher-credentialing requirements, and programs like Teach For America can all make a positive difference for student achievement in high school, according to a trio of new federally funded studies.
America’s Promise Alliance joins a host of other nonprofit organizations, foundations, civil rights groups, and Oprah Winfrey in calling for efforts to combat one of the most intractable problems in public education: graduation rates.
Three Washington state residents have admitted to selling thousands of bogus academic degrees through scores of phony online universities.
Preschool & After School
Officials overseeing the Advanced Placement program have announced that they intend to drop AP classes and exams in four subject areas, in a pullback expected to affect about 12,500 students and 2,500 teachers worldwide.
State Journal
The bill would cut to 60 the number of in-service hours in teaching English as a second language required of reading teachers who work with ELLs, down from the current requirement of 300.
The Idaho Education Association, its Pocatello affiliate, and several other public-employee unions in the state, which rely on the deductions to help pay for their political action committees, challenged the Idaho law.
Federal File
The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to review the case of an 8th grader who was suspended for an off-campus Internet message with a drawing that suggested a teacher should be shot.
Plenty of academic programs, but uneven progress, mark New Orleans’ recovery district.
Includes online photo gallery
A family member’s death, a teacher’s illness, a son’s deployment, a divorce; these are just some of the many parts making up the principal's untaught duty, writes Jamie Sussel Turner.
Celine Coggins writes on the need to reframe the concept of retention to fit the needs of a new generation of teaching professionals.
Michael Fullan writes about ways to improve school leadership, especially ways that involve integrating individual and organizational development.

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