I couldn’t help wondering if teachers and students in Iowa were watching the recent furor over President Obama’s speech at a Virginia school with curiosity and amusement.
I know that my native state has an unusually outsized influence over presidential elections, but when I was growing up, the presence of national political figures at schools was pretty routine. My teachers encouraged us to go to these campaign events, regardless of the candidate’s party tag, for in-class projects or extracurricular activities. —Sean Cavanagh
It’s no secret that school districts vary widely in how much they spend per pupil. But a recent federal report suggests that such variation may be even more pronounced among districts composed entirely of charter schools. The National Center for Education Statistics says there are such districts, and 22 states keep data on them.
Would a proliferation of charter school districts exacerbate disparities among schools? The report doesn’t say. —Debra Viadero
These days it’s rarely a surprise to read about a new effort to translate print curriculum to digital—unless it’s happening in Rwanda.
A new project, part of the country’s push toward the “Education for All” goals set by UNESCO, aims to create “an interactive Web portal” to share education materials.
Rwanda, a densely populated and poor country of 10 million, has made considerable progress since the genocide there in 1994. Enrollment in primary education has been growing substantially. —Kathleen Kennedy Manzo
A version of this article appeared in the September 16, 2009 edition of Education Week