National News Roundup

Article Tools
  • PrintPrinter-Friendly
  • EmailEmail Article
  • ReprintReprints
  • CommentsComments

A nationwide citizens' group has received a $50,000 grant from the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation to study public involvement in the allocation of funds under the new federal block grants.

The National Committee for Citizens in Education, a nonprofit organization based in Columbia, Md., has selected eight states for close scrutiny and hopes to encourage similar projects in other states.

"We believe that a primary ingredient in assuring responsiveness at the local level is citizen participation in decisions about how the mon-ey is to be spent," said Stan Salett, a senior associate of the organization. "Without effective citizen participation, education block grants only pay lip service to the concept of local control."

Under Chapter 2 of the Education Consolidation and Improvement Act, states and school districts are required to ensure that parents and other noneducators participate in spending decisions.

The group will examine the effectiveness of these requirements by determining how well state education agencies carry out the recommendations of their advisory committees and how the new programs supported with the block grants differ from the old categorical programs.

"If we find few to no changes in a state, no innovations or new directions, we might conclude that citizen input is having a negligible impact on the process," Mr. Salett said.

In addition, ncce plans to monitor the Education Department's implementation of the block-grant law and to serve as a clearinghouse for information on public involvement in state and local decisions.

This fall, the organization will survey the composition and activities of state advisory committees; it will complete its analysis by next spring, Mr. Salett said.

The Arkansas Board of Education last week voted to require candidates for teaching certificates to meet minimum scores on the National Teacher Examination subject-matter tests.

The cut-off scores are relatively low by national standards. Those seeking a teaching certificate in basic mathematics, for example, have to score at or above the 11th percentile nationally on the mathematics test.

In preparation for the new standards, the department administered the nte to all candidates for teaching certification during the last two years.

The Arkansas Education Association, the major teachers' organization in the state, has called for legislation that would require education schools to provide free remedial help for their graduates who fail to achieve the certification cut-off scores.

"Education schools bear the responsibility for preparing their graduates to pass the test," said Ermalee Boice, the association's assistant executive secretary.

Vol. 02, Issue 03

Notice: We recently upgraded our comments. (Learn more here.) If you are logged in as a subscriber or registered user and already have a Display Name on, you can post comments. If you do not already have a Display Name, please create one here.
Ground Rules for Posting
We encourage lively debate, but please be respectful of others. Profanity and personal attacks are prohibited. By commenting, you are agreeing to abide by our user agreement.
All comments are public.

Back to Top Back to Top

Most Popular Stories





Sponsor Insights

Effective Ways to Support Students with Dyslexia

Stop cobbling together your EdTech

Integrate Science and ELA with Informational Text

To Address Chronic Absenteeism, Dig into the Data

Can self-efficacy impact growth for ELLs?

Disruptive Tech Integration for Meaningful Learning

5 Game-Changers in Today’s Digital Learning Platforms

Keep Your Schools Safe and Responsive to Real Challenges

Hiding in Plain Sight - 7 Common Signs of Dyslexia in the Classroom

The research: Reading Benchmark Assessments

Shifting Mindsets: A Guide for Training Paraeducators to Think Differently About Challenging Behavior

All Students Are Language Learners: The Imagine Learning Language Advantage™

Shifting Mindsets: A Guide for Training Paraeducators to Think Differently About Challenging Behavior

How to Support All Students with Equitable Pathways

2019 K-12 Digital Content Report

3-D Learning & Assessment for K–5 Science

Climate Change, LGBTQ Issues, Politics & Race: Instructional Materials for Teaching Complex Topics

Closing the Science Achievement Gap

Evidence-based Coaching: Key Driver(s) of Scalable Improvement District-Wide

Advancing Literacy with Large Print

Research Sheds New Light on the Reading Brain

3 Unique Learner Profiles for Emerging Bilinguals

Effective Questioning Practices to Spur Thinking

Empower Reading Teachers with Proven Literacy PD

Student Engagement Lessons from 3 Successful Districts

Response to Intervention Centered on Student Learning

The Nonnegotiable Attributes of Effective Feedback

SEE MORE Insights >