November 20, 1991

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Vol. 11, Issue 12
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WASHINGTON--Last summer, the new superintendent of the District of Columbia public schools reassigned 4 assistant superintendents and 14 other non-instructional employees to provide direct services to students, primarily as principals and assistant principals.
SAN FRANCISCO--The four former secretaries of education who met here for an unprecedented panel discussion earlier this month may have occupied the same office, but they took from it divergent views on what ails the U.S. education system.
DENVER--The governing board of the National Association for the Education of Young Children last week unanimously agreed to join a coalition of its members in backing a five-year campaign to support and encourage efforts by child-care workers across the country to secure better wages and benefits.
ITASCA, ILL.--A group Of leading educators, business leaders, and policy makers, representing schools that educate half the nation's schoolchildren, met here last week to begin planning for a national examination system that could begin as early as 1993.
Gerald W. Bracey, a senior policy analyst for the National Education Association, was asked to resign recently because he repeatedly expressed his private opinions in a manner that suggested he was speaking for the union, top officials of the N.E.A. said last week.
More than three-quarters of American parents are totally unaware of the six national education goals adopted last year by President Bush and the National Governors' Association, a survey released last week shows.
Multicultural education enters the world of school art with the introduction of the "Skin Tones of the World" crayon collection.
Student achievement in Maryland schools is improving slowly, but academic and social performances still meet only 5 of 13 standards adopted in 1990, according to a report released by the state last week.
SUBJ: In his latest exercise of the strict oversight mandates included in Kentucky's landmark 1990 education-reform law, Education Commissioner Thomas C. Boysen this month began the process of removing the superintendent and entire school board of the Harlan County school district.
Using guidelines set by the U.S. Supreme Court last year, a federal judge has dismissed the desegregation case against the Oklahoma City public schools. U.S. District Judge Luther Bohanon released the Oklahoma schools from federal supervision this month because, he said, the district had eliminated the vestiges of racial discrimination "to the extent practicable."
WASHINGTON--The number of public secondary schools equipped to receive cable-television programs has more than doubled in the last two years, due to a large-scale initiative by the cable industry, an organizer of the project said here last week.
Disenchanted with or opposed to whole-language approaches to teaching reading, educators at eight Houston elementary schools have persuaded local school officials to allow them to return to traditional, phonics based reading-instruction program this year.
The Texas Board of Education voted earlier this month to delay approving new U.S. history textbooks for schoolchildren after citizens pointed out that the books contained more than 230 factual errors.
FORT MYERS, FLA.--As a teacher, Constance Jones had a strong desire to "know what children had learned before they reached me and to know what they were expected to know when they left me."
The National Council for the Social Studies has named the first five teachers to win "advanced certification" through its newly created national teacher recognition program. Only 10 teachers applied for the honor.
David C. Geary, a researcher with the psychology department at the University of Missouri at Columbia, recently conducted a comparative study of the arithmetic skills of American and Chinese children.
Despite a slowdown of strike activity in recent weeks, other forms of labor unrest among teachers appear to be on the rise in several regions of the country.
Negotiators for the Chicago Teachers Union and the city's board of education, assisted by federal mediators, continued to meet late last week in an effort to avoid a teachers' strike that was to begin Nov. 18.
Faced with an apparent record turnover among New York City principals, the city's public schools have joined with Bank Street College of Education to establish a center for training more than 200 novice school leaders.
WASHINGTON--The first phase of a study on children in licensed private child-care centers shows that they are faring "exceedingly well in educational and social development," a report released here last week concludes.
WASHINGTON--The nation's Roman Catholic bishops last week adopted a statement that calls on parents, church leaders, and government officials to put a renewed emphasis on the needs of children, both here and abroad.
A new national survey by the Educational Theatre Association presents a mixed bag of findings on the state of theater education in the nation's high schools.
A high school in central Florida has been ordered to forfeit two football games because officials allowed an out-of-district special-education student who had been assigned to the school to play on the team.
WASHINGTON--Hispanic Americans "made modest gains in educational attainment" during the past decade but still lag far behind their non-Hispanic peers, according to a new Census Bureau report.
More than half of all high-school students have consumed alcohol recently, and more than one-third report that they have recently had more than five drinks on one occasion, the results of a new federal study indicate.
Although most middle-grades teachers agree that special preparation is helpful for teaching early adolescents, fewer than one in five actually received specific middle-grades training, according to a leading researcher on middle schools.
More than 50 percent of the nation's school districts have partnerships with an array of parent, business, and civic groups, and most of those partner groups make improved academic performance a program objective, according to a study released last week.
Two years after launching its national education initiative, the Business Roundtable has begun an effort to identify the gaps between what each state has done and what it still must do to conform to the group's ambitious school-reform agenda.
ATLANTA--Educators' obligations to students do not end with a high school diploma, but should be stretched to include successful entry into the workforce or postsecondary education, state education commissioners from across the country agreed last week.
Although he is neither a career educator nor a member of the House Education Committee, Representative Charles Thomas of Georgia is making it his business to stockpile scholarly articles and books on the latest in educational research.
The California Board of Education last week launched a new stage in its bitter feud with Superintendent of Public Instruction Bill Honig by asking the state supreme court to order Mr. Honig to implement its policies.
Massachusetts teenagers would have to demonstrate their academic competence before they would be licensed to drive, under a plan proposed by Gov. William F. Weld.
WASHINGTON--The State of Mississippi has a duty to eliminate the vestiges of segregation in its higher-education system that continue to hamper the college choices of its black high-school graduates, lawyers representing the Bush Administration and a group of black residents told the U.S. Supreme Court last week.
WASHINGTON--Setting up a likely partisan confrontation, the Senate Labor and Human Resources Committee last week approved Democrat-sponsored legislation that would provide funds to states and individual schools for the development and implementation of comprehensive reforms.
Capital Update tracks the movement of legislation, the introduction of notable bills, and routine regulatory announcements.
WASHINGTON--The President's Advisory Commission on Hispanic Education held its first meeting last week and received a personal pledge of support from President Bush in a session at the White House.
A crackdown on student-loan defaulters would help pay for up to 20 weeks of extended unemployment benefits, under a proposal moving through the Congress last week.
WASHINGTON--The House last week passed legislation that would require employers to offer unpaid leave for workers to care for newborn children or to handle family medical emergencies, but the bill did not garner enough support to override a veto threatened by President Bush.
WASHINGTON--The Education Department has awarded $8.2 million in contracts for studies evaluating the impact of education reforms.
A scandal. Chaotic. A disaster. Irrelevant. A bazaar. Artificial. Irresponsible. Narrow. Fragmented. Incoherent. Those are the words of nationally known educators describing the general education curriculum. They've been using those kinds of words to describe the curriculum for at least a century, yet little has changed.
The November Atlantic takes the educational spotlight away from low-achieving students and shines it on what an article by Daniel J. Singal calls an equally serious threat to the country: the "dumbing down" of the collegebound.
I was very disappointed by the federal-court decision in Detroit requiring that the "male academies" there become like all the other schools that disproportionately place African-American males in lower-track classes, special education, remedial reading, and suspensions.
President Bush noted recently that he thought the idea of separate elementary schools for African-American boys was a worthwhile one (even if it meant changing civil-rights laws, he added later), since his experiences in a single-sex school as a boy had helped him.
FOUNDATION SUPPORT: Coverage of specific topics in Education Week is supported in part by grants from the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the CME Group Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the NoVo Foundation, the Noyce Foundation, the Raikes Foundation, the Wallace Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation. The newspaper retains sole editorial control over the content of the articles that are underwritten by the foundations. Additional grants in support of Editorial Projects in Education’s data journalism and video capacity come from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Schott Foundation for Public Education. (Updated 1/1/2017)

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