April 5, 2000

This Issue
Vol. 19, Issue 30
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The Achievement GapThe Minority Achievement Committee is Shaker Heights' best-known antidote to the nagging academic achievement gap that separates black and Hispanic students from their white and Asian-American counterparts here and in schools nationwide. Includes "In a Texas District, Test Scores for Minority Students Have Soared."
Last week, as they took up one of the nation's most divisive debates, U.S. Supreme Court justices were skeptical.
It sounded fine in theory: Set high standards for what students should know and be able to do. Give teachers and students the resources and help they need to reach the standards. Use tests to measure whether the goals are being met, and encourage results by rewarding success and penalizing failure.
Not the typical Republican presidential candidate, George W. Bush wants to create a brand-new federal reading program.
Members of the two teachers' unions in Montana were poised to celebrate late last week as their organizations cemented a long-planned merger.
A federal appeals court has agreed to take another look at a long-running lawsuit claiming California's teacher-testing program is biased against minority candidates.
  • Gates Millennium Program Announces Nominations
  • School Bus Did Not Stop, NTSB Says
  • Columbine Report Set for May
  • Fall Kills Student Climber
  • School Paper Targeted Teachers
  • Parents Want More Phys. Ed.
  • Nebraska Pole Vaulter Dies
  • Accreditation Revision Likely
Remedial courses are disappearing from the catalogs of public four-year colleges and universities as state lawmakers search for ways to slash spending on what they perceive to be duplicate services.
America's corporations have become the sugar daddies of the philanthropic world, a turn of events that experts say will benefit precollegiate and higher education over the long term.
Parents might not be at sea, after all, when their children go into cyberspace.
The Spencer Foundation, a Chicago-based philanthropy that supports research in education, last week named Ellen Condliffe Lagemann, a nationally known education historian, as its next president.
  • Sylvan Learning Shifts Its Focus Online
For all the talk last year about the rise of the for-profit education industry, including in the pages of Education Week, stocks of publicly traded education companies were generally out of favor on Wall Street.
  • Test Scores May Be Misleading, Experts Warn
Five years ago, the passing rates on state tests for students in this sprawling working-class suburb of Houston were separated by chasms of 30 points or more. Whites were at the top. Black and Hispanic students were at the bottom.
With Arizona trailing the nation in per-pupil spending, Gov. Jane Dee Hull and other leading Republicans are hoping to overcome their party's traditional aversion to higher taxes by calling for a sales-tax increase earmarked for education.
Five North Carolina districts are gearing up to test what may become a new element in the state's widely recognized school accountability program: dividing students into various racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic subgroups and then rewarding schools if test scores for students from all those categories improve.
Colorado schools will be assigned letter grades based on their state test results, under a bill that Gov. Bill Owens is poised to sign into law this week.
In the final days of its regular session, the Kentucky legislature last week passed a wide-ranging early-childhood initiative that proponents hailed as a landmark effort in a state that has gotten low marks in national ratings of children's well-being.
The condition of a Kentucky initiative to improve teacher quality slipped from critical to virtually dead last week as the state's regular legislative session ended without agreement on the measure.
Calling the way California doles out money to build new schools illegal, a coalition that includes Los Angeles students and community groups filed a suit last week seeking to bar the state from handing out construction aid until the most crowded districts can be guaranteed more help.
The chairman of the House education committee released a proposal late last week that would allow states and school districts to transfer money between several big-ticket programs contained in the main federal K-12 law.
The scenes from the school are shocking, but are familiar to many educators across the country: broken windows, mildewed ceiling tiles with gaping holes, and rotting wooden bookshelves.
Raising the ante for his education agenda, Gov. George W. Bush of Texas unveiled two new campaign proposals last week designed to help students read by the 3rd grade and improve the quality of the nation's teachers.
Progressive education gurus hope to enlist masses of teachers to help turn back the reform they claim is destroying great schools.
Sommerfeld became a martyr for the MCAS resistance.
Alex Sommerfeld is pretty much your typical teenager. Thin with close-cropped dark hair, he likes soccer, surfs the Internet for hours at a time, and is on intimate terms with profanity. He lives in a small, white-frame house in the Boston suburb of Danvers with his father. When his dad tells him to stop biting his nails, he tells his dad to shut up.
Our children are not born failures, argues Gerry House, but rather, it is our schools that too often have failed them.
According to Joseph A. Hawkins, the only real solution available for closing the achievement gap is academic rigor.
Hayes Mizell shares some key lessons about school reform and what accelerates efforts to raise student achievement.
Pardon the delay, but Larry Cuban's Commentary "Is Spending Money on Technology Worth It?" (Feb. 23, 2000) cries out for a reply.
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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