March 21, 2001

This Issue
Vol. 20, Issue 27
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Dramatic demographic shifts could help broaden the view of diversity in America's classrooms and heighten interest in minority students' needs, educators and national experts say. Includes two charts, "Census 2000: A Diverse Population" and "Under Age 18."
American 14-year-olds and their peers around the world have a good grasp of the fundamental principles and processes of democracy, but their understanding is often superficial and detached from real life, a new study concludes. Includes the table, "Testing for Civics Knowledge."
Teasing, name-calling, and bullying have long been synonymous with adolescence, but the possible consequences of a schoolwide culture of casual cruelty have never been as deadly as they are today.
As educators and policymakers turn their attention to widespread shortages of teachers for precollegiate classrooms, experts say few are recognizing a similar and perhaps more disturbing trend: the dwindling supply of teacher-educators.
Departments
Laws should be strengthened to protect children from attending schools built on or near chemically polluted sites, and districts should follow stricter environmental guidelines when selecting the future location of school buildings, a report by a national advocacy campaign urges.
Departments
  • New York Raps Buffalo Teachers' Union for Strike
  • District Takes Parent to Court
  • Baltimore To Close 9 Schools
  • Guaging Hispanics' Educational Attainment
  • D.C. Administration Takes Shape
  • End of Busing Is Challenged
  • Promotion Policy Questioned
  • Cleaver Gets Coach Fired
Departments
Educators believe they do a good job teaching students about the rights to freedom of religion, speech, the press, assembly, and petition as guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. But when it comes to granting students those rights in schools, educators are more wary.
Elementary school teachers will now be able to use new curriculum materials that tap the National Geographic Society's vast archives of photographs, maps, graphics, and narratives.
Departments
As the U.S. economy boomed last year, education remained the favorite cause of philanthropists, garnering one-quarter of all grant dollars given by the country's largest foundations, a report shows. Includes the charts, "Where Grant Dollars Go."
  • Educators Swap Tips on Finding and Serving Gifted Students
Incidents of violence have produced a growing industry of school security and safety businesses. Plus, "Coca-Cola Cans Exclusive Contracts."
The Coca-Cola Co. is taking some of the fizz out of its school marketing program.
Departments
  • Many Districts Are Not Using Standards To Design Professional Training
  • Accrediting Transformation
  • Temporary Truce
  • Return to UNESCO?
  • Arts Expansion
  • Literacy Center Forming
The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching unveiled a 5-year, $3- million initiative this month that will bring together some of the nation's top scholars to examine how teacher education classes are taught, how prospective teachers learn, and how their learning is evaluated.
The IEA tested 90,000 14-year-olds in 28 countries on their civics knowledge, engagement, and attitudes. Scores are on a 160-point scale.
The number of Hispanics in last year's U.S. Census increased by 58 percent from 1990, which means the proportion of the United States' population that is Hispanic (12.5 percent) is almost equal to the proportion that is African-American (12.9 percent). The proportion of U.S. residents of Asian origins rose by 48 percent in the same period, to 4.2 percent. About 6.8 million respondents, or 2.4 percent, selected more than one race, an option offered for the first time in the 2000 Census. White non-Hispanic or non-Latino respondents represent about 69 percent of the total population.
Georgia children who enter 3rd grade in 2003 would have to pass a state reading test to be promoted to the next grade, and 5th and 8th graders would face similar requirements in later years, under a bill passed by the state Senate last week.
Meeting in a special session called by the governor, the Louisiana legislature took steps last week toward giving teachers a pay raise, courtesy of gambling taxes.
Departments
New Mexico lawmakers spent the final days of their legislative session late last week ironing out the details of sweeping education legislation that would dramatically increase teacher compensation, create new incentives for career advancement for educators, and alter the way schools are governed in the state.
Florida and North Carolina have pulled back on plans to factor student test scores into school grades.
  • Florida
  • New Hampshire
  • North Carolina
  • Rhode Island
  • Wisconsin
  • Springfield Seeking Waiver
    From Mass. Graduation Test
  • Alaska Governor Targets Facilities
  • Ark. Spanish-Class Mandate Dies
  • Hawaii Teachers Authorize Strike
Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, back from his narrow loss for the vice presidency, is trying to use his increased stature in the Senate to inject the moderate Democrats' ideas into this year's version of the Senate's ESEA reauthorization. Includes "'The Debate Is Really Moving to the Center,'" a Q & A with Sen. Lieberman.
When Secretary of Education Rod Paige was asked about the fatal shootings this month at Santana High School in California, he named character education as one approach that might help avert such incidents. It's a sentiment that is shared by many in Washington.
Departments
Here are excerpts from Staff Writer Joetta L. Sack's March 9, 2001, interview with Sen. Joseph I. Lieberman, D-Conn., about his education proposal and future plans. The interview took place in his Capitol Hill office.
President Bush plans to nominate Eugene W. Hickok, Pennsylvania's secretary of education, to be the undersecretary of the Department of Education, the agency's No. 3 post.
A new wave of refugees from Africa, including many students who have had little or no education, poses a challenge for programs to help immigrants.
Asked what Americans ought most to know about him and his companions from Sudan, 17-year-old Abraham K. says: "They need to know we are willing to learn."
Author Steve Cohen has an idea that he thinks could trigger an e-learning revolution: teacher vouchers.
Howard Good reminisces about his mother's 'brutal' determination for her sons to learn. In light of her sons' successes, high-stakes testing doesn't seem like an entirely bad thing.
The authors argue that welcoming and supporting new generations of immigrants to the United States will ensure the continuing legacy of making and remaking America.
Letters
First, let me thank Louisa C. Spencer for volunteering her time to tutor children in New York City schools ("Two Views of District 2: Progressivism's Hidden Failure," Commentary, Feb. 28, 2001). We need more folks who are willing to assist our work in making public schools the best they can be.
Departments
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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