January 11, 2012

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Vol. 31, Issue 15
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Republicans running for president agree there should be a smaller federal footprint in education, but differ widely in details and policy experience on the issue.
Lawmakers and governors may push ambitious initiatives in their 2012 sessions, though warily in an election year.
Despite legal challenges and uncertainty, 3,919 students have signed up so far for the state's ambitious voucher program.
Grant recipients risk losing millions of dollars in Race to the Top money if they fail to live up to their promises, federal education officials make clear.
News in Brief
News in Brief
Report Roundup
But in the short run, teachers in the Boston program were less effective at raising student math scores, a study concludes.
The superintendents don't want schooling to be limited by classroom walls, a traditional school calendar, or standard grade progressions.
Efforts are under way to engage minority, underprivileged, and female students in STEM learning via programs outside the traditional school day.
Instead of increasing overall financial support, donors in 2011 were increasingly focused on supporting "new and emerging initiatives across the education pipeline."
Consortia documents outline tests that use computers in innovative ways and capture data about student knowledge that multiple-choice tests can't.
A new study notes the benefits of providing the class to 8th graders who would not otherwise have access to formal algebra curriculum.
Graduates of virtual high schools are now equal to graduates of brick-and-mortar schools in the eyes of military recruiters.
A study from the Gates Foundation says teachers embodying skills outlined in specified frameworks tend to help students learn more.
Dougherty County is the second Georgia district that state investigators have accused of rampant cheating on state tests.
Best of the Blogs
The 2012 federal spending plan reflects the Obama administration's success in defending Race to the Top and other programs from funding cuts.
A House proposal on how to overhaul the Elementary and Secondary Education Act mirrors elements of a Senate plan, but goes further in some areas.
Policy Brief
Changes in Pell Grant eligibility may lead to some students being dropped from the program and reduce grants for others.
Ten New York districts had School Improvement Grants suspended for failure to revise evaluations.
Congress revives the Striving Readers program, but scraps funding for history, foreign language, civics, and economics education.
Nearly 50 percent of schools failed to make adequate yearly progress in 2010-11, a report funds, besting the Education Department's 82 percent prediction.
Capital Recap
State of the States
The nine states splitting Race to the Top early-learning grants must now deliver on a slate of ambitious promises to improve the quality of early-childhood education for low-income children.
In recognition of the 10th anniversary of the No Child Left Behind Act, Education Week Commentary asked leaders in the K-12 community to consider the law’s impact.
The No Child Left Behind Act marked a major step forward for school reform, Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., writes.
Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., says that while NCLB has been a noble experiment, most decisions about education should be local.
FOUNDATION SUPPORT: Coverage of specific topics in Education Week is supported in part by grants from the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, the Pew Charitable Trusts, and the Wallace Foundation. The newspaper retains sole editorial control over the content of the articles that are underwritten by the foundations.

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