July 12, 2006
Education Week, Vol. 25, Issue 42
School & District Management 56 New Orleans Schools to Accept Students for New Year
The Louisiana Department of Education has issued a list of 56 New Orleans public schools that will be accepting students for the coming school year, more than double the 25 that were opened this past year.
Early Childhood Business Group Seeks Ambitious Pre-K Agenda
While national business leaders may make a compelling economic argument for expanding preschool to all children, states are years from being able to afford the minimum $16 billion price tag their plan requires, experts in state budgets and early education say.
Assessment Chiefs to Focus on Formative Assessments
States have devoted significant time and money to the tests used for accountability purposes. But a new initiative, announced in San Francisco June 24, intends to shift at least some of that attention to the assessments that teachers use on an ongoing basis to modify and improve instruction.
Education Funding Gates Foundation’s New Billions Viewed as Boon, Challenge for Education Giving
The recent announcement by the investor Warren E. Buffett that he will donate some $30 billion to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is spurring questions about what the gift will mean—and should mean—for education giving at the nation’s wealthiest philanthropy.
Teacher Preparation Teacher-Education Accrediting Group’s Numbers Up to 20
The latest accreditations granted by the Teacher Education Accrediting Council bring the number of institutions with that stamp of approval to just 20, a figure that continues to be dwarfed by its rival’s list.
School Climate & Safety Schools Being Asked to Shelter Pets During Emergencies
Haunting images of people being forced to leave their pets behind during Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath have spurred a flurry of activity to provide pet-friendly shelters in emergencies. With the arrival of hurricane season, schools are increasingly being asked to help ensure such scenes aren’t repeated, by converting their facilities to pet shelters, but the approach has met with opposition in at least some school districts.
Equity & Diversity Special-Interest Groups Confront National Math Panel
A national panel reviewing teaching and learning in mathematics heard from advocates for minority students and non-native English-speakers at a recent public forum here, as well as from a women’s professional organization that objected to decades-old research published by the panel’s vice chairwoman.
School & District Management Plenty of Advice Awaits Boston Schools’ Next Leader
To help Boston's next top administrator tackle the district's challenges without scrapping what’s working, a group of researchers was enlisted to take stock of the tenure of Superintendent Thomas W. Payzant, who retired last month after more than a decade on the job.
Assessment California Study Questions Validity of Gains Under NCLB
Student progress in reading has stagnated and in some cases declined since the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act, says a study released last week that examines test scores in a dozen states and finds that their gains are often exaggerated as a result of overly easy exams.
Teaching Profession Teachers Recruited to Find Solutions to Vexing Policy Issues
Teacher compensation was the inaugural topic for the hand-picked members of TeacherSolutions, a group of teachers brought together by the Center for Teaching Quality.
Education Funding Call for ‘Weighted’ Student Funding Gets Bipartisan Stamp of Approval
The United States needs a fundamental change in the way it allocates money to public schools—something that will not be easy to achieve even though it is desperately needed, a bipartisan, philosophically diverse group of policy leaders is contending.
Education Teachers’ Union Declines to March on Washington
Delegates gathered last week for the National Education Association’s annual convention rejected a march on Washington to show the union’s support for two school desegregation cases from Jefferson County, Ky., and Seattle that are now before the U.S. Supreme Court.
Teacher Preparation After Complaint, Teacher Council Changes Rating
The National Council on Teacher Quality has changed the rating it gave Samford University’s teacher-education program in a scathing study of the content of required reading courses for the nation’s teacher-candidates. The private council cited the report’s oversight of essential information used in the evaluation.
Ed-Tech Policy N.J. Seeks a Worldview Through Online Projects
New Jersey’s education department announced a partnership last month with the International Education and Resource Network, or IEARN, a New York City-based nonprofit group, to help students and teachers learn about the different histories and cultures of the world through collaborative online projects with students in other countries.
College & Workforce Readiness Calif. and Michigan Focus Programs on Career Skills
California and Michigan recently introduced online resources and curricula to help high school students explore careers and learn self-management skills for the increasingly competitive job market.
Federal Draft Federal Report Says Higher Education Is ‘Unduly Expensive’
A federal panel studying ways to improve higher education is struggling to reach a consensus on its recommendations for how best to hold down college costs and prepare students for an increasingly competitive economy.
Federal Report Faults Ed. Dept., States on Teacher-Quality Rule
By July 7, all states had to submit revised plans to the federal government detailing what they plan to do during the coming school year to meet the teacher-quality requirements of the No Child Left Behind Act. But a study released July 6 by a watchdog group cautions that most states so far have made only minimal progress in addressing the teacher-quality provisions.
Law & Courts Congress Getting Back to Work on Vocational Ed. Law
After more than a year of inactivity, Congress appears close to hammering out its revisions to the main federal vocational education law, which governs the flow of more than $1 billion a year to career-oriented programs in schools.
Special Education Justices Rule Against Parents in IDEA Case
In the second victory for school districts on a special education issue in the U.S. Supreme Court term just ended, the court has ruled that the main federal special education law does not authorize parents who win a dispute over their child’s individualized education program to recover expert fees.
Education Detroit Asked to Return Parental-Involvement Aid
The office of the Department of Education’s inspector general has asked the Detroit school district to return nearly $1 million in money the office says was spent improperly under a federal program designed to increase parental involvement in schools.
Education Minnesota Official to Lead Ed. Dept. Innovation Office
Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings last week named Morgan Brown as assistant deputy secretary for the Department of Education’s office of innovation and improvement.