September 17, 2014

Education Week, Vol. 34, Issue 04
College & Workforce Readiness Opinion Making College Access a Local Reality
For cities and districts seeking to establish a communitywide college-going culture, George Weiss and Mary Anne Schmitt-Carey offer four steps.
George Weiss & Mary Anne Schmitt-Carey, September 16, 2014
6 min read
Betty Hsu and Ivan Chang are the co-founders of Professor Word, a Philadelphia-based startup that has developed a tool to help students learn word definitions as they read online.
Betty Hsu and Ivan Chang are the co-founders of Professor Word, a Philadelphia-based startup that has developed a tool to help students learn word definitions as they read online.
Charles Mostoller for Education Week
Classroom Technology Startup Founders Apply Education Experience
Former educators with technology interests are increasingly making their way from classrooms into the startup world as they try to use their school expertise to create ed-tech products.
Michelle R. Davis, September 16, 2014
9 min read
Diana Diaz-Harrison, the founder of the Arizona Autism Charter School in Phoenix, talks with a young student at the school, while Sammy, her son, stands alongside her on the playground. The school is among about 100 charter schools across the country that specialize in serving students with special needs or disabilities.
Diana Diaz-Harrison, the founder of the Arizona Autism Charter School in Phoenix, talks with a young student at the school, while Sammy, her son, stands alongside her on the playground. The school is among about 100 charter schools across the country that specialize in serving students with special needs or disabilities.
Patrick Breen for Education Week
Special Education Special Education Charters Renew Inclusion Debate
Dozens of charter schools are targeting students with disabilities whose parents feel their needs are not being served in regular public schools.
Arianna Prothero, September 16, 2014
7 min read
Accountability Map: Kindergarten Requirements Nationwide
States that require school districts to offer kindergarten differ on whether they must offer a full-day or half-day program.
September 16, 2014
Kindergartner Mason Schmidgall hangs on tight to his mother, Natalie, on the first day of school at Oak Ridge Elementary School in Eagan, Minn. Free, full-day kindergarten is new this year in Minnesota, but access to such programs varies widely from state to state.
Kindergartner Mason Schmidgall hangs on tight to his mother, Natalie, on the first day of school at Oak Ridge Elementary School in Eagan, Minn. Free, full-day kindergarten is new this year in Minnesota, but access to such programs varies widely from state to state.
Ben Garvin/St. Paul Pioneer-Press
Early Childhood States Far From Uniform in Commitment to Kindergarten
While pre-K is a top priority for many policymakers nationwide, kindergarten remains a patchwork of district programs driven by varying state requirements.
Christina A. Samuels, September 16, 2014
8 min read
Teaching Texas District Tests New R&D Model With Novice Teachers
By systematically implementing, testing, tweaking, and expanding a new support program for novice teachers, Austin educators are aiming to apply research for an immediate impact on the classroom.
Sarah D. Sparks, September 16, 2014
4 min read
Early Childhood U.S. Trails in College Graduation in Global Study
A 34-nation study from the OECD finds U.S. students lagging at both ends of the education pipeline—preschool enrollment and college graduation.
Madeline Will, September 16, 2014
3 min read
Law & Courts Lawsuit Says Teacher Contracts Violate Wisconsin Policy
Madison County, Wis., school officials face allegations that two recent contracts violate the state's controversial law that restricts public employees' bargaining rights.
Stephen Sawchuk, September 16, 2014
3 min read
BRIC ARCHIVE
Steve Braden for Education Week
Accountability Opinion Debunking Three Assessment Myths
Teachers have options for managing the pressures of national and local testing demands, write K-12 educators Sherah Betts Carr and Anaya Bryson.
Sherah Betts Carr & Anaya Bryson, September 16, 2014
5 min read
Education Correction Correction
An article on unionized charter schools in the Sept. 10, 2014, issue of Education Week misspelled the names of the Nea Community Learning Center in Alameda, Calif., and of Cristina G. de Jesus, the president of Green Dot charter schools and the CEO of its California schools.
September 16, 2014
1 min read
Classroom Technology Report Roundup Survey: Students' Mobile-Device Use Rising
A growing number of U.S. students regularly use laptops, tablets, and smartphones for schoolwork, but just one in six attends a school that provides all students with their own such mobile devices.
Benjamin Herold, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Mathematics Report Roundup Mathematics Education
Better mathematics screening procedures may help schools choose students for 8th grade Algebra 1 classes who will be able to successfully complete the course, according to a study by the Regional Educational Laboratory West.
Sarah D. Sparks, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Student Well-Being Report Roundup Physical Education
Physically active boys perform better in early reading in lower primary school than more sedentary boys, according to a Finnish study published in the journal PLOS-One.
Sarah D. Sparks, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Reading & Literacy Report Roundup Social-Emotional Learning
Inattentive toddlers are at a higher risk of developing reading problems in 2nd grade, according to a study published this month in the journal Developmental Psychology.
Sarah D. Sparks, September 16, 2014
1 min read
School & District Management Report Roundup District Leadership
Superintendents have very little influence on student achievement in their districts, a report suggests.
Madeline Will, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Early Childhood Report Roundup Kindergarten Entry Age
Children who are among the oldest in their kindergarten class are more likely than younger classmates to take and pass Advanced Placement exams in high school and to earn bachelor's degrees within four years, according to a study by researchers at the College Board.
Holly Kurtz, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Law & Courts News in Brief N.J. District Settles Case of Race-Based Bullying
A southern New Jersey district has agreed to pay a student $75,000 to settle allegations that the district failed to take appropriate steps to end years of race-based bullying.
The Associated Press, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Student Well-Being News in Brief Indianapolis Prohibits Food Rewards for Students
A new wellness guideline in one of Indiana's largest districts barsteachers from rewarding student achievements with food.
The Associated Press, September 16, 2014
1 min read
School Climate & Safety News in Brief Mo. to Permit Weapons, Ban Monitoring in Schools
The Missouri legislature last week overrode two vetoes by Gov. Jay Nixon of bills related to school safety. The first bill will allow districts to designate teachers or administrators as "school protection officers" authorized to carry concealed firearms in schools.
Evie Blad, September 16, 2014
1 min read
International News in Brief Harvard Survey Reveals Pessimism About K-12
A survey of nearly 2,000 Harvard Business School alumni reveals continued pessimism about the United States' future economic competitiveness and the quality of its schools.
Michele Molnar, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Markets News in Brief New Social Studies Texts Challenged in Texas
Four years after state board of education members clashed over history standards in Texas schools, publishers are facing criticism over new textbooks based on those changes.
McClatchy-Tribune, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Law & Courts News in Brief Citing Curriculum Problems, Phila. Parents Sue State
Pennsylvania's state education department has violated its legal obligation to investigate claims of "massive curriculum deficiencies" in city schools, a group of parents whose children attend Philadelphia schools claimed in a lawsuit filed last week.
McClatchy-Tribune, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Markets News in Brief Scammers Target Schools With Bogus Math-Workbook Invoices
Thousands of schools have received an invoice for $647.50 for 50 common-core-aligned "Math Practice" workbooks that they didn't order or receive.
Michele Molnar, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Professional Development News in Brief National Group Launched for Chemistry Teachers
The American Association of Chemistry Teachers, which is billing itself as the "first national chemistry association for K-12 teachers," is officially up and running.
Liana Loewus, September 16, 2014
1 min read
School & District Management News in Brief Boston Mayor Appoints First 'Chief of Education'
Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh has named the city's first-ever "chief of education," a new Cabinet-level position charged with coordinating school improvement efforts across public, charter, and private schools, as well as colleges and universities.
Lesli A. Maxwell, September 16, 2014
1 min read
School Climate & Safety News in Brief Suspensions Banned for Youngest Pupils
Minneapolis schools Superintendent Bernadeia Johnson has placed a moratorium on suspending pupils for nonviolent behaviors in prekindergarten through 1st grade.
Evie Blad, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Education Funding News in Brief Federal Grants Given to Aid School Counseling Services
The U.S. Department of Education has awarded $14.7 million in grants to establish or expand school counseling programs in 40 districts in 20 states.
Evie Blad, September 16, 2014
1 min read
Education Funding News in Brief Majority of Americans Favor More Federal Pre-K Funding
Seven in 10 adults in the United States are in favor of using more federal money to ensure that high-quality preschool is available for every child in the country, according to a poll.
Christina A. Samuels, September 16, 2014
1 min read
School & District Management News in Brief New Research Panels to Take Pulse of Educators
The RAND Corp. has launched two large-scale longitudinal surveys intended to create a nationally representative pool of teachers and principals for researchers to explore changing perspectives on education policy and practice.
Sarah D. Sparks, September 16, 2014
1 min read