Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Wal-Mart’s Partner in Education Earns High Profile - NYTimes.com

Wal-Mart’s Partner in Education Earns High Profile - NYTimes.com

Wal-Mart Finds Ally in Education




What promises to be a lucrative arrangement between the country’s largest retailer and an education company based in West Virginia started with an unsolicited e-mail message in October.
Hiroko Masuike for The New York Times
Wallace Boston, of American Public University, spoke in New York on Wednesday.
The retailer, Wal-Mart Stores, was looking for a partner to offer online college courses to its work force in the United States. Might American Public Education — which runs two Web-based universities — be interested?
By January, American Public put together a team devoted to landing the Wal-Mart contract, and last week, the two companies announced an agreement. Wal-Mart committed to spending $50 million over the next three years in tuition and other assistance for employees who enroll.
Since then, shares in the $850 million education company, which started 19 years ago as a provider of classes to military personnel and now offers degrees in 76 fields, have risen 11 percent, and its profile in the for-profit education field has soared.
“It puts them on the map in a way they haven’t been,” said Trace A. Urdan, senior analyst in San Francisco with Signal Hill, an investment bank.
And the partnership, in Wal-Mart’s eyes, could be a tool to improve American competitiveness, American Public’s chief executive, Wallace E. Boston Jr., said on Wednesday at a conference sponsored by UBS in New York.
But the choice of American Public, which has about 70,000 students in 100 countries, was




Claremont Prep School Leadership Changes Hands

A message sent to parents of Claremont Preparatory School did not say why the headmaster would not be returning.

A Child’s View of the Oil Spill � Tangerine, Florida

A Child’s View of the Oil Spill � Tangerine, Florida

A Child’s View of the Oil Spill

Pufferfish

Pufferfish Struggling in the Oil Spill

Great Deal Offered By Edublogs! | Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day...

Great Deal Offered By Edublogs! | Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day...

Great Deal Offered By Edublogs!

Alice Mercer and I have been able to use an Edublogs Campus account for free this year, and it’s been great. Our classes have been able to use a ton of excellent features.
Now, you too can use Edublogs Campus….for free!
You can read more at Sue Waters’ post, Try a free Edublogs Campus for your class.
(Note: I’d be writing this post even if I hadn’t gotten a free Campus account this year)


Today’s World Cup Update

Is “Complicated” To “Complex” As “Puzzle” Is To “Mystery”?

I’ve posted previously applying Malcolm Gladwell’s frame of “puzzles versus mysteries” to present-day school

My Personal Responsibility Lesson For This Friday

Lewisville schools proposal on Web conduct raises free speech concerns | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | Latest News

Lewisville schools proposal on Web conduct raises free speech concerns | News for Dallas, Texas | Dallas Morning News | Latest News

Lewisville schools proposal on Web conduct raises free speech concerns



09:32 PM CDT on Wednesday, June 9, 2010

By WENDY HUNDLEY / The Dallas Morning News
whundley@dallasnews.com

Angela Armstrong is proud to be a teacher and never thought twice about making references to her profession on her Facebook page.
But those online remarks could get her into trouble under a recent proposal presented to the Lewisville school district. It would prohibit employees from criticizing the district or even affiliating themselves with the school on social networking sites.
"What a disappointment to read that I can no longer affiliate myself with a district I'm proud to work for," Armstrong told the Lewisville school board at its May 17 meeting.
The second-grade teacher at Camey Elementary School said the proposed rules restrict her right to free speech and could invite a lawsuit.
"Are you really willing to take on the First Amendment of the United States Constitution?" she asked.
With the growing popularity of blogs, podcasts, Twitter and other online social media, school districts are beginning to develop policies that govern the use of these emerging technologies.
The Texas Association of School Boards is drafting new policy language that addresses how employees should use social networking sites, even on their own time and on their own computers.
"For several years, districts have been wanting specific statements about social media in their policies," said Carolyn Counce, the association's director of policy service. "They're trying to keep their policies updated with the technology."
While the model policy isn't expected to be finalized until the fall, she said it will address what's expected of employees when they're posting information that could be accessed by students.
"We've all heard about teachers putting up something inappropriate," she said.
A New Hampshire English teacher was accused this year of sending naked photos of herself and sexually explicit text messages to a 15-year-old student. Melinda Dennehy has been charged with indecent exposure.
Dennis Connor, a 27-year-old aide at Garland's Naaman Forest High

One-room Northern California schoolhouse to close - Boston.com

One-room Northern California schoolhouse to close - Boston.com

One-room Northern California schoolhouse to close


June 9, 2010
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NAPA, Calif.—A 157-year tradition in a small Northern California community is coming to an end with the closure of its one-room schoolhouse.
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The Wooden Valley Elementary School in Napa County is scheduled to close Thursday after graduating its last class of fifth-graders.
The original 1853 structure is still standing, though children now attend classes in another one-room building erected in the 1950s.
The two dozen kindergartners through fifth-graders will now be bused to larger schools in Napa or Fairfield or be home-schooled.
Napa Valley Unified School District officials decided earlier this year that

Remainders: Social promotion definitely not dead says teacher | GothamSchools

Remainders: Social promotion definitely not dead says teacher | GothamSchools

Remainders: Social promotion definitely not dead says teacher

Blog U.: Lions in Winter - Confessions of a Community College Dean - Inside Higher Ed

Blog U.: Lions in Winter - Confessions of a Community College Dean - Inside Higher Ed


  • Lions in Winter

    By Dean Dad June 9, 2010 9:42 pm
    This post by Tenured Radical is one of the best things I've read in a long time. It was occasioned by the semi-forced retirement of Helen Thomas, the journalist whose comments about Israel and Palestine ended her career, but the part that spoke to me was the part about the Venerable Tenured Icon who had gone badly off the rails. It's worth quoting at length:
    This is, of course, a common problem in the academy. Venerable professor famous for irascible personality and eclectic remarks goes right over the edge one day and has to be forcibly retired, when in fact the signs of ineffectiveness and mental decline have been clear to close colleagues for several years: inappropriate remarks, fits of rage and/or confusion, memory lapses of gargantuan proportions. And yet, you go to the administration and say, "Hey, I think we have a problem" and administrators claim their hands are tied because of tenure, academic freedom, blah, blah, blah. I have a friend who made this lonesome trek year after year, recounting numerous horror stories that appeared in the teaching evaluations or were related by befuddled students about Famous Professor X, and was repeatedly sent

Seton Hall's lone finalist for presidency withdraws from consideration | NJ.com

Seton Hall's lone finalist for presidency withdraws from consideration | NJ.com

Seton Hall's lone finalist for presidency withdraws from consideration

Published: Wednesday, June 09, 2010, 10:00 PM
seton-hall.jpgSeton Hall University
SOUTH ORANGE — The lone finalist for the presidency of Seton Hall University said tonight he is withdrawing his name from consideration for the post, amid a brewing controversy among university officials over his alleged demands.
"I’ll be withdrawing my candidacy," Monsignor Stuart Swetland, professor of Christian ethics at Mount Saint Mary’s University in Maryland, told The Star-Ledger. "I wish Seton Hall well in its search for a new president ... I’ve discerned right now that God has other things that he wishes for me to do."
In recent days, several university officials said that during preliminary negotiations, Swetland asked for a yearly salary of nearly $300,000. The current president, Monsignor Robert Sheeran, makes approximately $31,000, which is consistent with the low salaries many priests and nuns are paid to run Catholic colleges.
Officials at the Catholic university also said Swetland was seeking a long list of other perks, including a three-year severance package. The officials did not want to be identified because they are not authorized to speak publicly about the confidential negotiations.
Swetland tonight denied making the salary request and said he was disappointed details of the

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