Tuesday, July 20, 2010

States Embrace National Standards for Schools - NYTimes.com

States Embrace National Standards for Schools - NYTimes.com

States Embrace National Standards for Schools

Doug Mills/The New York Times
President Obama with Arne Duncan, the secretary of education, last month in Michigan.

RelatedLess than two months after the nation’s governors and state school chiefs released their final recommendations for national education standards, 27 states have adopted them and about a dozen more are expected to do so in the next two weeks.

Will National Standards Improve Schools

The pros and cons of setting a federal norm for what children should know.

Their support has surprised many in education circles, given states’ long

A Leader’s Record at a Brooklyn School: Increased Stability, but Also Controversy

Some families and teachers from the private St. Ann’s School, known for its unconventional approach to academics, said that changing leadership changed its personality.

State’s Exams Became Easier to Pass, Education Officials Say

Officials said that state standardized exams had become easier to pass and that they would recalibrate scoring.
Joyce Irvine was removed July 1 as principal of Wheeler Elementary in Burlington, Vt., to comply with rules allowing the district to seek stimulus funds.

A Popular Principal, Wounded by Government’s Good Intentions

At Wheeler Elementary in Burlington, Vt., a highly regarded principal has been removed so the district can qualify for millions in stimulus dollars.

It's Our Time To Lead The Women’s Conference #education

It's Our Time To Lead

It's Our Time To Lead!

    12/31/69 | The Women's Conference | 0 Comments
    WPweb banner copy

    The Women’s Conference, in partnership with The Omega Institute, our Health & Wellness Partner, is presenting a special giveaway July 21 – 27. The Women & Power conference at The Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, New York, is joining us to connect women from across the country by offering a bi-coastal chance to win a free seat at both of our conferences.
    (Please note: Travel & hotel are not included for either conference.)


    • Just post your response to What unique qualities empower you, as a woman, to be a strong and compassionate leader? in the COMMENTS section at the bottom of this page. (Please keep responses to 200 words or less.)
    • We’ll pick our favorite response & announce the winner on July 30.

    About The Omega Institute’s Women & Power Conference

    Omega's annual Women & Power conference is one of the most celebrated women's gatherings in the world, unique in its rich diversity of speakers, performers, and participants. The conference is dedicated to empowering women to bring hope, healing, and change into their own lives and to the world around them.
    This year, the conference is a call-out to women of all ages and backgrounds to become the leaders we have been waiting for. Whether you are a professional, activist, volunteer, student, artist, mother, spiritual seeker, or social visionary, it is time for us to dig deep, retrieve our authentic voice and values, and lead with courage and heart—at home, work, and in the world.
    Join with hundreds of other women for a weekend of celebration and conversation guaranteed to wake up your inner leader and leave you with renewed purpose. Presenters include Gail Collins, Ani DiFranco, Elizabeth Lesser, Anna Deveare Smith and many others.
    For more information on the Women & Power conference, click here.

    A Special Offer to The Women’s Conference Community:

    You can save 25% on tuition for an Omega lifelong learning program at the Rhinebeck, New York campus. The offer runs through October 2011. Use discount code CA25 when you register. Restrictions apply.

    Schools Matter: Steve Krashen wins highest honor

    Schools Matter: Steve Krashen wins highest honor

    Steve Krashen wins highest honor

    I just discovered that my letter, "Well Crafted," won special recognition from Southwest Airlines. It was featured prominently in the last issue of Spirit, the Southwest Airlines Magazine and won their "top letter" award. Winners of this award win a free Spirit T-shirt.

    Well crafted

    Published in Spirit (Southwest Airlines Magazine), July, 2010.

    "Dream Job" is the right article for America at the right time. With the current emphasis on academics and high test scores, our country appears to be moving away from the time when "fixing things" and other forms of practical expertise was, as Mike Rowe says, "not only celebrated but also revered."

    Former US Cabinet member John W. Gardner pointed out that we all lose when we lose respect for non-academic work: "The society which scorns excellence in plumbing as a humble activity and tolerates

    New survey says California's child care centers not notifying parents of pesticide use - Inside Bay Area

    New survey says California's child care centers not notifying parents of pesticide use - Inside Bay Area

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    New survey says California's child care centers not notifying parents of pesticide use

    By Julie Chang jchang@mercurynews.com
    Updated: 07/20/2010 09:02:02 PM PDT

    A new survey of California's child care centers found that more than half of them are ignoring state regulations to notify parents that they are using potentially dangerous pesticides.
    Researchers at the UC Berkeley School of Public Health also found that 90 percent of the surveyed day care centers reported a pest problem, and nearly half of them used potentially harmful pesticides such as fogs and sprays.
    While it's not against state law for day care centers to use such remedies, they must report to the state and to parents if they are using fogs and sprays, and how frequently. Yet 24 percent of the 637 centers that responded to the survey did not notify parents, and 35 percent did not post warning signs.
    The California Department of Pesticide Regulation warns that the use of pesticide fogging and spraying could expose staff and children to harmful chemicals. It's a concern that has some child care centers going pesticide-free.
    "We have kids who put things in their mouth constantly. If anything were toxic near them, that would be awful," said Felicity Chapman, founder of Cubes&Crayons, an organic and pesticide-free day care in Mountain View. "I don't think

    Eduwonk � Blog Archive � Dollars In Albany, Feet On The Ground

    Eduwonk � Blog Archive � Dollars In Albany, Feet On The Ground

    Dollars In Albany, Feet On The Ground

    In the WSJ they laud the pro-charter money being raised in New York. But this can be deceiving, the money teachers’ unions throw into political races really isn’t that significant right now (although that could change with the new rules). The power comes from the ability to knock on doors, phone bank, etc…that’s the big deal.
    RiShawn Biddle says reformers need to wake up to that and get more in the

    Hard Tack For All My Friends

    If you have been wondering what Education Pioneers is all about

    Schools Matter: FCAT Child Abuse

    Schools Matter: FCAT Child Abuse

    FCAT Child Abuse

    From an entirely self-serving perspective, we have to wonder if this generation of the abused will be become the next generation of abusers and anti-empathy zealots. After all, when I was a kid . . .

    From the Miami Herald (ht to Monty Neill):

    The FCAT test defines, among other things, whether students pass from third to fourth grade and ultimately whether they graduate from high school with either a standard or special diploma, or

    Chartering Possibilities - First in a Series

    This is the first blog posting in a three part series. Parts two and three will run Wednesday and Thursday.

    I'm going to put one debate on hold during this series in order to bring up an entirely different debate. Here's what I'm going to put on the side:

    Charter schools: good or bad?

    Never mind that this either/or debate doesn't leave room for much gray area. Only the dimmest charter school advocates believe charters are the ultimate solution (they currently serve fewer than 5% of 

    Eduwonk � Blog Archive � Edujobs

    Eduwonk � Blog Archive � Edujobs


    SEED Foundation (umbrella for SEED schools) needs a performance and evaluation manager. Great organization doing great work.
    Three jobs at NACSA:

    Let’s Do The Time Warp Again!

    Turning around low performing articles…
    I woke up today and thought it was 2004, when this blog first launched. There in The New York Times was a Michael Winerip story that, well, left a few things out. Read the story but the basic take is that federal turnaround policy is forcing a great principal out of a good school.
    Russo grabs three pieces of low-hanging fruit: Is a really excellent principal representative of the overall landscape of persistently under-performing schools? The last line of the story indicates the principal isn’t actually being fired but is rather taking over the district’s school improvement work. Seems fishy? But most obvious: Federal law doesn’t hold schools accountable for the performance of students they haven’t had a least a year to teach. This is no small thing, the article states otherwise conflating taking a test with the scores being used for accountability.
    But there is more than that. As the article mentions, the district did not have to even apply for this money, it

    Gov. Christie's report finds private, parochial schools save N.J. $2.7B annually | NJ.com

    Gov. Christie's report finds private, parochial schools save N.J. $2.7B annually | NJ.com

    Gov. Christie's report finds private, parochial schools save N.J. $2.7B annually

    Published: Tuesday, July 20, 2010, 7:58 PM Updated: Tuesday, July 20, 2010, 8:00 PM
    chris-christie-bridgewater-franklin-randolph.jpgNew Jersey Governor Chris Christie in this file photo at the Statehouse.
    TRENTON — In a report released today by Gov. Chris Christie, a study commission on non-public schools found that private and parochial schools save New Jersey $2.7 billion annually, while providing "expanded educational options" for children.
    The report also recommended that some form of tax scholarships or tax credits be enacted in the state, which would help parents choose to send their children to nonpublic schools.
    Christie, who has backed a controversial bill that would allow school choice, said "the section of the report supporting tax credits for scholarship programs is especially important.
    "Many states provide such tax credits, and we support providing them in New Jersey, as well," he said in a press release. Christie said he would take the recommendations under consideration.
    The Governor’s Study Commission on New Jersey’s Nonpublic Schools was created by former Gov. Jon Corzine in December 2009, and chaired by Assemblyman Gary Schaer, (D-Passaic.)
    There are 24 members listed on the commission report, 15 of them affiliated with private or parochial schools.
    Steve Baker, a spokesman for the New Jersey Education Association, the state’s largest teacher’s union, said "their findings are hardly surprising.
    "The commission is made up largely of people who represent organizations with a financial interest directing public tax dollars to private schools," Baker said. "The fact remains that almost 90 percent of New Jersey students attend public schools. At a time when the governor is drastically reducing aid to those schools...it is unconscionable to consider using

    Proposal would give Rutgers University the authority to approve N.J. charter schools


    By The Star-Ledger Continuous News Desk

    July 19, 2010, 7:21AM
    TRENTON — Five N.J. Democrats have proposed a bill to expand the state's charter school system and provide Rutgers University with the authority to approve new schools, according to a report on APP.com. The legislation would also allow for new types of charters, such as virtual schools, one-gender schools and schools specializing in behavioral disorders, the report said. Though... Full story »

    Gov. Christie reveals plans to limit N.J. superintendents' salaries, base pay on merit

    Gov. Christie proposes superintendent salary cuts

    By Claire Heininger/Statehouse Bureau

    July 16, 2010, 6:00AM
    Proposal ties compensation to district size, encourage districts to share administrative teams Full story »

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