Friday, August 27, 2010

School Tech Connect: Meanwhile, Back In TechWorld

School Tech Connect: Meanwhile, Back In TechWorld

Meanwhile, Back In TechWorld

This is the conversation I'm always having with myself, like a crazy person. I think @jerridkruse nails it in the comments:

Puerto Rican teachers walk off the job. � Fred Klonsky's blog

Puerto Rican teachers walk off the job. � Fred Klonsky's blog

Puerto Rican teachers walk off the job.

In the largest public school walkout since 2008 Puerto Rican teachers hit the bricks in a one day strike over wages and working conditions.

AP reports:

Teachers walked off their jobs Thursday in a one-day strike over staff and funding levels in Puerto Rican schools, giving students an unplanned day off

A New Turnaround Strategy – ED.gov Blog

A New Turnaround Strategy – ED.gov Blog

A New Turnaround Strategy

MOBILE, Ala.—Of all the strategies we’ve heard for turning low-performing schools into high-performing schools, we had never heard this one: become a mind-reader.

Extrasensory perception—or at least a staff with a shared vision and the ability to anticipate each other’s needs—has apparently been key to the transformation at George C. Hall Elementary School.

“We’ve come to read each other’s minds at this point,” Principal Terri Tomlinson said today when the Courage in the Classroom bus pulled up at Hall. “We’re just a solid team.”

Earlier this year the Department profiled the school’s success in a series of videos on school turnaroundsabout the federal School Improvement Grant program. It was good to meet the administrators, teachers, parents and partners from that video in person and to hear from the larger team and community.


Click here for an accessible version of the video.

The community’s role in this turnaround was key, especially the support of the Mobile Area Education Foundation. For hard work like this, everyone has a role to play.

Massie Ritsch
Office of Communications & Outreach

SC agency finds 35 illegal workers at school sites - Boston.com

SC agency finds 35 illegal workers at school sites - Boston.com

SC agency finds 35 illegal workers at school sites

By Seanna Adcox
Associated Press Writer / August 27, 2010
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COLUMBIA, S.C.—State investigators have identified nearly three dozen illegal immigrants working at school construction sites in one South Carolina county, and fined a company, officials announced Friday.

The state agency overseeing South Carolina's illegal immigration law reported that five subcontractors have been cited for employing 35 illegal workers -- 32 of them identified since the 2008 law began applying to all businesses July 1.

The investigation at public school construction sites in Pickens County began in November, following complaints from residents and contractors not hired for the jobs. But the scope was initially limited, since the law applied then only to employers with more than 100 workers, said Jim Knight, head of the

How The Times built teacher effectiveness database | L.A. NOW | Los Angeles Times

How The Times built teacher effectiveness database | L.A. NOW | Los Angeles Times

The Times soon plans to publish a database on its website charting Los Angeles Unified School District teacher performance, allowing parents and others to examine the information.
In the video above, Times Database Editor Doug Smith describes the yearlong effort to gather the test scores and build the database. He also talks about the efforts over the last few weeks to provide teachers with the information before it goes online, giving them a chance to submit comments that will appear next to their scores. Smith said. The Times assembled a team to send out the information to nearly 2,000 teachers.
Smith also addresses some of the concerns raised by teachers and others about publishing the data. Smith said he's aware of concerns that the database could embarrass teachers and confuse parents. But he said he felt strongly it is important to make the data public and spark a debate about how to better use the information in making schools better.
What do you think? Share your views below.

You can't be my teacher.


If you don't know the internet you can't be my teacher, I need someone who knows what I know. Meet me on the web, at least half way. Teachers today need to be literate to relate to digital natives.

Text

Are you going to teach me in a school?

Are you going to make me sit in a desk all day?

Is this what you are going to use to teach me with?

Is this what you are going to use to teach me with? (echo)

Do you know how to use a computer?

Do you know how to use a computer? (echo)

Are you a teacher?

Are you my teacher?

Are you going to teach me using the internet?

Are you going to teach me how to be safe on the internet?

Do you know what goes on on the internet?

Are you sure you are my teacher?

Are you sure you are my teacher? (echo)

Are you going to learn how to use the technology?

I am a digital native.

Do computers scare you?

Are you afraid to use them?

Have you been on facebook?

Have you been on twitter?

Have you been surfing?

Do you even know what is on the internet?

Are you going to be my teacher?

Or just that textbook?

Because I want to know...

what the world has to offer

And if you are not on the internet...

and know nothing about computers.

you can't be my teacher!

I said you can't be my teacher.

Make room for somebody who knows how to use the internet.

Do you think I am going to be ready?

Do you think I am going to be ready?

Do you think you are preparing me for the
world that I have to live in?

Do you think I am going to be ready?

That's your job!

That's your job! (echo)

Freedom School Program Jackson State – ED.gov Blog

Freedom School Program Jackson State – ED.gov Blog

Freedom School Program Jackson State

JACKSON, Miss.—At the Kids Kollege Children’s Defense Fund Freedom School, the children aren’t called students; they’re called scholars. And the adults aren’t teachers; they’re servant leaders.

That’s how this after-school program serving disadvantaged children in Mississippi’s capital sets high expectations for everyone.

The program is a partnership between Jackson State University, a historically black college, and Children’s Defense Fund. CDF’s founder, Marian Wright Edelman, joined the Courage in the Classroom Tour this morning in Jackson. There, Secretary Duncan listened to a group of Kids Kollege interns talk about why they are drawn to the field of education.

Watch video from this morning’s visit to Jackson State University:Click here for an accessible version of the video.

Remainders: N.J. education chief fired over Race to the Top error | GothamSchools

Remainders: N.J. education chief fired over Race to the Top error | GothamSchools

Remainders: N.J. education chief fired over Race to the Top error

More Race to the Top:
  • N.J. Gov. Chris Christie fired his education chief over his costly Race to the Top goof. (Star-Ledger)
  • Christie previously blamed federal officials for not checking the clerical error. (NYTimes)
  • But USDOE released video showing that the state didn’t give the right data when asked. (USDOE)
  • Nine of the 12 winning RttT applicants were supported by Gates Foundation grants. (State Ed Watch)
  • Former city schools Chancellor Rudy Crew is “not there yet” in his support for RttT. (Russo)
  • La. schools chief Paul Pastorek says most state ed departments aren’t designed for reform. (Rick Hess)
  • And Arne Duncan will appear at the state teachers union on Monday to talk teacher evaluations. (T-U)

And in other news:

  • A parallel between Mayor Lindsay’s fire department and Mayor Bloomberg’s schools? (NYSun)
  • A Mississippi middle school has ended its race-based rules for class election eligibility. (Jezebel)
  • A group of parents write to President Obama opposing the federal turnaround strategy. (Answer Sheet)
  • And a portrait of how New Orleans schools have changed since Katrina. (EdWeek)

Voices of Courage: Dr. Tom Burnham – ED.gov Blog

Voices of Courage: Dr. Tom Burnham – ED.gov Blog

Voices of Courage: Dr. Tom Burnham

We’ve been fortunate on the Courage in the Classroom tour to have a number of state-level leaders join us along the way. On Thursday the state education commissioner of Arkansas, Dr. Tom Kimbrell, and the state superintendent in Louisiana, Paul Pastorek, both hopped on the bus and joined us at the day’s events. On Friday we welcomed aboard Dr. Tom Burnham, Mississippi’s superintendent of education, for stops in Jackson and Hattiesburg.

“I believe very strongly as educational leaders that one of our challenges is to stay connected with the teachers, and stay connected with the classrooms,” he said of the tour’s value.

Dr. Burnham assumed his position in January. It’s his second tour of duty as head of Mississippi’s K-12 public education system. In between stints he has served as the dean of the School of Education at the University of Mississippi and as a district superintendent in Biloxi, Miss., and in Henderson County, N.C. He began his career as a classroom teacher and coach.

Mississippi teachers, he said, “are working each day with a great deal of passion, they’re working each day with a great deal of professionalism, and in most cases a pretty significant level of preparation to be successful”—but, all too often, inadequate resources.

“At the end of the day, each day, many of these people go home very, very tired from having attempted to achieve success,” he said.

Here’s video of our conversation with Dr. Burnham aboard the bus:


Click here for an accessible version of the video.

The First Action of the New Year � Student Activism

The First Action of the New Year � Student Activism

The First Action of the New Year

At least, the first I’m aware of.

Student activists at UC Berkeley floated budget stats and contact info into some of the campus’s largest lecture halls on the first day of class this week. Have I missed something, or was this the country’s first student protest of 2010-11?

Blog U.: A Universiti Sains Malaysia response to ‘A question ...." - GlobalHigherEd - Inside Higher Ed

Blog U.: A Universiti Sains Malaysia response to ‘A question ...." - GlobalHigherEd - Inside Higher Ed

A Universiti Sains Malaysia response to ‘A question ...."

By Dzulkifli Abdul Razak August 27, 2010 4:58 pm

Editors' note: today's guest entry has been kindly developed by Professor Dzulkifli Abdul Razak, Vice-Chancellor, Universiti Sains Malaysia, a position he has held since 2000. Professor Dzulkifli's post is the seventh response to Nigel Thrift’s ‘A question (about universities, global challenges, and an organizational, ethical dilemma)‘, which was originally posted on 8 April 2010. As noted in last



Race to Top: Gates Backs a Bunch of Winners - State EdWatch - Education Week

Race to Top: Gates Backs a Bunch of Winners - State EdWatch - Education Week

Race to Top: Gates Backs a Bunch of Winners

Several of the states that won grants in the federal Race to the Top competition received financial help from a well-known source: The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Nine of the 12 winning applicants from a field of 47 over two rounds of the competition were given $250,000 apiece by Gates to support the crafting of their proposals, foundation spokesman Chris Williams confirmed. The contenders that benefited from that largesse were Massachusetts, New York, Florida, the District of Columbia, Georgia, North Carolina, Ohio, and Rhode Island in round two of the competition, and Tennessee in round one. The other three winners —Delaware, Hawaii, and Maryland—landed in the winners' circle without money from Gates.

Gates chose to help states that were in "good strategic alignment" with the foundation on key issues, Williams

Helping New Orleans Rebuild Its Schools – ED.gov Blog

Helping New Orleans Rebuild Its Schools – ED.gov Blog

Helping New Orleans Rebuild Its Schools

Five years ago, Hurricane Katrina destroyed schools throughout New Orleans. Since then, the state and city have worked together to make the city’s schools a model for school reform. New Orleans schools have made remarkable progress. They have been an inspiration to those of us who are working to provide a world-class education to all of America’s children.

Despite the progress, New Orleans still has a lot of work to do. More than 100 school buildings were devastated by the floods of Katrina. The city still needs to replace, rebuild and rehabilitate buildings that were destroyed by the floods. Working together, state and city leaders have produced a master plan to will rebuild and renovate its schools.

Today, I joined Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano in announcing more than $1.8 billion in federal funds to support the rebuilding of New Orleans’ schools. This money will support the city in building the excellent learning environments that the children of New Orleans deserve.

In addition, the Department of Education continues to support schools throughout the Gulf Coast that suffered damage from Katrina and other hurricanes. Our staff is preparing to award $12 million in grants from the Gulf Coast Recovery Initiative. These grants will help districts replace instructional materials, renovate and repair schools buildings, and support afterschool and other initiatives to provide extended learning.

Over the past five years, the Department has provided nearly $2 billion for schools in the Gulf Coast region. The money helped schools re-open immediately after the hurricanes and supported schools that enrolled students displaced by the hurricanes. It also provided the $7 million to Louisiana, Alabama, Texas, and Mississippi to pay for mental health assessments for students, substitute teachers, and emergency transportation, and other needs shortly after the hurricanes hit the Gulf Coast.

Five years later, New Orleans and the rest of the Gulf Coast are still recovering. President Obama and I are committed to doing our part to provide the students there with the world-class education they deserve.

Calif. budget delay creates trouble for colleges - Boston.com

Calif. budget delay creates trouble for colleges - Boston.com

Calif. budget delay creates trouble for colleges

By Terence Chea
Associated Press Writer / August 27, 2010
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SAN FRANCISCO—As California enters its ninth week without a budget, state higher education leaders said Friday the delay is creating financial problems and uncertainty for public colleges and universities.

The heads of the University of California, California State University and California Community Colleges said the three systems have not been receiving expected payments from Sacramento and aren't sure how much they'll get for the fiscal year that began July 1.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Legislature have not reached agreement on how to close a $19 billion budget shortfall. The impasse has led to delayed payments to school districts and counties, furloughs of state employees and the

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