No Child Left Behind Waivers Granted To 33 U.S. States, Some With Strings Attached
Huffinton Post 7/19/12
by Joy Resmovits
By Thursday, the Obama administration will have waived 32 states and Washington, D.C. from No Child Left Behind sort of. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is gearing up to announce that Arizona, Washington, D.C., Oregon, South Carolina, Kansas, Michigan, and Mississippi are now exempt from No Child Left Behind’s rigorous test requirements through the administration’s waivers. In a Wednesday call with reporters, Duncan called the process “a nationwide bipartisan movement toward next-generation education reform.”
E akahele Hawaii! But Does Enforcement Matter?
by Andrew Rotherham
Hawaii is under some scrutiny for its Race to the Top application, which was a slick production that has led to implementation challenges and put the state’s grant at risk. It's also led to a lot of grumbling about the competition. But there is other data, too. The state’s new assessment results are in and continue to climb. That led Secretary of Ed Arne Duncan to give cautious encouragement in the local media. Obviously, interested parties will want to visit the state next winter for a thorough examination. But for now the narrative is not as tidy as it was.
House Panel OKs Bill to Scrap Race to the Top, SIG, i3
Education Week: Politics K-12 7/18/12
by Alyson Klein
President Barack Obama’s signature education programs would be scrapped under a bill approved this morning by the House Appropriations Committee panel that oversees education spending. The measure would cut about $1.1 billion from the U.S. Department of Education’s roughly $68 billion budget, according to an analysis by the Committee for Education Funding, a lobbying coalition. The bill covers fiscal year 2013, which starts on Oct. 1.
Federal Priorities and State Funding
Whiteboard Advisors 7/17/12
by Gene Hickok
The Obama Administration, through education secretary Arne Duncan, seems to be pursuing a two-track strategy regarding national education policy. One track emphasizes positive incentives such as “Race to the Top.” The other encourages states to seek waivers from No Child Left Behind. It is too soon to know whether the incentive approach is working. It has received a lot of positive press. But the actual results aren't in yet. The waiver strategy seems to be working, though. A majority of states have requested and received waivers. In return, those states have agreed to adopt accountability plans approved by Washington.
NY charter schools’ edge: A boon to kids across the board
New York Post 7/18/12
by Bill Phillips
The new state test scores released this week showed yet again that charter schools on average are beating their local school districts, as they have for the past seven years. The bigger news, buried deeper in the numbers, is that charters are outperforming statewide averages in every key high-need demographic and subgroup.
Rating Rhode Island’s schools
Providence Journal: Editorial 7/19/12
...Surely, the state could learn something from the success of the charter schools, and try to replicate those successes in traditional public schools. At the same time, state policymakers should work harder to expand opportunities to “vulnerable” students by giving charter schools run by acclaimed nonprofits a greater chance to compete.
Fact finder gives report school board, teachers say no thanks (Chicago)
Chicago Sun-Times 7/18/12
by Rosalind Rossi
The long-awaited fact-finder’s recommendation on how to solve “toxic” Chicago teacher contract talks was finally made public Wednesday but nobody wanted it. Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s handpicked school board and hundreds of Chicago Teachers Union delegates both, unanimously, rejected the recommendations of a fact-finder both sides had picked to help resolve their stalemate.
Protecting mediocrity (Las Vegas)
Las Vegas Review-Journal: Opinion 7/19/12
Last year, Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval won a handful of education reforms in a budget compromise with legislative Democrats. Among the reforms was a provision barring teacher layoffs based solely on seniority. Finally, the most effective public school teachers could be retained during tough times or so voters thought.
Teacher ratings to remain hidden (PA)
Asbury Park Press 7/19/12
by Bob Jordan
If you think the new education reform bill means you'll get to see what grade your child’s teacher receives on his or her evaluation, think again. The grades, part of a teacher tenure reform bill that sits on Gov. Chris Christie’s desk, would be kept secret.
Nashville’s new school calendar may heat up learning
The Tennessean 7/19/12
by Camilla Benbow
This year Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools joins several surrounding school systems in implementing a balanced calendar. Metro is shortening the summer break and starting a week and half earlier than last year’s Aug. 11 start date.
Students’ online photos of California tests delay release of scores
Los Angeles Times 7/18/12
by Howard Blume
Additional sources for your education news and opinion.
> Education Week
> Gotham Schools
> Huffington Post
> John Merrow blog
> New York Times
> This Week in Education
> Washington Post