November 12, 2013
The News Journal
School success pivots on school leaders
No evaluation system is flawless. They all need improvement, greater refinement. But it is a tool that needs to be used. How else can leaders help the people they are leading? The better evaluation system leads to better communication, a stronger flow of information both up and down.
Laurel teachers ready to protest stalled contract negotiations
The teachers’ union is staging the protest to draw attention to the lack of movement on a new contract. 12 bargaining sessions have been held since negotiations began last March, including two with a state-appointed mediator, with no deal struck.
Kansas City Star
Seven of 10 Missouri school districts are adopting Common Core
Seven out of 10 Missouri districts are well on the way to putting the Common Core State Standards to work in their classrooms. A statewide survey by the department of education polled some 6,000 teachers and administrators. Of those districts in the survey that are not yet implementing the standards, nearly half will be next year. Overall, only 16% responded as being “unsure.”
Hampton Roads Pilot
Students dip feet into online learning…now required
A new Virginia law, H.B. 1061, requires students to take one online course before graduating. The number of half-credit enrollments in the state’s online program increased from 6,988 in 2011 to 19,607 this year. In some self-paced courses, instruction, class work, and testing occur completely online. In others, students view live teaching on a computer and complete coursework on their own time.
Minorities more than whites embracer the value of college, survey finds
While minorities worry more than whites about paying for higher education, a new survey finds that Latinos, Asian-Americans, and African-Americans are more likely to see value in the investment for themselves and for the country. Minorities also were far more likely to say the economy would benefit if the United States meets President Obama’s goal of increasing college attainment rates.
Moving top teachers to struggling schools has benefits
A new study finds that elementary teachers identified as effective who transferred to low-achieving schools under a bonus-pay program helped their new students learn more, on average, than teachers in a control group did with their students. They also stayed in the schools at least as long as other new hires. But despite a large financial reward, only 5% of eligible teachers made the shift.
e School News
Are states measuring students’ career readiness?
A new Center on Education Policy report found that most states give one or more assessments of career readiness, technical, or employability skills to high school students, but the types of tests used vary considerably. While 45 states report that they or their districts assess students for career readiness, only 14 have established a definition of what it means for high school students to be career- or work-ready.
More high school students in Florida are taking advantage of MOOCs
Earlier this year, Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed H.B. 7029, which allows high schoolers to take massive open online courses, MOOCs, in subject areas with end-of-course exams, including algebra, geometry, and biology. The law requires MOOC providers to use certified teachers and win approval from the state education department. The concept is being tested in three districts and likely will expand across the state.