March 28, 2013
DE Department of Education
Secretary Murphy announces teacher appreciation student essay contest
Across the state, exceptional educators teach, care for and inspire Delaware students. Those who know best just how hard they work are the children in their classrooms. For the third year, the Delaware Department of Education will sponsor a student essay contest with winners announced during Teacher Appreciation Week in May. This year’s theme is based on a poem by former Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Carolyn Warner: The New American Dream. Secretary of Education Mark Murphy encourages children to tell him how their public school teachers are giving them the American Dream.
The Rodel Foundation Blog
IB impressed with international baccalaureate
The New York Times
With vouchers, states shift aid for schools to families
A growing number of lawmakers across the country are taking steps to redefine public education, shifting the debate from the classroom to the pocketbook. Instead of simply financing a traditional system of neighborhood schools, legislators and some governors are headed toward funneling public money directly to families, who would be free to choose the kind of schooling they believe is best for their children, be it public, charter, private, religious, online or at home.
The Philadelphia Inquirer
DeMedici II will buy former GlaxoSmithKline building for new String Theory School
Under terms that will be announced Thursday, a nonprofit associated with the Philadelphia Performing Arts Charter School has agreed to buy the curving, eight-story building for $29 million for the String Theory High School for the Arts and Sciences. It will be the first charter high school in the city focused on the performing arts. The nonprofit, DeMedici Corporation II, expects to finance the property with tax-exempt bonds from the Philadelphia Authority for Industrial Development (PAID), according to Mary D’Anella, spokeswoman for String Theory Schools, which manages the charter.
The Washington Post
D.C. school facilities plan considers charters for the first time
Neighborhoods in Southeast Washington, on Capitol Hill and along the eastern border of Rock Creek Park are among those most in need of school renovations, according to a school facilities plan the Gray administration released Wednesday. While previous facilities plans outlined projected timelines for individual school construction projects, the new document offers few specifics and no estimate for how much taxpayer money will be needed to meet the projected demand for improved schools. The 2013 facilities plan is the first in the city’s history to consider charters, the taxpayer-funded, independently run public schools that have grown quickly in recent years and now enroll more than 40 percent of the city’s students.
The Portland Herald-Press
More advanced placement classes to be offered online
Maine is increasing funding and expanding courses for a program that provides free online Advanced Placement courses to students who can’t get them at their local high school. The program initially was funded with federal money, but went on hiatus for a year when that money ran out. Then the state re-launched it at the urging of the legislature’s education committee.
Texas House Votes to Reduce High-stakes Testing, Change Graduation Requirements
The Texas House approved H.B. 5 that reduces from 15 to five the number of end-of-course exams needed for graduation from high school. The bill also replaces the current “4×4” graduation plan — four years of English, math, science, and social studies — with several different paths to a diploma. The aim is to increase flexibility for students, particularly those seeking career training.
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