May 20, 2013

May 20th, 2013

Category: News, Policy and Practice, Postsecondary Success, Student-Centered Learning

Local News

Delaware Department of Education
State launches Delaware Future Ed Leaders summer program
The Delaware Department of Education is accepting applications for a six-week summer program for promising future leaders who have a passion for education and want to gain hands-on exposure to policy work. The program has been developed specifically for current students, recent graduates and junior teachers as they explore career paths in education and seek exposure to careers in state government. Individuals from all programs of study are welcome to apply. Although teaching experience is not required, preference will be given to outstanding teachers currently working in Delaware public schools.

The News Journal
Schools to chop support staff in droves
Cuts in state and federal funding are causing school districts throughout Delaware to plan layoffs that could hit paraprofessionals and other support staff particularly hard. School districts only recently started submitting their layoff plans, so the state doesn’t have a final tally regarding the number of positions at risk, said David Bowman, the state’s deputy secretary of education. He notes the financial picture for school districts continues to look bleak, especially in light of cuts in federal funding for education.

George Read recognized as model school
George Read Middle School is a model for how schools should work, according to an international education think tank. The New Castle school is one of only 16 across the country to be named a model school by the International Center for Leadership in Education. George Read earned the group’s accolades after noticeable increases in English and math test scores. ICLE staff praised the school for its classroom and school environment. “All students were able to actively participate in school activities and students were consistently recognized and validated by their teachers and their peers,” a news release said. The school earned applause for its Zero Tolerance policy, which “doesn’t allow students to fail.”

National News

Education Week
Digital trends shifting the role of teachers
Since receiving a class set of Chrome books, a Samsung laptop that uses a Chrome operating system, in December 2011, Mr. Mercer has altered his teaching style—spending less time holding court at the front of the room and more time crisscrossing the classroom to answer questions and provide individual, targeted feedback. And rather than rely on outdated textbooks to drive the bulk of his instruction, he now writes his own curriculum.

MOOCs Provider in higher ed. targets K-12 Teacher PD
In attempting to bring “MOOCs” to the world of teacher training, the Silicon Valley company Coursera and its partners at universities and other institutions are courting a new and potentially vast audience, one that is becoming increasingly accustomed to receiving professional training via the Web.

The New York Times
Schools add to test load, just to assess the questions
Students in New York State sweated their way through some of the toughest exams in state history this spring. Now hundreds of thousands of them will receive a reward only a stonyhearted statistician could appreciate: another round of exams. As school districts across the country rush to draw up tests and lesson plans that conform to more rigorous standards, they are flocking to field tests — exams that exist solely to help testing companies fine-tune future questions.

The Denver Post
Colorado Board of Education approves new graduation requirements
The Colorado board of education adopted a new set of graduation standards to be phased in over the next seven years. The requirements are based on competency in four core subjects instead of “seat time.” They offer a menu of options for students to meet the minimum standards, ranging from standardized test results to scores on Advanced Placement tests to a variety of yet-to-be-determined measures.

Philadelphia Inquirer
Charters ready to work with district
A flurry of media activity has swept the city in the wake of the School District of Philadelphia’s fiscal crisis. This activity has produced some misinformation regarding charter schools. It’s time to set the record straight. Charter schools are funded by taxpayer money that is passed through the home school district of each student choosing the charter option. Before passing through those funds, districts take up to 21 deductions from the average cost per student. In Philadelphia, this means that charter schools are receiving about 78 percent of what the taxpayer is paying per student to the district, while the district retains the balance. In other words, charter schools are doing more with less.

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Rodel Foundation of Delaware



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