May 24, 2013
The News Journal
Higher bar set for education in Delaware
Bill Budinger knows what it takes to compete internationally. The company he and members of his family founded, Rodel Inc., once found itself pitted against international electronics giants for control in the semiconductor industry. “We knew that we had to go from being the best in America to the best in the world. And to do it, we knew we had to think differently,” Binger said. Rodel would end up thriving in that market. Now Binger wants to see another creation of his take the same philosophy.
Common Core standards for education are challenged
The brewing debate over national education standards found a local audience in southern Delaware on Thursday night as about 20 people affiliated with the 9-12 Delaware Patriots turned out for a Cape Hen open School Board meeting. The school board was to hear a staff presentation on the Common Core Standards, adopted by Delaware officials in 2010, with a 2012-13 implementation goal. The Common Core State Standards are a national effort to create universal expectations for what knowledge and skills students should have. Delaware has been a leader in the Common Core for years, but some activists are protesting a system they say takes decisions out of the hands of local districts.
Rodel envisions world-class Del. education system by 2020
The Rodel Foundation of Delaware seeks to maximize the potential of every child in an effort to make Delaware’s public education system world-class by 2020.
Budget committee commits additional funds to education initiatives
Monday’s positive state revenue forecast is good news for Delaware education. An additional $21.7 million was added to the revenue estimate by the Delaware Economic and Financial Advisory Council (DEFAC). $7.2 million of those dollars are headed for programs under the Department of Education. Joint Finance Committee (JFC) members earmarked $300,000 for grants to schools developing accelerated learning curriculum, even though two bills creating the grant programs haven’t been approved yet. The committee also created a similar, $2 million line item to fund charter school expansions that also requires additional legislative authorization.
The Milford Beacon
Milford school board updates elementary curriculum
An outdated curriculum in Milford’s elementary schools will be replaced next year with a $371,000 English/Language Arts program from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. At its May 20 regular meeting, the Milford School District board of education unanimously approved the purchase of the updated curriculum. According to Travis Moorman, director of teaching and learning for the Milford School District, the new program includes materials for all grades in each of the district’s three elementary schools and at the Evelyn L. Morris Early Childhood Center.
Teaching students better online research skills
Sara Shaw, an elementary school teacher in Avon, Mass., realized she needed to teach online research skills several years ago when her students kept turning in projects riddled with misinformation. The flawed material often came from websites the students used. They took the information as fact, when it often was just someone’s personal opinion. Ms. Shaw thinks teaching online research skills is even more critical than it was just a few years ago. More than ever, information is literally at the fingertips of students through smartphones, tablet computers, and other digital devices.
The Washington Post
Chicago to shutter 50 schools, largest mass closing in major U.S. city
Chicago’s board of education voted Wednesday to shutter 50 schools, the largest number of schools closed at one time by any major U.S. city.
The board, appointed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel (D), opted to close 49 elementary schools and one high school after the current school year ends. It decided to keep open four additional schools that had been recommended for closure by Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett.
San Francisco Chronicle
Senate rejects move to stop Common Core standards
A resolution pushed by tea party groups seeking to keep the state from using a set of uniform national standards for public school testing was killed Thursday by the Louisiana Senate. Senators voted 27-8 to shelve the legislation and keep it from moving any further, a day after the Senate Education Committee advanced the proposal without taking action.
Education Committee Chairman Sen. Conrad Apple, R-Metairie, asked senators to scrap the legislation, saying Sen. A.G. Crowe’s resolution contained “a number of assumptions that are not true.”