May 7, 2013

May 7th, 2013

Category: News

Local News

The News Journal
Superstars in Education have their day in the spotlight
Delaware’s business community turned out in force Monday night to honor teachers creating innovative new ways to teach children. Every year since 1989, the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce has given its Superstars in Education award to a handful of schools or districts. On Monday night, the group honored this year’s recipients with a banquet in their honor, while giving out the awards. “I love this event because it celebrates the innovation going on in our schools,” Gov. Jack Markell said. “Teachers, tonight is about honoring you. Frankly, every day should be about honoring you.

Choice before Appoquinimink voters is crucial
An opinion by Richard A. Forsten, a member of the Appoquinimink School Board
I’m a fiscal conservative, a Republican, and a believer in limited government and low taxes. And, as a result, I find myself in an unusual position – I’m supporting the new Appoquinimink School District referendum on May 9. This was not an easy decision, nor was it made lightly, but as a still relatively new school board member who has been studying the district’s finances six ways to Sunday for the last several months, I believe it the right decision at this time under all of the relevant circumstances.

Future looks bright with students at STEM event
An opinion by Ted Kaufman, a former U.S. senator from Delaware
We all read a lot of headlines about how our education system needs to do more to ensure American competitiveness. It’s easy to nod your head, silently agree that something has to be done, and turn to the sports page.. Last week I watched Delaware high school and middle school students compete with each other to build structurally strong box girder beams. I was a judge at the 35th annual Delaware Technology Student Association State Conference at the Delaware State Fairgrounds in Harrington. TSA’s stated mission is “to foster personal growth, leadership, and opportunities in technology, innovation, design, and engineering. Members apply and integrate science, technology, engineering and mathematical concepts through co-curricular activities, competitive events and related programs.”

National News

The Sacramento Bee
Viewpoints: Resist urge to delay Common Core testing
Across California, teachers, parents and school administrators are working to make the transition to the new Common Core State Standards. They are asking an understandable question: Are schools ready? Let’s be candid: California’s chronically underfunded education system has been put through the financial wringer in recent years. At the height of the fiscal crisis, more than 2 million students – one child in three – attended a school in financial jeopardy.

Education News
Zynga invests in education gamification startups
San Francisco-based game company Zynga’s non-profit wing has announced that it will invest $1 million in a new program aimed at helping tech startups build games which aid children’s learning. According to Jessica E. Lessin in the Wall Street Journal, an initial handful of startups have already been selected to join an accelerator this summer. It will be hosted at the Zynga offices and Zynga employees will be provided to help product improvement.

Education Week
Rifts deepen over direction of ed. policy in U.S.
In statehouses and cities across the country, battles are raging over the direction of education policy—from the standards that will shape what students learn to how test results will be used to judge a teacher’s performance. Students and teachers, in passive resistance, are refusing to take and give standardized tests. Protesters have marched to the White House over what they see as the privatization of the nation’s schools. Professional and citizen lobbyists are packing hearings in state capitols to argue that the federal government is trying to dictate curricula through the use of common standards.

The New York Times
ACT to move toward computer-based testing
High school students will take the ACT college admissions exam by computer starting in the spring of 2015 — but at least for a while, the paper and pencil version will be available, too. “We are moving to a computer-based version, but for the foreseeable future, we will also have the paper and pencil test as an option for schools that don’t have the technological capability,” said Jon Erickson, the president of ACT’s Education Division. About 1.7 million students took the ACT in 2012, slightly more than took the SAT. The content of the ACT — a four-part exam that assesses English, reading, math and science skills, with an optional writing test — will be unchanged.

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