August 14, 2012
Christina School District adds Delaware’s first public Montessori programs
Public Montessori schooling is available for the first time to Delaware residents with the opening this month of two programs in the Christina School District. They include a preschool through grade 5 program operating under the umbrella of Bancroft Elementary School in Wilmington and a preschool program at Brookside Elementary School in Newark. The new Montessori programs in the Christina School District are three-year pilot programs.
Kentucky follows Colorado’s lead in creating nonprofit partner
The Kentucky Board of Education directed the state department to continue developing the Fund for Transforming Education in Kentucky, a 501(c)3 nonprofit group that would have its own board and would be created as an additional funding source for public education. The directive also states that Kentucky is looking to the Colorado Legacy Foundation as a potential model for the fund.
$400 million Race to Top contest for districts starts now
The Department of Education kicked off the $400 million Race to the Top competition for districts after making big changes to the contest rules to assuage school boards and prod more large districts to apply. In a nod to rural districts, the department lowered the number of students that must be served to 2,000 from 2,500 and is allowing a group of 10 districts to apply regardless of the number of students.
Can value-added be applied to teacher preparation? Scholars weigh in
Can the value-added method be used, fairly and reliably, to differentiate among teacher preparation programs? According to scholars who have studied the issue, this remains something of an open question. The Center for Analysis of Longitudinal Data in Education Research has put together several papers on this topic, complete with a plain-language discussion from the scholars about their results.
New Mass. law gives expelled students more options
Under a law signed by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick, districts will be required to provide education programs for expelled or suspended students and to more accurately report discipline data to the state. House Bill 4332 also establishes a 90-school day long maximum period of exclusion and requires schools to consider alternative disciplines before suspending or expelling students.