September 14, 2012
Ten schools were featured which have an innovative approach to excellence and “buzz-worthy ideas.” Delaware’s Odyssey Charter School in Wilmington was selected as one of the honor-roll schools due to its emphasis on content-based foreign language instruction.
Delaware Department of Education
New charter framework to strengthen state oversight, support of schools
State officials — recognizing the system that was established in 1995, when the state’s charter law first went into effect, was due to be refined — have been working for two years on the performance framework. In 2010, the state sought an evaluation by the National Association of Charter School Authorizers to provide an external assessment with recommendations on how to strengthen Delaware’s system. Many of the suggestions in NACSA’s report, published in March 2011, are incorporated in the framework, which was adopted by the State Board of Education this summer and goes into effect next year.
The News Journal
Military families salute core standards move
For military families, a national move to unify what’s taught through Common Core State Standards could mean one less transition each time they relocate. “It’s just a huge advantage to us,” said King, wife of an airman stationed at Dover Air Force Base. Delaware is among the states that will take part, and parents will begin to see changes this school year. Teacher Nelle Cox, who teaches at Dover Air Force Base Middle School, said when students transfer a lot of time is spent figuring out what they know – and how to bring them into the fold in a Delaware public school classroom.
New faces in classrooms
A program at MOT Charter helps connect parents to the classroom by including them as volunteers who help teachers with small-group programs, such as the literacy-boosting bingo game. A core group of about a dozen parents comes in weekly during the school day to work on teacher-selected activities with children. Last year’s pilot program included reading help for students, and this year, they plan to add math support.
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Cluster of new exams proposed for all high schoolers
All Wisconsin high school students would take a suite of new exams to gauge what they’ve learned and how on track they are to succeed in college and careers, under a new proposal. Superintendent Tony Evers is requesting funds for all 11th-graders to take the ACT exam as well as a separate career skills test starting in the 2014-15 school year. All 9th- and 10th-graders would take a pre-ACT test.
New York Times
Push to add charter schools hangs over strike
Plans to expand charter schools in Chicago are not officially on the negotiating table, but still hang heavily over the teachers’ strike. The 50,000 students who attend charter schools have remained in class during the strike. Charters play a prominent role in a national education reform agenda that includes more rigorous teacher evaluations and challenges to union seniority, issues that have proved nettlesome in the Chicago negotiations.