Education News Roundup: Oct. 22, 2012

"Field Lights" by Momboleum/CC/flickr

“Field Lights” by Momboleum/CC/flickr

Today’s Top Picks:

The media has shown us what’s really important in Utah schools: Whether East gets in the football playoffs or not.
http://goo.gl/PC27G (SLT)
and http://goo.gl/YWHAa (SLT)
and http://goo.gl/EeXFp (DN)
and http://goo.gl/0aK9w (DN)
and http://goo.gl/qLMB1 (OSE)
and http://goo.gl/R198F (PDH)
and http://goo.gl/G15u6 (KUTV)
and http://goo.gl/bJcCQ (KTVX)
and http://goo.gl/2W5Vg (KSL)
and http://goo.gl/d6JxK (KSL)
and http://goo.gl/BQu0z (KSTU)
and http://goo.gl/j0PkZ (KSTU)
and http://goo.gl/f8AVU (Yahoo Sports)
or the commentary:
http://goo.gl/heBe1 (SLT)
and http://goo.gl/ZKJED (DN)
and http://goo.gl/GwuYs (PDH)

Standard looks at the new school lunch rules.
http://goo.gl/H7jmJ (OSE)

Ed Week asks: What becomes of ESEA waivers if Romney wins?
http://goo.gl/8gGXB (Ed Week)

AP looks at Common Core implementation in New York.
http://goo.gl/ji90r (AP)

New York Times looks at a high school where it takes six years to graduate, but you get technical training and an associate’s degree along with your diploma.
http://goo.gl/y6Z0T (NYT)

Not only do the popular kids get the best dates for the junior prom, they make more money later in life, too.
http://goo.gl/Cm5Rr (WSJ)
or a copy of the study
http://goo.gl/5Vt1h

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TODAY’S HEADLINES
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UTAH

Herriman protests UHSAA decision on East High

Kids pass or fail new school lunch requirements?

Fighting poverty with education; hope for breaking the cycle of multi-generational poverty

To teach military kids, educate the educators

Setting up students in high school to succeed in college

Stuart Reid, Utah Senator, Proposes Bill That Would Require State School Board To Develop Sex Education Program For Parents

Holt Elementary School counselor uses campaign to build students up

UEA honors 10 educators with awards

Be the Change targets teen issues at Lone Peak High

Timberline Middle School starts anti-bullying program

Granite School Board to hold open house meetings on boundary changes

Group posts school board survey

Grant offers Catholic School tuition money

OWATC open house for parents, students

Schools, DSC join for career path event
DSC event focuses on post-secondary training, education

Prison pumpkins are holiday bounty for Utah schoolchildren

Fire affects outbuilding at American Fork High School

OPINION & COMMENTARY

Birds and bees
Parental sex education misses point

Thumbs up, thumbs down

Didn’t get the memo

UHSAA struggles to explain ineligibility cases for East, Timpview

In wake of the UHSAA ruling we learn, life isn’t fair, and mercy may be elusive

Penalizing the innocent; cancer run upcoming; key volleyball contests on tap

Letting those other kids lag behind: a principal responds to the new “differentiated” standards

Education mythbusters

Fiscal planning: set a little aside

The UEA’s argument for charter schools

Won’t Back Down

Red Meat Radio: Inside Utah Politics

Fairness and compassion have higher priorities in East High case

Our declining values illustrated in prep football

Don’t make substitute teachers pay for background checks

Scott Handy will adhere to appropriate methods

Bullying does not have to be a part of life

Obama’s Best-Kept Secrets

Another Charter School Test Passed
Eight of New York City’s top elementary and middle schools are charters—and four of the charters are in Harlem.

Ex-Marine turned teacher: ‘Stop demonizing me and my profession’

NATION

Debates Push Fate of Education Policies to Fore
Romney camp clear: New scrutiny looms if candidate prevails

Obama ad blasts Romney over teachers

New standards changing the way NY students learn

At Technology High School, Goal Isn’t to Finish in 4 Years

Attorney: Texas school funding ‘hopelessly broken’

Cheerleading needs sports safety rules, docs say

In Texas, a Legal Battle Over Biblical Banners

Idaho lawmaker stands by calling public schools ‘Godless’ institutions

Idaho group promoting Luna’s education overhaul won’t disclose donors

Parent trigger advocates, opponents struggle over Adelanto children’s future

Governor Patrick on Massachusetts Top Spot in Education

Getting Away With It: Pre K-O

Soldiers Lost and Found: Students Rediscover the Fallen

Popular Kids in High School Earn More Later in Life.

iPad Mini event to include education push, report says
The company is reportedly often meeting with schools to discuss the iPad’s appeal.

Blank Park Zoo uses Skype to bring lessons to rural Iowa kids

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UTAH NEWS
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Herriman protests UHSAA decision on East High

Herriman • East and Timpview had their day in front of the Utah High School Activities Association.
Now Herriman wants one.
The school has filed a formal complaint with the UHSAA, requesting another hearing in front of the board of trustees panel that made the East and Timpview rulings on the programs’ penalties for ineligible players. If the school isn’t heard within the framework of the UHSAA, the complaint warns that the Herriman parents could pursue legal action.
Herriman’s bone to pick is the seemingly dual nature of the rulings for the same offense: Timpview had to forfeit every game it played an ineligible player, and East forfeited only enough games to put it in a No. 4 seed.
The ruling directly affects the No. 1-seeded Mustangs, who could face East in the first round next Saturday if the Leopards top Mountain View in a Tuesday play-in game.
But the administrators and coaches at the school call the issue much bigger than a game. On Sunday night, the school staged a small gathering of a few dozen coaches, administrators, parents and players over their frustration with a ruling they feel shows the UHSAA’s inconsistency on its most serious issues.
http://goo.gl/PC27G (SLT)

http://goo.gl/YWHAa (SLT)

http://goo.gl/EeXFp (DN)

http://goo.gl/0aK9w (DN)

http://goo.gl/qLMB1 (OSE)

http://goo.gl/R198F (PDH)

http://goo.gl/G15u6 (KUTV)

http://goo.gl/bJcCQ (KTVX)

http://goo.gl/2W5Vg (KSL)

http://goo.gl/d6JxK (KSL)

http://goo.gl/BQu0z (KSTU)

http://goo.gl/j0PkZ (KSTU)

http://goo.gl/f8AVU (Yahoo Sports)

Kids pass or fail new school lunch requirements?

Kail Chugg finds this year’s school lunches hard to swallow.
“I know the goal is to make it healthier, but when people don’t eat it, they can’t eat better,” said Kail, 18, a Bonneville High School senior. “If it doesn’t taste good, I don’t want to eat it. There are days where you just don’t want to eat, because it’s that unappealing.”
Kail and students across the nation are upset about school lunch changes made by local districts to comply with the USDA’s Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, intended to boost nutrition and fight childhood obesity. The new requirements have resulted in lower-calorie, lower-fat meals with more fruit and vegetables, less protein and grains and smaller portion sizes.
http://goo.gl/H7jmJ (OSE)

Fighting poverty with education; hope for breaking the cycle of multi-generational poverty

SALT LAKE CITY — Education is the brightest hope for breaking the cycle of multi-generational poverty. But kids born to poor, under-educated parents aren’t likely to succeed at school without help that targets their family situations, and that help is most needed during their earliest years.
Those are among conclusions of “Child Poverty and Its Lasting Consequence,” a study by the Washington, D.C.-based think tank the Urban Institute.
http://goo.gl/lQx1u (DN)

To teach military kids, educate the educators

More than 2 million children face the unique challenge of having military parents.
Children in military families often move six to nine times between preschool and graduation, and many go months without seeing a parent who is on active duty. Frequent moves can disrupt their social lives and academic progress, while personal knowlege of the danger of war can isolate them from peers for whom war might seem irrelevant.
That is why the American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and the Military Child Education Coalition have partnered with Joining Forces to create Operation Educate the Educators, which identifies and prepares schools and teachers to meet the needs of military children.
http://goo.gl/9KV73 (DN)

Setting up students in high school to succeed in college

Colleges in the United States aren’t producing enough graduates to keep up with future job demands, so reversing low college completion rates is critical, says an October 2012 study by the National School Boards Association and Center for Public Education. The study found that the right kind of preparation in high school could make a big difference in keeping students on track for college completion.
http://goo.gl/AWuT9 (DN)

Stuart Reid, Utah Senator, Proposes Bill That Would Require State School Board To Develop Sex Education Program For Parents

Republican Utah state Sen. Stuart Reid is sponsoring a bill that would require the state school board to develop a sex education program for parents, so that they might feel better equipped to teach their children about sex in the privacy of their own homes.
The proposal comes one year after Republican Gov. Gary Herbert vetoed a controversial sex education bill that would have banned Utah public schools from teaching about contraception and sexually transmitted diseases. Reid’s legislation would not alter the sex ed curriculum currently in schools, but would offer an alternate setting for such discussions that is both free and voluntary.
http://goo.gl/dP0fZ (HuffPo)

Holt Elementary School counselor uses campaign to build students up

CLEARFIELD — Katrina Beddes — the Utah School Counselor of the Year — recently noticed that Holt Elementary School students were frequently making negative comments about themselves, their peers and their teachers.
Beddes — one of five finalists for National School Counselor of the Year — took it upon herself to craft a way to reverse this negative trend and to improve the atmosphere throughout her school.
Her concern resulted in a “Fill Your Bucket” campaign composed of fluffy, colored pompoms and a little bucket for each student in the school.
When a student receives a compliment from another student, they put a pompom in their own bucket and in the bucket of the person who complimented them.
The result: students looking for ways to build each other up.
http://goo.gl/zc1pS (OSE)

UEA honors 10 educators with awards

The Arch Coal Foundation and Utah Education Association honored 10 educators with Excellence in Teaching awards Thursday night.
Award recipients were nominated by their peers and chosen based on their work with students. Each winner received an award and $1,500 from the Arch Coal Foundation at a KeyBank Superstars in Education banquet.
http://goo.gl/EXW8H (SLT)

http://goo.gl/7ocxJ (OSE)

Be the Change targets teen issues at Lone Peak High

‘DJ Carp, drop that beat!” yelled Kyle Nelson, a Lone Peak teacher and facilitator. One hundred students followed suit and started grooving to the beat in the gymnasium turned workshop cocoon on Friday. They laughed, ran, jumped and even learned a flash mob dance in an effort to break down barriers and then address some of the real issues that weigh on teenagers toda
Last year Lone Peak High School lost three students within months of each other to drug- and alcohol- related deaths and suicides. The day was designed with activities and information to help students be the change that they want to see in the world — to help them “notice, choose and act.”
Nelson told students that sometimes people turn to drugs or alcohol to kill the pain, but there are healthy ways to release the emotional pressure that comes with problems.
http://goo.gl/Cbxad (PDH)

Timberline Middle School starts anti-bullying program

With cyberspace now offering a new medium to torment people, there has been an explosion of bullying events in the news, some even contributing to deadly ends.
Timberline Middle School in Alpine — with 1,277 students — has taken steps to discover instances of bullying occurring on school property and educating students on how to combat and end it.
http://goo.gl/0RwsA (PDH)

Granite School Board to hold open house meetings on boundary changes

WEST VALLEY CITY — The Granite Board of Education is holding open house meetings on proposed school boundary changes.
The district is building a new elementary school at 5194 W. Highbury Parkway, and several neighborhoods are being reviewed for realignment. The open house will run from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 1, at Valley Crest Elementary, 5240 W. 3100 South.
The board also is considering a boundary change for Granger and Rolling Meadows elementary schools.
http://goo.gl/d7tQH (DN)

Group posts school board survey

As part of their work to support well-informed public engagement and provide voters with information, Utahns for Public Schools recently invited all 18 State School Board candidates to respond to seven questions concerning public education in Utah. Their responses are posted on utahnsforpublicschools.org.
Member organizations, including PTA, Utah School Boards Association and Utah Education Association, are sending the responses statewide to their respective memberships and community representatives on the UTPS Board are sharing the survey responses with their email lists.
http://goo.gl/xpJCL (SGS)

Grant offers Catholic School tuition money

Wells Fargo, which has given a grant to Utah Catholic Schools for the last 10 years, this year donated $12,500 for tuition assistance.
http://goo.gl/c5INF (IC)

OWATC open house for parents, students

OGDEN — Ogden-Weber Tech on Tuesday will host a Parent Night open house for high school students and their parents.
The event will be 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the Health Technology building on the main campus, 200 N. Washington Blvd.
http://goo.gl/IlpsD (OSE)

Schools, DSC join for career path event
DSC event focuses on post-secondary training, education

ST. GEORGE — Washington County School District counselors and Dixie State College will present the sixth annual College and Career Night from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Burns Arena on the campus of Dixie State College.
The event is free and open to the public.
http://goo.gl/FEIIp (SGS)

Prison pumpkins are holiday bounty for Utah schoolchildren

Halloween came early Monday for special needs students at Kauri Sue Hamilton School, 2728 W. 13400 South in the Jordan School District. Hundreds of pumpkins grown by inmates at the Utah State Prison were delivered to the school, the first of several donations that will be made to organizations in the Salt Lake Valley. Inmates grow the pumpkins from seeds donated by Mountain Valley Seeds and harvest them through the summer. After the Halloween project, inmates begin growing poinsettias to deliver to children and the Capitol Building for the holiday season. Female inmates also build gingerbread scenes and donate them to the Festival of Trees.
http://goo.gl/ror0T (SLT)

http://goo.gl/HFujm (DN)

Fire affects outbuilding at American Fork High School

Fire crews responded to a fire on the American Fork High School campus Sunday afternoon.
The fire involved track and field sporting equipment according to Jon Zwahlen, an American Fork firefighter. The fire was extinguished quickly and no one was hurt. The fire is under investigation.
http://goo.gl/obNJ8 (PDH)

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OPINION & COMMENTARY
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Birds and bees
Parental sex education misses point
Salt Lake Tribune editorial

One Utah legislator wants public schools to get more into the business of teaching about the birds and bees. No, we’re not talking about doing a better job of teaching teenagers about sex, contraception and sexually transmitted diseases — topics young Utahns surely need to better understand.
No, what Sen. Stuart Reid, R-Ogden, wants school teachers to do is give parents the facts so that they can, in turn, instruct their children, and public schools in the Beehive State can continue neglecting, by order of law, this most basic and necessary area of health education.
Excuse us, but we have to say this is a goofy, back-door way to address the very real problem of ignorance about sexuality that’s so prevalent in our state.
http://goo.gl/uVgsn

Thumbs up, thumbs down
(Ogden) Standard-Examiner editorial

Thumbs up: To the unstoppable teen, Hunter Woodhall, 13, who attends Syracuse Junior High School. Despite having both legs amputated as a baby, the active, athletic Hunter is the Shriners Hospitals for Children ambassador for 2012-13.
http://goo.gl/huzMm

Didn’t get the memo
Salt Lake Tribune commentary by columnist Paul Rolly

The Utah lieutenant governor’s office is running public service announcements urging residents to log onto its site, vote.utah.gov, to get sample ballots, poll locations and other information about voting this year.
The tagline on the ad says, “Democracy: It’s better when you participate.”
That should cause some apoplexy in the Utah Legislature, which went to great pains during its 2011 session to mandate that schoolchildren be taught the United States is a republic, not a democracy.
http://goo.gl/ZoNrJ

UHSAA struggles to explain ineligibility cases for East, Timpview
Salt Lake Tribune analysis by columnist Kyle Goon

The Utah High School Activities Association’s Midvale headquarters was inundated with angry emails and calls Thursday when it released its executive committee’s decision to force the East football team to forfeit seven games and exclude the Leopards from the state tournament.
Now that the UHSAA’s board of trustees has reversed that decision, allowing the No. 1-ranked Leopards to play this postseason, executive director Rob Cuff says he’s hearing more of the same — just from the other side of the fence.
“For us, it just seemed like a no-win situation,” said Cuff, who was not part of either decision but was charged with explaining both on back-to-back days. “It hasn’t been easy for the panels. It hasn’t been easy for anyone. Either decision would affect certain schools.”
But only one of the decisions — Friday’s announcement that East would play — has finality to it. There is no appeal process; only the possibility that the same board would convene to hear new evidence.
The problem for many coaches in the state is that the ruling appears to set a new — and troubling — precedent.
http://goo.gl/heBe1

In wake of the UHSAA ruling we learn, life isn’t fair, and mercy may be elusive
Deseret News commentary by columnist Amy Donaldson

“I have always found that mercy bears richer fruits than strict justice.”
–Abraham Lincoln
Let’s start this difficult conversation by establishing one very important reality: Life isn’t fair.
In fact, it’s inherently unfair.
And as difficult as that is for us to accept at times, it’s a much more difficult concept to teach. Explaining to someone else that life’s injustices are actually opportunities and blessings makes one seem like an insensitive jerk.
Also, if we just accepted life’s inequities, we’d never change unjust situations. Our innate response to unfairness is to protest.
Sometimes that is helpful, and sometimes that is crippling.
http://goo.gl/ZKJED

Penalizing the innocent; cancer run upcoming; key volleyball contests on tap
(Provo) Daily Herald commentary by columnist Beky Beaton

Now that the dust from last week’s UHSAA football rules hearings appears to be settling, it’s time to assess the fallout.
First of all, I have to give full credit to the Timpview administration for self-reporting the new violations, however inadvertent they might have been. That should begin to rebuild the trust that must exist within the community.
The real shame of all such situations is that young people who’ve done nothing wrong must suffer the consequences of someone else’s errors, whether they are deliberate acts or not.
http://goo.gl/GwuYs

Letting those other kids lag behind: a principal responds to the new “differentiated” standards
Deseret News commentary by columnist Mary McConnell

I’m re-posting a comment from charter school director Carolyn Sharette here, in hopes that her stinging words will reach more readers . . . and touch more consciences.
She’s responding to my blog reports that the great majority of states, including Utah, have asked for and won federal government approval to set lower educational standards for minority kids.
In her comments, Ms. Sharette mentions that some schools – and yes, most are charters – have beaten the odds and helped these same minority kids achieve results that suburban school districts would envy.
http://goo.gl/PdUF8

Education mythbusters
Deseret News commentary by columnist Mary McConnell

Just a quick post to share an op-ed from yesterday’s Philadelphia Inquirer. Two educational researchers attempt to “bust” five “myths about education.”
What I like is that the list should give some pause to almost everyone
http://goo.gl/71sLo

Fiscal planning: set a little aside
Senate Site commentary by Rep. Jim Nielson and Sen. Lyle Hillyard

Throughout most of the 20th century, Kiribati, a Pacific island nation, based much of its economy on mining guano for fertilizer. In 1956, the island set up an endowment fund to invest taxes raised from these mining operations. Today, the guano is long gone, but the pile of money ($400 million) remains. That is enough, reported the British news magazine The Economist to boost the islands’ GDP by a sixth. The same report suggested that rather than spend all our natural resource revenues in boom times, it is wiser to save for the generations that will follow long after the resources are exhausted.
Are our needs today more important and more urgent than those of our grandchildren? Do Utah’s natural resources and their associated severance taxes belong to every generation or just those that exploit them? Honest answers to these questions suggest that, like Kiribati, we should invest a portion of the revenues from our natural resources for future generations.
But that’s not what we’re doing.
http://goo.gl/ctof8

The UEA’s argument for charter schools
Commentary by Charter Solutions President Lincoln Fillmore

Sharon Gallagher-Fishbaugh didn’t realize it, but in her remarks before the general assembly at the UEA Convention this morning, she made a very compelling argument to break up the public education monopoly with more charter schools and scholarships for private schools.
I know. Recover from your shock. I was at the UEA Convention. Harry Wong spoke. When I was a teacher, I used his structure and philosophy to manage my classroom and teach my students. That’s how a schlub like me became a decent teachers.
SGF made her pitch to all the new teachers to join the UEA by saying that none of them were in the room to be political, but that every decision that affects their classroom is a political one. The amount of money she has to spend, the way she’s evaluated, the curriculum, and the tests the students take.
She’s right.
http://goo.gl/9LEPm

Won’t Back Down
Commentary by Charter Solutions President Lincoln Fillmore

I balanced my visit to the UEA convention today with a visit in the late afternoon to see Won’t Back Down, which is a movie in the tradition of Waiting for Superman, but is a fictionalized drama instead of a documentary (though the movie says it’s based on actual events).
The movie only has a score of 33% at Rotten Tomatoes. I usually agree with that site, so my expectations were low. I’m biased in the movie’s direction, though, which helped me like it quite a bit.
http://goo.gl/VCNZj

Red Meat Radio: Inside Utah Politics

Kory Holdaway
http://goo.gl/mN4PS

Fairness and compassion have higher priorities in East High case
Deseret News letter from T. G. Mahas

When the Utah High School Activities Association voted to vacate East High’s 2012 football season on such a small administrative discrepancy, it was the greatest travesty in high school sports history. Using Timpview circumstances as a model is beyond logic. Timpview got to play all their games and experienced the joy. Now taking away their titles has no consequences. The players are laughing at this type of discipline.
Using Highland High residents to influence the committee is wrong. He should have rescued himself. East High’s 100 plus players deserve the right to play; then take away all their games and trophies — as they did with Timpview.
Fairness and compassion have higher priorities over vengeance and revenge.
http://goo.gl/wZMnt

Our declining values illustrated in prep football
(Ogden) Standard-Examiner letter from Bruce Hunt

Concerning the Oct. 19 sports news article, “UHSAA punishes East, Timpview,” what has this society become? What are we teaching our children? Do anything to win, no matter what the cost? I refer to the problems they are having at the high school level with ineligible players, money being unaccounted for, referees who swing games the way they want, out and out cheating. What’s next? Will fathers pay off coaches to play their sons? Will profits from last year’s games be used to buy a new car for next year’s quarterback?
Should we start pumping our children full of steroids at an early age so they can be stars at the high school level? Where is it going to stop?
The Utah High School Association has to step up with stiff penalties. They have to set an example with those who are not following the rules. This is a serious problem that has to be addressed.
Open enrollment is nothing but a way to cheat and it should all be closed. If not, then all the schools, who have open enrollment, should be put in their own region and play each other.
http://goo.gl/PvBzJ

Don’t make substitute teachers pay for background checks
(Ogden) Standard-Examiner letter from Alan Millard

This letter is in response to a letter sent to substitute teachers by Becky Williams, human resource director of Davis School District. The letter was dated Oct. 12, 2012. There is now a requirement that all substitute teachers be finger-printed, have a criminal background check. The teacher has to pay for it.
It is the human resource office that is requiring this be done, and the very least it can do as our employer is pay for this procedure, which is already at the teachers’ inconvenience. I have not received any kind of a raise since I signed on as a substitute teacher over a decade ago.
http://goo.gl/KFXja

Scott Handy will adhere to appropriate methods
(Ogden) Standard-Examiner letter from Clark Hogan

I would like to recommend that the voters of Ogden City give considerable thought to the upcoming school board election. I commend the Ogden School District for the improvements that have been recently implemented and there are some great stories of success. Unfortunately, the answers to some of the Ogden School District’s issues have yet to be addressed effectively. The Ogden School Board needs Scott Handy to help bring a perspective of synergy and unity to both the people and the process of education.
Scott Handy has a teaching degree and experience in education, valuable business expertise, and above all, an ethical compass that will bolster the effectiveness of the Ogden School Board in attaining the success that our students deserve.
http://goo.gl/dlOFC

Bullying does not have to be a part of life
(Provo) Daily Herald letter from Tamara Gray

I have a HUGE problem with the “Bullying just a part of life” letter. Yes, many people are bullied, but to say that children that are bullied have parents that “coddle them and don’t let them experience life” is ignorant. It’s people like her and parents of bullies that hide their head in the sand saying that “bullying prepares you for the real world,” it’s no big deal, my child would never do that, or everyone gets bullied, etc. You obviously have never had a child have his/her arms held behind their back, swung around, and hit their head against a brick wall at school. Or had a teacher join in or start the ridiculing of your child that gives license to others to do the same.
http://goo.gl/2f6gD

Obama’s Best-Kept Secrets
New York Times commentary by columnist THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN

ONE thing that has struck me about the debates so far is how little President Obama has conveyed about what I think are his two most innovative domestic programs. While I don’t know how Obamacare will turn out, I’m certain that my two favorite Obama initiatives will be transformative.
His Race to the Top program in education has already set off a nationwide wave of school reform, and his Race to the Top in vehicles — raising the mileage standards for American-made car and truck fleets from 27.5 miles per gallon to 54.5 m.p.g. between now and 2025 — is already spurring a wave of innovation in auto materials, engines and software. Obama mentioned both briefly in the last debate, but I want to talk about them more, because I think they are the future of progressive politics in this age of austerity: government using its limited funds and steadily rising performance standards to stimulate states and businesses to innovate better economic, educational and environmental practices.
While it is too scary for Obama to tell people in so many words, his races to the top in schools and cars are both based on one brutal fact: “The high-wage, medium-skilled job is over,” as Stefanie Sanford, a senior education expert at the Gates Foundation, puts it. The only high-wage jobs, whether in manufacturing or services, will be high-skilled ones, requiring more and better education, and Obama’s two races to the top aim to produce both more high-skill jobs and more high-skilled workers.
http://goo.gl/aOf4U

Another Charter School Test Passed
Eight of New York City’s top elementary and middle schools are charters—and four of the charters are in Harlem.
Wall Street Journal op-ed by EVA MOSKOWITZ, founder and chief executive of the Success Academy Charter Schools

New York City recently released official progress reports for the city’s 1,230 schools, including measures of how each school compares with other schools that have similar students. The reports provide yet more proof that charter schools—which outperformed traditional public schools by a wide margin—are working. Eight of the top 11 elementary and middle schools by student performance are charters, and four of those charters are in Harlem.
What might be most notable about the city’s findings, however, is that Harlem’s experiment with school choice has improved educational outcomes not just for the select few (some 10,500 currently) who win lotteries to attend charter schools. Although critics claim that charter schools succeed at the expense of district-run schools—because, the argument goes, charters “cherry pick” students, leaving behind those who are hardest to educate—Harlem’s results prove otherwise.
Of New York City’s 32 school districts, three serve students in Harlem. Suppose we treat all of Harlem’s charter and district schools as a single district (while separating out the Upper West Side, which shares a district with Harlem). In 2006, the third-graders in this Harlem district were near the bottom of the citywide heap—28th in math and 26th in English. Today, this overall group of Harlem students ranks 16th in math and 18th in English.
http://goo.gl/0FHaa

Ex-Marine turned teacher: ‘Stop demonizing me and my profession’
Washington Post commentary by Matthew Swope, who has been teaching physics for 10 years and before entering the teaching profession, was a Marine and a police officer

I am a teacher. Year 10. High school physics. I am a professional educator in a field that demands professional credentials, continuing education, skill and knowledge based licensing exams and background checks including fingerprints so I am deemed responsible enough and safe enough to work with children. I’m a mandated reporter of physical abuse, neglect, and sexual abuse.
There, now I’ve established my bona fides and authority to speak knowledgeably on the subject.
Oh, wait, I have to knock out the ones who claim I’ve only ever taught. I served in and was honorably discharged from the United States Marine Corps. I then spent six years carrying a badge and a gun and worked a beat as a police officer in a city of 180+ thousand people. I’ve done other things than teach.
When I was a cop, if crime went up on my beat they didn’t blame me for not working hard enough. They brought in additional officers to beef up the presence and manpower. They did dispassionate studies of data to identify problems, communicated the results to me, and let me help decide how to address them.
http://goo.gl/lrtxn

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NATIONAL NEWS
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Debates Push Fate of Education Policies to Fore
Romney camp clear: New scrutiny looms if candidate prevails
Education Week

As the two presidential campaigns continue to sharpen how they would approach the federal role in education if victorious, advisers to President Barack Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney have made it clear that the fate of waivers under the No Child Left Behind Act may be decided by the November election.
During two debates last week featuring education advisers to the rival campaigns, surrogates for Mr. Romney emphasized that the waiver flexibility granted by the U.S. Department of Education to 34 states and the District of Columbia would—at a minimum—be reviewed and could even be revoked if their candidate wins.
The waivers are “not about flexibility. They’re very prescriptive,” F. Philip Handy, a former chairman of the Florida state board of education and an education adviser to Mr. Romney, said at an Oct. 15 debate at Teachers College, Columbia University.
Mr. Handy said Mr. Romney plans to review all executive orders, and waivers, though not technically executive orders, would also be reviewed. He said a Romney administration would push for reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, whose current version is the decade-old NCLB law, and if that didn’t happen, would try to return to the law as written.
http://goo.gl/8gGXB

Obama ad blasts Romney over teachers
USA Today

President Obama’s campaign is playing the education card against Mitt Romney with a new ad attacking him over teachers and class size.
The ad cites a pair of comments by Romney, one of which is: “We all like school teachers. It’s a wonderful thing… But hiring school teachers is not going to raise the growth of the U.S. economy.”
The other Romney quote: “All the talk about we need smaller classroom size, look that’s promoted by the teachers unions to hire more teachers.”
Says the pro-Obama ad: “President Obama has a different view. He believes smaller class sizes and great teachers are a key to a stronger economy and a stronger middle class.”
http://goo.gl/qXDmt

New standards changing the way NY students learn
Associated Press via Wall Street Journal

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Sam Radford expected to pay for college when he sent a daughter off to Morgan State and a son to Norfolk State University. What bothered him was paying for remedial courses to get them up to speed with where they should have been after high school.
It’s something parents of about a quarter of all New York students entering college now do.
That’s why, with three sons still in Buffalo Public Schools, Radford is thrilled at New York state’s implementation this year of rigorous new English and math standards whose buzzwords are “college and career ready,” even for younger students.
“It’s frustrating to have to pay for college courses that are catching your child up versus paying for a credit-bearing course,” Radford said. “It does (children) no good to go spend six and seven hours in school every day and then come out of there and not be in a position to compete.”
New York is one of 45 states that have adopted the Common Core standards, a uniform set of benchmarks which include a dozen shifts in the way students are taught. From kindergarten through 12th grade, the goal is building an educational foundation that supports whatever follows.
http://goo.gl/ji90r

At Technology High School, Goal Isn’t to Finish in 4 Years
New York Times

Flakes of green paint are peeling from the third-floor windowsills. Some desks are patched with tape, others etched with graffiti. The view across the street is of a row of boarded-up brownstones.
The building and its surroundings in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, may look run-down, but inside 150 Albany Avenue may sit the future of the country’s vocational education: The first 230 pupils of a new style of school that weaves high school and college curriculums into a six-year program tailored for a job in the technology industry.
By 2017, the first wave of students of P-Tech — Pathways in Technology Early College High School — is expected to emerge with associate’s degrees in applied science in computer information systems or electromechanical engineering technology, following a course of studies developed in consultation with I.B.M.
http://goo.gl/y6Z0T

Attorney: Texas school funding ‘hopelessly broken’
Associated Press

AUSTIN, Texas — Attorneys for hundreds of school districts told a judge Monday that Texas’ system for funding public schools is “hopelessly broken” and could eventually cost the state billions of dollars in lost tax revenues.
The districts were reacting in part to lawmakers cutting $5.4 billion from public schools nearly 18 months ago.
But their attorneys also say simply restoring funding to previous levels won’t be enough to fix the fundamentally flawed way Texas pays for public education. They point out that the cuts have come even as the state requires schools to prepare students for standardized tests that are getting more difficult, and amid a statewide boom in the number of low-income students that are especially costly to educate.
http://goo.gl/qPsII

http://goo.gl/FJDGo (Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

Cheerleading needs sports safety rules, docs say
Associated Press

CHICAGO — Cheerleading isn’t just jumping and waving pompoms – it has become as athletic and potentially as dangerous as a sport and should be designated one to improve safety, the nation’s leading group of pediatricians says.
The number of cheerleaders injured each year has climbed dramatically in the last two decades. Common stunts that pose risks include tossing and flipping cheerleaders in the air and creating human pyramids that reach 15 feet high or more.
In a new policy statement released online Monday in the journal Pediatrics, the American Academy of Pediatrics says school sports associations should designate cheerleading as a sport, and make it subject to safety rules and better supervision. That would include on-site athletic trainers, limits on practice time and better qualified coaches, the academy says.
Just like other athletes, cheerleaders should be required to do conditioning exercises and undergo physical exams before joining the squad, the new policy says.
http://goo.gl/HRHMO

http://goo.gl/rpGwv (USAT)

http://goo.gl/GBU0Q (Pediatrics)

In Texas, a Legal Battle Over Biblical Banners
New York Times

KOUNTZE, Tex. — In a barrage of recent e-mails, telephone calls and letters to his office, Kevin Weldon has been called some of the worst things a Christian man in this predominantly Christian town can be called: un-Christian, and even anti-Christian.
“I’ve been in this business a long, long time,” said Mr. Weldon, the superintendent of the 1,300-student school district in Kountze, northeast of Houston. “People that know me know how I am. Even though I got those things, I’m going to be honest with you, this may sound very flippant, but it just went in one ear and out the other.”
Mr. Weldon, 53, is in a position that few superintendents in small-town Texas have found themselves: taking a stand on religious expression that has put him at odds with the majority of his students and his neighbors, not to mention the governor, the attorney general and, some in Kountze believe, his God.
http://goo.gl/VBBjs

Idaho lawmaker stands by calling public schools ‘Godless’ institutions
Spokane (WA) Spokesman-Review

Rep. Vito Barbieri is defending a statement posted on his re-election campaign website in which he called on Christians to pull their children out of Idaho’s “Godless” public schools.
In a debate on TV Channel 19 between Barbieri, R-Dalton Gardens, and his Democratic challenger Cheryl Stransky, also from Dalton Gardens, Barbieri was asked about this statement posted on his website regarding public schools: “One more thing: If you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and God, then pull your kids out of that Godless institution.”
Barbieri told questioners from the Coeur Group that he stands by the statement. “My words exactly,” he said.
Barbieri, a first-term state lawmaker who’s seeking a second term, said, “The first alternative is home schooling. You have control of your curriculum. Even with the Luna laws, we weren’t addressing curriculum, we were addressing how it was delivered. If you want to have control of your children’s curriculum, home school. If that’s not an alternative, private education needs funds.”
http://goo.gl/6fbxn

Idaho group promoting Luna’s education overhaul won’t disclose donors
Associated Press via (Boise) Idaho Statesman

BOISE, Idaho — A group promoting Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Luna’s education overhaul refused Friday to disclose its donors, instead suggesting it be allowed to take back its money.
Education Voters of Idaho’s new lawyer, Christ Troupis, told Secretary of State Ben Ysursa that his client is a nonprofit organization that’s exempt from campaign disclosure under federal law.
Still, Troupis says the group – created Aug. 16 amid the battle over Luna’s overhaul – would take back its $200,000 contribution that went for TV commercials touting the education changes, in exchange for Ysursa dropping demands that donors’ names be released.
Troupis also went on the counterattack, saying Ysursa’s efforts to secure the identities of Education Voters of Idaho’s financiers were having a chilling effect on the group’s free-speech rights.
http://goo.gl/PxPkn

Parent trigger advocates, opponents struggle over Adelanto children’s future
San Bernardino (CA) Sun

ADELANTO – Inside Christina Purcell’s classroom at Desert Trails Elementary School, there was no hint of the political turmoil going on outside, just a few hundred feet away.
“Five goes into 100 how many times?” she asked a group of 30 sixth-graders in a classroom festooned with Boston Red Sox memorabilia.
“Fifty,” came one answer.
“Twenty?” another student asked.
“Did you hear the answer?” Purcell said. “Twenty.”
Next door, at Desert Trails Park, hand-painted signs urged passersby to come in and vote:
“Our kids can’t wait,” “Yes, we can.”
After months of lead-up, members of the Desert Trails community were holding a vote on what charter school would take over the failing Adelanto Elementary School District school.
The Desert Trails Parent Union has successfully – for now, at least – invoked California’s 2010 “parent trigger” law, which allowed them to invoke a variety of sweeping changes if they collected signatures from more than half of the students’ parents.
http://goo.gl/KKoWG

Governor Patrick on Massachusetts Top Spot in Education
Bloomberg EDU Podcast

Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick discusses school reform, Common Core Curriculum Standards, broadband infrastructure needs and the commonwealth’s successful results from the National Assessment of Education Progress (NAEP), also known as the nation’s report card. He talks with Jane Williams on Bloomberg Radio’s “Bloomberg EDU.”
http://goo.gl/H5zk6

Getting Away With It: Pre K-O
Public Radio International This American Life

Producer Alex Blumberg tells the story of how Oklahoma, against huge odds, came to have the first and best publicly-funded pre-school system in the country, and how one businessman joined the fight because a cardboard box full of evidence convinced him that pre-school was the smartest business decision the state could make.
http://goo.gl/OgVtN

Soldiers Lost and Found: Students Rediscover the Fallen
Wall Street Journal

ST. JOHN, Ind.—Soon after she finished her junior year at Lake Central High School last spring, Marissa Emery visited the American war cemetery in St. Avold, France. Walking in, she could see just the blank backs of the white marble crosses, a vast, grassy field of the anonymous dead.
Only when she was standing among the grave markers did Ms. Emery turn and see that the front of each one bore a name, including that of the man she was there to visit: Cpl. Homer “Binks” Gettler. The 21-year-old soldier was killed fighting his way across France in 1944, while pining for Betty, the fiancée waiting for him at home in Indiana.
Ms. Emery gathered a pile of small stones in her T-shirt. On top of Cpl. Gettler’s cross she arranged them in the outline of a heart. She took one dark rock and threw it against the paved pathway until it broke in two. Ms. Emery placed half in the center of the heart. The other half she tucked into her backpack. That was for Betty.
Some 1,750 Indiana soldiers have lost their lives in Iraq, Afghanistan and Vietnam and many more in World War II. Ms. Emery’s high-school history teacher, Tom Clark, wants his students to know that each one comes with a story.
For 27 years, Mr. Clark has had his students track down the families of the state’s battle casualties. In hundreds of files jammed with letters, records, telegrams and photos, his classes have mapped the tides of the nation’s relationship with its wars and its dead.
http://goo.gl/5px55

Popular Kids in High School Earn More Later in Life.
Wall Street Journal

High school popularity may pay off.
A study released Monday argues those in the top fifth of the high school popularity pyramid garnered a 10% wage premium nearly 40 years after graduation, compared to those in the bottom fifth.
The study was published by the National Bureau of Economic Research. Its authors say they don’t view popularity as an “innate personality trait.” Instead, popularity pays because those who learn to play the game in high school are figuring out what they need to know to succeed when they enter the workplace. The report suggests schools may want to join their academic mission with one that helps students build their social skills.
http://goo.gl/Cm5Rr

A copy of the study
http://goo.gl/5Vt1h

iPad Mini event to include education push, report says
The company is reportedly often meeting with schools to discuss the iPad’s appeal.
C/Net

Apple’s iPad Mini could be a solid way for the company to continue its push into the education market, according to a new report.
At tomorrow’s iPad Mini event, Apple will highlight the device’s appeal to educational institutions, Bloomberg is reporting, citing a source. The source didn’t say how Apple will flex its educational muscle, but it might center on the device’s size and reduced cost.
Apple’s iPad Mini will likely be unveiled at tomorrow’s special event. The device is expected to ship with a 7.85-inch screen. The appeal to educational institutions might be its cost, which should be considerably less than the current iPad, which starts at $499. Some reports have even pegged the iPad Mini’s cheapest price at $249, putting it within striking distance of cash-strapped schools.
The iPad push is already on, according to Bloomberg’s sources. All across the U.S., Apple’s sales staff meets often with administrators to bring its tablet into schools.
http://goo.gl/rQUaF

Blank Park Zoo uses Skype to bring lessons to rural Iowa kids
Des Moines (IA) Register

As Blank Park Zoo’s Daniela Graham took out the hedgehog, the second-grade class oohed and aahed. Jessie Greiner’s students, who attend Cardinal Elementary School in Eldon, called out names, hoping to guess the animal Graham held.
While these reactions are typical for Graham, the zoo’s manager of education, using Skype to present to students sitting in a classroom more than 100 miles away was something new.
“We’ve never done something like this before,” said Graham, who presented her Creepy Crawlers program through the Internet-based video communication platform. “I was a bit nervous because we were using smaller animals, but I got the same reactions from those kids that I do when I’m doing it in person.”
Graham said the zoo would consider following up last Tuesday’s virtual field trip with other schools. If it does, zoo officials may want to send Greiner a thank-you note.
http://goo.gl/e8ukX

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CALENDAR
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USOE Calendar
http://tinyurl.com/5x9oh9

UEN News
http://www.uen.org

November 1-2:
Utah State Board of Education meeting
250 E. 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.schools.utah.gov/board/Meetings/Agenda.aspx

November 8:
Utah State Charter School Board meeting
250 E. 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://1.usa.gov/Axtt5K

November 13:
Executive Appropriations Interim Committee meeting
1 p.m., 445 State Capitol
http://www.le.utah.gov/Interim/2012/html/00002224.htm

November 14:
Education Interim Committee meeting
2 p.m., 30 House Building
http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2012&Com=INTEDU

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