Education News Roundup: May 22, 2105

48Education News Roundup

Today’s Top Picks:

 

Rep. Jon Cox floats a bill that would make the state superintendent an elected position and the state board a gubernatorial appointment.

http://go.uen.org/3Iw (SLT)

 

Or you can listen to Utah State Board of Education Chairman David L. Crandall and Associate State Superintendent Angela O. Stallings discuss the Board with Senate President Wayne Niederhauser.

http://go.uen.org/3J2 (KTKK) (audio)

 

For those of you into education governance minutia, Utah and Nebraska are the two states with nonpartisan, elected boards that appoint the superintendent. States with an appointed board and an elected superintendent (with partisan/nonpartisan status noted in parentheses): Arizona (partisan), California (nonpartisan), Georgia (partisan), Idaho (partisan), Indiana (partisan), Montana (partisan), North Carolina (partisan), North Dakota (nonpartisan), Oklahoma (partisan), and Wyoming (partisan). We should note that Washington kinda-sorta follows this pattern, however, the governor appoints seven of the board members, local boards elect five members, and private schools elect one. The Washington superintendent is a nonpartisan race.

http://go.uen.org/3Jh (NASBE)

 

Among those appointed board-elected superintendent states, Arizona is currently having a messy fight over just who does the Arizona Office of Education work for: the governor’s board or the elected superintendent?

http://go.uen.org/3IC (Arizona Republic)

 

BYU and USOE team up to train technology and engineering teachers.

http://go.uen.org/3II (PDH)

 

Logan elementary students get some programming practice.

http://go.uen.org/3IL (LHJ)

 

The U releases a study of student discipline involving American Indian students in Utah.

http://go.uen.org/3J9 (High Country News) or a copy of the study http://go.uen.org/3Ja (University of Utah)

 

How interested in student data privacy are state legislatures? 177 bills have been introduced in 45 states so far this year.

http://go.uen.org/3J4 (Ed Week)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

————————————————————

TODAY’S HEADLINES

————————————————————

 

 

UTAH

 

Draft bill seeks education compromise, would make Utah superintendent elected, state school board appointed Education » Bill author hopes to break years-long impasse on the issue.

 

Preparing the next generation of technology and engineering teachers

 

Local enthusiasts help students program computers

 

American Indian students in Utah face harsh discipline Research finds they are referred to law enforcement and arrested more than any other group.

 

Auto skills honed at hands-on competition

 

New principal of Ridgeline High School has much to do before students begin attending in 2016

 

Cache School District announces three new principals at the elementary level

 

School board weighs food program options, hires new principal

 

Sandy Teen Honored For Volunteerism At National Award Ceremony In Washington, D.C.

 

Hillcrest students, others show support for fallen classmates

 

Facebook comment-sparked lockout at Syracuse High School lifted

 

Social worker ordered to remain in jail after arrest for having sex with a teenage client

 

Salt Lake Community College students protest tar sands mining

 

Off In the World They Go

Caps off: Utah County high school graduation dates, valedictorians

 

Area graduates remember, laugh at commencements

 

All-night graduation parties may lead to drowsy driving accidents

 

Inside Our Schools

 

Head Start preschool program praised, criticized as it commemorates 50th anniversary

 

 


 

 

 

OPINION & COMMENTARY

 

Utah Legislative Update

 

Chalkboards and challenges: A tribute to teachers

 

‘Clas’ of 2015? Graduation medals get a C-minus

 

Sex ed: What do our kids need to know?

 

Put people in control

 

Why diverse cities are smartly bucking the dangerous opt-out movement Black and Latino families can least afford to ignore honest measures of students’ academic progress

 

At Last, Scrutiny for Public-Union Deals A growing movement is opening labor negotiations so taxpayers can see how their money is being spent.

 

From Bad to Worse

The GOP budget would worsen cuts to key education programs like Pell Grants.

 

Jeb Bush’s big weakness on education might not really matter

 

Startup Teacher Education

A fresh take on teacher credentialing

 

 


 

 

 

NATION

 

State Lawmakers Balance Concerns on Student-Data Privacy State lawmakers weighing advocate, industry views

 

APS teachers burn their evaluations in protest

 

Mississippi education agency to tweak state standards

 

Douglas – Arizona Board of Education fight goes to court

 

Minnesota education layoffs could begin July 1 with bill veto

 

Survey shows Western students less likely to be enrolled in music classes

 

How Do You Motivate Kids To Stop Skipping School?

 

Schools turn to Propane Buses as Stricter Emissions Standards Loom

 

 

 

 

————————————————————

UTAH NEWS

————————————————————

 

Draft bill seeks education compromise, would make Utah superintendent elected, state school board appointed Education » Bill author hopes to break years-long impasse on the issue.

 

Should the state school board be partisan, nonpartisan or appointed?

Lawmakers have debated that questions for years and became trapped in a stalemate over the issue in March.

But Ephraim Republican Rep. Jon Cox said Wednesday he is working on a compromise.

“I think this proposal tries to bring all three of those [ideas] together,” Cox said. “I’m trying to thread the needle here.”

Under Cox’s bill, currently in draft form for interim study, Utah’s elected state school board would be replaced with one that is appointed by the governor.

But in a new option for the years-long debate, the bill would also require a nonpartisan election for the position of state superintendent, who heads the state Office of Education and is currently selected by board members.

“We’ve had that debate for years and years,” Cox said. “It kind of feels like a broken record, and in this particular case, I’m trying to break that impasse with a different solution.”

http://go.uen.org/3Iw (SLT)

 

 


 

 

 

Preparing the next generation of technology and engineering teachers

 

What could you make with a piece of foam, two 2x4s and an old Rollerblade? Michelle Whitaker and her fellow classmates were able to take these seemingly unrelated objects and assemble them into a prosthetic leg.

“We then raced each other around the classroom on our new legs,” Whitaker said.

While it all might seem like fun and games, this project is part of Brigham Young University’s Technology and Engineering Education (TEE) program. Whitaker and the other students in the program are preparing to teach in the field of technology and engineering with a hands-on innovative approach. It seems to be working.

“Through this activity we discovered many of the considerations that must go into designing prosthetics in order to make them most effective and comfortable, ” Whitaker said.

Graduates of the TEE program work with BYU’s McKay School of Education and the Utah State Office of Education to certify to teach technology and engineering.

http://go.uen.org/3II (PDH)

 

 


 

 

 

Local enthusiasts help students program computers

 

It’s about the size of a deck of cards but can do amazing things.

The Raspberry Pi is a single-board hobby computer that was invented to teach kids programming. On Tuesday, a local group of Raspberry Pi enthusiasts set up a “jam” at Wilson Elementary for students and community members to come and see what this little computer can do. Enthusiasts can also show off what they’ve been able to do with their own Raspberry Pi, including play Super Nintendo games.

“The newest one, the Raspberry Pi 2, is powerful enough to be a stand-alone desktop computer. You use an SD card instead of hard drive. You can plug it into a monitor and keyboard and mouse, and it’s online,” said Cody Erekson, a software engineer and a volunteer at Wilson Elementary. “It’s a Linux computer, and it can do anything that any computer can do.”

Wilson Elementary has science, technology, engineering, art and math clubs, one of which focuses on teaching kids how to use Raspberry Pis. The small computer was created to help give college students more of a baseline in technical background.

http://go.uen.org/3IL (LHJ)

 

 


 

 

 

American Indian students in Utah face harsh discipline Research finds they are referred to law enforcement and arrested more than any other group.

 

One day in 2014, in Utah’s San Juan School District, two middle school boys went looking for their teacher. The district serves the largest number of Native American students in the state and both boys identified as such. In pursuit of their teacher, they checked out the teachers’ lounge, and, in that room full of adult secrets, they began to poke around. In the fridge they found a couple bottles of Dr. Pepper. They grabbed them and drank them.

Unsurprisingly, they were caught.

But what might have been dismissed as a youthful infraction instead took a serious turn: both boys were referred to law enforcement for theft.

Their story, which comes from a report released by the University of Utah Friday, is not unusual. The study, conducted by researchers at the university’s S.J. Quinney College of Law Public Policy Clinic, found that Native American students in Utah are disciplined far more harshly than their peers. They’re almost eight times more likely to be referred to law enforcement and six times more likely to be arrested than white students, far out of proportion to the size of the population.

The result is a phenomenon known in education circles as the “school-to-prison pipeline,” whereby zero tolerance disciplinary policies that disproportionately target minority students funnel them out of school and into juvenile justice programs.

“A lot of these policies have the best intentions,” Vanessa Walsh, the report’s primary author, said. “We have to keep our schools safe. But it’s having consequences that I don’t think anyone anticipated.”

http://go.uen.org/3J9 (High Country News)

 

A copy of the study

http://go.uen.org/3Ja (University of Utah)

 

 


 

 

 

Auto skills honed at hands-on competition

 

SALT LAKE CITY – For 90 minutes, the tension was palpable as 20 students bent over 10 cars trying to diagnose a variety of problems and figure out how to fix them.

Each student had earned the right to be there by achieving high scores on a state exam, and five of the 10 teams at the state competition were from schools in Davis County.

Students from Woods Cross, Bountiful, Clearfield, Syracuse and Davis high schools had been selected to compete in the Ford/AAA Student Auto Skills competition for a chance at scholarships and a trip to a national contest in Dearborn, Mich. The event was held on the Miller Campus of Salt Lake Community College.

http://go.uen.org/3Je (DCC)

 

 


 

 

New principal of Ridgeline High School has much to do before students begin attending in 2016

 

The school now has a name, a mascot and colors but there is still a lot that needs to be done before students start attending Ridgeline High School in Millville.

Bob Henke only has a few weeks left as the principal of Mountain Crest High School before he transitions full time as the new principal of Ridgeline on July 1. Even though students won’t be attending the new school until late August 2016, Henke says there are a lot of details that need to be taken care of between now and then.

http://go.uen.org/3IO (CVD)

 

 


 

 

Cache School District announces three new principals at the elementary level

 

The Cache County School District announced its new principals at the elementary school level Wednesday. The announcement marks the end of a long list of administrative changes in the district.

http://go.uen.org/3IK (LHJ)

 

 


 

 

 

School board weighs food program options, hires new principal

 

School board members also elected to offer Kendall Benson the position as the new secondary schools principal. One of four candidates for the opening, a committee of faculty, school administration and community members unanimously recommended him. With three decades of educational experience, Benson was previously the principal at Cedar Middle School in Iron County, Utah.

http://go.uen.org/3Jf (Wrangell [AK] Sentinel)

 

 


 

 

 

Sandy Teen Honored For Volunteerism At National Award Ceremony In Washington, D.C.

 

Utah’s top middle school volunteer of 2015, Amelia Slama-Catron, 14, was honored May 3 in the nation’s capitol for her outstanding volunteer service during the 20th annual presentation of the Prudential Spirit of Community Awards. Amelia, who is an eighth-grade student at Midvale Middle School, resides in Sandy.

Amelia, along with other top youth volunteers from across the United States and several other countries, received a $1,000 award and personal congratulations from “Good Morning America” co-anchor Robin Roberts at an award ceremony and gala dinner reception held at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History.

http://go.uen.org/3Jg (Sandy Journal)

 

 


 

 

Hillcrest students, others show support for fallen classmates

 

MIDVALE — Students at Hillcrest High School on Thursday mourned the loss of two students who were killed in a car crash Wednesday night.

Hunter Kelson, 17, and Cheyenne Bagley, 16, died about 7:30 p.m. when the Plymouth Neon that Kelson was driving pulled out onto 700 East near 9675 South while attempting to make a left turn and was T-boned on the driver’s side by an oncoming Jeep Wrangler.

http://go.uen.org/3IE (DN)

 

http://go.uen.org/3IT (KUTV)

 

http://go.uen.org/3IU (KTVX)

 

http://go.uen.org/3IV (KSL)

 

http://go.uen.org/3IY (KSTU)

 

http://go.uen.org/3J1 (KNRS)

 

 


 

 

Facebook comment-sparked lockout at Syracuse High School lifted

 

Syracuse High School was briefly placed on a precautionary “lockout” Thursday morning after a “suspicious” Facebook posting aimed an unspecified Davis School District high school campus.

Syracuse police spokeswoman Erin Behm stressed that while the “message was of an aggressive nature and towards a high school,” it did not contain any “outright threat of violence and no specific school was named.”

“Syracuse police …. worked with other agencies and located the person who made the post and the lockout at the school has been lifted,” she stated.

Police did not immediately release details on whether the suspect had been formally arrested, or whether the suspect was an adult or student.

http://go.uen.org/3ID (SLT)

 

http://go.uen.org/3I1 (OSE)

 

 


 

 

 

Social worker ordered to remain in jail after arrest for having sex with a teenage client

 

LOGAN — A judge has ordered a 34-year-old Hyrum man, accused of having a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old girl, to remain in jail and await a preliminary hearing.

Donavan Faucette made his initial appearance in 1st District Court Thursday morning.  He has been charged with rape, object rape and forcible sodomy, all first-degree felonies.  He was arrested late Sunday night after telling a supervisor at Bear River Mental Health, where he was employed, that he had engaged in a sexual relationship with a client.

http://go.uen.org/3IP (CVD)

 

http://go.uen.org/3IM (LHJ)

 

 


 

 

 

Salt Lake Community College students protest tar sands mining

 

SALT LAKE CITY – An unusual gathering came together in Salt Lake Thursday. Zombies were roaming around the Gallivan Center and Salt Palace protesting what they call the promotion of dirty fossil fuels.

Thursday, the governor held his energy summit.

These students from Salt Lake Community College were there to highlight the deadly impacts of tar sands mining on humans and the ecosystem.

The groups, Utah Tar Sands Resistance and Peaceful Uprising were also part of Thursday’s protest.

“The people united, will never be defeated. The people united, will never be defeated. The people united, will never be defeated…”

“Their examples is profits/iPads for schools where the land can be used for generations and be preserved and it’s not our land, it’s native land and it’s important to remember that… ”

The Utah School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration approved at 32,000 acre lease at the book cliffs for a Canadian Company called US Oil Sands.

http://go.uen.org/3Jb (KTVX)

 

 


 

 

Off In the World They Go

Caps off: Utah County high school graduation dates, valedictorians

 

Cesar Valencia has come a long way — literally. Born in Mexico 18 years ago to Heliodoro and Yalila Valencia, he is the oldest of three children. The Valencias have lived in Santaquin for 10 years and Cesar has attended Payson High School for three.

http://go.uen.org/3IJ (PDH)

 

 


 

 

 

Area graduates remember, laugh at commencements

 

Area graduations continued Thursday with a docket diverse enough to include both a moment of silence for classmates who passed away before the big day and a valedictorian exhibiting his rapping skills.

Snow Canyon, Hurricane, Millcreek and Tuacahn high schools all celebrated the class of 2015.

http://go.uen.org/3IQ (SGS)

 

 

 


 

 

All-night graduation parties may lead to drowsy driving accidents

 

SOUTH JORDAN — It’s high school graduation season, and after the pomp and circumstance fades, high school grads head out to all-night parties. Even without alcohol involved, drowsy driving can be deadly.

“All the graduation parties last clear until the morning,” said prospective graduate Morgan DeGooyer.

Teens in South Jordan say their graduation party is slated to last until 4 a.m.

http://go.uen.org/3IW (KSL)

 

 


 

 

Inside Our Schools

 

Hurricane Valley Academy Charter

Snow Canyon High

Springdale Elementary

http://go.uen.org/3IR (SGS)

 

 


 

 

 

Head Start preschool program praised, criticized as it commemorates 50th anniversary

 

As Head Start commemorates its 50th anniversary this week, the news coverage has been dominated by participants and alumni of the preschool program for low-income families praising its effectiveness and value.

http://go.uen.org/3IF (DN)

 

 

 

 

 

————————————————————

OPINION & COMMENTARY

————————————————————

 

Utah Legislative Update

KTKK commentary by Sen. Wayne Neiderhauser

 

Topic: Utah State Board of Education

Guests: Utah State Board of Education Chairman David L. Crandall and Associate State Superintendent Angela O. Stallings.

http://go.uen.org/3J2 (audio)

 

 


 

 

Chalkboards and challenges: A tribute to teachers

(Logan) Herald Journal commentary by columnist Kathy Archer

 

Andy Rooney once said, “Most of us end up with no more than five or six people who remember us. Teachers have thousands of people who remember them for the rest of their lives.”

With the end of the school year upon us, it seems only appropriate to say thank you to the many dedicated teachers whose influence will be remembered for decades — teachers whose passion for their jobs is displayed in their belief in their students’ ability to succeed.

When I think of the truly great teachers to whom my children and I have been exposed, most of them have a number of attributes in common. They tend to be innovators, creative, smart, and ambitious. They are successful educators because they communicate well. They are compassionate, endearing, charming, and (if we’re lucky) funny. They are proactive; and they are dedicated, continuous learners themselves.

http://go.uen.org/3IN

 

 


 

 

‘Clas’ of 2015? Graduation medals get a C-minus

(Ogden) Standard-Examiner commentary by columnist Mark Saal

 

OGDEN — The graduation medallions were already hanging around the necks of some of the seniors at Fremont High School by the time anyone noticed.

The powder-blue medals — given to all 620 graduating seniors during the Monday ceremony at the Dee Events Center — feature a Fremont seal in the center. Around the outer ring are inscribed the words “Fremont Silverwolves,” as well as the designation “Clas of 2015.”

Yes, you read that right; it’s not a typo. Or rather, it IS a typo. “Clas.” With just one “S.”

Weber School District spokesman Nate Taggart said neither the school nor district had advance knowledge of the misspelling.

“Nobody at the school got eyes on it until it was too late,” Taggart said. “The first we knew about it was at the graduation ceremony. There wasn’t any proof (of the design) approved in advance.”

http://go.uen.org/3IH

 

http://go.uen.org/3IX (KSTU)

 

 


 

 

 

Sex ed: What do our kids need to know?

(St. George) Spectrum commentary by Susan Ertel of Ivins

 

Let’s start this conversation by getting religion and morality in their proper places. Parents are responsible for teaching children about religion and moral behavior if they so choose, and they can enlist the help of religious leaders. A school’s job is to teach facts and provide information: to help students make responsible decisions with information rather than hearsay.

Giving children a strong moral background enhances their ability to make decisions with facts and to understand the consequences of their actions. Children need both types of education. They need some type of moral or ethical training, and they need facts presented without bias.

http://go.uen.org/3IS

 

 


 

 

Put people in control

Deseret News letter from James Green

 

I believe there should be no government-run, or public, schools at all. It should all be private — where people have control over what happens to their children while the children gain an education.

http://go.uen.org/3IG

 

 


 

 

Why diverse cities are smartly bucking the dangerous opt-out movement

Black and Latino families can least afford to ignore honest measures of students’ academic progress

New York Daily News op-ed by STEVE SIGMUND, executive director of High Achievement New York, and ARVA RICE, president and CEO of the New York Urban League

 

While opponents of the Common Core standards and other special interest groups were using this year’s state English Language Arts and math tests to score political points, parents in New York’s largest urban school districts reinforced their support for those same tests. A recent analysis from our coalition, High Achievement New York, showed that 98% of students in the state’s five largest cities took these assessments.

In New York City, Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers, parents demonstrated through their actions that they believe the tests are a valuable part of our educational system. Those students make up more than 40% of test-takers statewide. And even more important, these are the districts that need rigorous assessments aligned with higher standards the most.

The opt-in rate in New York City alone, with more than 420,000 students eligible for the tests, was 99%.

These cities are our most diverse districts, with African Americans and Hispanics comprising significant portions of the student populations.

That tells us something powerful. For far too long, too many minority students were allowed to slip through the cracks of our educational system, and the assessments are an important tool in changing the game.

http://go.uen.org/3Iy

 

 


 

 

At Last, Scrutiny for Public-Union Deals

A growing movement is opening labor negotiations so taxpayers can see how their money is being spent.

Wall Street Journal op-ed by MATTHEW J. BROUILLETTE, president and CEO of the Commonwealth Foundation

 

If you’ve ever spent hundreds on a smartphone or thousands on a new car, you know what it’s like to hunt for the best deal. Yet when paying for state and local government services worth billions, Americans often hand politicians a blank check without ever knowing if they could get more for their money.

Year after year, elected officials behind closed doors negotiate labor contracts for 19 million state and local government workers. The result? Skyrocketing salaries, health-care costs and pension benefits are making services like public schools and policing unaffordable for taxpayers. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, compensation for government workers nationwide has grown 21% since 2000, compared with only 9% in the private economy.

Fortunately a growing list of states now shine light on secretive contract negotiations with public-employee unions—putting taxpayers back in charge.

http://go.uen.org/3Ix

 

 


 

 

 

From Bad to Worse

The GOP budget would worsen cuts to key education programs like Pell Grants.

U.S. News & World Report op-ed by Carmel Martin, executive vice president for policy at the Center for American Progress

 

 

While Senate education committee members are hard at work trying to overhaul the No Child Left Behind Act, a bigger threat to our education system that almost no one is talking about looms large. Several weeks ago, Congress passed a budget resolution that outlines huge cuts to nondefense discretionary spending, putting our country on track to fund nondefense programs at historically low levels.

Soon Congressional appropriators will begin the process of applying that draconian budget outline to specific programs like Head Start, Pell Grants and Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. We as a nation risk accepting a harmful “new normal” for spending on education as well as health and other programs over the next decade.

The existing cuts are in part the result of the “sequester” from the Budget Control Act of 2011, of which President Barack Obama has said: “the whole design of these arbitrary cuts was to make them so unattractive and unappealing that Democrats and Republicans would actually get together and find a good compromise.” Unfortunately, Congressional paralysis prevailed and, as a result, spending on education, health and other domestic activities is on track to be lower than it has been over the last 50 years, as a percentage of GDP. Federal per-pupil education spending will fall to levels not seen since before 2000.

Not surprisingly, these cuts hurt most those who were already behind. Funding for Title I of ESEA, which provides funding for schools serving low-income students, is $1 billion less today than it was in 2010, a decrease of seven percent. Title II of ESEA, which funds teacher quality programs, is down by 25 percent, or more than $800 million. Meanwhile, federal child care support for low-income families has barely budged since 2010. While Congress has returned Head Start to pre-sequester funding levels, those dollars do not go as far today as they did in 2010.

If federal funding had tracked the rate of inflation since 2010, millions more children would have been served, according to a Center for American Progress analysis.

http://go.uen.org/3J8

 

 


 

 

Jeb Bush’s big weakness on education might not really matter

Vox commentary by columnist Libby Nelson

 

Iowa Republicans have plenty of concerns about Jeb Bush, but his support for Common Core isn’t one of them, a focus group of likely caucus-goers conducted this week by Bloomberg Politics and consulting firm Purple Strategies found.

When the participants were asked, “Is there anyone in this room a, who thinks Common Core is important, and b, who knows about Jeb Bush’s position and is bothered by it?”, there was a moment of silence — and then two participants admitted they didn’t really understand what the question was about.

“What is Common Core? I guess I don’t understand it,” one participant said as others nodded along:

A group of 10 people is hardly decisive evidence, and the conventional wisdom is still that Common Core is a serious problem for Bush. Republican insiders in Iowa and New Hampshire told Politico they think Common Core is Bush’s biggest issue in the early primaries and caucuses.

But the focus group suggests that some Iowans might not care that much, or don’t know enough about the standards to care. And that’s not a complete surprise. Nationally, a large number of Republicans — in a national poll in February, 42 percent — said they’ve heard little to nothing about the standards. (And the more people said they knew about Common Core in the same poll, the less they actually did know.)

http://go.uen.org/3J5

 

 


 

 

Startup Teacher Education

A fresh take on teacher credentialing

Clayton Christensen Institute for Disruptive Innovation analysis

 

As education reformers across the country are working to improve student outcomes at scale, many are focusing on improving the teaching force. This case study describes how three groups of charter management organizations (CMOs)—High Tech High in San Diego; Uncommon Schools, KIPP, and Achievement First in New York; and Match Education in Boston—created their own teacher certification and master’s degree programs after concluding that the teachers who graduate from most traditional teacher education programs lack the skills needed to teach successfully.

The greatest common obstacle in creating these programs was navigating state policy and accreditation requirements. These requirements vary by state and accreditor and affect the time and effort required for new teacher education programs to be approved. They also heavily influence the program features an institution must adopt, the start-up costs, and the cost structure of a program once it is fully implemented. Any new program should therefore begin by investigating the requirements specific to its region.

In states and regions where the authorization and accreditation processes are lengthy and demanding, program founders need to develop a clear strategy and timeline. They also need to work early to foster strong relationships with others in the field who can offer guidance and generate support for their work. All programs will likely face some challenges in reconciling innovative program models with complex state regulations, which are typically designed to ensure compliance with traditional approaches.

http://go.uen.org/3IA

 

 

 

 

 

 

————————————————————-

NATIONAL NEWS

————————————————————-

 

State Lawmakers Balance Concerns on Student-Data Privacy

State lawmakers weighing advocate, industry views

Education Week

 

Building on last year’s energetic debate in states over how best to protect student data, legislators have intensified efforts in 2015 to address the issue in statehouses.

And this year, there’s particularly prominent tension between privacy advocates concerned about loopholes through which data can be shared and used inappropriately, and the education technology providers who don’t want restrictions on access to learning software and other services.

The template is being set by two bills in particular—one state and one federal. The California Student Online Personal Information Protection Act (SOPIPA), passed last year, has been praised by data-protection advocates and is the model for bills introduced in 15 states this year. And national attention is focused on the federal Student Digital Rights and Parental Rights Act of 2015, sponsored by Democratic U.S. Rep. Jared Polis of Colorado and Republican U.S. Rep. Luke Messer of Indiana, which is designed to limit the sale of student information to postsecondary institutions and restrict educators’ discretion over its dissemination. Federal lawmakers have also recently discussed proposals to overhaul the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act.

According to the Data Quality Campaign, a Washington-based organization that lobbies for the effective use of student data, 177 bills have been introduced in 45 states dealing with student-data privacy and protection so far this year, as of early May. That’s up from 110 bills that were introduced in 36 states in 2014. But the approval rate for new laws has actually slipped dramatically.

A big issue this year: how service providers use or don’t use data, and in what situations they’re held accountable.

http://go.uen.org/3J4

 

 


 

 

APS teachers burn their evaluations in protest

Albuquerque (NM) Journal

 

More than three dozen Albuquerque school teachers, including many who have just been rated “highly effective” by the New Mexico Public Education Department, burned their teacher evaluations in front of the Albuquerque Public Schools headquarters Wednesday to protest what many called the inherent “unfairness” of the process.

Courtney Hinman ignited the blaze by taking a lighter to his “effective” evaluation. He was quickly followed by a “minimally effective” special education teacher from Albuquerque High School, then by a “highly effective” teacher from Monte Vista Elementary School.

Wally Walstrom, also of Monte Vista Elementary, told the crowd of 60 or 70 people that his “highly effective” rating was “meaningless,” before tossing it into the fire.

One after another, teachers used the words “meaningless” and “unfair” to describe the evaluations and the process used to arrive at those judgments.

http://go.uen.org/3Iz

 

 


 

 

 

Mississippi education agency to tweak state standards

Jackson (MS) Clarion-Ledger

 

The Mississippi Department of Education will seek public input on the controversial Common Core State Standards it adopted five years ago in an effort to improve them.

Starting next month, the agency will make available a website where individuals can comment on each one of the academic standards. The site will be accessible from June 15 to Sept. 15, and is open to parents, educators and the general public.

“It’s intended to allow stakeholders to provide feedback to improve standards we have in place now,” said MDE spokeswoman Patrice Guilfoyle. “It’s not intended to be a referendum on the standards as a whole.”

Some parents and high-profile politicians, including Gov. Phil Bryant and Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves, have called for the removal of the Common Core State Standards. It became a rallying cry at the state Capitol this year and prompted several legislative attempts to forcibly end the MDE’s use of the standards.

Lawmakers passed one such bill, Senate Bill 2161, but it was so watered down by the time it reached Bryant’s desk that he vetoed it.

MDE’s plan, which it announced Thursday at a state Board of Education meeting in Jackson, almost mirrors the watered-down version of the vetoed bill.

http://go.uen.org/3IB

 

 


 

 

 

Douglas – Arizona Board of Education fight goes to court

(Phoenix) Arizona Republic

 

Arizona Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas went to court Thursday to ask a judge to determine who controls the staff of the state education board.

Attorney Stephen Tully, who represents Douglas, told Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Patricia Starr that Arizona State Board of Education staff acted illegally earlier this month when they moved out of the Education Department building into the Governor’s tower a few blocks away.

Douglas has sent letters to board staffers telling them to return to work in the Education Department building or risk being fired.

“The law is clear,” Tully told the judge. “The board has taken action to take power away from the superintendent. The Department of Education needs closure on this.”

But attorney Colin Campbell, who represents Education Board President Greg Miller and Executive Director Christine Thompson, told Starr he will move to dismiss Douglas’ suit.

“The conflict is a political battle” that does not belong in court, he said. “The conflict is over who controls education policy.”

http://go.uen.org/3IC

 

 


 

 

 

Minnesota education layoffs could begin July 1 with bill veto

St. Paul (MN) Pioneer Press

 

Minnesota’s education funding dispute means more than 800 state education workers will begin receiving layoff notices June 1.

Gov. Mark Dayton said he regrets the need to upset workers’ lives, but state law requires that workers who could be laid off receive a month’s advance notice, even if his education funding differences with lawmakers could be settled before July 1.

Both Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party member Dayton and Republican House Speaker Kurt Daudt of Crown said this week that a special legislative session to fix the funding quarrel almost certainly would not be called before the layoff notices are mailed.

Dayton on Thursday vetoed the $17 billion education spending bill for 2016-17. While it included $400 million in additional money, it does not fund universal pre-kindergarten.

Minnesota Management and Budget says that without an education bill when the new fiscal year begins July 1, the Education Department will shut down and many school funds would not be available.

However, the state could go to court as it did during 2011 and 2005 partial government shutdowns and ask a judge to declare some employees and some funds critical to the state so that they be allowed to continue even without a bill.

http://go.uen.org/3J6

 

http://go.uen.org/3J7 (Minneapolis Star Tribune)

 

 


 

 

 

Survey shows Western students less likely to be enrolled in music classes

EdSource

 

A national survey of teachers and parents found that students in the West have lower rates of enrollment in music classes and fewer minutes a week of required music education. Yet Western teachers and parents feel more strongly than those in other regions that music and arts education should be considered a core academic subject, the researchers found.

“There is a disconnect in the Western region in some of the aspirations teachers and parents have for music education and the on-the-ground reality that teachers and students face,” said Peter Grunwald, lead author of the study.

http://go.uen.org/3Jc

 

A copy of the survey

http://go.uen.org/3Jd (National Association of Music Merchants Foundation)

 

 


 

 

 

How Do You Motivate Kids To Stop Skipping School?

NPR

 

It seems like a no-brainer: Offer kids a reward for showing up at school, and their attendance will shoot up. But a recent study of third-graders in a slum in India suggests that incentive schemes can do more harm than good.

The study, a working paper released by the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, looked at 799 boys and girls. The kids, mostly age 9, were students in several dozen single-classroom schools run by the nonprofit Gyan Shala in some of the poorest neighborhoods in the city of Ahmedabad.

Gyan Shala’s program is free and has a reputation for offering decent quality instruction in language, math and science. Still, attendance rates are no better than the average for the region. On any given day, about a quarter of students are absent. Gyan Shala’s administrators believe many opt to stay home and play if, say, it’s a festival day or a sibling who attends a different school is off or simply because they’re not in the mood for class.

So the researchers challenged kids in about half of the classes: Over a designated 38-day period, show up for at least 32 days — that’s 85 percent of the time — and get a special gift: two pencils and an eraser.

That might not sound like much. And it’s not as if these kids couldn’t get a pencil or eraser some other way, notes Sujata Visaria, an economist at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology and a co-author of the study. Still, such items are a treat in the slums where these kids live, Visaria says.

http://go.uen.org/3IZ

 

A copy of the study

http://go.uen.org/3J0 (Institute for Emerging Market Studies)

 

 


 

 

 

Schools turn to Propane Buses as Stricter Emissions Standards Loom

New York Times

 

MACON, Ga. — For many Americans, propane is that stuff from the home improvement store that fuels backyard barbecues and patio dinners. But in a growing number of cities across the country, it is what gets children to school.

Of the top 25 school bus markets, 19 have propane­fueled vehicles in their fleets, including New York, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, Philadelphia and Phoenix. Boston just bought 86 of the alternative­fuel buses for the fall, while in the Mesa County Valley district in Grand Junction, Colo., administrators recently signed a five­year, $30 million contract that includes 122 propane buses.

And here, about an hour and a half southeast of Atlanta, Bibb County school administrators are so happy with the 33 buses they started running last year that they have ordered 20 more.

“They’re healthier, they’re cleaner burning, they’re much quieter than the diesel option,” said Anthony V. Jackson, the district’s transportation director. “Right now, it’s projected that over time we’ll see significant savings.”

With tougher emissions standards looming and the constant pressure to save money, propane has become increasingly attractive as an alternative to traditional fossil fuels for some vehicles. Burning propane reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 22 percent compared to gasoline­powered buses or 6 percent compared to diesel, according to the Propane Education and Research Council, an industry­funded group.

http://go.uen.org/3J3

 

 

 

 

 

 

————————————————————

CALENDAR

————————————————————

 

USOE Calendar

http://www.schools.utah.gov/main/CALENDAR.aspx

 

 

UEN News

http://www.uen.org

 

 

June 16:

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting

2 p.m., 445 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2015&Com=APPEXE

 

 

June 17:

Education Interim Committee meeting

9 a.m., 30 House Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2015&Com=INTEDU

 

 

June 18-19:

Utah State Board of Education meeting

250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

http://www.schools.utah.gov/board/Meetings/Agenda.aspx

 

 

July 9:

Utah State Charter School Board meeting

250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

http://go.uen.org/1pn

 

 

 

Related posts:

Comments are closed.