Education News Roundup: Sept. 30

busEducation News Roundup

Today’s Top Picks:

 

Park City looks at tax increase if the bond election fails.

http://go.uen.org/4KO (PR)

 

EPA grant will provide for some cleaner school buses in Utah.

http://go.uen.org/4L8 (DN)

or http://go.uen.org/4L9 (DEQ)

 

PRI looks at a former child laborer in Iran who is now a student at Wasatch Academy in Mount Pleasant.

http://go.uen.org/4Lz (Public Radio International The World)

 

Harvard professor looks at the educator professional development student that came out in August discrediting much of professional development.

http://go.uen.org/4KM (National Education Policy Center)

 

Education groups encourage Congress to pass an update to ESEA.

http://go.uen.org/4KP (Ed Week)

 

Secretary Duncan encourages more funding for schools to lessen funding for prisons later.

http://go.uen.org/4KS (WaPo)

and http://go.uen.org/4Lr (WSJ)

and http://go.uen.org/4Lq (HuffPo)

and http://go.uen.org/4Ls (USN&WR)

or ED estimates of impact on states

http://go.uen.org/4L1 (ED)

 

Ed Week has put together a Common Core explainer.

http://go.uen.org/4Lm (Ed Week)

 

Study finds that perhaps the best way to get kids to eat broccoli is to not put that broccoli anywhere near a chicken nugget.

http://go.uen.org/4KZ (WaPo)

and http://go.uen.org/4Lh (USAT)

 

 

 

 

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TODAY’S HEADLINES

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UTAH

 

Park City School District could increase taxes if bond fails Taxpayers could still end up paying for district’s list of projects

 

EPA grant to will help buy 15 cleaner school buses in Utah

 

Once a child laborer in Iran, now a high school student in Utah

 

Many local schools struggle with school grades

 

Candidate for governor Jonathan Johnson visits Cedar

 

What’s up with that? School zones determined by school, painted by city

 

Kids Learn STEM Through Fashion Design

A science, technology, engineering and math company offers 3-D printing, robotics and other enrichment courses.

 

9-year-old girl denied inhaler during coughing fit at school, per Jordan District policy

 

Protesters bring Minneapolis school board meeting to a halt

 

Sophomore class at Timpview High crowns burn victim homecoming princess

 

2 Utah schools awarded Blue Ribbon from U.S. Department of Education

 

Canyons School District accepting SALTA applications

 

Granite School District to host parent seminars on youth protection

 

Pocahontas float at high school homecoming parade sparks outrage from Native American students

 

Professional, college sports mascots take field for annual Mascot Bowl

 

First of its kind in Utah, High School Climbing League

 

Iron Cowboy tells students at Rowland Hall Middle School to chase their dreams

 

Dancing Moose Montessori School hosts Scarecrow Festival Oct. 1

 


 

 

OPINION & COMMENTARY

 

Utah needs leadership in education funding

 

Polling on the professionalization of public education and the end of tenure

 

Sports fade, but arts are for the ages

 

Leaving Behind an Education Legacy

John Boehner, a chief architect of No Child Left Behind, made a significant mark on education policy.

 

Review of Report on the Effectiveness of Teacher Development Programs TNTP report describes some real weaknesses in current professional development but makes poor analytic choices, yielding problematic conclusions

 


 

 

NATION

 

Education Groups to Congress: Please Do Your Job and Reauthorize ESEA

 

Civil Rights Groups: Beef Up Accountability in NCLB Rewrite

 

Education Secretary to urge criminal justice reform, wants $15 billion to go to teachers

 

Regan, IFF sue Idaho over Common Core tests

 

The Common Core Explained

 

Ybarra will seek to stop required ninth-grade testing

 

Kansas lawmakers seek data on school board members related to district employees

 

Math content in schools adding to achievement gap, new study finds

 

Teacher prep fails to prepare educators for diversity, child trauma, panel says Roundtable discussion at Capitol tackles issues in teacher training

 

Hampshire just says ‘no’ to SATs, and the results are in

 

Asians to surpass Latinos as largest immigrant group in U.S., study finds

 

Student in custody, principal injured in shooting at Harrisburg High

 

Father of Washington state school shooter convicted on gun charges

 

Michelle Obama: Girls, Don’t Hold Back in School

 

Researchers have discovered a surprisingly simple way to get kids to eat more veggies

 

 

 

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UTAH NEWS

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Park City School District could increase taxes if bond fails Taxpayers could still end up paying for district’s list of projects

 

The Park City School District may be moving forward with its project list whether voters approve a controversial $56 million bond or not.

What could happen if the bond fails has become a hot topic in recent weeks, with the district divulging its backup plan: The Board of Education could raise the capital levy tax. It would allow the district to get the money it needs to complete its expansive list of projects, but would come at a much higher cost to taxpayers.

The 20-year bond would increase property taxes on an average primary residence, valued at $639,000, by $123 a year. Phil Kaplan, a member of the Board, said a capital levy tax increase could be much more expensive for residents, at least in the short term. The Board is estimating it would cost taxpayers roughly $360 to $600 a year over a period of three to five years.

http://go.uen.org/4KO (PR)

 

 


 

 

EPA grant to will help buy 15 cleaner school buses in Utah

 

SALT LAKE CITY — The school bus fleet in five districts is about to get less polluting due to a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to help shave costs on 15 new buses.

The Utah Department of Environmental Quality announced Tuesday it was awarded the money through the EPA’s National Clean Diesel Campaign.

Money will pay for 25 percent of the costs associated with the bus purchases made by the Davis, Granite, Provo, Tooele and Weber school districts.

http://go.uen.org/4L8 (DN)

 

http://go.uen.org/4L9 (DEQ)

 

 


 

 

Once a child laborer in Iran, now a high school student in Utah

 

I’m doing my homework right now. Something that some of my friends call “work.” They don’t know that for some children work is something else entirely. It’s standing in the rain and snow to sell a few stems of flowers. Maybe the only thing that would make these kids happy is getting to go to school, and getting to do homework. I used to be one of those kids.

I was a child laborer when I was a refugee in Iran. I was living with my brother, and our conversations were pretty heavy most of the time: He wanted me to abandon my education and go back to Afghanistan, because paying rent was very hard for him — his income was just enough to take care of himself and sometimes help my mother.

So I decided to start working, despite the fact it was highly unacceptable in my family for a girl to work outside the house. I started working, cleaning the nonprofit that gave me an education every day in order to make ends meet. I was at the school from 8 p.m. until 4 p.m. I would clean the nonprofit in the morning, then go to my classes. In the afternoon I would clean the nonprofit again, and then go home. Most of the time my friends would help me.

The only thing that would bother and embarrass me was cleaning the toilets in front of the students, my friends. Gradually, life became harder, because I took responsibility for all the expenses. As conditions become harder, I also became tougher. No longer was I ashamed of washing the toilets. In reality, I was happy to be able to pay the rent, or buy some things for myself. I had more confidence in myself. I knew that if my life conditions had any mercy on me, I had developed enough strength to find myself a way out through the walls.

I was given a chance when I received a full scholarship to Wasatch Academy in Utah. But these students’ thoughts and concerns are often different than my own.

Students at Wasatch Academy do many presentations on things affecting the planet, such as pollution, recycling and dying oceans. As an Afghan refugee in Iran, my childhood was spent searching for a safe place. As a child laborer, I didn’t have time to explore or think about the world. Only time to work and learn ways to survive.

http://go.uen.org/4Lz (Public Radio International The World)

 


 

 

Many local schools struggle with school grades

 

School grades have been issued, and for the second year in a row, schools in the San Juan School District did not do as well as hoped.

Just one school, Monticello Elementary School, earned an A grade in the second year of a controversial grading program developed by the Utah State legislature.

Two schools earned B grades, including Blanding Elementary School and Monticello High School, while three more schools earned a C grade, including Montezuma Creek Elementary School, ARL Middle School and San Juan High School.

Schools earning a failing grade are Bluff and Tse’bii’nidzisgai elementary schools and Whitehorse and Monument Valley high schools.

Two schools did not have enough students to earn a grade. They are La Sal Elementary School and Navajo Mountain High School.

http://go.uen.org/4Lt (San Juan Record)

 

 


 

 

Candidate for governor Jonathan Johnson visits Cedar

 

CEDAR CITY – Jonathan Johnson, who is challenging Gov. Gary Herbert for the Republican nomination for governor in the 2016 election, made a visit to Cedar City Sept. 22 and hosted a town hall meeting at the public library.

Another foundational plan is for a transformational change in Utah’s educational system. With five children, Johnson knows the importance of a good education.

“I think teachers in Utah by and large do a marvelous job,” he said. “However, they are maligned for working hard, boots on the ground, with our kids in the classroom. We’re not getting enough money into the classroom because it’s stuck in bureaucracy.”

http://go.uen.org/4Lw (Iron County Today)

 


 

 

What’s up with that? School zones determined by school, painted by city

 

Question: Why do we have a school crossing painted in the middle of roads so far away from schools? For instance, in Providence, there is a school crosswalk at the intersection of Center Street and Fox Ridge Drive.

Answer: A couple of things go into determining where a crosswalk goes within a school boundary. The school itself comes up with a Safe Route to School plan that helps outline the safest ways kids can get to school by either walking or biking.

http://go.uen.org/4La (LHJ)

 

 


 

 

Kids Learn STEM Through Fashion Design

A science, technology, engineering and math company offers 3-D printing, robotics and other enrichment courses.

 

Simon Hopkins, a senior at Park City High School in Utah, works as an instructor at Zaniac, a national science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) enrichment franchise. Hopkins recently concluded one of Zaniac’s first six-week fashion design courses at the company’s Park City campus. He began each week’s class with a brief fashion history lesson, teaching that Converse All Star shoes were originally designed for basketball players, and that Nike, Inc., was named after the Greek goddess of the same name.

He would then suggest a project for the students to complete on Inkscape, open-source vector graphics software, leaving the majority of the class time for the students to create their own clothing designs, “interpreting what I [had] taught them between the history of fashion and the instructions on how to use Inkscape,” he says.

Fashion design is now taught at all six Zaniac campuses. The 90-minute sessions are weekly and organized with a 5:1 student-to-instructor ratio. Fashion design is for fourth- through eighth-graders, but Zaniac offers other after-school programs and camps for kindergarten through eighth-grade students and focuses on a variety of STEM activities such as, robotics and 3-D printing. Zane Math, the original program from which Zaniac classes grew, provides customized math enrichment. There are currently two campuses in Utah, three in the Northeast, and one in Miami. Other locations are scheduled to open this fall.

http://go.uen.org/4LA (U.S. News & World Report)

 


 

 

9-year-old girl denied inhaler during coughing fit at school, per Jordan District policy

 

WEST JORDAN, Utah — A 9-year-old girl was denied her inhaler during a coughing fit at school in West Jordan because staff were not notified of the child’s prescription, Jordan School District officials said Monday.

Emma Gonzales obtained an inhaler over the weekend after a coughing fit landed her in the emergency room. On Monday, the fourth grader was hit with another coughing spell in class at Columbia Elementary.

When Emma took her inhaler out to use it, her teacher sent her to the office, where staff took the inhaler.

http://go.uen.org/4Lg (KSTU)

 

http://go.uen.org/4Ly (Fox News Latino)

 

 


 

 

Protesters bring Minneapolis school board meeting to a halt

 

A group of 20 or so protesters angered by Minneapolis Public Schools’ contract with Reading Horizons, a Utah-based company that provided books some teachers found laden with cultural and racial stereotypes, forced an abrupt end to Tuesday’s special Board of Education meeting.

Protesters associated with the Social Justice Education Movement, including teachers, students and disgruntled community members, called for an end to the district’s $1.2 million contract with Reading Horizons, which released a controversial literacy curriculum.

Board members took two separate recesses to calm the crowd, a district spokesperson confirmed Tuesday night. The meeting was held to discuss a proposed 4 percent increase to its property tax levy, but the board had to forgo allowing public input on the matter due to the disruption.

http://go.uen.org/4Lu  Minneapolis (MN) Star Tribune

 

http://go.uen.org/4Lv ([Minneapolis, MN] Southwest Journal)

 

 


 

Sophomore class at Timpview High crowns burn victim homecoming princess

 

PROVO — The students at Timpview High School in Provo united to let a friend know they haven’t forgotten her.

“Just to let her know that we are thinking about her even though she is still in Salt Lake,” said Holly Lewis, a junior who organized the efforts. “We still love her and we’re thinking of her all the time.”

Members of the sophomore class decorated the lobby outside the burn unit at University Hospital and brought flowers, balloons, a banner, and a crown to surprise Baylee Hoaldridge, who sustained burns over 65 percent of her body July Fourth in an ATV accident.

http://go.uen.org/4Ld (KSL)

 


 

 

2 Utah schools awarded Blue Ribbon from U.S. Department of Education

 

This year’s list of National Blue Ribbon Schools includes two Wasatch Front elementary schools recognized for academic excellence.

The U.S. Department of Education recognized 335 public and private schools on Tuesday, including Salt Lake City’s Ensign Elementary School and Provo’s Wasatch Elementary School.

Both schools scored above the state average on SAGE, Utah’s year-end testing system, and earned A grades in the state’s most recent school grading reports.

http://go.uen.org/4LB (SLT)

 


 

 

Canyons School District accepting SALTA applications

 

SANDY — Canyons School District students who attend kindergarten through sixth grade are eligible for testing for placement in the district’s advanced-learner magnet program services in the 2016-17 school year.

The applications window for SALTA — Supporting Advanced Learners Toward Achievement — is open until midnight Friday, Oct. 30.

http://go.uen.org/4L5 (DN)

 

 


 

 

Granite School District to host parent seminars on youth protection

 

SALT LAKE CITY — The Granite School District will host three parent seminars on youth protection during the school year.

Each of the seminars will address the topics of mental health, substance abuse, bullying and Internet safety.

http://go.uen.org/4L7 (DN)

 

 


 

 

Pocahontas float at high school homecoming parade sparks outrage from Native American students

 

WEST JORDAN, Utah – A group of American Indian students who attend Copper Hills High School didn’t like how their culture was being portrayed during homecoming festivities last Thursday and took their concerns to administrators.

Disney-themed characters such as Snow White, Cinderella and Mulan lined the parade route for the Copper Hills High homecoming parade. But a float carrying cheerleaders dressed as Pocahontas filled with teepees didn’t go over well with the President of the school’s American Indian Association.

Shelby Snyder said the costumes and float was disrespectful and demeaning towards Native American culture. Snyder Gathered 190 signatures from students and delivered them to the principal urging him to address the issue.

Principal Todd Quarnberg apologized to Snyder.

http://go.uen.org/4Le (KSTU)

 

 


 

 

Professional, college sports mascots take field for annual Mascot Bowl

 

LEHI, Utah — It was the 12th annual Mascot Bowl at Lehi High School Monday.

The charity football game benefits Bear Hugs for Kids and Firemen and Friends for Kids. The charities raise money to buy Christmas gifts for underprivileged children.

The eighth graders and mascots were out in full force for the annual tradition. In the past 12 years, the little league team beat the mascots six times.

http://go.uen.org/4Lf (KSTU)

 

 


 

First of its kind in Utah, High School Climbing League

 

LEHI – The first of its kind in Utah, a High School Climbing League celebrates with its first competition this Friday. The Momentum climbing Gym in Lehi along with Alpine School District have partnered together to make this dream a reality for students. The competition runs from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.

http://go.uen.org/4Lx (KSL)

 


 

 

Iron Cowboy tells students at Rowland Hall Middle School to chase their dreams

 

James Lawrence, the Iron Cowboy, takes a photo with student Samantha Lehman at Rowland Hall Middle School in Salt Lake City on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015. He completed 50 Ironman triathlon distances in 50 consecutive days through all 50 states, totalling more than 7,000 miles of biking, running and swimming.

http://go.uen.org/4L6 (DN)

 

 


 

 

Dancing Moose Montessori School hosts Scarecrow Festival Oct. 1

 

WEST VALLEY CITY, Utah – The community and Dancing Moose Montessori School students will celebrate fall at the annual Scarecrow Festival.

The event is Thursday, October 1 from 5 to 7 p.m.

http://go.uen.org/4Lc (KTVX)

 

 

 

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OPINION & COMMENTARY

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Utah needs leadership in education funding Deseret News op-ed by Richard Davis, professor of political science at Brigham Young University

 

Last week, Zions Bank CEO Scott Anderson wrote an op-ed urging Utahns to support Gov. Gary Herbert’s proposals for increased education funding and also pressure the Utah Legislature to “properly fund education, including targeted tax increases.” Anderson specifically advocated more funding for teacher compensation and training, early childhood education, and programs for failing students.

Anderson is exactly right about the need to make public education funding the top priority for Utah’s future. Compared to other states, Utah is a laggard in per pupil spending; the state has been 51st in spending for many years now. Yet, Anderson is mistaken in believing Gov. Herbert will lead the way on this issue. Herbert and Utah’s legislators have failed to supply the resources to education that are necessary to adequately fund our needs.

Many Utah legislators argue that this per-pupil spending statistic doesn’t matter because more money doesn’t translate into high quality education. It is interesting that they never use that argument on other policy areas. When did they last say that if we don’t spend money on transportation we will still have good roads? Or if we don’t spend money on building a new prison, we will still have a modern prison facility? Only education seems to work well without money.

However, the lack of funding continues to have serious consequences for Utah’s public education system.

http://go.uen.org/4KN

 

 


 

 

Polling on the professionalization of public education and the end of tenure Utah PoliticoHub commentary by Daniel Burton

 

A new poll shows that while support for more teacher pay is solid, the public may expect teachers to give up the security of tenure.

With parent teacher conferences fresh on my mind after meeting with our second grade daughter’s two teachers yesterday, I read about recently released results of a PDK/Gallup poll that indicate support is increasing for the professionalization of the education profession.

“A strong majority of respondents—73 percent of Americans and 74 percent of public school parents—were also in favor of more extensive board certifications for teachers (akin to those in medicine and law) in addition to college degrees.”

At the same time, a substantial amount though smaller amount–58 percent of all Americans and 66 percent of public school parents–want teachers to be paid better.

Polling on the professionalization of public education and the end of tenureBut that’s not all; there is strong support to end teachers tenure, as well.

http://go.uen.org/4Lb

 

 


 

Sports fade, but arts are for the ages

Salt Lake Tribune letter from Mark W. Baer

 

I read with interest and personal experience Wasatch Music Academy head Dave Murphy’s recent letter (“Music, not sports, is lifetime endeavor,” Sept. 25) regarding the ever-diminishing attention paid to music in schools.

Murphy — who happens to be one of the finest music instructors and people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing — is spot on, and this lack of support should concern all of us. A lack of music, and all arts for that matter, in childhood means that a seed is not planted when a person is young and most impressionable. It also means that children, and ultimately adults, will not be as well rounded and not be exposed to things that have proven to make them flourish and make them better students in many other areas, including math, science and more.

http://go.uen.org/4L4

 


 

 

Leaving Behind an Education Legacy

John Boehner, a chief architect of No Child Left Behind, made a significant mark on education policy.

U.S. News & World Report op-ed by Nina Rees, president and chief executive officer of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools

 

In the immediate aftermath of House Speaker John Boehner’s announcement that he’ll resign the speakership and his seat in Congress next month, reaction has centered on the political ramifications. Boehner has continuously battled a group of right-wing Republican members who were again threatening a government shutdown this week. The speaker’s resignation looks likely to quell that rebellion. But as Boehner gets set to depart, it’s his policy legacy – particularly his impact on education policy – that warrants a closer look. Two examples show his impact.

The first is his role in the passage of the No Child Left Behind Act. As chairman of the House Education and Workforce Committee in 2001, Boehner, staffed with a sharp and steady team, spearheaded passage of the law. He worked closely with Rep. George Miller, D-Calif., to secure broad bipartisan support of a bill that instituted stronger accountability measures, informed parents about the progress of their schools, and gave parents opportunities to exercise school choice for their children attending underperforming schools.

No Child Left Behind shined a bright light on all of our public schools, and reminded everyone that all students deserve a great education. Throughout the negotiations, Boehner reminded his colleagues that the purpose of this legislation was to benefit the students. Period. Boehner helped the new Republican president, George W. Bush, deliver on a major campaign commitment. And coming just three years after Boehner had been driven out of the House Republican leadership team, the effort exemplified and reinforced his skills as a negotiator and leader.

http://go.uen.org/4KX

 


 

 

Review of Report on the Effectiveness of Teacher Development Programs TNTP report describes some real weaknesses in current professional development but makes poor analytic choices, yielding problematic conclusions National Education Policy Center analysis by Heather C. Hill, Jerome T. Murphy Professor in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education

 

BOULDER, CO— A recent report from TNTP, formerly known as The New Teacher Project, argues for fundamental changes in the way public school districts think about teacher professional development (PD) and growth. But a new review of that report explains key weaknesses and cautions against policy use of the report’s findings and conclusions, notwithstanding the report’s presentation of useful original data about how educators experience the PD.

Heather C. Hill, the Jerome T. Murphy Professor in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, reviewed The Mirage: Confronting the Hard Truth About Our Quest for Teacher Development for the Think Twice think tank review project at the National Education Policy Center, housed at the University of Colorado Boulder’s School of Education.

The TNTP study uses original data collected from teachers and administrators in three school districts and one charter network. The report contends that PD options are often a poor fit for teacher needs, rendering those options ultimately unsuccessful in improving teacher evaluation scores. Hill’s review praises the study’s descriptive passages, including evidence that teachers find a lack of coherence in school district offerings and in the utility of their own PD.

Hill’s review, however, cautions readers about the report’s calculations of per-teacher cost estimates for PD, which TNTP determined by including salary increases resulting from development credits and master’s degrees. Because this choice is at odds with much of the prior research on this topic, it is a weaker component of the study. The analysis comparing growth in teacher evaluation scores to teachers’ PD experiences suffers from a number of issues as well, including a mis-match between the behaviors rewarded by teacher evaluation and the PD features explored in this study, Hill writes. In this vein, many of the report’s statements – such as that teachers are “marching in place” in terms of evaluation scores, lean toward hyperbole rather than reason. However, the report does conclude with an astute comparison of the coherence of professional development in public districts to that of charter networks, finding that charter networks maintained a much more coherent system, one in which teachers were expected to improve and where they had regular feedback and opportunities for out-of-classroom practice in instructional techniques.

Hill concludes that “readers who rely more on the report’s empirical evidence and less on its hyperbolic statements will profit from reading this report.”

http://go.uen.org/4KM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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NATIONAL NEWS

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Education Groups to Congress: Please Do Your Job and Reauthorize ESEA Education Week

 

The leadership drama in Congress may be taking up a lot of political oxygen, but 10 education groups don’t want lawmakers to take their eye off reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act.

In a Sept. 29 letter to four key education leaders in Congress, those groups, including the two national teachers’ unions and the organization representing state schools chiefs, said that there’s huge demand for them to put the final touches on legislation that would renew the ESEA. They also stress the importance of preserving the federal education law’s focus on low-income students, equity, and high-quality education for all students.

http://go.uen.org/4KP

 

 


 

 

Civil Rights Groups: Beef Up Accountability in NCLB Rewrite Education Week

 

No Child Left Behind conference negotiations are expected to kick off in earnest this fall. And accountability, particularly for poor students, students of color, and special populations of children (think English-language learners) will likely be a really big issue.

Neither the Republican-only House bill, nor the Senate’s bipartisan bill goes far enough in calling for states to hold schools accountable for the progress of long-overlooked students, according to the Obama administration.

And that sentiment goes double for the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, a coalition of civil rights groups.

In fact, LCCR has teamed up with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) on radio ads running in key districts.

http://go.uen.org/4KQ

 

 


 

 

Education Secretary to urge criminal justice reform, wants $15 billion to go to teachers Washington Post

 

U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan on Wednesday plans to appeal to the nation’s states and cities to dramatically reduce incarceration for nonviolent crimes, and he is proposing to use the estimated $15 billion in savings to substantially raise teacher pay in high-poverty schools.

Duncan argues that such a move would help persuade strong teachers to work with the students who most need them and would signal that the country cares about educating disadvantaged children.

“I’ve long said great teachers deserve to be paid far more. With a move like this, we’d not just make a bet on education over incarceration, we’d signal the beginning of a long-range effort to pay our nation’s teachers what they are worth,” Duncan plans to say Wednesday afternoon at the National Press Club in Washington, according to a copy of his prepared remarks. “That sort of investment wouldn’t just make teachers and struggling communities feel more valued. It would have ripple effects on our economy and our civic life.”

Duncan’s Education Department does not have any authority to make the changes that he is urging, and his speech acknowledges that his ideas “will strike some as improbable or impractical.”

http://go.uen.org/4KS

 

http://go.uen.org/4Lr (WSJ)

 

http://go.uen.org/4Lq (HuffPo)

 

http://go.uen.org/4Ls (USN&WR)

 

ED estimates of impact on states

http://go.uen.org/4L1 (ED)

 

 


 

 

Regan, IFF sue Idaho over Common Core tests Spokane (WA) Spokesman-Review

 

BOISE – A new federal lawsuit against Idaho Gov. Butch Otter and others charges that the state’s version of Common Core standards for student learning and the tests tied to them are illegal.

Brent Regan, chairman of the board of the Idaho Freedom Foundation, and nine other individuals described as “Idaho taxpayers and residents of the state of Idaho” argue that the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium, or SBAC, which developed the test, is “an illegal interstate compact not authorized by the U.S. Congress.” Other defendants in the lawsuit are state schools Superintendent Sherri Ybarra and state Board of Education President Don Soltman.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs are Bryan Smith, who unsuccessfully challenged 2nd District Idaho Congressman Mike Simpson in the GOP primary in 2014, and Christ Troupis, who unsuccessfully challenged Idaho Attorney General Lawrence Wasden in the same primary election.

Regan, who was in Michigan at a meeting on Tuesday, declined to comment on the lawsuit, but said it wasn’t related to his experiences as a member of the Coeur d’Alene School Board.

A North Idaho businessman and medical device engineer, Regan was part of a group of conservatives who briefly held a majority on the school board until the 2013 election. He served less than a year before losing the seat. Two months after his appointment to the board, Regan publicly apologized after making a racially insensitive joke about President Barack Obama at a legislative forum.

http://go.uen.org/4L2

 

http://go.uen.org/4L3 ([Nampa, ID] KIDO)

 

 


 

 

The Common Core Explained

Education Week

 

The Common Core State Standards arose from a simple idea: that creating one set of challenging academic expectations for all students would improve achievement and college readiness.

But the idea proved to be the only thing that was simple about the common core.

Brewing since 2007 and launched officially in 2009, the drive for common learning goals in English/language arts and mathematics produced an extraordinary response: All but four states embraced the standards in a huge wave of adoptions in 2010 and 2011. But there was also an extraordinary backlash: By 2015, several states reversed their adoptions of the standards, and nearly half backed out of their initial promises to use tests designed to measure mastery of them.

Here are some common questions and answers about the complicated phenomenon known as the common core:

http://go.uen.org/4Lm

 


 

 

Ybarra will seek to stop required ninth-grade testing

(Boise) Idaho Statesman

 

Sherri Ybarra, Idaho’s superintendent of public instruction, wants school districts freed from having to give a statewide exam in the ninth grade this year, and also wants a waiver of the requirement that the class of 2018, this year’s sophomores, pass the statewide Common Core exam as a graduation requirement.

Ybarra will make her case to the State Board of Education when it meets Oct. 21-22 in Lewiston, said Jeff Church, Ybarra’s spokesman.

Common Core standards specify what students should know in math and English language arts before they graduate. Versions of the standards have been adopted by most states, including Idaho.

Districts, complaining of too much testing, were dismayed when they learned earlier this month that they would have to add ninth-graders to the list of test takers for this year. Taking the Common Core exam eats up instructional time and clogs district computer resources, educators say.

http://go.uen.org/4KW

 

 


 

 

Kansas lawmakers seek data on school board members related to district employees Wichita (KS) Eagle

 

Kansas lawmakers are seeking information on the number of school board members across the state with spouses or relatives working for school districts.

The Kansas Legislative Research Department sent out a survey to school board members throughout the state on Friday asking them to answer whether they or any of their relatives work for school districts or the Kansas Department of Education.

The request for this information came initially from the Legislature’s Special Committee on Ethics, Elections and Local Government, according to researcher Martha Dorsey, who explained that the committee would be reviewing the impact of HB 2345 “if it passed in its current form.”

The bill, which was introduced during the past session, would restrict a person from serving on a local school board if his or her spouse, parent or sibling worked for any school district in the state. The bill sparked backlash from educators and school board members when it received a hearing early this year and was quickly tabled.

http://go.uen.org/4KY

 

 


 

Math content in schools adding to achievement gap, new study finds Washington Post

 

The gap in math performance between poor students and their wealthier peers is due in large part to the systemically weaker math content in schools that teach low-income students, according to a new study released Wednesday.

In a peer-reviewed study published in the journal of the American Educational Research Association, researchers analyzed test scores of students who took the 2012 Programme for International Student Assessment, an international test given by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

They found that a large amount of the difference in math scores between poor and wealthier students can be traced to unequal access to strong math content in school. The researchers said the problem is worldwide and not isolated to the U.S.

But they estimated that nearly 40 percent of the gap in U.S. student performance in math can be traced to that unequal access; the researchers attributed the remaining 60 percent to family and community background.

http://go.uen.org/4KT

 

A copy of the study

http://go.uen.org/4KU (American Educational Research Association)

 

 


 

 

Teacher prep fails to prepare educators for diversity, child trauma, panel says Roundtable discussion at Capitol tackles issues in teacher training Hechinger Report

 

WASHINGTON—Too many new teachers are unprepared for the classroom and especially lack experience working with diverse, low-income students and the trauma that can impact students from those backgrounds.

That was the consensus at a roundtable discussion of educators and teacher trainers, which was hosted by Rep. Susan Davis (D-Calif.) Tuesday in Washington and focused on how to build a better teacher workforce.

Panelists said that a time when the white student population has become the minority in America’s schools, teacher preparation programs are failing to recruit teachers who reflect increasing diversity. During the 2011-12 school year, only about 7 percent of teachers in the nation were black, and about 8 percent were Hispanic. Panelists also said that teacher training programs are not providing authentic teacher residency or student teaching experiences in schools with diverse, low-income students.

“We need to train teachers in schools that actually reflect those demographics,” said Kris Beck, a science teacher from Chicago. “The students that are in front of me have such difficult experiences and I was able to train for that for a year in a school that actually reflected those demographics. If I hadn’t done that, I don’t think I would have been prepared for the kinds of things I faced when I was in my own classroom.”

http://go.uen.org/4Ln

 

 


 

 

Hampshire just says ‘no’ to SATs, and the results are in USA Today

 

Universities like George Washington, Temple and Cornell may have adopted a “test-optional” approach to SAT and ACT scores, but Hampshire College went one step further last fall when it wouldn’t take test scores at all.

One year later, the private liberal-arts school in Amherst, Mass., now has the initial results.

Given one reason for the no-tests’ decision was because tests are “strongly biased against low-income students and students of color,” Hampshire College President Jonathan Lash says in a statement on the results, the school seems to have made progress toward inclusiveness.

Class diversity, he says, “increased to 31% students of color, the most diverse in our history, up from 21% two years ago.”

And the percentage of students “who are the first-generation from their family to attend college rose from 12% to 18%.”

But while the quantity of applications went down — “likely because we made it harder to apply, asking for more essays” — the percentage of students “who accepted our invitation to enroll rose in a single year from 18% to 26%, an amazing turnaround.”

http://go.uen.org/4KV

 

 


 

 

Asians to surpass Latinos as largest immigrant group in U.S., study finds Los Angeles Times

 

Asians are likely to surpass Latinos as the nation’s largest immigrant group shortly after the middle of the century as the wave of new arrivals from Latin America slows but trans-Pacific migration continues apace, according to a new study of census data.

The surge of immigration that has reshaped the American population over the last half century will transform the country for several decades to come, the projections indicate. Immigrants and their children are likely to make up 88% of the country’s population growth over the next 50 years, according to the study by the Pew Research Center, which has tracked the effects of immigration on the country’s population for the last several decades.

The foreign-born, who made up just 5% of the nation’s population in 1965, when Congress completely rewrote the country’s immigration laws, make up 14% today, the study found. They are projected to be 18% of the population by 2065.

Increasingly, that population growth will involve Asians. Unlike the Latino population, which mostly shares a common language, Spanish, and many cultural traits, the census category of Asian takes in a vast array of ethnic and language groups, including Japanese, Chinese, Koreans, Filipinos, Indians and Pakistanis.

Already, Asian Americans make up about 6% of the nation’s population, up from just 1% in 1965. By the middle of the century they will total 14%, the projections say.

Asians are expected to constitute 36% of the immigrant population by 2055, surpassing Latinos, who by then will be 34% of immigrants, the study indicates. Since many Latinos are third- or fourth-generation Americans, they will remain a larger share of the total population, close to one-quarter of all Americans by midcentury.

http://go.uen.org/4Lo

 

A copy of the report

http://go.uen.org/4Lp (Pew Research Center)

 

 


 

 

Student in custody, principal injured in shooting at Harrisburg High Sioux Falls (SD) Argus Leader

 

Harrisburg High School is on lockdown Wednesday after a shooting that left its principal with a flesh wound. Superintendent Jim Holbeck said all students are safe and parents need to stay away.

The shooter was a student who is in custody, Lincoln County State’s Attorney Tom Wollman said. The victim is in stable condition, he said.

Harrisburg High School’s principal is Kevin Lein. Harrisburg School Board members declined to comment.

http://go.uen.org/4Lj

 

http://go.uen.org/4Lk (AP)

 


 

 

Father of Washington state school shooter convicted on gun charges Reuters

 

The father of a Washington state teen who went on a deadly shooting rampage at his high school last October was convicted on Tuesday of federal gun charges, prosecutors said.

Raymond Fryberg, 42, was found guilty by a jury in Seattle on all six charges of illegal firearms possession in violation of a 2002 court protection order that barred him from obtaining guns, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Western Washington said in a statement.

Fryberg’s attorney, John Henry Browne, said he was disappointed at the decision and would appeal the ruling.

Among the weapons were a rifle, a shotgun and a Beretta Px4 Storm handgun. The Beretta was used by his son Jaylen Fryberg in the Oct. 24, 2014 massacre at Marysville-Pilchuck High School, about an hour’s drive north of Seattle.

The popular 15-year-old football player opened fire on a cafeteria gathering of his cousins and three close friends before taking his own life. Four of the students died and one survived

http://go.uen.org/4L0

 

http://go.uen.org/4Ll (AP)

 


 

 

Michelle Obama: Girls, Don’t Hold Back in School Associated Press

 

NEW YORK — First lady Michelle Obama has some advice for teenage girls: Don’t shy from being the smartest kid in the class. And never mind what the boys think.

“Compete with the boys. Beat the boys,” she told about 1,000 schoolgirls and young women Tuesday at an event aimed at publicizing her “Let Girls Learn” campaign to expand girls’ access to education in developing countries and encourage American girls to take advantage of their opportunities. But the first lady also gave some impromptu, personal pep talks on handling the pressures of adolescence.

On dealing with the frustrations, embarrassments and slights of high school: “I know being a teenager is hard,” but it’s temporary and not a template for the rest of life: “Half these people, you’re not going to know when you’re 60.”

And on whether being brainy comes at a social cost: “There is no boy, at this age, that is cute enough or interesting enough to stop you from getting your education,” the water pump operator’s daughter-turned-Harvard-trained lawyer said. “If I had worried about who liked me and who thought I was cute when I was your age, I wouldn’t be married to the president of the United States.”

http://go.uen.org/4KR

 

http://go.uen.org/4Li (Reuters)

 

 


 

 

Researchers have discovered a surprisingly simple way to get kids to eat more veggies Washington Post

 

It seems like an age-old problem — kids not eating their vegetables — and it is. Little ones, more interested in macaroni and cheese than sautéed spinach, are still leaving the latter largely untouched. The proof is both anecdotal — what parent hasn’t tussled with this? — and borne out in data. Nine out of 10 children, after all, still don’t eat enough vegetables, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The problem has been blamed, at least in part, for the deteriorating diets of American youth. It has also been on clear display ever since the government updated, in 2013, its nutrition standards for the National School Lunch Program. Children, suddenly confronted with vegetables on every plate (as required as part of the change), have responded not by eating them but by leaving them on their plates — untouched.

It’s a poignant example of how kids are really good at making really bad decisions about food. And it has proved pretty frustrating for health and nutrition advocates, who can’t seem to find a reasonable way to get children to eat more healthfully at school.

But it turns out there might be an ingenious solution hiding beneath everyone’s nose.

Researchers at Texas A&M University, looking for patterns in food consumption among elementary school children, found an interesting quirk about when and why kids choose to eat their vegetables. After analyzing plate waste data from nearly 8,500 students, it seems there’s at least one variable that tends to affect whether kids eat their broccoli, spinach or green beans more than anything: what else is on the plate.

Kids, in short, are much more likely to eat their vegetable portion when it’s paired with a food that isn’t so delicious it gets all the attention. When chicken nuggets and burgers, the most popular items among schoolchildren, are on the menu, for instance, vegetable waste tends to rise significantly. When other less-beloved foods, like deli sliders or baked potatoes, are served, the opposite seems to happen.

http://go.uen.org/4KZ

 

http://go.uen.org/4Lh (USAT)

 

 

 

 

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CALENDAR

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USOE Calendar

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

 

 

UEN News

http://www.uen.org

 

 

October 1:

Utah State Charter School Board meeting

9 a.m. 250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

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

 

 

October 8:

Utah State Board of Education study session and committee meetings

3 p.m., 250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

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

 

 

October 9:

Utah State Board of Education meeting

8 a.m., 250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

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

 

 

October 20:

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting

2 p.m., 445 State Capitol

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

 

 

October 21:

Education Interim Committee meeting

8:30 a.m., 30 House Building

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

 

 

October 29:

Charter School Funding Task Force

1 p.m.,  445 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2015&com=TSKCSF

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