Education News Roundup: March 3, 2016

Utah State Capitol

Utah State Capitol/Education News Roundup

Education News Roundup

Today’s Top Picks:

 

Bill that directs more public education money to the state’s poorest districts advances.

http://go.uen.org/6fN (SLT)

 

Will the truancy decriminalization bill languish in House Education?

http://go.uen.org/6fE (SLT)

 

L.A. Unified superintendent reaches out to charter schools.

http://go.uen.org/6fJ (LAT)

 

It can be tough holding a classroom discussion of the presidential debates these days.

http://go.uen.org/6g3 (AP)

 

 

 

 

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TODAY’S HEADLINES

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UTAH

 

Committee signs off on proposal to push $20M toward Utah’s poorest school districts

 

After heated debate, clock runs out for committee vote on bill to decriminalize school truancy

 

The two states of Utah: A story of boom and bust Numbers tell a troubling story for many families

 

Guv hopeful Johnson: I’m leading Herbert among state delegates

 

Did you say free? Educators turn to textbooks that cost nothing, as U.S. Department of Education throws its weight behind them

 

Why we should love engineers

 

Tech Savvy event for girls in STEM coming to Dixie; public participation encouraged

 

Maple Mountain teacher surprised with UACTE Teacher of the Year

 

STEM Action Center Takes to the Road with Tesoro STEM Bus Grant

 

HMK sixth-graders put lesson in politics into practice

 

Students, parents, emergency responders collaborate during armed intruder evacuation drill

 

Native American says performance from Utah high school’s dance team mocked tribe’s culture

 

Weber High students, staff mourn the loss of teacher Rex Johnson

 

Three Utah writers launch new books for young readers Books » Three Utah writers delve into self-discovery, relationships and perseverance by way of truth and fiction in youth-themed works.

 

RDT to visit Sanpete schools

 

Canyons offering free workshops on autism

 

New Davis elementary schools need names

 

School moves classes to the Capitol for a day

 

Happy 112th birthday to you!

 


 

 

OPINION & COMMENTARY

 

Utah’s one-party system not serving the state well

 

423 (Implementing Federal Education Program Amendments)

 

Land Grab Not About Education

 

The fantastic new ways to teach math that most schools aren’t even using Here are four small changes new teachers can make to help students

 

Who Has Worked for the Presidential Candidates on Education?

 

Schools and hard knocks

Children need protection from high-impact sports such as rugby and American football

 


 

 

NATION

 

New L.A. schools chief Michelle King calls for making peace with charters

 

Texas education board dreads possible return of culture war with anti-gay candidate

 

Schools Find Campaign Talk Conflicts with No-bullies Message

 

God, Wall Street, and the New Push to Save U.S. Catholic Schools Donors include Protestants, Jews and at least one atheist

 

Classroom spending at Arizona schools dips, state reports shows

 

Criminal investigation launched after video shows school police officer slapping young man

 

Idaho students arrested on suspicion of burning down principal’s home

 

Chances are, Boston schools are safe from sugary drinks Sugary soft drinks and juices have all but disappeared from Boston’s public schools.

 

State Schools Superintendent Tommy Bice to retire

 

Retired educator appointed interim deputy education commissioner

 

 

 

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UTAH NEWS

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Committee signs off on proposal to push $20M toward Utah’s poorest school districts

 

Utah’s lowest-funded school districts would be first in line for new education money under a bill that received committee approval on Thursday.

The bill, sponsored by South Jordan Republican Sen. Lincoln Filmore, would sequester a portion of new school funds and distribute it among districts and charter schools that are below the state’s funding average.

The bill is estimated to carve out roughly $20 million from the Education Fund for low-funded schools in its first year.

http://go.uen.org/6fN (SLT)

 


 

 

After heated debate, clock runs out for committee vote on bill to decriminalize school truancy

 

Mountain View Elementary Principal Bryce Day said Wednesday that he has no intention of referring parents to truancy court.

Speaking before the House Education Committee, Day told the story of a second-grade student who couldn’t read when he arrived at school in the fall, and who has been absent for 63 days, or more than half, of the current school year.

It was only the threat of criminal truancy, Day said, that opened up conversations between the student’s family and school staff.

“It wasn’t until I was able to send a letter letting the parent know that it is a class B misdemeanor that I finally got that parent to engage with me,” Day said.

Day was speaking in opposition to SB45, a bill that would remove the criminal penalty for school truancy.

He said schools rely on the state’s compulsory education laws, not to punish parents but to push dialogue and ensure that children receive an education.

“This bill will inordinately impact low-income schools and our youngest students,” he said.

Sponsored by Highland Republican Sen. Alvin Jackson, SB45 was approved by the Senate last month in a 22-5 vote.

Its path to the House of Representatives was slowed Wednesday, as floor debate forced the education committee to abruptly end its hearing before taking a vote on the bill.

http://go.uen.org/6fE (SLT)

 


 

 

The two states of Utah: A story of boom and bust Numbers tell a troubling story for many families

 

VERNAL — A Gallup poll released in late February revealed Utah residents are the most positive in the nation about their state’s economic conditions.

The results must not have included those who live in Uintah and Duchesne counties, Utah’s oil- and natural-gas rich country that is full of vacant storefronts, long unemployment lines and plunging sales tax revenues.

“With the oil and natural gas collapse, there have been losses, and they are hurting everywhere in the Uinta Basin with this setback,” said Scott Smith, a regional economist in the basin for the state Department of Workforce Services.

“The rest of the state is actually booming, and they are out there dying and feeling really isolated. From our point of view, things are really rough. The rest of the state is, ‘Happy Days are Here Again.’

The contrast between Wasatch Front-fueled successes and the Uinta Basin’s struggles is stark:

The plunging oil prices in the Uinta Basin are having impacts elsewhere in Utah, such as a decrease of $30 million in school trust lands revenue in a year’s time — money that goes to support public schools.

http://go.uen.org/6gc (DN)

 


 

 

Guv hopeful Johnson: I’m leading Herbert among state delegates

 

BRIGHAM CITY — Republican gubernatorial hopeful Jonathan Johnson had a message for the roughly two dozen gathered Tuesday night, in a cozy downstairs den in this small Top of Utah city, to hear his stump speech and a question-and-answer session: I’m outpolling Gary Herbert among Republican state delegates, he said.

Johnson’s not providing more details, and Governor Herbert would certainly disagree with his Republican challenger’s claim. But if Johnson, chairman of the board at Overstock.com — who eschews signature-gathering for the traditional caucus-convention route to nomination — surprises with a strong showing at the party convention this spring, it will largely be due to hour-long town hall meetings like the one in Brigham City. Sasha Clark, Johnson’s communications director, says the campaign has been meeting in homes across the state for the past 19 months, with no plans to stop.

In Brigham City, before a mostly Republican audience, Johnson, speaking in his familiar raspy voice – one that recalls the late Andy Devine – positioned himself as a conservative alternative to Herbert. Issues mentioned included education, Medicaid expansion and a planned lawsuit to sue the feds for oversight of state lands.

Johnson told attendees that Herbert has failed to address those issues, supporting Common Core standards, backing a Medicaid expansion contingent on federal requirements and procrastinating a promise to litigate for state autonomy over lands.

“The federal government likes to expand its power. The states don’t say ’no’ enough,” Johnson said. With education, he told attendees “a menu of different standards” should be available for local districts to choose. The menu could even include a Common Core-type offering, but it must be the local district deciding what’s best, not Washington D.C. or Salt Lake City.

http://go.uen.org/6gf (OSE)

 


 

 

Did you say free? Educators turn to textbooks that cost nothing, as U.S. Department of Education throws its weight behind them

 

The avant-garde of educators on social media went aflutter last week as the U.S. Department of Education announced new developments in its effort to assist schools that embark on plans to ditch old-school textbooks.

Emblazoning their social media posts with #GoOpen, teachers, principals, advocacy organizations and trade groups rallied behind what the department described as “high-quality, openly-licensed educational resources” for K-12 schools. Worth noting: These books and materials are free.

“Openly licensed educational resources can increase equity by providing all students, regardless of zip code, access to high quality learning materials that have the most up-to-date and relevant content,” acting U.S. Education Secretary John King said in a statement.

At an event tagged as the #GoOpen Exchange, the department praised pioneering educators who were working to upend the traditional model of textbooks and materials. To assist with that work, the Department of Education has recruited a full roster of supporters, both public and private, including Amazon Education, Microsoft and Edmoto.

The thirteen states that pledged to make use of free materials are: Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Maryland, Michigan, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Rhode Island, Utah, Vermont, Virginia and Wisconsin. Separately, 40 districts in an array of states have promised to replace at least one textbook with an open-license resource.

http://go.uen.org/6gd (Hechinger Report)

 


 

 

Why we should love engineers

 

HILL AIR FORCE BASE — Engineers often perform heroic works behind the scenes, with the public oblivious to the effects on everyone’s daily lives. Consequently, Engineering Week was born across the nation more than 60 years ago, and is still going strong in an effort to shed some light on the work of engineers.

“We need to celebrate what engineers bring to us as a society, especially since a lot of work on the military side happens behind closed doors, yet massive amounts of work have been done by engineers when you eventually see an airplane,” said Robert Fabian, organizer of Utah’s Engineers Week. “We want to reinforce their work to the next generation.”

Last week, a host of Northern Utah organizations, corporations and student groups from area universities participated in demonstrations, competitions and lectures in hopes of garnering more interest and understanding of the field for those entering the profession.

Another common problem for students looking at future engineering careers, Hailey said, is based on perception.

“Our high school kids think you have to be in the top 10 percent of all intellectual people on the planet and be good at math and science. So many people feel they aren’t smart enough to be engineers,” Hailey said. “That’s not the case, though. It takes a commitment and a willingness to follow the degree path and see the end result of being able to do so many great things.”

Hailey sees the success that is coming from STEM education for students, but there are still messages that need to be changed when recruiting students into engineering programs.

http://go.uen.org/6gh  (Hilltop Times)

 


 

 

Tech Savvy event for girls in STEM coming to Dixie; public participation encouraged

 

  1. GEORGE – With the goal of encouraging girls to get involved in the fields of science, technology, engineering and math, Dixie State University will hold a day-long Tech Savvy conference March 19 geared toward 6th- to 9th-grade girls. Event organizers are inviting community individuals and organizations to be a part of the event as well.

According to the sponsor of the event, the St. George branch of the American Association of University Women, Dixie State University has been selected to host one of only 22 Tech Savvy pilot programs nationwide.

Tech Savvy Southern Utah is a day-long science, technology, engineering, and math — or STEM — career conference designed to get girls excited about careers in these fields and to help families learn how to help their daughters achieve their STEM education and career goals.

http://go.uen.org/6gi (SGN)

 


 

 

Maple Mountain teacher surprised with UACTE Teacher of the Year

 

Career and technical education in Utah have a place in Utah schools, and some of the best teachers can be found there.

Kathryn Crandall, teacher at Maple Mountain High School (MMHS) in Nebo School District, was awarded the Utah Association Career and Technology Education (UACTE) Teacher of the Year from the Work-based Learning division at the UACTE Conference held Feb. 5-6 in St. George.

http://go.uen.org/6fU (PDH)

 


 

 

STEM Action Center Takes to the Road with Tesoro STEM Bus Grant

 

Salt Lake City—The Utah STEM Action Center recently received a $1.5 million five-year grant from the Tesoro Foundation to create a STEM mobile classroom and support the creation of a STEM-competitive workforce.

“We are proud to support the STEM Action Center and its mission to produce a STEM-competitive workforce to ensure Utah’s continued economic success,” said Brad Shafer, senior manager of government and public affairs for Tesoro. “As an employer constantly seeking out top-talent and as a socially responsible corporate citizen, supporting STEM education-related programs is the cornerstone of Tesoro’s community investment strategy,”

Mobile classrooms deliver activities that require specialized equipment, facilitate professional learning activities for teachers, and deliver kits and tools that can be left behind for students and teachers to continue STEM learning opportunities.

http://go.uen.org/6fB (Utah Business)

 

http://go.uen.org/6fC (UP)

 


 

 

HMK sixth-graders put lesson in politics into practice

 

Students in Buffy Camps’s sixth grade class at Helen M. Knight Elementary School are getting a real life lesson in how politics works at the local level.

Camps said the lesson was designed to teach the students argument writing.

“Up until this point, they’ve been doing persuasive writing,” she said.

Students were asked to pick a topic that they felt strongly about.

“I challenged them to choose something they wanted to change in their community — their home, school, city, state, country, the world,” Camps said. “They then gathered data through Internet sources or by creating a survey.”

Students chose a variety of topics, ranging from local issues to national ones.

http://go.uen.org/6ge  (Moab Times-Independent)

 


 

Students, parents, emergency responders collaborate during armed intruder evacuation drill

 

WEBER COUNTY, Utah – More than 800 elementary age students evacuated their school, after a hypothetical intruder broke in with a weapon.

It was lights off and doors closed during a realistic lockdown at Kanesville Elementary School.  Students gathered up quietly and waited for help.

Fortunately, scenario was just a large-scale safety drill, but this one was unique because it was not just for the kids.

http://go.uen.org/6fW (KTVX)

 

http://go.uen.org/6fY (KSTU)

 

http://go.uen.org/6gj (OSE)

 


 

 

Native American says performance from Utah high school’s dance team mocked tribe’s culture

 

CEDAR CITY, Utah — A dance routine performed by a Utah high school drill team is getting backlash for its cultural insensitivity to Native Americans.

The video has amassed nearly 20,000 views after it was posted by a parent who saw the performance during a halftime show last week at Cedar High School–home of the “Redmen.”

“The outfits, the music, the way they were dancing, the feathers, the way they were wearing the regalia: I thought it was mocking Native American people rather than honoring them,” said Teyawnna Sanden, who is a member of the Paiute Tribe.

http://go.uen.org/6gk (KSTU)

 


 

 

Weber High students, staff mourn the loss of teacher Rex Johnson

 

PLEASANT VIEW — Students and staff at Weber High School are mourning the death of a beloved teacher, whom they lost suddenly Monday morning, Feb. 29.

Rex Johnson, 62, suffered a heart attack at school and died soon after at an area hospital.

Johnson worked at Weber School District for 18 years. At the time he died, he was teaching history and English for special education students, said Superintendent Jeff Stephens.

http://go.uen.org/6fS (OSE)

 


 

 

Three Utah writers launch new books for young readers Books » Three Utah writers delve into self-discovery, relationships and perseverance by way of truth and fiction in youth-themed works.

 

Even in the prolific world of Utah’s successful writers-for-youth, three national book launches in one month seems remarkable. So we invited all three writers — Ally Condie, Emily Wing Smith and Lindsay Eagar — to the studio to mark their new publishing directions.

Condie and Wing are writing colleagues and friends who also share the same influential editor, Julie Strauss-Gabel, the publisher of Dutton Children’s Books. Eagar is publishing her debut novel, but she has a rare four-book contract. All three will be appearing at Wasatch Front book events in coming days.

http://go.uen.org/6fM (SLT)

 


 

 

RDT to visit Sanpete schools

 

SANPETE COUNTY– As part of their 50th-Anniversary Tour, Utah’s internationally acclaimed Repertory Dance Theatre (RDT) will visit several schools in Sanpete County this week as part of their 50th-anniversary tour, culminating in a full evening concert at the George S. and Dolores Doré Eccles Center for the Performing Arts at Snow College Saturday, March 5, at 7:30 p.m.

As part of the Professional Outreach Program to Schools (POPS) program, which receives funding from the state legislature, major arts organizations visit every school at three-to-five-year intervals.

Schools on this tour are Ephraim, Manti and Gunnison Valley elementary schools, as well as Wasatch Academy Thursday and Friday, March 3 and 4.

http://go.uen.org/6gb (PDH)

 


 

 

Canyons offering free workshops on autism

 

SANDY — Anyone looking for information about autism and Aspergers syndrome is invited to attend a series of classes offered by the Canyons School District’s Office of Special Education.

http://go.uen.org/6fR (DN)

 


 

 

New Davis elementary schools need names

 

LAYTON – Davis School District has two new elementary schools, and they need names. Community members are invited to make suggestions between now and noon on Friday, March 4.

http://go.uen.org/6fT (OSE)

 


 

 

School moves classes to the Capitol for a day

 

Colt Riley uses a Braille notetaker as the Utah School for the Deaf and the Blind held class at the Capitol in Salt Lake City on Wednesday. Each year, the school’s students, faculty and staff plan a day of “School on the Hill” and invite legislators to learn about the unique ways educational resources and services are provided to students with hearing or visual impairments.

http://go.uen.org/6fP (DN)

 


 

 

Happy 112th birthday to you!

 

Kade Peterson, a member of Brighton High School’s student government, left, reads Dr. Seuss’ “Wacky Wednesday” to Roman Trujillo and Branic Berg at Bella Vista Elementary School in Cottonwood Heights on Wednesday. The event was held in honor of what would have been Dr. Seuss’ 112th birthday and the National Education Association’s Read Across America Day.

http://go.uen.org/6fQ (DN)

 

 

 

 

 

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OPINION & COMMENTARY

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Utah’s one-party system not serving the state well

(Logan) Herald Journal commentary by columnist Jay Monson

 

Utah’s legislative session will end soon, and at the risk of sounding like a grumpy old man, I’m going to climb up on my old and nearly worn out soapbox and sing the same two notes I’ve sung many times.

Second is the issue of education. I am glad to see that education will be receiving badly needed added funds. Great public schools and universities has always been a value of this state. Historically, this has been one of the reasons people moved here. When I was on the State Board of Education, then State School Superintendent Walter Talbot called it “the miracle of Utah” that we had such low funding for public education but yet we had fine schools. That was a long time ago. As I said, I am glad to see education will be receiving added funds.

But dollars per classroom student isn’t the total problem. We face a severe shortage of teachers. This is a real crisis in Utah’s education. Where have all the teachers gone?

http://go.uen.org/6fV

 


 

 

423 (Implementing Federal Education Program Amendments) Sutherland Institute commentary by education policy analyst Christine Cooke

 

Thank you, Mr. Chair and members of the committee. My name is Christine Cooke, education policy analyst for Sutherland Institute.

Sutherland believes that state and local officials are better equipped than the federal government to make education policies and programs for Utah students. HB 423 requires the State [School] Board to make state determinations about the financial impacts of federal programs and requires it to pursue state solutions to financial losses that occur when Utah decides not to implement a federal program.

Because this bill better gives Utah greater independence over federal mandates and objectives, we encourage you to support HB 423.

http://go.uen.org/6fZ

 


 

 

Land Grab Not About Education

Salt Lake City Weekly letter from Tim & Jaquelynn Henney

 

My 1957 bride and I live in Sandpoint, Idaho, but we winter in Moab, Utah. The latter entitles us, we hope, to comment on a story we have been following for years, it seems, in City Weekly.

The reason U.S. Reps. Rob Bishop, Jason Chaffetz and their cultist cronies are trying to steal public lands is not to upgrade Utah’s dismal public education. It is to feather the financial nests of fellow sect member entrepreneurs whose polluting dollars keep them in office. With straight faces, they insist they want to raise funds to improve Utah education. Baloney.

http://go.uen.org/6gg

 


 

 

The fantastic new ways to teach math that most schools aren’t even using Here are four small changes new teachers can make to help students Hechinger Report commentary by COREY DRAKE, associate professor of teacher education and director of teacher preparation at Michigan State University’s College of Education

 

This is an exciting time to be a mathematics teacher-educator.

In the past two decades, we have developed a much better understanding not only of how children learn math, but also of how to teach math – and how to prepare teachers to teach math. A short (though incomplete) list of teaching practices that we know work to support student learning includes posing challenging tasks that connect to children’s prior understandings and out-of-school experiences, providing opportunities for children to make sense of and talk about mathematics, and promoting the use of mental mathematics based on patterns in our number system.

Yet it is also a challenging time to be a mathematics teacher educator because these teaching practices are not being used in most classrooms and schools. Further, there are many constraints limiting the use of these practices — ranging from high-stakes testing to crumbling schools.

Here, I am advocating for an approach to mathematics teacher preparation that takes seriously our responsibility to support novice teachers in making small changes in the status quo of mathematics teaching while working together with teachers to create more transformational changes.

http://go.uen.org/6g6

 


 

 

Who Has Worked for the Presidential Candidates on Education?

Education Week commentary by columnist Alyson Klein

 

Happy Day After Super Tuesday! As you scour the returns, I’ll bet you’re wondering: Who is helping these people figure out their education platforms, or who on their campaign team has an education background?

Or, if they don’t have a team in place yet, who have these candidates worked with in the past on education issues? And who are their education aides in their day jobs as senator or governor? (Those names can matter down the line—one of President Barack Obama’s original White House education advisors, science teacher Steve Robinson, first worked in his Senate office.)

We put our crack research team at the Education Week library on the case. Here’s what they came up with:

http://go.uen.org/6g7

 


 

 

Schools and hard knocks

Children need protection from high-impact sports such as rugby and American football The Economist editorial

 

IMAGINE being asked to take part in an activity that gives you somewhere between a 1-in-5 and 1-in-20 chance of a serious head injury over a four-month period. That could lead to weeks of impaired mental performance and headaches, and, especially if the blows are repeated, the danger of longer-term mental-health problems. Now imagine that your child is the one taking that risk.

Such are the dangers associated with playing American football. The risks of concussion are higher still in rugby, one of the world’s fastest-growing sports. These concerns have already prompted some changes. Rugby has introduced “head-injury assessment” rules, enabling players who have suspected concussions to be substituted temporarily so that they can be checked by medical staff. All 50 of America’s states have adopted “return to play” laws that require medical clearance before younger athletes who have sustained a concussion can take to the field again.

Such measures are welcome, but they sidestep the real issue: is it safe to play a game whose rules require people to slam into each other? As understanding grows of what happens in the brain when collisions take place, the answer seems certain to be “no”.

http://go.uen.org/6ga

 

 

 

 

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NATIONAL NEWS

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New L.A. schools chief Michelle King calls for making peace with charters Los Angeles Times

 

Recently hired school L.A. schools Supt. Michelle King on Tuesday called for traditional public schools and charters—groups often at odds—to work together, pledging to set up a conference where they could share ideas.

At a town hall event in Pacoima, before an audience of 700, King demonstrated a growing comfort in her new role as well as skill in framing responses that would appeal to those assembled.

Although it was not King’s first public event, the question-and-answer forum at Pacoima Middle School was an early showcase of her direct message to parents. A low-income neighborhood, Pacoima includes some popular charter schools as well as some traditional schools that have struggled for years with low academic achievement.

The tension between charters, which are run outside of the district’s control, and traditional schools, was underscored over the summer, when the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation circulated a draft proposal to pull half of district students into charters.

Months later, a district-appointed task force concluded that the rapid growth of charters had the potential to drive the district into bankruptcy.

http://go.uen.org/6fJ

 


 

 

Texas education board dreads possible return of culture war with anti-gay candidate Dallas Morning News

 

AUSTIN – Mary Lou Bruner has at least twice said President Barack Obama was a gay prostitute in his youth. She believes that there is scientific proof the Grand Canyon could not have been created by anything other than the biblical Great Flood and that sex education is a method to indoctrinate kids to be gay.

And Tuesday night, she nearly won a seat on the state panel that oversees education standards for Texas’ 5.2 million schoolchildren, representing a district that includes Rockwall and Kaufman counties and much of East Texas.

Now, as the frontrunner heading into the May 24 Republican runoff, Bruner could be the spark that rekindles the fiery political rhetoric the board has been attempting to smother for more than a decade.

“She will be a human rain delay that will create headlines, and it will make legislators and educators and parents across the state shake their heads and say, ‘The state board is back at it again. They’re making themselves irrelevant again,’ ” said Thomas Ratliff, the outgoing Mount Pleasant Republican who Bruner is seeking to replace. “It will render the board less of a player, and it will limit their influence across the state because unfortunately too many people don’t get past the headlines.”

Bruner declined to comment for this report.

http://go.uen.org/6fK

 


 

 

Schools Find Campaign Talk Conflicts with No-bullies Message Associated Press

 

BUFFALO, N.Y. — Ryan Lysek rose to become vice president of his fifth-grade class at Lorraine Academy in Buffalo, New York, after the sitting veep got bounced for saying things that went against the school’s anti-bullying rules. So the 10-year-old is a little puzzled that candidates running to lead the entire country can get away with name-calling and foul language.

The nasty personal tweets and sound bites of the 2016 Republican presidential campaign are reverberating in classrooms, running counter to the anti-bullying policies that have emerged in recent years amid several high-profile suicides.

For teacher David Arenstam’s high school class in Saco, Maine, the campaign has been one long civics lesson: “Can you really ban a whole group of people from coming into the country?” the students will ask, or “What’s the KKK, and do they still really exist?”

But mostly, Arenstam said, when it comes to Republican Donald Trump, students “can’t believe nobody calls him on the carpet the way that they would be called on the carpet if they said those things.”

http://go.uen.org/6g3

 


 

 

God, Wall Street, and the New Push to Save U.S. Catholic Schools Donors include Protestants, Jews and at least one atheist Bloomberg

 

The financial world’s fingerprints are all over Boston’s St. John Paul II Catholic Academy. Tile floors gleam and lockers shine thanks to money raised by the likes of Bob Atchinson, co-founder of the hedge fund Adage Capital Management. Plaques outside classrooms highlight donors from Wellington Management Co., Convexity Capital Management and Merrill Lynch.

Wall Street’s commitment to inner-city Catholic schools goes back decades. But in major population centers like Boston, New York and Chicago, the alliance has taken a leap. Donors not only demand accountability for what they’ve given but also increasingly want to help run things, too, setting off new debate about the Catholic identity of Catholic schools.

“It is a dance that is still being played out,” says Timothy McNiff, the Archdiocese of New York’s superintendent of schools.

In Boston, Atchinson is a trustee for the Campaign for Catholic Schools, a nonprofit that oversaw $55 million in fundraising that made the new academy possible. In the New York borough of the Bronx, Richard Brennan of Value Recovery Capital sits on a board that runs 14 Catholic schools. In Philadelphia, H. Edward Hanway, former chief executive officer of Cigna Corp., leads the Faith in the Future Foundation, which operates the Archdiocese’s 17 high schools and four special-education institutions. They all see a chance to improve a system that, despite crumbling infrastructure and tight budgets, produces students who test better and graduate at higher rates than their public-school peers.

“That’s what Wall Street does,” Brennan says. “We look for inefficiencies in things that have massive potential, like a good company with a bad balance sheet. We look for upside — and we see upside here.”

http://go.uen.org/6g8

 


 

 

Classroom spending at Arizona schools dips, state reports shows

(Tucson) Arizona Daily Star

 

PHOENIX — Arizona schools spent less of the money they received last year in the classroom than in any of the 15 years the state has been keeping track, a new report shows.

Just 53.6 cents out of every dollar spent to educate Arizona youngsters in 2015 went for instruction, the Auditor General’s Office found. That includes everything from teachers, aides and even coaches to supplies like pencils and paper and some activities such as band or choir.

Aside from being at the lowest point since the agency started looking at the issue in 2001, it also is 7.2 cents below the national average.

http://go.uen.org/6fL

 


 

 

Criminal investigation launched after video shows school police officer slapping young man Baltimore Sun

 

Law enforcement officials launched a criminal investigation Wednesday after video surfaced of a Baltimore school police officer slapping and kicking a teenage youth while a second officer watches.

The incident occurred Tuesday afternoon on the steps outside a city high school. School Police Chief Marshall Goodwin and the two officers in the video were placed on administrative leave, and activists renewed calls for the Department of Justice to investigate the school police.

School officials have released few details of the incident, and there is disagreement about whether the youth is a student.

On Wednesday, acting School Police Chief Akil Hamm said the two officers responded to REACH Partnership School in Clifton Park after two “intruders” were reported inside. He said their presence was considered a threat.

http://go.uen.org/6fH

 

http://go.uen.org/6g0 (WaPo)

 


 

 

Idaho students arrested on suspicion of burning down principal’s home Reuters

 

SALMON, IDAHO | Idaho police arrested three teenagers on Wednesday and were seeking a fourth on suspicion the group set a fire that destroyed the home of a high school principal and could have killed the educator and his wife, authorities said.

The principal had suspended two of the students just days before the blaze in Payette, said the town’s police chief.

Mark Heleker, principal of the 430-student high school in the small southwest Idaho community, said he and his wife were awakened during the fire by their adult daughter at about 1 a.m. on Feb. 22 after she returned from walking her dog and saw flames shooting from the home’s attached garage.

The trio and their pets escaped unharmed from the two-story house before it was engulfed, as their cars, furniture and other belongings were destroyed, he said.

http://go.uen.org/6g1

 

http://go.uen.org/6g2 ([Boise] Idaho Statesman)

 


 

 

Bill on Sexually Explicit Books Gets Final OK in Virginia Associated Press

 

RICHMOND, Va. — A bill that would force schools to notify parents if their children are to be assigned to read books with sexually explicit content is heading to Virginia’s Democratic governor.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe has not said whether he will sign the bill, which a library expert says would be the first of its kind in the country.

The Republican-controlled House sent the measure to McAuliffe with a 77-21 vote Thursday. It passed the Senate earlier this week.

The bill would also require schools to provide an alternative to the sexually explicit book if a parent objects.

http://go.uen.org/6g4

 


 

 

Chances are, Boston schools are safe from sugary drinks Sugary soft drinks and juices have all but disappeared from Boston’s public schools.

Boston Globe

 

Sugary soft drinks and juices linked to bulging waistlines have all but disappeared from Boston’s public schools after a major push began years ago to banish the drinks, according to a study published Thursday that calls the city’s strict rules a model for the nation.

Only 4 percent of Boston students have access to sugar-sweetened beverages, said researchers, who examined compliance with a 2004 policy banning the sale of soft drinks, fruit drinks, sweetened teas, and sports drinks in schools. Consumption of such beverages has been strongly linked with obesity.

“The Boston Public Schools have always been ahead of the curve, particularly on health and nutrition,” said Rebecca S. Mozaffarian, lead author of the study and a nutrition researcher a the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

Boston’s success, she said, can guide school districts across the nation as they roll out federal rules on sugary beverages that took effect during the 2014-2015 school year.

http://go.uen.org/6g9

 


 

 

State Schools Superintendent Tommy Bice to retire Montgomery (AL) Advertiser

 

In a surprise announcement, Alabama State Schools Superintendent Tommy Bice said Tuesday he would retire effective March 31 and take a job with a Birmingham-based educational nonprofit.

Speaking at a press conference in his office overlooking the State House and State Capitol, Bice, 61, said recent gains in the state’s high school graduation rate, combined with significant improvements in the Education Trust Fund budget, led to his decision.

“About a month ago, it just felt right,” he said. “It was something (where) you wake up one day and say ‘OK, we’ve had many accomplishments. At some point I was going to retire, and this time felt right.”

Bice, who took the job in 2012, plans to take a position as education director for the Mike and Gillian Goodrich Foundation, which works on education and poverty issues.

http://go.uen.org/6fI

 


 

 

Retired educator appointed interim deputy education commissioner Associated Press via Anchorage (AK) Dispatch News

 

JUNEAU — A retired state educator has been named interim deputy commissioner of the Alaska education department.

Interim Commissioner Susan McCauley appointed Betty Walters to the position, effective Wednesday. Walters will serve in the role vacated by Les Morse, who has retired.

The department, in a release, says Walters has been involved in education since 1964. She served as a longtime school administrator in the Kodiak Island Borough School District.

The department has undergone big changes in recent weeks, with Commissioner Mike Hanley stepping down after the state Board of Education indicated that it wanted new leadership and Morse retiring.

http://go.uen.org/6g5

 

 

 

 

 

————————————————————

CALENDAR

————————————————————

 

USOE Calendar

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

 

 

UEN News

http://www.uen.org

 

 

March 3:

Senate Education Committee meeting

8 a.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/SEDU0303.ag.htm

 

House Revenue and Taxation Committee meeting

8 a.m., 445 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/HREV0303.ag.htm

 

Utah State Board of Education legislative meeting

Noon, 210 Senate Building

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

 

Senate Transportation and Public Utilities and Technology Committee meeting

4 p.m., 215 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/STPT0303.ag.htm

 

House Education Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 30 House Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/HEDU0303.ag.htm

 

House Business and Labor Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 445 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/HBUS0303.ag.htm

 

March 4:

House Judiciary Committee meeting

8 a.m., 20 House Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/HJUD0304.ag.htm

 

Senate Government Operations and Political Subdivisions Committee meeting

8:29 a.m., 415 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/SGOP0304.ag.htm

 

Senate Education Committee meeting

4 p.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2016&Com=SSTEDU

 

Appropriations Committee meeting

6 p.m., 445 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2016&com=APPEXE

 

 

March 7:

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting

7 a.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2016&com=APPEXE

 

House Education Committee meeting

8 a.m., 30 House Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2016&Com=HSTEDU

 

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2016&com=APPEXE

 

 

March 8:

Senate Education Committee meeting

8 a.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2016&Com=SSTEDU

 

House Education Committee meeting

10 a.m., 30 House Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2016&Com=HSTEDU

 

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2016&com=APPEXE

 

 

March 9:

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2016&com=APPEXE

 

 

March 10:

Utah State Charter School Board meeting

250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

http://go.uen.org/62M

 

 

March 17:

Utah State Board of Education study session and committee meetings

250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

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

 

 

March 18:

Utah State Board of Education meeting

250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

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

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