Education News Roundup: March 4, 2016

Sierra Bonita Elementary students visited the Supreme Court Chamber at the Capitol/Education News Roundup

Sierra Bonita Elementary students visited the Supreme Court Chamber at the Capitol/Education News Roundup

Education News Roundup

Today’s Top Picks:

 

Education well positioned, preliminarily, in the state budget.

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

and http://go.uen.org/6gq (UP)

 

House amends bills on school grading and Utah State Board of Education elections.

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

and http://go.uen.org/6gu (DN)

 

Logan High looks at its MacBook Air program.

http://go.uen.org/6gK (LHJ)

 

States question whether end-of-year tests should be timed or not.

http://go.uen.org/6h5 (Ed Week)

 

 

 

 

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TODAY’S HEADLINES

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UTAH

 

Education fares well as lawmakers fine-tune $14.7 billion state budget Blueprint » Spending plan includes money for a bare-bones health plan, state employees and the homeless.

 

House committee makes changes to school grading, election bills

 

Utah vaccine education bill ailing after floor amendment

 

Bill would raise funding floor for lowest-income school districts

 

Retiring senator aims a protecting freedom and agency

 

Making sense of Utah’s teacher shortage

 

Logan High reports success with one-to-one laptop policy

 

Bridgerland fair winners talk science projects, Intel competition

 

Why should you care about Uinta Basin’s pain?

 

Davis School District purchasing land in West Point

 

Chaos and creativity: Local high school art teacher named outstanding educator

 

Former elite gymnast Aimee Walker Pond encourages teens to ‘never give up’

 

Auto-pedestrian crash with Weber County school bus sends man to hospital

 

CHS under fire for Native American halftime dance

 

Eighth-grader finds unique way to thank police officers

 

BDES students explore Canyonlands clinic

 

Huntsman family calls for nominations of Utah educators who go ‘above and beyond’

 

Fitch Rates Jordan School District, UT’s Refunding GOs ‘AAA’; Outlook Stable

 


 

 

OPINION & COMMENTARY

 

High school coaches should learn from Richfield incident

 


 

 

NATION

 

GOP Candidates Probably Can’t Repeal Common Core ‘We’re cutting Common Core,’ Trump said at the most recent Republican debate.

 

What Happens When Trump Shuts Down the Department of Education?

 

What John Kasich got wrong about Detroit’s troubled schools in last night’s debate

 

You’re fired! U.S. school debaters’ dim view of Trump’s podium style

 

For States, Question Is: To Time Tests or Not?

N.Y. is latest to move to untimed tests

 

The new SAT lands, just as more colleges go test-optional The College Board says it changed The Big Test to better predict who is college ready but more than 200 colleges decided grades can do the job

 

Students Rally Behind South Carolina Teacher Who Resigned After Nude Photo Theft

 

American Indian Girls Often Fall Through the Cracks

 

Lawmakers Fail to Override Transgender Bill Veto

 

Judge backtracks on release of California student records

 

Opt-Out Fans Urge Senate to Reject John King’s Ed. Sec. Nomination

 

9th Circuit revives case over school district’s accommodation of troubled student

 

Two Ohio teens charged for not reporting gun at school before shooting

 

3 Seniors Charged with Hazing Freshman on ‘No Gay Thursday’

 

Sixteen school lunch programs making a difference Many experts believe that improving the food options available in school lunches is an important step towards lifting up their overall well-being. Here are sixteen school lunch programs that are making important strides in this arena.

 

Obamas to remain in D.C. after presidency so daughter can finish high school

 

 

 

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UTAH NEWS

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Education fares well as lawmakers fine-tune $14.7 billion state budget Blueprint » Spending plan includes money for a bare-bones health plan, state employees and the homeless.

 

Legislative budget leaders unveiled details of a $14.7 billion budget Thursday that included $440 million in new spending on public and higher education, funding for a plan to provide health care to the poorest Utahns, and a 3 percent salary bump for state workers.

The education funding comes in about $18 million higher than the governor requested in his budget proposal in December. It pays for the roughly 9,700 new students expected to enroll in Utah schools in the fall and increases per-pupil spending by about 3.75 percent.

“Hey hey!” the enthusiastic governor said. “As everyone knows, education is my top budget priority. We try to give the resources as we’re able to education. … We’re changing the culture in education, making it a priority, and the Legislature is jumping in with both feet and saying, ‘Let’s help.'”

The budget blueprint contains $15 million to put technology in classrooms — far less than the $100 million the state Board of Education had requested —  and $3 million for an early reading program for kindergarten through third grade. There is no funding for the expansion of full-day kindergarten classes, which was one of the board’s top priorities.

“The high points, I think, No. 1 is our commitment to funding education,” said Senate Budget Chairman Lyle Hillyard. “Secondly, we funded some technology and some of those programs that will really make a difference in making a transformation in public education.”

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

 

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

 


 

 

House committee makes changes to school grading, election bills

 

A pair of bills aimed at updating the state’s school-grading law and method for selecting state school board candidates was amended on the way through a House committee on Thursday.

School performance would still be evaluated with a letter grade under the latest version of the grading legislation. But educators wouldn’t need to worry about chasing expectations that become more difficult every year.

An earlier version of the bill called for the minimum score at each letter grade level to increase by 2 percent each year. Under the revised bill, those grade levels would jump by 5 percent in years when the majority of schools achieved an “A” or “B” grade.

Those increases would end after the grade breakdown resembled a traditional scale, with a score of 90 percent receiving an “A,” 80 percent receiving a “B,” and so forth.

“Instead of just coming back and having to adjust this every year, let’s put this in statute,” said Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, R-Sandy, who sponsored the original school-grading law in 2011.

The bill passed the committee with unanimous support, but lawmakers expressed some concern over the reliability of the school-grading system as a measure of school performance.

Christensen also sponsored an amendment to a bill that would revive an embattled method for selecting state school board candidates.

A 2014 court decision invalidated the state’s current election law, which relies on a nominating committee to screen candidates and forward names to the governor for placement on the ballot.

The bill, sponsored by Ogden Republican Sen. Ann Millner, attempts to work around the court decision by directing the committee to choose candidates based on objective criteria.

Millner’s proposal passed the Senate in early February, but concerns over the practical realities of an objective nominating committee tied the bill up in the House Education Committee.

The committee responded on Thursday by amending the bill to further restrict the qualifications that could be considered when evaluating candidates.

And Christensen amended the bill further by requiring school board candidates to be committed to Utah’s public education laws, particularly those specifying that the government’s role in education is secondary to the role of a parent.

“These are the polices that are so fundamental,” Christensen said.

Because of the changes, the bill would require an additional vote of the Senate if it succeeds in the House.

And Jaycee Skinner, legal counsel for the Utah governor’s office, said the amendments make the bill inconsistent with itself, and potentially conflict with the court’s ruling.

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

 

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

 


 

Utah vaccine education bill ailing after floor amendment

 

A bill making disease education a prerequisite to vaccine exemptions wasn’t immune from the back-and-forth of Utah politics on Thursday.

Sponsored by Holladay Democratic Rep. Carol Moss, the proposal called for parents to complete a 20-minute online course before excusing children who attend public schools from the immunizations required under state law.

But an amendment that passed in a 39-35 vote on the House floor would make obtaining an exemption easier than ever, removing the requirement that a parent ever set foot inside their local health department.

The sponsor of that amendment, Lehi Republican Rep. Jacob Anderegg, said his intent was to accommodate residents in Utah’s rural areas who face long drives to the nearest health department.

But after the amendment passed, Moss said she could no longer support her own bill and asked her colleagues to circle it, which indefinitely postpones debate.

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

 


 

 

Bill would raise funding floor for lowest-income school districts

 

SALT LAKE CITY — Adding to an ongoing emphasis on school funding equity, lawmakers gave their initial endorsement for a bill Thursday that would raise the funding floor for Utah’s lowest-funded school districts.

SB244 would set aside $21.4 million next year to be spread evenly across more than half of Utah’s 41 school districts. The bill would incrementally increase funding for districts with the lowest per-pupil dollars each year until those revenues are largely evened out.

The bill states that schools would be allowed to use the money “for any education purpose,” including teacher salaries, curriculum and other needs. It comes following a similar initiative to improve funding equity for charter schools in Utah.

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

 


 

 

Retiring senator aims a protecting freedom and agency

 

SALT LAKE CITY– A family man, a religious man, an ambitious man, a humorous man, an African-American man, and a Utah Senate man. Senator Alvin B. Jackson, R-Highland, was appointed in 2014 by Gov. Gary Herbert to the Utah State Senate to represent District 14. During his time in office, Jackson has spent the past year and half protecting the rights of his constituents.

“Before running, I spent six years studying and teaching the Constitution around the country,” Sen. Jackson said. “To me the primary purpose of the government, and as it says so in The Declaration of Independence, is to protect the rights of the people, so 90 percentage of my bills involve that–protecting the freedom and agency of the people.”

During the 2016 legislative term, Jackson’s number one priority is to pass SB45, a bill that would eliminate criminal penalties for a parent of truant school-age child.

“The government should not force people, it should encourage, educate, inform, and persuade people,” Sen. Jackson said. “Rather than throw parents in jail, we should go and sit down with and ask the parents, ‘What’s the problem? How can we get your child back in school?’”

However, Jackson may never see SB 45 come to fruition. He recently announced that he plans to resign from the legislative body after the session concludes next month. At the end of the school year, he and his family of seven will move back East, where Jackson grew up. The lawmaker plans to work on his family farm in Virginia, continue running his consulting firm, as well as help take care of his aging parents who live in the Washington, D.C. area.

http://go.uen.org/6gP (BYU Universe)

 


 

 

Making sense of Utah’s teacher shortage

 

SALT LAKE CITY — The story of Kane County School District Superintendent Robert Johnson’s is similar to other public educators around the state of Utah: There are teacher openings, but they aren’t being filled.

“Last year we had a math opening, we had an individual who graduated from Kanab high school and was teaching in Wyoming and wanted to come back,” he said. “But when she saw she was going to have to take a $20,000 pay cut she wasn’t going to do it.”

Why aren’t they being filled? Diana Suddreth, director of teaching and learning at the Utah State Office of Education says, “It’s a very complicated issue. It’s not just one thing.”

Not all subjects and grade levels are lacking in certified teachers, though. The biggest shortages across the state are in elementary education.

http://go.uen.org/6hb (KSL)

 


 

 

Logan High reports success with one-to-one laptop policy

 

Six months into Logan High’s one-to-one device launch, Logan High educators are reporting success and a plan to continue the student laptop program.

“The students are in love with (the MacBook Airs), generally,” Educational and Technical Services Director David Long said. “They really are using them to do some amazing things.”

After the school received laptops in September as part of a grant, most students exhibited responsibility in caring for their devices and using them for educational purposes, Long said, though the No. 1 use on record is iTunes.

http://go.uen.org/6gK (LHJ)

 


 

 

Bridgerland fair winners talk science projects, Intel competition

 

Logan High School students Raymond Li and Jennifer Ban have been to the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair before, but only as observers. Now they are excited for the opportunity to win prizes competing in the same competition against 1,700 high school students from more than 75 countries, regions and territories.

Li and Ban will get that opportunity because they were the winners of the Bridgerland Science and Engineering Fair, held at Utah State University on Saturday, Feb. 27 (they were runner ups last year, which explains why they were only “observers” at Intel last time). The Intel International Science and Engineering Fair is scheduled for May 8 to 13 in Phoenix, Arizona.

http://go.uen.org/6gL (LHJ)

 


 

 

Why should you care about Uinta Basin’s pain?

 

SALT LAKE CITY — The Wasatch Front is thriving and the “help wanted” or “now hiring,” signs are proof the local economy is growing. If people want work, they can get it.

Not so in the Uinta Basin, where the jobless rate is more than double the rest of the state, and the number of the newly unemployed is a statistic that won’t stop growing.

Beside the humanitarian wish to help there is ample reason for those throughout the state to care about what’s happening in the basin?

The revenue from oil and gas production is not merely centralized in the Uinta Basin but goes into the state general fund in the form of severance tax.

Revenue from oil and gas production on school trust lands also goes into a pot that is divvied up among public schools to pay for needs agreed on by a school community council. That revenue doesn’t know geographic boundaries; it can go to help a child in Provo just as easily as one in Vernal.

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

 


 

 

Davis School District purchasing land in West Point

 

LAYTON — The Davis School Board approved the purchase of land in West Point, anticipating enrollment growth and the need for new schools, during a meeting held Tuesday, March 1.

The 9.5-acre parcel being purchased from Kirkman Farms LLC for $878,750 is near the southeast corner of the intersection of 1800 North and 4500 West.

“This is the first installment of what will probably be two purchases for a future elementary site,” said Craig Carter, the district’s business administrator, in the meeting held at Ellison Park Elementary School, in Layton.

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

 

 


 

 

Chaos and creativity: Local high school art teacher named outstanding educator

 

HYRUM — Inside the orderly halls of Mountain Crest High School is a classroom in the school’s north wing that is simply an explosion of color and purposeful chaos.

Art teacher Michael Bingham sits at his desk on an otherwise quiet day in the classroom, while Foreigner’s “Head Games” blasts from the stereo mounted on the wall.

Bingham was recently named Outstanding Educator of the Year by the Springville Museum of Art during its annual All-State High School Art Show last month.

http://go.uen.org/6gM (LHJ)

 


 

 

Former elite gymnast Aimee Walker Pond encourages teens to ‘never give up’

 

An elite gymnast and former Bruin joined Mountain View High School’s student body on Thursday for an assembly on suicide awareness.

As a part of the school’s Hope Week — a regular event held to help students realize there are options available if they are suffering from depression or suicidal thoughts — Aimee Walker Pond spoke about the challenges and setbacks she had to overcome to be successful.

Born deaf and blind in one eye, Pond was originally turned away from gymnastics class because the studio didn’t have a coach who signed.

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

 


 

 

Auto-pedestrian crash with Weber County school bus sends man to hospital

 

OGDEN — A 26-year-old man walking near the crosswalk at 12th Street and Harrison Boulevard was hit by a Weber County School District bus Friday morning, March 4, according to the Ogden City Police Department and Weber County dispatch.

Weber dispatch confirmed the auto-pedestrian collision occurred at around 5:45 a.m.

According to tweets from Ogden police, the man was taken to a local hospital for treatment and is in serious condition with reported injuries to his head and shoulder area. The road was clear and with no traffic delays by around 7 a.m.

“It is believed the injured male was crossing Canyon Road just east of the intersection,” Ogden police Lt. Nate Cline said in a press release. “It is unknown at this time if the male was appropriately using the designated crosswalk. The male was struck by the bus as it attempted to complete a left hand turn from Harrison Blvd., onto Canyon Road.”

The bus did not have any passengers at the time of the crash, according to the press release.

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

 

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

 

http://go.uen.org/6gQ (KUTV)

 

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

 

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

 


 

 

CHS under fire for Native American halftime dance

 

Last Friday’s halftime performance by the Mohey Tawa Cedar High School drill team has drawn criticisms for the depiction of Native American dress and culture.

The CHS drill team danced to “tribal” music filled with eagle sounds, traditional singing and drumming while wearing braided wigs and fake feathers during last Friday’s basketball game.

The drill team has performed the dance “on several occasions,” according to Iron County School District Superintendent Shannon Dulaney.

The routine came under fire when a video was posted on Facebook by Teyawnna Sanders, a parent of one of the basketball players.

“Why should I have to explain why a non-native is dancing that way?” Sanders commented on the video. “If asked, Cedar’s answer most likely be that they are honoring us. Please do us a favor and don’t. Honor our sovereignty, our treaties — honor us by getting cultural diversity training. But please stop with this.”

The video has been viewed more than 20,000 times.

http://go.uen.org/6gN (SGS)

 


 

 

Eighth-grader finds unique way to thank police officers

 

SOUTH JORDAN — We’re only three days into March and already this year the United States has seen 16 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty — 12 of them shot to death, including Unified Police Officer Doug Barney here in Utah.

It’s enough to make even the friendliest officer question his or her career choice. But when officers get something like two South Jordan police officers received Thursday, it helps remind them why they do this job.

Baylee Quiroz’s great-grandmother died in December, and the eight-grader is the one who found her. Not knowing who else to call, Baylee knew the police would help.

“It means a lot to her, the officers who helped her that day,” said Tiffany Quiroz, Baylee’s mother.

“They were clearly grieving and needed help with the steps and the whole process,” said South Jordan police officer Alexis Iversen, one of the officers who responded to Baylee’s call.

“We just sat there at the table with them and helped them grieve through the process,” said South Jordan Police Sgt. Josh Whatcott, who was also there.

“They were extremely nice. They were calm,” Baylee said.

Whatcott and Iversen didn’t realize their impact until Thursday morning when Baylee showed up at the police station with a school memorial project she created. The tri-fold display is dedicated to law enforcement officers, showing a police badge for each U.S. officer recently killed in the line of duty.

http://go.uen.org/6gS (KSL)

 


 

 

BDES students explore Canyonlands clinic

 

Canyonlands Healthcare Clinic in Beaver Dam had a delightful visit from giggling preschoolers on Wednesday morning, eager to meet the staff and see the neat things doctors, nurses and dentists do.

http://go.uen.org/6gO (SGS)

 


 

 

Huntsman family calls for nominations of Utah educators who go ‘above and beyond’

 

Do you know a great teacher, principal or school volunteer? The Huntsmans would like to know about them.

Nominations for this year’s Huntsman Awards for Excellence in Education will be accepted until 5 p.m. on Friday, March 25.

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

 

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

 


 

 

Fitch Rates Jordan School District, UT’s Refunding GOs ‘AAA’; Outlook Stable

 

SAN FRANCISCO–Fitch Ratings has affirmed the ‘AAA’ rating on the following Jordan School District, Utah (the district) bonds:

–$126.1 million general obligation (GO) bonds, series 2006, 2007, and 2014 (refunding).

This ‘AAA’ underlying rating reflects the district’s credit quality without consideration of the ‘AAA’ rated guaranty on the GO bonds provided by the Utah School Bond Default Avoidance Program.

The Rating Outlook is Stable.

http://go.uen.org/6ha (Business Wire)

 

 

 

 

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OPINION & COMMENTARY

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High school coaches should learn from Richfield incident Salt Lake Tribune letter from Donald J. Ries

 

The reported events at the Class 2A championship in Richfield this past weekend, if true, bring shame on our state and bring into serious question the so-often-heard claim that “sports build character.”

I would hope that if I were the coach of the Emery team, and Emery fans had made racial slurs, I would have stopped the game, gotten on the PA system and told the fans that if they did not grow up and show the sportsmanship that I expect of my players, that we would walk off the court.

This is a high school game! This is not the NBA, the Olympics or any world-class event. This is high school, where everything the school and students do is supposed to have an educational value.

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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NATIONAL NEWS

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GOP Candidates Probably Can’t Repeal Common Core ‘We’re cutting Common Core,’ Trump said at the most recent Republican debate.

U.S. News & World Report

 

When GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump was asked Thursday night during the latest Republican debate to name specific federal programs he plans to ax in order to pay for his proposed tax cut, his answer was somewhat predictable.

“We’re cutting Common Core,” he said. “We’re getting rid of Common Core.”

The academic standards – benchmarks for what students should know by the time they finish each grade – are a favorite chew toy of the Republican candidates. They’ve become a prime example of federal overreach and the government putting its sticky fingers in education, an issue that most people believe is a state and local responsibility.

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., has denounced the standards. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, has promised to “repeal every word” of the Common Core if elected.

“For Cruz and Trump supporters, some part of their brain lights up when they hear that,” says Michael Petrilli, president of The Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a conservative education policy organization. “It is something that has become a symbol of whatever you want it to be.”

Maybe it’s time to let them in on a secret, if they didn’t already know: The federal government is actually prohibited from telling states what standards they can and cannot use. And if elected, they likely wouldn’t be able to eliminate the Common Core or tell states not to use it, because that’s a state’s decision.

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

 


 

 

What Happens When Trump Shuts Down the Department of Education?

(New York) The Street

 

Republican frontrunner Donald Trump has called for the abolition of the Department of Education (ED) more than once.

Among his remarks were those made at an October 18, 2015 appearance on Fox News, when he suggested he would either dismantle ED or slash its funding. “I’m not cutting services,” he said, “but I may cut the Department of Education.” At his January 11 campaign stop in Manchester, N.H. earlier this year, the Wall Street Journal reported that he stopped short of a wholesale ED shutdown but reiterated his desire to slash its funding. Then in his post-Super Tuesday press conference, he stated his intention to close ED down.

It’s not clear whether the question is addressed in a Trump position paper. The Trump campaign’s website identifies six key issues; higher ed policy is not among them. He has published a video about his position on education, but it focuses entirely on Common Core, the nationwide standards put forward by ED; he opposes it, as do many other Republicans. Concerning a possible ED shutdown, ED spokesperson Alberto Betancourt said, “No one will be available for comment.” A Trump campaign spokesperson did not return requests for comment.

The idea of closing sections of the federal government isn’t new. Former presidential candidate and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, along with his father Ron, have made abolishing the Federal Reserve System part of both their presidential campaigns. Ted Cruz has called for the abolition of the Internal Revenue Service.

ED didn’t become a cabinet level agency until the last year of Jimmy Carter’s presidency. When Ronald Reagan entered the White House the following year, he vowed to shut ED down, only to backtrack in 1985, citing a lack of support from the then-Democrat-controlled Congress.

Even if everything Trump says flies in the face of conventional wisdom, statements about an ED shutdown can’t be dismissed out of hand. But in the event that is was closed, federal funding to higher ed would not end — nor would federal support for education across the board.

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

 


 

 

What John Kasich got wrong about Detroit’s troubled schools in last night’s debate Washington Post

 

Thursday night’s Republican presidential debate in Detroit did not only feature vulgar conversation about genitalia. It also featured the first really substantive question about K-12 education in the 11 GOP debates to date.

And that was apt given the setting. Detroit’s public schools are broken. They are $3.5 billion in debt and could run out of cash before the end of the school year, according to the Detroit Free Press. Children go to class in buildings with rats, roaches and crumbling ceilings. In some schools there are mushrooms growing out of the walls.

Fox News anchor and debate moderator Megyn Kelly put the question to Ohio Gov. John Kasich: “If the federal government bailed out the auto industry here in Detroit, should it also bail out the Detroit schools?”

Kasich never directly answered Kelly’s question. He suggested that Detroit schools are on the right track to improvement in part because they are under mayoral control.

“Well, look, first of all, I think the mayor now is controlling the schools,” Kasich said. “This is not much different than what happened in Cleveland, Ohio, where the African American Democrat mayor, the union and business leaders came to see me and said, ‘Would you help us to pass legislation to really create a CEO environment so that we can take control of the schools?’ ”

“It worked beautifully,” Kasich said. “Cleveland’s coming back. The Cleveland schools are coming back because of a major overhaul.” He went on to discuss the importance of vouchers and charter schools and vocational education, and he said that adults need to “put politics aside” and fight in their communities for stronger schools.

Leaving aside the question of whether mayoral control would really be enough to fix Detroit’s problems, there is this fact: Detroit is not under mayoral control. The city’s schools have been under state-appointed emergency manager for years.

As unsexy as it might sound, governance of the public schools has been a matter of heated debate in Detroit.

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

 


 

 

You’re fired! U.S. school debaters’ dim view of Trump’s podium style Reuters

 

BOSTON | Donald Trump has dismissed fellow White House hopefuls as liars, journalists as disgusting people and Mexican immigrants as rapists with a belligerent public speaking style that has helped catapult him to the front of the Republican pack.

The verbal tactics, on display in Thursday night’s debate in Detroit, have given the billionaire real estate developer front-runner status in early primary contests and opinion polls of U.S. Republican voters. But they would not last long on an academic debate stage, according to high school and college competitors and their coaches.

“He would last one tournament and then be removed from the team,” said Eric Di Michele, coach of the speech and debate team at Regis High School in New York, one of the country’s top-ranked teams. “This kind of ‘ad hominem’ attack followed by insults, I’ve never seen it.”

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

 

 

 

For States, Question Is: To Time Tests or Not?

N.Y. is latest to move to untimed tests

Education Week

 

Among the chief complaints that educators and parents have had about standardized testing is that it puts too much pressure on young students.

The testing battle has been particularly fraught in New York state, where as many as 20 percent of 3rd through 8th grade students opted out of common-core tests last spring. To ease anxiety about the process, the education commissioner last month announced that, starting this year, standardized tests would no longer have time limits.

But some psychometricians say that move is dead wrong—that ending time limits will take time away from teaching, cause logistical headaches for schools, and make the process longer and more frustrating for test-anxious students. And, according to research, it won’t actually help students perform any better.

http://go.uen.org/6h5

 


 

 

The new SAT lands, just as more colleges go test-optional The College Board says it changed The Big Test to better predict who is college ready but more than 200 colleges decided grades can do the job Hechinger Report

 

This week – for the first time – hundreds of thousands of high school students are taking a new version of the SAT college entrance exam. The redesigned test claims to be a better measurement of whether students are prepared for college. At the same time, the list of colleges that don’t require applicants to submit SAT scores is growing.

Gone are those two-dollar words that nobody uses anymore – words like “phlegmatic” and “lachrymose.” But The Big Test is still here, and so are the sweaty palms for students like John DeSimone, 17, a junior at Revere High School, in Revere, Mass.

“I was panicking last night, worrying, ‘Oh my God, how am I going to do on this test?’” DiSimone said shortly after taking the SAT earlier this week.

He noted differences in the new test. Unlike on the old test the essay part is now optional. Students are tested on their ability to read text and answer questions about it.

With these and other changes, The College Board, the non-profit that produces the SAT, is trying to stay relevant to the new content being taught under the Common Core standards.

http://go.uen.org/6h9

 


 

 

Students Rally Behind South Carolina Teacher Who Resigned After Nude Photo Theft New York Times

 

A South Carolina high school teacher who says she was forced to resign after a student took her phone and circulated a nude picture of her has garnered the support of hundreds of students who signed a petition demanding she be reinstated.

The teacher, Leigh Anne Arthur, who had taught for more than a decade in Union County, which is about 70 miles northwest of Columbia, said she had left her phone on her desk and was out of the classroom when a 16­year­old boy took her phone. The phone was passed among several classes of students, and the photo — which Ms. Arthur said she had taken for her husband for Valentine’s Day — was copied and shared.

The Union County Schools superintendent, David Eubanks, said in an interview that Ms. Arthur shared responsibility for the episode because she had allowed students to use her phone in the past.

“It became a regular piece of equipment that they used in that classroom,” Dr. Eubanks said. “Knowing that, why did she put that photograph on that cellphone?”

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

 

http://go.uen.org/6gx (NPR)

 

http://go.uen.org/6gy (Seventeen magazine)

 

http://go.uen.org/6gz (Parenting magazine)

 


 

 

American Indian Girls Often Fall Through the Cracks Stateline

 

They’re poor, more likely to be sexually abused, end up in foster care, drop out of school, become homeless. They’re often the prey of traffickers.

American Indian and Native Alaskan girls are a small fraction of the population, but they are over-represented in the juvenile justice system, whether they are living on or off the reservation.

Native American girls have the highest rates of incarceration of any ethnic group. They are nearly five times more likely than white girls to be confined to a juvenile detention facility, according to the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

There are programs on tribal lands that work with Native girls who have been caught up in the system, using federal funds. But American Indian girls often find themselves without state or local social service programs tailored to their cultural backgrounds and experiences, which are distinct from other girls living in or on the edge of poverty.

http://go.uen.org/6h8

 


 

 

Lawmakers Fail to Override Transgender Bill Veto Associated Press

 

PIERRE, S.D. — The South Dakota House failed on Thursday to override the governor’s veto of a bill that would have required transgender students to use bathrooms corresponding with their birth gender, though the bill’s main sponsor suggested that supporters regroup and come back with a “better, stronger bill.”

The vote came two days after Republican Gov. Dennis Daugaard vetoed the bill, saying it didn’t address “any pressing issue” and that such decisions were best left to local schools. The governor also warned that such a law – which would have been a first in the U.S. – could invite costly litigation against the state and local schools.

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

 

http://go.uen.org/6h1 (Reuters)

 


 

 

Judge backtracks on release of California student records San Jose (CA) Mercury News

 

Responding to overwhelming public protest, a federal judge has backtracked on the potential release of records for 10 million California students — and decided that they won’t be provided to attorneys in a special-education lawsuit.

Instead, Judge Kimberly Mueller ruled that the huge database will remain solely with the California Department of Education, which then will have to assist attorneys seeking evidence in the state’s electronic files.

But the judge left in place the potential release to attorneys of other comprehensive information, including six years of statewide STAR test data, plus records of special-education students, who make up about 10 percent of pre-K-12 students statewide. Those databases include mental health and behavior records.

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

 

http://go.uen.org/6h6 (Ed Week)

 


 

 

Opt-Out Fans Urge Senate to Reject John King’s Ed. Sec. Nomination Education Week

 

Acting U.S. Secretary John B. King, Jr.’s confirmation hearing was collegial, substantive, and seemed to foreshadow a swift Senate sign-off for the former New York state chief, who is seeking the job officially.

But not everyone is on Team King. A group of progressives, including leaders in the opt-out movement, sent a letter to the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee this week recommending that its members not confirm King, whose nomination is slated for a vote next week.

The signers include: Noam Chomsky, a retired professor of linguistics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Diane Ravitch, a research professor at New York University; Deborah Meier, a senior scholar at New York University, Karen Lewis, the president of the Chicago Teachers Union; and Monty Neill, the executive director of FairTest.

http://go.uen.org/6h7

 


 

 

9th Circuit revives case over school district’s accommodation of troubled student Reuters

 

A federal appeals court has revived a lawsuit filed by a couple accusing an Arizona school district of failing to accommodate their behaviorally troubled daughter, who was transferred first within the district and eventually to a private psychiatric school.

U.S. District Judge Ivan Lemelle, sitting by designation on a 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel, ruled Thursday that the parents did not waive their right to challenge their daughter’s first transfer by consenting at the time.

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

 

A copy of the ruling

http://go.uen.org/6h0 (9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals)

 


 

 

Two Ohio teens charged for not reporting gun at school before shooting Reuters

 

Two 14-year-old boys from southwestern Ohio were charged on Friday with a misdemeanor for failing to report that a fellow student had taken to school a gun used in a shooting that wounded four students, the Butler County Sheriff’s office said.

James Austin Hancock, also 14, pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to a number of charges, including two counts of attempted murder stemming from the Monday shooting in the cafeteria at Madison Jr/Sr High School in Middletown, about 38 miles (61 km) north of Cincinnati.

Hancock showed the gun to two boys early in the school day, the sheriff’s statement said.

“These boys had knowledge that the suspect … had the gun at school, and they did not tell anyone,” Sheriff Richard Jones said in the statement.

“It is imperative that if there is rumor or first-hand knowledge about any type of weapon or weapons that someone has or is intending to bring to school, it has to be reported to someone,” the sheriff said.

http://go.uen.org/6h3

 


 

 

3 Seniors Charged with Hazing Freshman on ‘No Gay Thursday’

Associated Press

 

Three senior football players at a suburban Philadelphia high school have been charged with assaulting a freshman with a broom handle on what the team called “No Gay Thursday,” a prosecutor announced Friday.

Three 17-year-old students at Conestoga High School held down a 14-year-old boy on Oct. 15 and penetrated him with the broom handle while he screamed, Chester County District Attorney Tom Hogan said.

After the charges were announced, longtime head football coach John Vogan was suspended from all coaching duties pending the outcome of an investigation by the Tredyffrin/Easttown School District.

http://go.uen.org/6h4

 


 

 

Sixteen school lunch programs making a difference Many experts believe that improving the food options available in school lunches is an important step towards lifting up their overall well-being. Here are sixteen school lunch programs that are making important strides in this arena.

Food Tank via Christian Science Monitor

 

Over 31 million children in the United States consume most of their daily caloric intake at school. For many children, it may be the only food they eat regularly each day. But improving the quality of school lunches offers an effective way to ensure that half of what children eat is healthy, nutritious, and sustainably grown. School lunch programs that source organic, local, nutritious, and sustainable foods impact children’s health and also the health of our planet. Food Tank has compiled a list of 16 school lunch programs making strides to improve children’s health.

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

 


 

 

Obamas to remain in D.C. after presidency so daughter can finish high school USA today

 

President Obama cast some light on his post-presidency plans Thursday, telling lunch companions in Milwaukee that he plans to remain in Washington so that his youngest daughter can finish high school.

“We’re going to have to stay a couple of years so Sasha can finish. Transferring someone in the middle of high school — tough,” he said while eating lunch at a Milwaukee restaurant.

Beyond that? “We haven’t figured that out yet,” he said.

http://go.uen.org/6h2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

————————————————————

CALENDAR

————————————————————

 

USOE Calendar

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

 

 

UEN News

http://www.uen.org

 

 

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., 250 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/SEDU0304.ag.htm

 

Senate Health and Human Services Committee meeting

4 p.m., 210 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/SHHS0304.ag.htm

 

Senate Business and Labor Committee meeting

4 p.m., 215 Senate Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/SBUS0304.ag.htm

 

House Government Operations Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 30 House Building

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/HGOC0304.ag.htm

 

House Political Subdivisions Committee meeting

4:10 p.m., 450 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/~2016/agenda/HPOL0304.ag.htm

 

Appropriations Committee meeting

6 p.m., 445 State Capitol

http://le.utah.gov/Interim/2016/html/00001745.htm

 

 

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

 

Utah State Board of Education legislative meeting

Noon, 210 Senate Building

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

 

 

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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