Education News Roundup: April 4, 2016

 

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month/ Education News Roundup

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month/ Education News Roundup

Education News Roundup

Today’s Top Picks:

 

Legislative leaders are polling members about a veto override session.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yi (DN)

and http://gousoe.uen.org/6yW (UP)

and http://gousoe.uen.org/6yX (KSL)

 

The three finalists for Salt Lake District superintendent are all from out of state.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yo (SLT)

 

Massachusetts takes a look at Utah and itself in dual-immersion education.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yk (Boston Globe)

 

New York is also pumping up its dual immersion programs.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6z3 (WSJ)

and http://gousoe.uen.org/6yT (New York Daily News)

 

Today may be Square Root Day (http://gousoe.uen.org/6z4, Scientific American), but it looks like history is more of the topic du jour:

Trib looks at Utah’s first female State Superintendent, Emma McVicker.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6z4 (SLT)

Ed Week looks at the tenure of the first-ever U.S. Secretary of Education, Shirley M. Hufstedler.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yR (Ed Week)

 

ED begins releasing draft ESSA regulations.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yl (Ed Week)

 

 

 

 

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TODAY’S HEADLINES

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UTAH

 

GOP legislative leaders stirring up support for veto override session

 

Salt Lake City school board announces finalists for district superintendent

 

In a global economy, Mass. lags in teaching foreign languages

 

Utah bill creates advancement opportunities for students

 

New Law Lessens Impact Of SAGE Test On Teachers

 

Utah universities looking to build ‘army of individuals’ to treat autism

 

Living History: Suffrage carried Emma J. McVicker, an early champion for education, into office as state superintendent

 

Utah chosen to receive grant to better align schoolwork with industry needs

 

Good Question: ‘When candidates use public schools for campaigning, who pays?’

 

Dixon Middle School students now authors of books on bullying, making friends and disabilities

 

Students get close-up look at Utah County agriculture

 

American Fork High School names new band director

 

Youth Protection Parent Seminar is April 11 in Provo

 

Former WWE champ to talk about choices

 

CenturyLink Donates $10,000 to STEM Education Ogden High School student recognized at April 1 Jazz game

 

Organization raises funds and awareness during Child Abuse Prevention Month

 


 

 

OPINION & COMMENTARY

 

Autism deserves the attention of all of us

 

Trash state school board

 

Should cities help teachers who can’t afford to live where they work?

 

Substitute teaching can be a nightmare, local sub says

 

Tips to rock that science fair project

 

High school sports benefit students

 

School athletics seen as a must, but not all students play

 

Helping to level the AP playing field: Why eighth grade math matters more than you think

 

Why all parents should opt their kids out of high-stakes standardized tests

 

Policymaking on Education Data Privacy: Lessons Learned

 


 

 

NATION

 

Ed. Department Releases Draft ESSA Regulations on Testing, Spending Issues

 

Teacher-Pay Equity on People’s Minds, But Not on the Table, During ESSA Talks

 

Chicago Teachers Union tries to leverage momentum from walkout

 

What’s new for the Common Core in 2016

 

Dual-Language Classes for Kids Grow in Popularity

 

NYC to unveil big expansion of bilingual education programs in schools

 

Washington Charter School Bill to Become Law Without Governor’s Signature

 

In Denver, a growing number of marijuana shops are close to schools After city and feds have tried to keep stores 1,000 feet away, schools are moving in nearby

 

Sex Ed, America, 2016: Where the Information Is Often Absent — or Medically Inaccurate Only 13 states require that HIV and sexual education be medically accurate.

 

Why it’s no small feat that these hearing-impaired kids made it to the national round of a reading competition

 

First-Ever Education Secretary Had a Groundbreaking Tenure at the Department

 

Group Hands Out Sex in the Bible Tracts in Colorado Schools

 

 

 

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UTAH NEWS

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GOP legislative leaders stirring up support for veto override session

 

SALT LAKE CITY — GOP legislative leaders are stirring up support for an override session to restore $4.5 million in funding for early education programs vetoed by Gov. Gary Herbert.

“These vetoed initiatives are proven and important,” Senate Majority Whip Stuart Adams, R-Layton, said in a statement issued Friday by the Senate. “If we don’t find a way to reinstate funding, the real losers will be Utah students.”

House Majority Whip Francis Gibson, R-Mapleton, expressed a similar sentiment about the GOP governor’s actions late Wednesday to strike about a third of the money appropriated last session for a K-3 reading and online preschool programs.

“We remain committed to these programs and working closely with members of our state board of education to ensure they have the tools necessary to enhance education for Utah’s schoolchildren,” Gibson said in a House statement.

Both Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, R-Sandy, and House Speaker Greg Hughes, R-Draper, said the required polling of lawmakers to determine their interest in an override session got underway Friday.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yi (DN)

 

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yW (UP)

 

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yX (KSL)

 


 

 

Salt Lake City school board announces finalists for district superintendent

 

Three out-of-state finalists are in the running to be superintendent of the Salt Lake City School District, the district’s school board announced Friday.

The finalists include Rhonda Carr, area superintendent for Indianapolis City Schools; Alexa Cunningham, superintendent of Arizona’s Tolleson Union High School District; and Krish Mohip, an administrator in the Chicago Public Schools system.

Finalists were selected from a pool of 33 national candidates. A final round of interviews will be conducted by the school board during public meetings the week of April 18.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yo (SLT)

 


 

 

In a global economy, Mass. lags in teaching foreign languages

 

PARK CITY, Utah — Amid the rugged hills speckled with patches of melting snow, students learn about the periodic tables and other science lessons in French. On another side of the city, first-graders learn how to tell time in Spanish.

While this part of the Rocky Mountains might seem a world away from the cafes in Paris or Spain, the Park City school system is part of one of the most ambitious statewide initiatives in the country that aims to make tens of thousands of students fluent in two languages. On any day, students across the state can be heard speaking French, Spanish, German, Mandarin, and Portuguese.

In all, almost 10 percent of Utah elementary school students are enrolled in a dual-immersion program — just seven years after the initiative was launched — enabling them to spend half their day in classrooms in English and the other half in a foreign language.

As Massachusetts tries to elevate its education system to be among the best in the world so that it can compete more aggressively in a global economy, it is falling woefully behind one of the reddest states in offering students the opportunity to become multilingual, a critical job skill for the 21st century.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yk (Boston Globe)

 


 

 

Utah bill creates advancement opportunities for students

 

Utah students could soon be getting the chance to accelerate their education now that a competency-based bill has been passed.

Senate Bill 143, signed by Gov. Gary Herbert on Monday, will put into effect the Competency-Based Education Grants Program, which will allow local education agencies to apply for grants to enable students to advance their courses if they demonstrate comprehensive knowledge in one or more subject areas.

The program takes away from the traditional time limits that have been a part of many U.S. school systems and lets students move at their own pace.

The local school board or charter school governing board would establish the program and include a way to measure a student’s competency.

Additionally, the grant will be managed and administrated by the Utah State Office of Education with application acceptance expected to begin this year.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yV (SGS)

 


 

 

New Law Lessens Impact Of SAGE Test On Teachers

 

With the passage of the federal Every Student Succeeds Act last year, states may now have more freedom to implement their own education policies. Utah quickly followed this year with two new laws designed to reduce the emphasis on standardized testing in teacher evaluations.

HB 200 and HB 201, introduced by Democratic state Rep. Marie Poulson and signed by Republican Gov. Gary Herbert, will reduce the amount of standardized testing as well. Tami Pyfer, Herbert’s education advisor, said that Utah’s SAGE test was only intended to evaluate students, not teachers.

“Previously, 20 percent of a teacher’s evaluation was based on a student’s SAGE score in math, English, and science because those are the only three subjects that are tested in SAGE,” Pyfer said. “The SAGE test was never designed to be used to evaluate teachers; it’s designed to measure growth and knowledge of students.”

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yY (UPR)

 


 

 

Utah universities looking to build ‘army of individuals’ to treat autism

 

A Cookie Monster toy sits on a shelf in Teresa Cardon’s office, along with other interactive toys. She’ll put a cookie in its hand, pull it down and the cookie goes into the blue character’s mouth as the monster goes “nom nom nom.”

“I can’t tell you how many kids, their first words have come over those toys,” said Cardon, a certified speech language pathologist, Board Certified Behavior Analyst and director of the Melisa Nellesen Autism Center at Utah Valley University.

Interactive toys, including bubbles, can be excellent tools in treating children with autism and coaxing out those first words. And in Utah, those treatments, and the professionals who dedicate their lives to helping these individuals, are needed more than ever.

“We have to create an army of individuals that can go out and support the numbers we have in Utah County and in Utah of children who are being diagnosed and need services,” Cardon said.

Both UVU and Brigham Young University have created classes targeted at autism and are in the process of gaining approval for other programs. Both universities also hold annual autism conferences to educate professionals on recent research.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yH (OSE)

 


 

 

Living History: Suffrage carried Emma J. McVicker, an early champion for education, into office as state superintendent

 

In the late 1890s, a little known but earnest Utah woman named Emma J. McVicker strived to improve standards for education, women wage earners, disadvantaged children and politics.

A New York émigré who met and married her husband in Salt Lake City, McVicker taught music at the Salt Lake Collegiate Institute (which became Westminster College) and served as the school’s principal until 1884. In 1883, she became the first president of the Orphan’s Home and Day Nursery Association.

McVicker was fiercely protective of children and working mothers who considered their jobs a matter of “survival” and worked long hours for low wages.

In 1894, she joined a group of like-minded women leaders to create a free kindergarten for disadvantaged children. Called the Free Kindergarten Association, which evolved into the present-day Neighborhood House, the school also offered a day nursery run by nurses, home economics classes, and various club activities for children and mothers. Although many individuals supported the school, it would take years before it significantly changed Utah’s long-held attitude toward working mothers.

In 1895, McVicker was nominated by Utah’s Republican Party to serve as state superintendent of education. A court ruling that women could not vote because they were “ineligible to run for office” subsequently disqualified her.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yv (SLT)

 


 

 

Utah chosen to receive grant to better align schoolwork with industry needs

 

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah is one of 24 states chosen to receive a $100,000 grant to examine how well schools are preparing students for employment and to develop a plan to improve.

The grants are part of a five-year $75 million initiative called New Skills for Youth, a partnership between the Council of Chief State School Officers, JPMorgan Chase and Advance CTE.

Business leaders hope to help educators develop high school programs that are more aligned with high-skill, high-demand jobs in their state. The initiative will later include advancing programs, degrees and credentials for college students.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yO (KSL)

 


 

 

Good Question: ‘When candidates use public schools for campaigning, who pays?’

 

Utah became the political place-to-be two weeks ago as presidential hopefuls swarmed in to stump.

Some of their stops took place at public schools which are funded by taxpayers. It prompted 2News Viewer Jeani to write asking, “When candidates (e.g.,Ted Cruz and Mike Lee) use public schools, e.g., Provo High School for campaigning, who pays for the use of the school — someone to unlock the doors, set up the chairs, the electricity, clean-up, etc.”

It’s a good question and the answer is: the candidates.

School districts have policies in place when someone wants to rent one of their auditoriums. For example, Salt Lake City School District, which runs West High School where Bernie Sanders stumped last month, has written in its policy that they allow use of their facilities, “when that use does not interfere with a school function or purpose.”

And it’s not just politicians allowed to rent or auditoriums allowed to be rented.

If you want to play baseball with your friends you can rent a Salt Lake City School District’s field for around $7 per hour. You can also rent a parking lot for $40 a day and put on a fundraiser car wash, should you choose.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6z2 (KUTV)

 


 

 

Dixon Middle School students now authors of books on bullying, making friends and disabilities

 

“Fito the Friendly Robot” — about a lonely, shunned robot who invents a new game with another robot — has a lot in common with other picture books.

It has computer generated artwork and a message about acceptance, but unlike most other books, it was created by middle school students.

“We just thought it was cool and it was fun to do,” said Ashley Macfarlane, an eighth-grader at Provo’s Dixon Middle School who’s in the process of creating a different book. “It is something that is fun to do with the class and we can use different materials to make the pictures.”

Students in Leann Moody’s class at the middle school have been working on creating picture books for elementary students all year. They wrote the text during their first semester, and now are working on using sketches, using Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to create the pictures. If chosen by the state, the books will be available online as part of the Young Authors of Utah Project.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yG (PDH)

 


 

 

Students get close-up look at Utah County agriculture

 

SPRINGVILLE — A group of Utah County second-graders learned last Wednesday it is not simply the supermarket up the street that provides fresh eggs for breakfast or hot dogs and hamburgers at family cookouts.

The annual Farm Field Days put on by the Utah Farm Bureau and held in various locations throughout the state showcased Harward Farms in Springville in a three-day event.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yN (KSL)

 


 

 

American Fork High School names new band director

 

Nate Seamons hasn’t been resting well ever since he learned he would be taking over for American Fork High School’s longtime band director John Miller — once Miller retires this summer.

“I lose sleep,” Seamons said. “I literally wake up every night about 2 or 3 in the morning, and I’m playing scenarios in my head. And I’m not on the job yet.”

Seamons learned he’d been chosen for the job in the middle of March after the school brought in five finalists for a panel interview, a chance to direct the musical groups and to answer questions from the students.

Seamons has previously been the band director at Lehi High School, Gunnison Valley High School and Hurst Junior High School in Texas. He also has taught at LD Bell High School in Texas. He currently is working towards a doctorate degree in music at the University of Utah and serves as a captain in the Army Reserves.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yI (PDH)

 


 

 

Youth Protection Parent Seminar is April 11 in Provo

 

PROVO — The Provo School District invites all parents and students in seventh through 12th grade to attend a Youth Protection Parent Seminar at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, April 11, at Provo High School, 1125 N. University Ave.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yC (DN)

 


 

 

Former WWE champ to talk about choices

 

LAYTON — Former WCW and WWE Wrestling Champion Marc Mero will talk about the power of choices during a free community event, starting 7 p.m. Monday, April 4, at Layton High School.

Mero, based in Florida, is now a motivational speaker with his own non-profit organization called “Champion of Choices.” According to his website, www.thinkpoz.org, Mero has shared his experiences and the lessons he learned at more than 1,300 schools. He will talk with students at E. G. King Elementary on Monday morning, before his evening presentation at Layton High.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yF (OSE)

 


 

 

CenturyLink Donates $10,000 to STEM Education Ogden High School student recognized at April 1 Jazz game

 

CenturyLink, Inc. presented a $10,000 donation to the Utah STEM Action Center at halftime of the Utah Jazz-Minnesota Timberwolves game on Friday, April 1. The contribution will support STEM’s efforts to promote the best educational practices in math and science studies that align with industry needs and support Utah’s long-term economic prosperity.

During the 2015-16 regular season, one student was recognized each month by CenturyLink based on his or her excellence or significant improvement in science, technology, engineering or math and participation in STEM programs. Honored students received four tickets to a Jazz home game, a personalized jersey and in-game recognition at Vivint Smart Home Arena.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yU (Utah Jazz)

 


 

 

Organization raises funds and awareness during Child Abuse Prevention Month

 

SALT LAKE CITY — April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and some Utahns are being recognized for their work as child advocates.

The group Prevent Child Abuse Utah and Attorney General Sean Reyes recognized three people Friday.

The group is selling pinwheels to help raise awareness on the issue, and the proceeds will help educate more Utahns on how to prevent child abuse.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yL (KSTU)

 

 

 

 

 

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OPINION & COMMENTARY

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Autism deserves the attention of all of us

(Provo) Daily Herald editorial

 

The list of public health crises that have taken root in Utah, and in Utah County in particular, is long and varied.

As much as we like to think of this place as Happy Valley — either in actuality or irony — there are numerous issues we would all be wise to keep an eye on as good residents and stewards of the communities in which we live.

We know plenty about Utah’s bad air and the problems that come with it. We saw with the December 2014 measles outbreak how failing to vaccinate can cause problems. Recently, the issue of opioid abuse — our little local secret that really isn’t much of a secret at all — received its share of traction.

Now that April is upon us, we here at the Daily Herald are attempting to do our part to illuminate a health crisis that is growing larger by the day, disproportionately affects Utah children, and is often misunderstood not only by the public at large, but those very families who have received a diagnosis.

The issue is autism spectrum disorder.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yJ

 


 

 

Trash state school board

Deseret News commentary by columnist John Florez

 

Stop trying to fix Utah’s State School Board. Legislators have taken over any power the State School Board had, rendering it useless. So just trash it. It’s a vestige of the past and serves no purpose.

Historically, state school boards have served as unbiased bodies that focus on articulating the long-term vision, mission and policy for public education. However, in Utah under the the state constitution, the board is limited to a management role — “the general control and supervision of public education.” So, who sets the vision, mission and policies for public education — the Legislature, the governor? Who is in charge and accountable for how well our children are educated? Now, no one.

Utah public education has no entity that can articulate a vision for public education that is unbiased and meets the changing needs of our society; rather, policy is made on the whim of each lawmaker or special interests. Three years ago, the Legislature decided to develop a long-term education plan for the state that would prioritize education bills and create a vision for education. We are still waiting.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yh

 


 

 

Should cities help teachers who can’t afford to live where they work?

Deseret News commentary by columnist Eric Schulzke

 

Teachers and other public service professionals working in costly metro areas around the country are struggling to find affordable housing within reasonable driving distance from their employment. The problem is now leading some cities to explore affordable housing subsidies.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yB

 


 

 

Substitute teaching can be a nightmare, local sub says

(Logan) Herald Journal commentary by Marilyn Liddle, a retired adjunct professor of English/Humanities

 

Rather than stand at a freeway exit ramp with a sign that says, “Will work for dental implants,” I choose to substitute in the schools. I try to imagine that I am helping parents and teachers with the difficult job of training our children. Some days are better than others, but the behaviors I see most often when the cat’s away are aimless wandering, constant talking, throwing objects, fake bathroom requests, tattling (lots of this), lying, kicking, slapping, ignoring instructions, swearing, blatant impertinence and cell phone use. There is constant push-back and arguing with simple requests as in, “It’s time to put this away and get ready for lunch. I’ll give you a few minutes to wash your hands, or you may use a squirt of sanitizer.” The one student who was not ignoring me says, “We never wash our hands before lunch.” I’m shocked and retort, “Why do you think your teacher is not here? Because she is sick. There are a lot of germs in this room. It would be good to wash your hands before eating.” “No, we never get sick,” is the last word.

When I have a class in subdued pandemonium and I look into a room where the regular teacher is teaching a calm, attentive class, I conclude that students act differently for subs. They do not care about your age, qualifications or experience. They just know they do not have to mind you. Elementary students especially do not like someone else in the teacher role. But I wonder, do teachers even know how students act when they are away? Many request certain subs who will keep the daily regimen going.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yK

 

 


 

 

Tips to rock that science fair project

(Ogden) Standard-Examiner commentary by KARISSA WANG, a senior at NUAMES

 

Many high schools around Utah ask their students to participate in science fairs. Some students interpret this as an assignment, but others interpret this as an opportunity.

I have firsthand experienced the opportunities science fair can bring forth, including participation in international science fairs, all-expenses- paid traveling, research experience and cash awards.

But my experience with science fair lies not only in participating but also in judging, which have both helped me realize exactly what it is that makes some students’ projects stand out. Here are some tips about doing your best at the science fair:

http://gousoe.uen.org/6z1

 


 

 

High school sports benefit students

Salt Lake Tribune letter from Jennifer Solomon

 

Natasha Herbst (“Cut High School Sports,” March 31) clearly never played any sports growing up, or she would know the value of them in children’s lives. I did play, and those memories, including and especially from high school, are some of my most cherished, and those times helped shape me into who I am today.

As an adult, I remain a big sports fan; it is one of my favorite pastimes, as it is with much of the world. My kids play sports, and I hope they continue throughout all their schooling. Of course, there are some who take sports for themselves or their children far too seriously, but for the most part sports contribute much good to the lives of its participants.

Competing in sports teaches life lessons through experience that can’t necessarily be taught solely in a classroom — character building lessons like discipline, drive, teamwork, sportsmanship and a sense of accomplishment resulting from hard work and practice.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yw

 


 

 

School athletics seen as a must, but not all students play Deseret News letter from Natasha Herbst

 

Athletics are a huge part of our culture as Americans, but have we paused to consider how this affects our country? Billion-dollar sports stadiums are dotted across the country, and the Super Bowl is by far the most watched television broadcast. From a young age we are exposed to the idolization of sports. Famous athletes are our version of American royalty and our high school environments are no different. Athletics are seen as a must, when in reality just over half of high school students play sports, and only about 2 percent get athletic scholarships.

When there are budget cuts the first things to go are teachers, library services and guidance services. Americans are lacking a good education. Only 77 percent of Americans graduate high school, and the high-pressure, competitive work environment we face requires more from this generation in order to succeed. Eliminating our high school sports would improve test scores and focus, better prepare students for college, as well as save a lot of money for more worthwhile causes. Imagine parents investing in a tutor instead of hundreds of dollars into sports camps. If the time, money and dedication we put into sports went into our education, imagine how much we could improve our lives and our country.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yD

 


 

 

Helping to level the AP playing field: Why eighth grade math matters more than you think Brookings Institute commentary by Liz Sablich, Communications Director, Governance Studies

 

For years, many schools across the U.S. have offered qualified students the ability to take advanced-level courses apart from many of their fellow students in a practice known as tracking. New data released in the 2016 Brown Center Report on American Education shed light on tracking, who it applies to, and its implications for student achievement and equity in American schools.

The 2016 Brown Center Report on American Education is the fifteenth installment in the long-running series authored by Tom Loveless.  One of the three studies in this year’s report, “Tracking and Advanced Placement,” investigates whether there is an association between offering accelerated math courses to students in eighth grade and performance on Advanced Placement (AP) exams four years later, when those students are seniors in high school. It’s an important question with ramifications for academic achievement and equity in American schools.

Loveless’ study is the first to assess whether outcomes at the end of high school—specifically participation and scoring on AP exams—may be associated with tracking in eighth grade. State-level tracking data from 2009 and AP data from 2013 reveal the following findings:

* States with larger percentages of tracked eighth graders produce larger percentages of high-scoring AP test takers, whereas states where tracking is less prevalent tend to have a smaller proportion of high scorers. As displayed in the table below, highly tracked states with an above average share of 3+ AP scorers include: California (88 percent tracked), Colorado (91 percent), Connecticut (90 percent), Maryland (94 percent), Minnesota (87 percent), and Utah (89 percent). States with sparser eighth grade tracking and a below average proportion of high-scoring AP students include: Delaware (64 percent tracked), District of Columbia (63 percent), Louisiana (54 percent), Mississippi (52 percent), and Texas (57 percent).

http://gousoe.uen.org/6z0

 


 

 

Why all parents should opt their kids out of high-stakes standardized tests Washington Post commentary by columnist Valerie Strauss

 

The Network for Public Education, a nonprofit education advocacy group co-founded by historian Diane Ravitch, is calling for a national “opt out” of high-stakes standardized testing, urging parents across the country to refuse to allow their children to participate in this spring’s testing.

In a video released on the network’s website, Ravitch says families should opt out of state-mandated high-stakes testing in part because the scores provide “no useful information” about the abilities of individual students and are unfairly used to evaluate educators. She also notes that testing and test prep take up valuable class time that could be better put to use providing students with a full curriculum, including the arts.

“Opt out is the only way you have to tell policymakers that they’re heading in the wrong direction,” Ravitch says in the video, aimed at parents.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6ys (SLT)

 

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yt (WaPo)

 

The video

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yu (Vimeo)

 

 


 

 

Policymaking on Education Data Privacy: Lessons Learned National Association of State Boards of Education analysis

 

In the past three years, policymakers in almost every state have considered laws to ensure the safety of student data, and the US Congress is considering seven bills on student data privacy. At the same time, the Every Student Succeeds (ESSA) Act requires that states adopt evidence-based interventions to improve school performance. The education research to inform these interventions depends on access to student data. In Policymaking on Education Data Privacy: Lessons Learned , NASBE Director of Education Data and Technology Amelia Vance outlines key lessons policymakers should contemplate before taking action.

“Data privacy will be ever more important as education becomes more personalized and dependent on technology,” writes Vance. “By taking advantage of the current spotlight on privacy and using it to make positive changes that balance privacy and good data use, state boards can improve education and create a system where the appropriate use of data can help all children succeed.”

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yq

 

 

 

 

 

 

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NATIONAL NEWS

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Ed. Department Releases Draft ESSA Regulations on Testing, Spending Issues Education Week

 

Negotiators trying to craft rules on testing and spending for the Every Student Succeeds Act now have a starting point for discussion.

The U.S. Department of Education Friday released draft regulations on the two areas of the law that a panel of educators, advocates, and experts have been discussing: testing, and a spending portion of the law called “supplement-not-supplant” (which governs how local and state dollars interact with federal Title I spending for students in poverty).

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yl

 


 

 

Teacher-Pay Equity on People’s Minds, But Not on the Table, During ESSA Talks Education Week

 

When Congress passed the Every Student Succeeds Act last year, lawmakers did not change federal requirements governing how local spending between high- and low-poverty schools must be comparable. But those requirements—specifically, how they relate to teacher salaries—have been on the minds of K-12 advocacy groups during negotiated rulemaking for ESSA, which started last week, even though it’s not on the table as a topic subject to negotiations.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6ym

 


 

 

Chicago Teachers Union tries to leverage momentum from walkout Chicago Tribune

 

As demonstrators left downtown streets late Friday, the Chicago Teachers Union was left to figure out how to leverage its one-day strike to achieve a new contract and increased funding for education from the state.

“I don’t think that’s entirely landed yet,” CTU Vice President Jesse Sharkey said Friday when asked about the union’s next move. “But trying to generate attention and a sense of urgency is the point.

“Now we’ve got to keep the momentum going. The protests started a process that is critical and needed.”

The CTU and Chicago Public Schools remain in contract negotiations, which are in a final phase that ends in May. If an agreement isn’t reached by then, an open-ended strike is a possibility.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yj

 


 

 

What’s new for the Common Core in 2016

New York Post

 

With fewer questions and no time limits, this month’s Common Core tests in English Language Arts and math will still be a challenge for city students.

It’s the fourth year of the statewide exams that kids from 3rd through 8th grade must take each spring to prove their academic progress.

In 2015, only 30 percent of city students passed the ELA test, and 35 percent passed in math — a fractional improvement over the year before.

The Common Core state standards, a set of learning benchmarks that New York adopted in 2010 to claim $696 million in federal education funds, spell out the skills all kids should gain from kindergarten through 12th grade so that they can graduate “college- or career-ready.” State-issued standardized tests are required under the terms of the federal grant.

But the curriculum’s chaotic rollout spawned a backlash last year, led by parents who complained the new standards were age-inappropriate and teachers who didn’t want their job evaluations tied to student test scores. About 240,000 kids statewide — 20 percent of those eligible — boycotted the tests in 2015.

In response, Gov. Cuomo announced a set of reforms in December. This April’s tests are the first under the new mandates.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yn

 

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yP (AP)

 


 

 

Dual-Language Classes for Kids Grow in Popularity Wall Street Journal

 

Penelope Spain is desperate to make her 3-year-old son fluent in a second language.

Last year, the Washington, D.C., attorney competed with hundreds of other parents for a spot at several prekindergarten programs that teach lessons partly or mostly in Spanish. She struck out. “I sat on the couch and just cried endlessly,” she recalled. Now she has widened her search to French and Mandarin schools.

Public schools that immerse students in a second language have become hot destinations for parents seeking a leg up for their children in a global economy. New York, Utah, Delaware and other states are adding classrooms where at least half of lessons are taught in a second tongue.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6z3

 


 

 

NYC to unveil big expansion of bilingual education programs in schools New York Daily News

 

Big Apple public schools are going to become a bit more of a melting pot — at least linguistically.

Schools Chancellor Carmen Fariña will unveil a plan Monday to open 38 bilingual programs at city schools starting in September, the Daily News has learned.

This includes 29 new Dual Language programs that will include classes taught in Chinese, French, Haitian Creole, Arabic, Polish and Spanish — with English used on alternating days.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yT

 


 

 

Washington Charter School Bill to Become Law Without Governor’s Signature Education Week

 

Washington Governor Jay Inslee has said he will neither sign nor veto a bill reinstating charter schools, allowing the measure to become law on Sunday without his signature.

The legislature passed a bill last month to resurrect the state’s fledgling charter school sector six months after the Washington Supreme Court ruled the original law, passed by voter referendum in 2012, was unconstitutional. It was the first time a state’s high court has ruled wholesale against a charter law.

The court ruled that charters did not qualify as “common” schools—basically, public schools—because they were not overseen by locally elected school boards and, therefore, were not eligible to draw money from the general fund.

A bill championed by charter school advocates to revive the law was passed by the Republican-controlled Senate in January, but had stalled in the House education committee before Rep. Larry Springer, a Democrat, used a procedural maneuver to resuscitate the bill.

The effort to restore the law met resistance from several groups, including the state’s teachers’ unions.

The measure, which directs charters to draw from a new funding source and layers more regulations on the schools, passed the legislature on the last day of the regular session.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yS

 


 

 

In Denver, a growing number of marijuana shops are close to schools After city and feds have tried to keep stores 1,000 feet away, schools are moving in nearby Denver Post

 

As legal marijuana has proliferated in Denver, city officials concerned about exposure to children long have tried to keep pot shops at least 1,000 feet from schools.

Yet more than two dozen schools in the city now are located closer than that to stores selling medical or recreational marijuana, according to a Denver Post analysis of city data. The Post identified 25 shops closer than 1,000 feet to at least one nearby school, out of 215 medical, recreational or dual shops.

Most often — in 17 cases — the shops landed there first.

Only later were they joined by new or relocated schools, often charters or alternative schools. Other shops predated city and state distance restrictions or a change in the city’s measuring method.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yp

 


 

 

Sex Ed, America, 2016: Where the Information Is Often Absent — or Medically Inaccurate Only 13 states require that HIV and sexual education be medically accurate.

(New York) The 74

 

Here, as early as age 4, school children are taught about their bodies and respect. By 8 years old, they learn about gender stereotypes and self-image. And by 11, they are introduced to the concepts of sexual orientation and the importance of safe sex and contraception.

Here, the teen pregnancy rate is 14 pregnancies for every 1,000 girls ages 15 to 19 and 4 births per 1,000 girls.

Here is the Netherlands — a world away from the United States, where the pregnancy rate is 57 for every 1,000 girls ages 15 to 19, and the birth rate 24 per 1,000 teen girls. While the CDC reports this as a record low, it notes that the teen pregnancy rate in the U.S. remains “substantially” higher than than in any other industrialized country.

The consequences are significant. The CDC reports that teen childbirth and pregnancy costs taxpayers at least $9.4 billion due to increased health and foster care. Only 50 percent of teen mothers receive a high school diploma by age 22, compared to 90 percent of those who did not have children during their teen years. The children of teen mothers are more likely to be incarcerated, unemployed and find themselves pregnant as teenages.

Also, chlamydia, syphilis, and gonorrhea are on the rise for the first time since 2006. And Americans between the ages of 15 and 24 accounted for almost two-thirds of new chlamydia and gonorrhea cases.

Jonathan Zimmerman, a New York University professor and the author of “Too Hot To Handle: A Global History of Sex Ed,” is not ready to ascribe the Netherlands’ low teen pregnancy and birth rates to better sex education in their schools. He does point out that their purpose in teaching about sex is different than America’s.

Across the country, California’s new sex education laws are going a few steps further. Beginning January 1, 2016, all school districts are required to not only teach comprehensive sex education including HIV/AIDS education, but also educate students on a number of other topics. These topics include instruction on gender identity, sexual orientation, decision-making and negotiation to overcome peer pressure, and in some cases, sexual harassment.

Nearby Utah takes a different approach. Sex education and HIV education are mandated, and must be medically accurate. That is, as long as the education promotes abstinence until marriage and stays away from any information on contraception, including a component that stipulates educators legally cannot answer “students’ spontaneous questions,” if the question conflicts with any parts of the law.  In Utah the teen birth rate is 20.6 per 1,000 girls.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yZ

 


 

 

Why it’s no small feat that these hearing-impaired kids made it to the national round of a reading competition Los Angeles Times

 

Diamond Scott often communicates in two languages at the same time. While the sixth-grader speaks English out loud, she weaves sentences with her hands, whooshing her fingers into the lively shapes that form American Sign Language.

This weekend, as the captain of the Sussman Middle School literacy team, Diamond will use her hard-earned communication and reading skills to compete in the final round of the Battle of the Books, a literacy competition run by Gallaudet University.

This year marks the first time the Downey school has reached the competition’s national level. It’s the only team that includes students who learn with peers who don’t have hearing challenges; all the other teams come from specialized schools that teach students who are deaf.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yr

 


 

 

First-Ever Education Secretary Had a Groundbreaking Tenure at the Department Education Week

 

When Congress approved the creation of a U.S. Department of Education as its own cabinet-level agency in 1979, it did so only after encountering opposition from both sides of the aisle. Many conservative lawmakers were concerned that it would be a bureaucratic intrusion into education, while some liberals were worried its creation would make getting additional federal aid for education more difficult, among other concerns.

Then, when President Jimmy Carter, a supporter of a separate education department, made his selection for the nation’s first secretary of education, he picked Shirley M. Hufstedler, at the time a serving federal appeals court judge and former California Court of Appeals judge who did not have a background in education policy.

Her time as secretary was short—although she was sworn in by Carter in December 1979, the Education Department only began operations in May 1980, and she left in early 1981, when President Ronald Reagan took office.

But Hufstedler, who died on March 30 in California at age 90, helped organize the department during its earliest days, provided a steady hand at the tiller, and helped Carter show Congress that the department would not be the tool of any particular group.

http://gousoe.uen.org/6yR

 


 

 

Group Hands Out Sex in the Bible Tracts in Colorado Schools Associated Press

 

DENVER — Atheists are providing pamphlets on topics like sex in the Bible, problems with the Ten Commandments and a Satanic activity book to middle and high school students in a rural Colorado district.

It may sound like an April Fool’s joke, but Friday’s handouts are real. It’s the result of a fight between Delta County schools and critics over whether it should continue to let everyone from Little League organizers to the Gideons distribute literature in schools.

The availability of Bibles in schools in December led the Freedom from Religion Foundation to ask to the school district to offer its material to students in a bid to close the door on all outside literature. But the school district allowed it, rather than risk a costly lawsuit. The district says it’s looking at changing its policy http://gousoe.uen.org/6yQ

 

 

 

 

 

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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

 

 

April 4:

USBE Superintendent Selection Committee meeting

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

http://www.schools.utah.gov/board/Meetings/Agenda/April4SuptSelectionComm.aspx

 

 

April 14:

Utah State Charter School Board meeting

250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City

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

 

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

 

 

April 15:

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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