Education News Roundup: April 13, 2017

Today’s Top Picks:

Granite School District looks to raise taxes to raise teacher salaries.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Fz (SLT)
and http://gousoe.uen.org/9FT (KUTV)

Problems continue at the APA construction site in Draper.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FK (SLT)

Carbon High singers are headed to Carnegie Hall.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gc (Price Sun-Advocate)

New national report finds that many transgender students are just not drinking fluids nor going to the bathroom at school at all.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FC (Newsweek)
or a copy of the report
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FD (Movement Advancement Project)

New study finds school could save billions if they shared information about how much they were each paying for technology.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G6 (Ed Week)
or a copy of the report
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G8 (Ed Week)

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TODAY’S HEADLINES
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UTAH

Granite School District readies tax hike to fund raises in teacher-retention race
Granite joins other Salt Lake County districts boosting pay amid statewide teacher shortage.

American Preparatory Academy’s neighbors say the school erected a ‘spite fence’ to silence critics

Legislative leaders make significant changes to interim schedule

Lt. Gov. Cox urges high school students to get involved

Utah teen who stabbed five classmate enters guilty plea in adult court

Lehi football, basketball coach speaks out in favor of medical cannabis

Davis School District breaks ground on new junior high in Layton

District approves $2.5 million demolition of Granite High School
Demolition > Effort will be made to preserve memorabilia; residential work to begin this summer.

Wasatch Academy receives Utah Heritage Award

CHS singers invited to Carnegie Hall

Tuacahn’s Root selected for NRA’s education summit

Mountain Crest and Ridgeline musicians to compete in 2017 Young Artist Cup

Valley HS musicians excel this Spring

Diocesan SLVSEF Winners

Provo School District to hold 15th annual Easter Basket Auction on Thursday

10 ways to support families and individuals with autism

March 2017 Students of the Month Honored by St. George Exchange Club

OPINION & COMMENTARY

Tax reform is key to Utah’s future success

I Actually Thanked a Teacher
Now 88, she gave me a refresher in the lesson I’d learned in first grade: how to read the word ‘look.’

Leading a District Can Be Controversial, Embrace It
Fear of political backlash shouldn’t drive leadership decisionmaking

The GOP’s best choice for education reform
A scholarship donation tax credit would help needy children attend better schools

NATION

Transgender Students Avoid School Bathrooms Despite Health Consequences: Report

Democrats Condemn Climate Change Skeptics for Targeting Teachers

K-12 Schools Could Save Billions by Sharing Ed-Tech Prices, Report Say

Chicago schools try a new disciplinary tool: empathy
Chicago public schools are pivoting from heavy reliance on expulsions and suspensions to a focus on social and emotional learning and restorative justice. Here’s what that looks like at one school.

A small school caught in the crossfire of AmeriCorps debate
Nativity Preparatory School in New Bedford, Mass., could lose vital funding for most of its teachers if the AmeriCorps program is slashed from the federal budget. But such a threat also exposes the challenge of providing a tuition-free, private school education for students from low-income families.

Attorney: Carr verdict shows ‘consequences’ of actions

La Vernia athletics hazing scandal arrests climb to 13

Kids more likely to stop bullies when parents tell them to

On The Navajo Nation, Special Ed Students Await Water That Doesn’t Stink

U.S. Department of Education Announces Key Hires

Universal pre-K improves kids’ health in a hidden, powerful way, according to a new study

 

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UTAH NEWS
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Granite School District readies tax hike to fund raises in teacher-retention race
Granite joins other Salt Lake County districts boosting pay amid statewide teacher shortage.

The Granite Board of Education plans to raise property taxes this year to fund across-the-board pay raises for teachers and school administrators, the district announced Wednesday.
Starting teaching salaries in the district will be bumped from $37,000 to $41,000, and current faculty members will receive a roughly 11.6 percent “market-based” raise, Granite spokesman Ben Horsley said.
Amounts have not been ratified by members of the Granite Education Association, but Horsley expressed confidence late Wednesday that the union would sign off on the proposal.
“We want Granite to become the destination and school district of choice,” he said. “This pay scale will bring that in line so that we should be attracting the best teachers.”
The larger-than-typical raises partially are a response to similar plans to boost entry-level salaries at Jordan School District and Canyons School District. Jordan was first to make its plans known, which led to what some Salt Lake County educators have privately described as an “arms race.”
Horsley said increased state funding allows for a 3 percent cost of living adjustment in teacher pay. The additional 8.5 percent raises – approximately $19 million combined – will be drawn from school district coffers.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Fz (SLT)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9FT (KUTV)

 

American Preparatory Academy’s neighbors say the school erected a ‘spite fence’ to silence critics

Good fences may make good neighbors, but a recently-erected construction barrier at American Preparatory Academy is adding to simmering tensions between the Draper charter school and nearby residents.
Last Wednesday, homeowners Josh and Emily Aune hung a banner on their fence promoting ShameOnAPA.org, a website critical of American Preparatory Academy’s construction of a second campus on its Draper property.
Their home is located next to the mouth of the school’s driveway on Lone Peak Parkway, putting the banner in full view of families dropping off and picking up their children.
On Monday, a backhoe was parked in front of the banner, Josh Aune said, and by Tuesday, a roughly 10-foot-tall opaque fence had been installed along the back side of Aune’s property.
“We’re a couple thousand feet away from the actual construction,” Aune said on Wednesday. “Either their construction team is incompetent, or they have ulterior motives.”
Aune said the school gave no notice that the fence would be erected. He suspects it was installed to keep American Preparatory Academy parents from learning about the ongoing frustrations between the charter schools and its residential neighbors.
“In my opinion, it’s a spite fence,” Aune said. “It’s a distorted use of taxpayer dollars.”
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FK (SLT)

 

Legislative leaders make significant changes to interim schedule

Big changes are coming in how the Utah Legislature will meet this interim – from now until the end of the year.
Most Utahns could care less about when lawmakers meet at Capitol Hill and around the state.
But for those whose lives interact with the 104 part-time legislators, the changes will dictate parts of their work-a-day activities.
The new schedule means that the regular interim study committees – which used to meet every month – will not meet in July or October, with budget subcommittees taking their Wednesday time slots.
As usual, the regular interim day will be the third Wednesday of each month, May through November, with some exceptions.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Fw (UP)

A copy of the interim schedule
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Fx (Legislature)

 

Lt. Gov. Cox urges high school students to get involved

Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox asked students at InTech Collegiate High School what they don’t like about politics.
Politicians are liars, said one student from the crowd Wednesday afternoon.
“Yeah, a lot of lying going on; politicians – it’s one of the things we’re good at,” Cox said.
Other students chimed in. It’s too contentious, it splits people apart, politicians only care about themselves, they said.
“We’re on these teams and now we have contention between us because we’re just – you’re someone different than me,” Cox said.
In between visits with business representatives and college students in Logan on Wednesday, Cox stopped by InTech to talk about the importance of being informed and involved with government in an age where people like him aren’t very popular.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FA (LHJ)

 

Utah teen who stabbed five classmate enters guilty plea in adult court

Provo * Luke Dollahite, the teen who stabbed five classmates last year at an Orem high school, pleaded guilty Thursday to one count of attempted aggravated murder in adult court.
Dollahite, 16, who left five boys seriously injured during the bloody locker-room rampage November, had pleaded guilty last week in juvenile court to four counts of attempted aggravated murder.
Sentencing is set for June 22 before 4th District Judge Christine Johnson.
As part of a plea deal, prosecutors have agreed to recommend a 10-year-to-life prison term.
Utah law states that attempted aggravated murder generally carries a 15-year-to-life sentence, but allows a judge to order a lesser 6-year-to-life or 10-year-to-life sentence if the court finds it is “in the interest of justice.”
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FL (SLT)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9FN (PDH)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9FY (DN)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gj (KTVX)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gk (KSTU)

 

Lehi football, basketball coach speaks out in favor of medical cannabis

It’s not usually a chore to get a kid to eat her favorite food, but Andy Hadfield had to coax his 4-year-old daughter, Andelyn, to take a single bite of waffle on Wednesday.
She was afraid she would throw up, as she so frequently had during her multiple rounds of chemotherapy to treat the cancer she was diagnosed with in October.
Her loss of appetite continues well after each of her chemotherapy rounds is over, Hadfield said, and she is down from 41 pounds to 34.
“She just looks like bones,” said Hadfield, who is a coach for Lehi’s high school football and basketball teams. “It’s just hard to watch a kid that loves to dance and sing and play not be able to do those things.”
Hadfield drove from Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City to speak to a group of more than 30 people in a room at the Provo City Library on Wednesday to tell them why he is in favor of legalizing cannabis for medical purposes. The people had gathered for a presentation from UCan, an organization whose purpose is to educate people about the medical purposes of cannabis.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FO (PDH)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9FU (KUTV)

 

Davis School District breaks ground on new junior high in Layton

LAYTON — The Davis School District broke ground on its newest junior high school Wednesday, April 12.
The school is being built by Hughes General Contractors and is slated for completion in summer 2019. The Davis School District Board of Education capped the project’s cost at $39.6 million, which is coming out of a $298 million bond initiative passed by voters in 2015.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FM (OSE)

 

District approves $2.5 million demolition of Granite High School
Demolition > Effort will be made to preserve memorabilia; residential work to begin this summer.

The century-old Granite High School campus in South Salt Lake is facing its final days after a $2.55 million demolition contract was approved by Granite School District on Tuesday.
District spokesman Ben Horsley said demolition is likely to begin in August after work on asbestos mitigation has been completed.
Granite High School opened in 1907 and has been closed since 2009.
Over the last decade, various proposals have been floated to preserve the school’s iconic structures. But after an $11.6 million sale to Wasatch Developments and Garbett Homes, the southern portion of the high school site will be converted into a residential development, with commercial or other uses slated for the parcel’s north side.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Fy (SLT)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9FV (KTVX)

http://gousoe.uen.org/9Ge (Construction & Demolition Recycling)

 

Wasatch Academy receives Utah Heritage Award

MT. PLEASANT– Wasatch Academy located in Mt. Pleasant within the Mormon Pioneer National Heritage Area, recently received a Utah Heritage Award for its work restoring Pierce Hall, one of the early buildings on the preparatory school campus.
The award was presented to Wasatch Academy Head of School Joseph Loftin at the annual meeting and award ceremony of Preservation Utah at the Falls Event Center, Trolley Square, Salt Lake City. Preservation Utah is a nonprofit organization that promotes historic preservation statewide.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gh (PDH)

CHS singers invited to Carnegie Hall

Carbon High School’s Vocal Jazz choir sang well enough in recent national competition to earn an invitation to perform at Carnegie Hall in New York City next spring.
The group won first place gold at a national choir festival in San Diego. Their high score gives them the opportunity to sing where famous people like Duke Ellington, Tchaikovsky, and the Beatles have performed.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gc (Price Sun-Advocate)

 

Tuacahn’s Root selected for NRA’s education summit

Marlie Root, a sophomore at Tuacahn High School for the Performing Arts, is one of just 47 students nationally who has been selected to participate in the National Rifle Association’s annual National Youth Education Summit in July.
YES is a seven-day, all-expense paid educational experience in Washington, D.C., for outstanding rising high school juniors and seniors. While in the nation’s capital, Root will learn the significance of the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights while developing an understanding of government and the importance of actively participating in it.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FS (SGS)

 

Mountain Crest and Ridgeline musicians to compete in 2017 Young Artist Cup

Cache Valley’s 18th annual Young Artist Cup will take place Thursday, April 13, and Friday, April 14, in the auditorium of Mountain Crest High School. The competition begins at 7:00 p.m. both nights, with Thursday featuring vocal and string artists and Friday showcasing piano, brass, wind and percussion performances.
Established in 2000, the Young Artist Cup is designed to honor student musicians in grades 10-12 who attend high school on the south end of Cache Valley. While the competition has traditionally involved participants who live within the boundaries of Mountain Crest High School in Hyrum, it will now include students from the new Ridgeline High School, which opened this school year in Millville. Home-schooled students are also eligible to compete.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FR (CVD)

 

Valley HS musicians excel this Spring

The Valley High School music students have had a busy month preparing, traveling and performing. Their hard work has paid off in a number of ways.
In early March, the choir and orchestra students traveled to northern Utah for their annual Music Tour. Bryan Sullivan hosted them at Manti High School for an excellent workshop. While in Sanpete Valley, the students toured the music department at Snow College and performed at the Golden Horizon Care Center for the residents. One nice lady said after every song, “That was so beautiful! Would you please do another?” The students were moved by the chance to perform for such a grateful audience.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gg (Southern Utah News)

 

Diocesan SLVSEF Winners

Utah Catholic School students competed against other young scientists from schools all across Utah in the 2017 Salt Lake Valley Science and Education Fair on March 21-24. Following is a list of students from Catholic Schools who earned awards at the SLVSEF.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gf (IC)

Provo School District to hold 15th annual Easter Basket Auction on Thursday

Provo City School District will be hosting the 15th annual Easter Basket Auction on Thursday, giving the community a chance to leave with special prizes while also giving back to some of the district’s programs.
The event will begin at 6:30 p.m. with the auction starting at 7:30 p.m. at Riverside Country Club.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FQ (PDH)

 

10 ways to support families and individuals with autism

April is Autism Awareness Month, and like many people, you may wonder how that affects you. You may know a family with a child with autism. You kids may be friends with someone with autism. You may know someone at work with autism. But what can you do to offer support and understanding?
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FP (PDH)

 

March 2017 Students of the Month Honored by St. George Exchange Club

ST. GEORGE, Utah – The March Student of the Month recipients were recently honored by the St. George Exchange Club. The St. George Exchange Club sponsors the Student of the Month Program, which honors one student from the area high schools each month.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FW (KCSG)

 

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OPINION & COMMENTARY
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Tax reform is key to Utah’s future success
Deseret News op-ed by A. Scott Anderson, CEO and president of Zions Bank

Utah’s economy is booming. How can we keep it going long into the future? A key factor is progressive, pro-growth tax reform that produces more funding for education to create the best workforce in the nation.
In the legislative session earlier this year, our leaders acknowledged the need for major tax reform in Utah. Some small, but important, steps were taken. But much more is needed to create a tax system that keeps Utah’s economy vibrant, broadens the tax base and provides enough funding for education and other vital state services.
Legislative leaders were right to embrace tax reform. As society evolves and the structure of the economy changes, tax policy must keep up to avoid economic distortions and perverse incentives.

A key goal of tax reform should be to generate more money for education. We will not produce the nation’s best workforce by spending the lowest amount per pupil in the country. Money isn’t everything in education, but it is a critical element to attract top-quality teachers and maintain reasonable class sizes.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gd

 

I Actually Thanked a Teacher
Now 88, she gave me a refresher in the lesson I’d learned in first grade: how to read the word ‘look.’
Wall Street Journal commentary by novelist Bob Greene

Amid the endless torrent of angry and violent world events, I switched off the television set, shut down the computer, and turned to something I hoped would provide welcome respite: a slender book of photographs illustrating the history of the small Ohio community where I grew up.
I was flipping through the pictures: a long-gone grocery store, a church under construction, an early streetcar. Then I came across one that stopped me. The photo was of three children-two girls and a boy-taking a tap-dancing class in 1934. One of the girls, dark-haired and bright-eyed, was identified as Patti Ruoff.
Could it be? My first-grade teacher was named Patricia Ruoff. When you’re 6, you don’t think about your teachers having had lives before you encountered them. But it seemed plausible that the tap-dancing girl had grown up to teach school in the town.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FB $

 

Leading a District Can Be Controversial, Embrace It
Fear of political backlash shouldn’t drive leadership decisionmaking
Education Week op-ed by Nicholas A. Fischer, a school-management consultant and coach

Former President Barack Obama often talked about politics as “the art of the possible.” This aphorism comes from the 19th-century Prussian diplomat and politician Otto von Bismarck. One way to interpret the adage is that pragmatism trumps all; in other words, when trying to steer public opinion, it is best to focus on the attainable. And, unfortunately, when it comes to our children’s education, this notion of “what’s possible” is often synonymous with what is politically safe. This is a big mistake.
In my early days as a principal in Florida, the superintendent of my district was fond of describing our goals in similar terms: He explained that we should be aware of the political environment and steer clear of controversy. Compromise or a “good enough” solution was the holy grail to him. Wanting the perfect, in his world, meant you got nothing at all.
Now, after serving more than decade as a superintendent, I have learned firsthand that our education system is often shaped more by the politically safe and less by the fearless experimentation it takes to truly improve schools for all students. And yet, the search firms that help recruit school and district leaders tend to view candidates’ first qualifier as the length of time they have served in a district. Unfortunately, the examination of data that could show how, or if, a school or district leader has made on-the-ground improvements often takes a back seat. A leader who avoids controversy or policy proposals that question long-established practices hasn’t taken the right kind of chances in my book.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G5

 

The GOP’s best choice for education reform
A scholarship donation tax credit would help needy children attend better schools
Washington Times op-ed by Peter Murphy, vice president for policy at the Invest in Education Foundation

Republicans in control in Washington have to decide whether to exert themselves on a range of issues to improve the economic and social conditions for millions of Americans or merely tinker at the margins with small-potato approaches.
When it comes to education, the Trump administration and Congress have a historic opportunity to immediately improve the educational landscape and lives of countless children from financially needy and working-class households by including a scholarship donation tax credit in tax reform legislation under consideration this year.
For decades, Republicans have been preaching that the federal bureaucracy and forced conformity to traditional public education models won’t solve the education crisis, particularly for Americans in need. But they’ve never delivered a national solution that moves the needle.
A stronger charitable tax incentive to offset income and corporate taxes would encourage private donations to private scholarship funds and exponentially expand the pool of K-12 resources available to students. This would help families of limited means provide the educational opportunities they need for their children – something upper-income families take for granted.
Using the federal tax code this way would be seamless and simple. It would not affect or reorder existing federal education funding, including Title I and other programs, nor would it impede states and school districts’ ability to improve public education.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9Gb

 

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NATIONAL NEWS
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Transgender Students Avoid School Bathrooms Despite Health Consequences: Report
Newsweek

As yet another bathroom debate began to brew in Michigan this week, a report released by LGBT rights advocates showed transgender students often avoid using school restrooms because they feel uncomfortable and unsafe.
“Separation and Stigma: Transgender Youth and School Facilities,” a document published Tuesday by the Movement Advancement Project, GLSEN, National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Education Association, found that 70 percent of transgender students said they’ve gone out of their way to not use campus bathrooms. Pulling in data from a 2015 survey of youth and a 2016 study of adults, the report mentioned that transgender people revealed they not only drank less but also developed urinary tract infections in their quest to skip the public facilities.
The pro-LGBT rights organizations involved in the report sent the statistics to Education Secretary Betsy DeVos along with an open letter urging her to reverse course and establish a national policy protecting students’ rights to use facilities that correspond to their gender identities rather than biological sex.
“On the surface, the argument is about bathrooms, but at a deeper level, it is about whether or not transgender students will be included in our public education system,” Ineke Mushovic, the executive director of the project, said in a news release. “Put simply, if transgender students cannot safely access a bathroom, they cannot safely attend school.”
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FC

A copy of the report
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FD (Movement Advancement Project)

 

Democrats Condemn Climate Change Skeptics for Targeting Teachers
Frontline

Three top Democrats have urged a libertarian think tank to stop mailing climate change skeptical classroom materials to teachers across America.
The ranking Democrats on the House committees overseeing education, natural resources and science condemned the group’s mass-mailing campaign and counseled teachers to throw away the materials when they arrive.
But the Heartland Institute said it has no intention of desisting: It has continued to send books and DVDs rejecting the human role in global warming to public school science teachers in all 50 states. Heartland project manager Lennie Jarratt said packages are also being distributed to science teachers at private and charter schools and to college professors.
An initial batch of 25,000 books was mailed out in early March, and two additional batches have been sent since, Jarratt said. In total, he said, more than 200,000 packages will be sent, with the goal of getting the materials into the hands of every science teacher in the country.
The packages contain a book titled “Why Scientists Disagree about Climate Change” and a related DVD; both dispute the scientific consensus that climate change is a crisis. Accompanying them is a cover letter from Jarratt, who leads Heartland’s Center for Transforming Education. The letter points teachers to an online guide to using the DVD in classrooms.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FG

 

K-12 Schools Could Save Billions by Sharing Ed-Tech Prices, Report Say
Education Week

U.S. schools could save at least $3 billion a year on educational technology by sharing information about how much they pay for hardware and software, according to estimates in a new study by the nonprofit Technology for Education Consortium.
Of that amount, at least $1.7 billion could be saved in instructional and non-instructional software purchases, and $500 million in Chromebook purchases alone, if all districts paid the lowest prices vendors charge, the study’s authors estimated.
Discrepancies between the highest and lowest prices districts pay for the same hardware and software product can range between 20 percent and 40 percent, the researchers found.
The analysis, “How School Districts Can Save (Billions) on Edtech” was released exclusively to EdWeek Market Brief by the Technology for Education Consortium, a nonprofit that wants to bring transparency, efficiency, and collaboration to K-12 schools as they evaluate and purchase ed-tech products and services.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G6

A copy of the report
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G8 (Ed Week)

 

Chicago schools try a new disciplinary tool: empathy
Chicago public schools are pivoting from heavy reliance on expulsions and suspensions to a focus on social and emotional learning and restorative justice. Here’s what that looks like at one school.
Christian Science Monitor

CHICAGO-Gigi’s freshman year at Amundsen High School started with a bang, for all the wrong reasons. She snapped at teachers, got into fights, was often late to class, and was a regular in detention.
Before, just one of those transgressions at the 1,200-student school on Chicago’s North Side would likely have gotten her what it got most kids across America’s third-largest school district: a no-questions-asked 10-day suspension.
But when Christian Pederson, the school’s restorative justice coordinator and her swim team coach, heard that Gigi’s closest friend had recently died, his response to her behavior was very different. Mr. Pederson went straight to her physics class, pulled her out, and offered a few simple words: “So, I heard what happened. You’re part of the swim team; we’re a family.”
“Those words actually helped me open up because I used [to] just keep to myself,” recalls Gigi, now in her junior year. “Opening up made me have hope at least someone in this building cares and is willing to help.”
Compassionate efforts to get at the root cause when students start acting up, and then to help them work through it, might sound pie-in-the-sky to some. But that approach is now the norm at the school, staff and students with similar stories say. Amundsen has nearly halved its number of out-of-school suspensions since 2012. That’s when its new principal, Anna Pavichevich, began leading the school in a cultural 180, transitioning from a disciplinary system that Ms. Pavichevich says “used to be about kicking kids out,” to one that emphasizes social and emotional learning (SEL) and restorative justice.
The turnaround at Amundsen is the ripest fruit of an overhaul of Chicago Public Schools’ (CPS) discipline policy. For years – in Chicago and throughout the US – “zero-tolerance” policies ruled the day at public schools.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FF

 

A small school caught in the crossfire of AmeriCorps debate
Nativity Preparatory School in New Bedford, Mass., could lose vital funding for most of its teachers if the AmeriCorps program is slashed from the federal budget. But such a threat also exposes the challenge of providing a tuition-free, private school education for students from low-income families.
Christian Science Monitor

NEW BEDFORD-Jacob Berman doesn’t know where he would be if he hadn’t attended Nativity Preparatory School, a tuition-free, private middle school in New Bedford, Mass., designed to serve boys from low-income families. But the senior at Boston College says he’s pretty sure he wouldn’t be as confident, as accomplished, or as selfless as he is today.
“The main point that Nativity really stressed in every way was to be a Nativity man for others, to basically look out and see what else you can do not just for yourself, but for other people,” he says in a phone interview.
Mr. Berman is one of more than 150 graduates of the school, open since 2000, who have gone on to defy statistics that have plagued boys from the inner city and from minority backgrounds. The graduation rate for students at Nativity – all of whom qualify for free or reduced lunch or government fuel assistance – is more than 97 percent for high school and 75 percent for college, well above national averages for this demographic.
Both the Nativity faculty and experts on education reform and Catholic schools interviewed for this story credit the school’s success to both the wrap-around services it provides – longer school days, smaller class sizes, and a counselor that follows graduates through high school and college – as well as a culture that instills confidence and a sense of purpose into its students.
But a foundation of the school’s model could be yanked loose under a budget proposed by the Trump administration. If Congress were to approve the administration’s proposal to slash the federally funded AmeriCorps service program, the private school with just 55 students could lose a major source of funding for seven of its eight teachers. The school would survive, insists headmaster John Martin. But it would have to divert more of its attention to fundraising to maintain its services.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FE

 

Attorney: Carr verdict shows ‘consequences’ of actions
Wilmington (DE) News Journal

Delaware Family Court Judge Robert Coonin on Thursday found Trinity Carr, 17, delinquent of criminally negligent homicide and third-degree criminal conspiracy for the death of her classmate Amy Inita Joyner-Francis at a high school in Wilmington last year.
A delinquent finding in Family Court is a guilty verdict.
Coonin found Zion Snow, also 17, delinquent of third-degree criminal conspiracy. Chakiera Wright, another classmate, was found not delinquent of criminal conspiracy. Prosecutors had argued Carr, Wright and Snow planned an “attack” on Joyner-Francis, a term Coonin also used to describe the confrontation.
It was “not a fight between two teenagers squaring off to settle a mutual grievance,” Coonin said. “(Carr) stuck the first blow without warning, carried on a relatively brief but violent attack … and she had to be pulled off her victim.”
There was not sufficient evidence to show Wright had participated in the plan, Coonin added.
“In the restroom video, unlike Trinity Carr who is the principal attacker, and Zion Snow who is seen kicking Amy Joyner-Francis while she is down, Chakeira Wright is shown pulling Trinity Carr off,” he said.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FZ

La Vernia athletics hazing scandal arrests climb to 13
San Antonio (TX) Express-News

LA VERNIA – Three more students from La Vernia High School have been arrested in connection with a hazing scandal that officials say has involved three of the school’s athletic programs for several years.
Colton Weidner, 18, Christian Roberts, 18, and John Rutkowski, 18, were arrested Tuesday on a charge of second-degree felony sexual assault, bringing the total number of arrests to 13.
According to the complaint filed by Texas Ranger Joel Kite, the three and an unnamed juvenile attacked a 15-year-old in February at a home near La Vernia, sodomizing him with a flashlight. The youth cried out and struggled, but he was overpowered and couldn’t stop the assault, the complaint alleges. Weidner, Roberts and Rutkowski are all seniors who play basketball.
The Texas Rangers took over the investigation April 3 and the state Attorney General’s office will be prosecuting the cases. Local officials, who have said there are at least 10 victims, turned over the investigation and prosecution to ensure impartiality since many know the victims and the accused in this small town, about 30 miles east of San Antonio.
So far, six adult students and seven juvenile students have been arrested.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FJ

 

Kids more likely to stop bullies when parents tell them to
Reuters

Kids are more likely to step in when they see bullying at school if their parents have told them to get involved than if they’ve been taught it’s better to stay out of it, a recent U.S. study suggests.
About one in 10 children are victims of bullying, and many anti-bullying programs are focused on getting bystanders to intervene, researchers note in the Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology. While previous research has linked certain parenting practices to higher odds that kids will be victims or perpetrators of bullying, less is known about how parents impact what children do as bystanders.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G3

A copy of the study
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G4 (Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology)

 

On The Navajo Nation, Special Ed Students Await Water That Doesn’t Stink
(Phoenix) KJZZ via NPR All Things Considered

On the Navajo Nation, kids with the most severe developmental disabilities attend a school called Saint Michael’s Association for Special Education.
Dameon David, 8, is waking up from a nap in his classroom. He has come to the school in northeastern Arizona for four years. He has cerebral palsy, seizures and scoliosis. His mom, Felencia Woodie, picks him up from a bed with Superman sheets.
“Other schools that he was going to go to, they didn’t have the nursing staff or the equipment he goes in, or the trained staff that they have here to do his suctioning, his feeding and his medications daily,” she says.
Woodie, who also works at Saint Michael’s, says the only problem with the school is its water.
“It has a certain stench to it. Sometimes you’ll smell … kinda like a egg smell,” Woodie says. “Sometimes it’s yellow, brown, or even we’ve seen black.”
Many of the kids at Saint Michael’s are medically fragile. So they have equipment that needs to be cleaned daily. The staff refuses to use the tap water to wash equipment. Instead, they use 5-gallon jugs of filtered water trucked in from many miles away.
More than one-third of the Navajo Nation – which is the size of West Virginia – doesn’t have running water. And at some of the places that do, like Saint Michael’s, people don’t want to drink it because it smells, tastes funny and looks bad.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FX

 

U.S. Department of Education Announces Key Hires
Education Week

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has announced a slate of hires for key positions in the department. Many of these folks have been working in the Education Department since the beginning of the Trump administration, but now they will have more formal, official roles.
None of these folks have received formal nominations from the White House, and will not need Senate confirmation to step into their roles. But some will be serving in an “acting” capacity in positions that they can be nominated formally for later.
For instance, Candice Jackson will be a deputy secretary in the Office for Civil Rights and acting assistant secretary. And Jason Botel, who had been serving as a senior White House adviser, will be a deputy secretary for elementary and secondary education and will serve as acting assistant secretary of that office.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9G9

http://gousoe.uen.org/9Ga (WaPo)

 

Universal pre-K improves kids’ health in a hidden, powerful way, according to a new study
Business Insider

New York City is in the middle of a major initiative to improve the lives of children: universal pre-kindergarten.
The city, home to the largest US school district, started an aggressive expansion of its pre-K program in 2014, based on a body of research suggesting that pre-K can be a powerful, cost-effective way to give kids a skills boost as they enter the education system.
Any eligible 4-year-old in New York City can now attend free, full-day pre-K. And that means all the kids attending pre-K now are spending their days in radically different ways than their peers born just a few years earlier.
That change is likely to affect the kids for the rest of their lives.
A new paper, published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, investigates how pre-K affects kids’ access to healthcare. The results suggest that universal pre-K programs are improving the odds that kids who need treatment for vision, hearing, or asthma issues get the help they need.
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FH

A copy of the study
http://gousoe.uen.org/9FI (NBER) $

 

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

USBE Legislative Tracking Sheet
http://www.schools.utah.gov/law/Legislative-Session.aspx

UEN News
http://www.uen.org

April 13:

Utah State Charter School Board meeting
1:30 p.m., 2750 University Park Blvd., Layton
http://www.schools.utah.gov/charterschools/State-Board.aspx

April 21:

Utah State Board of Education Law and Licensing Committee meeting
8:30 a.m., 250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.boarddocs.com/ut/usbe/Board.nsf/Public

Utah State Board of Education Finance Committee meeting
1 p.m., 250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.boarddocs.com/ut/usbe/Board.nsf/Public

April 26:

Utah State Board of Education Standards and Assessment Committee meeting
9:30 a.m., 250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.boarddocs.com/ut/usbe/Board.nsf/Public

May 4:

Utah State Board of Education committee meetings
250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.boarddocs.com/ut/usbe/Board.nsf/Public

May 5:

Utah State Board of Education meeting
250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.boarddocs.com/ut/usbe/Board.nsf/Public

June 22:

Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee meeting
8 a.m., 445 State Capitol
http://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?Year=2017&Com=APPPED

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