Education News Roundup: June 22, 2017

Today’s Top Picks:

Legislature considers cleaning up Utah’s education code, but is also considering 90 education-related bills (so far) for the 2018 session.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiv (DN)

New census data shows Utah’s younger population is growing ever more diverse.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiw (SLT)
and http://gousoe.uen.org/aix (DN)
and http://gousoe.uen.org/aiT (AP)

Several public education groups received “Talent Ready Utah” grants.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiD (SLT)

Alabama drops ACT Aspire.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiy (Birmingham News)
and http://gousoe.uen.org/aiU (AP)

Fidget spinners are soooooo 20 minutes ago. The newest thing: Mini-crossbows.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aj0 (Guardian)

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TODAY’S HEADLINES
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UTAH

Lawmakers labor to clean up state education code with 90-plus more bills in pipeline

New Census data point to a new Utah: a ‘mixed-heritage, multicultural tapestry’
Census data > With the minority population having grown by 20.3 percent since 2010 and white population by 8 percent, the state is quickly becoming much less homogeneous.

One Utah idea to train workers of the future: Kids as tech support in their own schools
A dozen new state grants support new ‘talent pipelines.’

Utah STEM schools receive awards

Logan OKs $209K in assistance for subdivision expected to help stabilize school district

Utah Shakespeare Festival To Use Grants To Stage New Play, Bring Shakespeare To Schools

A sticky situation: With $10,000 on the line, students craft prom outfits from duct tape

Administrative changes in Logan City School District result in “shuffling” of personnel

Why LGBT youth in Utah consider suicide
LGBT adults reflect on the isolation they felt in their youth, suicide idealization, and growing up gay in Utah.

Police looking for man last seen in Ogden after 3 bodies found on Idaho property

Man who falsely told daughter’s school to evacuate sentenced

OPINION & COMMENTARY

The labor shortage can be an important opportunity or a major crisis for Utah

The benefits of small government also apply to schools

DeVos Should Take on Education’s Reformocracy
It’s time to reboot reform and rediscover the conviction that bureaucracy and paperwork are not tools for fostering terrific schools.

NATION

Alabama board votes to end contract with ACT Aspire

Superintendents sound alarm over Medicaid changes in Obamacare repeal bill

GOP Health Care Proposals: What Educators Should Know

Black Caucus Dumps Trump Meeting, Says DeVos Won’t Protect Civil Rights

Education Dept. regulatory reform task force finds over 150 rules to review

Mentors for New Teachers Found to Boost Student Achievement-by a Lot

Project-Based Learning’s Next Project: Understanding When It Works

10 who graduated thanks to testing errors will keep diplomas

Forget fidget spinners, it’s the toothpick crossbow that is worrying parents
New toy taking China by storm can fire needles and nails as well as toothpicks, leading to concerns over safety

 

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UTAH NEWS
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Lawmakers labor to clean up state education code with 90-plus more bills in pipeline

SALT LAKE CITY – Even as Utah lawmakers labor to tidy up the section of the Utah code on education, legislators have filed more than 90 bills for consideration in the 2018 legislative session, and it’s only June.
One lawmaker is asking whether it’s time for a moratorium on filing new bills until the Utah Legislature’s Education Interim Committee completes recodification of the state education code.
Titles 53A, 53B, 53C and 53D of the Utah Code now include 65 chapters of education statutes covering issues as diverse as compulsory education requirements in public education, college tuition waivers and establishment of state aboreta.
Recodification of the section is akin to cleaning out a gargantuan hall closet, except that the job will be tackled by legislative staff guided by a committee of 19 lawmakers and with suggestions from education community stakeholders.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiv (DN)

 

New Census data point to a new Utah: a ‘mixed-heritage, multicultural tapestry’
Census data > With the minority population having grown by 20.3 percent since 2010 and white population by 8 percent, the state is quickly becoming much less homogeneous.

New census estimates show that Utah’s minority populations continue to be younger and grow faster than whites – signaling a state shift to what one demographer calls “a mixed-heritage, multicultural tapestry of people and cultures.”
“That’s the new Utah,” not the old one that was nearly homogeneous and white, said Pam Perlich, director of demographic research at the University of Utah’s Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute.
For example, new estimates released Thursday show that minorities now account for 21 percent of Utah’s population – one of every five residents, as of July 1, 2016. That is up from 19 percent in the 2010 Census.
Since 2010, Utah’s minority population grew by 20.3 percent, while the white population increased by a much smaller 8 percent.
The Asian population swelled in that time by nearly 34 percent (adding 18,446 people); the number of residents with mixed heritage jumped by 30.8 percent (adding 14,361); the black population rose by 23.2 percent (6,107 people); the amount of Pacific Islanders went up 20.2 percent (4,887 people); Hispanics’ count climbed by 17.3 percent (62,100 people); and the number of American Indians increased by 11 percent (2,992 people).
In short, every minority group saw faster growth rates than whites during this decade.
Perlich said that will likely continue because Utah’s older generations – which are losing bigger numbers to death – are mostly white. Younger generations are more diverse.
For example, 35 percent of minorities are under age 18, while 29 percent of whites are. Among people with mixed heritage, a majority are under 18 – 52.1 percent. Perlich said most of them are children of a parent who came to the state in a big wave of immigration during the 1990s and 2000s before the Great Recession.
“It’s evidence that great demographic transformation of Utah continues to unfold year by year…. If we do the math, we can see how Utah will continue to become more diverse,” Perlich said. “These trends are cumulative, ongoing and irreversible.”
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiw (SLT)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aix (DN)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiT (AP)

 

One Utah idea to train workers of the future: Kids as tech support in their own schools
A dozen new state grants support new ‘talent pipelines.’

Utah kids need tech skills. Utah school districts need tech support.
In a match funded by the state, the Millard School District will create a way for students in 11 districts to gain experience in information technology by helping with computer crashes and other electronic woes in their own schools.
The partnership is one of a dozen that will divide $2.1 million in state grants to develop a skilled workforce for Utah’s leading industries.
The “Talent Ready Utah” grants are designed to bolster collaboration among industry, educational institutions and economic-development leaders to create “talent pipelines for high-demand, high-wage occupations,” Nate McDonald, spokesman for the state Department of Workforce Services, said in a news release.
“We need to prepare a critical mass of skilled workers in select economic clusters where there is demand. That can only happen if we have talent ready for those jobs,” Gov. Gary Herbert added in the release.
The Millard School District program was awarded $154,024. Other grants went to:

* Pinnacle Canyon Academy, $200,000: The school will develop six-week paid internships for high school students in a health professions program at Utah State University Eastern in Price.

* Weber State University, $274,000: WSU will train people from applied technology centers and school districts on curriculum for advanced hybrid and electrical vehicle systems.

* Granite School District, $200,000: The district will oversee summer computer coding boot camps in 10 school districts and redesign the “Keys to Success” program to focus on promoting computer-science careers.

* Duchesne School District, $148,863: The district will create a program for students to solve issues and complete projects with business leaders.

* Utah State University-Moab, $126,820: USU will create and implement “stackable” credentials programs for the Grand County School District.

* Utah State University-Eastern in Price, $50,000: USU will assess industry needs in southeastern Utah and develop a career-pathways program for students from middle school to graduate school.

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiD (SLT)

 

Utah STEM schools receive awards

The STEM Action Center awarded eight Utah public schools with the STEM School Designation during the STEM Best Practices Conference on Tuesday in Provo.
The STEM Schools Designation defines criteria to help Utah schools create comprehensive science, technology, engineering and math learning environments for their students.
Foothill Elementary in Orem earned the highest award, the Platinum STEM School Designation, and Westridge Elementary in Provo was awarded the Gold STEM School Designation. The six other schools that earned similar recognitions were Endeavour Elementary in the Davis School District, New Bridge Elementary in the Ogden School District, Creekview Elementary in the Carbon School District, Willow Elementary in the Tooele County School District, George Washington Academy in St. George and the Utah Virtual Academy.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiH (PDH)

 

Logan OKs $209K in assistance for subdivision expected to help stabilize school district

A new subdivision with large lots in the northwest of Logan is expected to bring stability to Logan City School District and Bridger Elementary, a school with high mobility among apartments and rental housing.
To help the Quayle Meadows subdivision move forward, the Logan Redevelopment Agency on Tuesday approved a total of $209,000 in assistance for the first 22 of an expected 203 total lots ranging in size from a quarter- to a half-acre.
Under the agreement, $9,500 will be distributed per lot as soon as all 22 lots in the first phase are developed along with trail segments, landscaping improvements and established terms for a homeowners association. No additional assistance is expected for the rest of the subdivision.
Logan Economic Development Director Kirk Jensen said the goal of the redevelopment funding is to catalyze the full buildout of the subdivision, increase housing diversity and stabilize the neighborhood. He said just 27 percent of the housing stock in that area is owner-occupied.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiI (LHJ)

 

Utah Shakespeare Festival To Use Grants To Stage New Play, Bring Shakespeare To Schools

The Utah Shakespeare Festival has recently been awarded two grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, totaling $45,000. The first will fund the production and world premiere of a new play, and the second will help bring Shakespeare to communities in Utah and surrounding states.
According to Josh Stavros, media and public relations manager at the Utah Shakespeare Festival, many arts organizations throughout Utah receive funding through the NEA, and the festival is grateful to count itself among them. He said this funding not only helps to support the arts, but is an honor to receive, and helps to show organizations that they’re doing something right.

The second grant, through Arts Midwest, totals $25,000 and will bring Shakespeare’s “The Tempest” to schools, community centers and correctional facilities in Utah, Nevada, Wyoming, Colorado and Arizona.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aj4 (UPR)

 

A sticky situation: With $10,000 on the line, students craft prom outfits from duct tape

Hurricane High School students Lauren Gardner and Ruben Taylor found themselves in a sticky situation at their prom.
They were literally covered in sticky tape. And their duct tape outfits did not make it easy to move.
“We did one slow dance where it was just gentle swaying,” Gardner says.
“For scholarship money you do what you have to do – even if that means not break-dancing,” Taylor adds.
The duct tape outfits were not merely high school hijinks. They are part of a serious (and, in some ways, not-so-serious) scholarship competition sponsored by Duck Brand duct tape. It’s all part of Duck Brand’s annual Stuck at Prom contest and the Hurricane students are among 10 finalist couples competing for the grand prize of two $10,000 scholarships.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiK (SGS)

 

Administrative changes in Logan City School District result in “shuffling” of personnel

LOGAN -Dr. Frank Schofield has just completed his second year as superintendent of the Logan City School District. Looking ahead to the 2017-2018 school year, Schofield said the district has made some exciting personnel changes that will benefit the 6,000 students currently being served.
Schofield said the changes were initiated given a move out of state by Theresa Hough, who had been serving as the district’s teaching, learning and assessment services director. A redistribution of funding sources allowed the district to divide Hough’s single position into two, with Jed Grunig, Ellis Elementary School’s former principal, being appointed director of teaching, learning and assessment services for elementary schools. Melisa Richardson, who served most recently an assistant principal at Logan High, will fulfill the role for the district’s secondary schools.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiJ (CVD)

 

Why LGBT youth in Utah consider suicide
LGBT adults reflect on the isolation they felt in their youth, suicide idealization, and growing up gay in Utah.

It was only 17 years ago that then-President Bill Clinton designated June as Pride Month.
Each year since then, individuals who identify as LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender) and their allies organize events that promote visibility and demand equality throughout the month.
However, in those 17 years, the amount of hate crimes against LGBT individuals – the most targeted minority group in the country – hasn’t budged much.
The deadliest mass shooting in the nation’s history was the attack on Pulse Nightclub in Orlando last year, killing 49 and leaving another 53 wounded.
Earlier this month, a 12-year-old member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints – Utah’s overwhelmingly predominant religion – was silenced by ecclesiastical leadership in front of her congregation while she bore her testimony and came out as a lesbian in a video that quickly went viral.
According to River Beatty’s obituary, a 22-year-old Southern Utahn who committed suicide in May, she was transitioning from male to female and was “antagonized” throughout her life because she struggled with her gender identity.
One 15-year-old Californian in the LDS faith was sent to St. George in 2011 by her parents who believed her homosexuality could be cured with treatment. Alex Cooper, coauthor of “Saving Alex,” was subjected to emotional and physical abuse at an unlicensed treatment center run by fellow Mormons who “used faith to punish and terrorize her.” She was subjected to emotional and physical abuse, including being forced to face a wall while wearing a backpack full of rocks for extended periods of time.
These few of many examples show just how dangerous it is, still, to identify as LGBT in the United States, not only because hate crimes and speech are rampant, but also because LGBT individuals are often a danger to even themselves.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiL (SGS)

 

Police looking for man last seen in Ogden after 3 bodies found on Idaho property

CALDWELL, Idaho – Authorities are looking for a man last seen in Ogden after three women were found shot to death on his Idaho property Monday.
Police are searching for Gerald Michael Bullinger, 60, who is wanted for failure to report a death, a felony charge. Police in Idaho say Bullinger should be considered “armed and dangerous.”
Bullinger may be driving a white 2007 Ford Focus with a Utah license plate reading 129UMP. He was last seen in Ogden about 10 days ago, according to a report from the Idaho Statesman.
Lt. Tim Scott of the Ogden Police Department said that police have been aware of Bullinger since Monday when the bodies were found.

Cheryl Baker, Bullinger’s wife, is missing and hasn’t been heard from for around 10 days, her brother Byron Baker told the Statesman. However, Idaho police would not say whether Baker was one of three women found.
Bullinger and Baker, who recently retired as an art teacher at GreenWood Charter School in Harrisville, were in the process of moving from Ogden to Idaho, the Statesman reported.
Police have not released the names of the deceased and would not comment if the women were related to Bullinger. Police said the women ranged in age from mid-teens to mid-50s.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiF (OSE)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiN (KUTV)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiO (KTVX)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiP ([Boise] Idaho Statesman via KSL)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiQ (KSTU)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiC (AP)

 

Man who falsely told daughter’s school to evacuate sentenced

AMERICAN FORK, Utah – A Utah man accused of telling officials at his daughter’s elementary school to evacuate the building because he had explosives in his vehicle parked outside has been ordered to spend another two months in jail and then complete five years of probation.
The Daily Herald reports 35-year-old Christopher Craig has already spent more than nine months in jail, but will be behind bars for two more after a ruling Tuesday.
Authorities did not find any explosives in Craig’s vehicle after he made the bomb threat. He pleaded guilty in May to one second-degree felony of making a false alarm.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiG (AP via OSE)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiM (AP via KUTV)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiR (KNRS)

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiS (AP via MUR)

 

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OPINION & COMMENTARY
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The labor shortage can be an important opportunity or a major crisis for Utah
Deseret News op-ed by A Scott Anderson, CEO and president of Zions Bank

In a recent Market Snapshot newsletter, Zions Bank economic and public policy officer Robert Spendlove pointed out a threat to economic growth in Utah and the nation:
“It has been nearly eight years since the end of the Great Recession and many businesses in the United States are still struggling to grow, but this time for a different reason – a lack of qualified workers. There is a growing divide between the number of job openings and the number of qualified workers to fill them.”
This increasing labor shortage in Utah and across the nation can be an important opportunity for Utah – or it can be a major crisis.
It can be a real opportunity because Utah has a plethora of young people – an upcoming workforce – expanding at a faster rate than anywhere in the nation. With a young, growing population, Utah can be a very attractive place for businesses to expand and relocate.
Another reason the labor shortage can be an opportunity is that Utah has historically been a welcoming place for immigrants, and immigration is a very important source for good employees.
But these attractive opportunities will not come to fruition if Utah’s young people are not properly prepared for the jobs that will exist in the new economy, and if immigration policies are so restrictive that this important labor source dries up.

Preparing our young people will require a large investment. We cannot accomplish it while spending the least amount per-pupil in the country. That’s why the Our Schools Now initiative (which I co-chair with other community leaders) is so important. It will provide the resources needed so every student can succeed.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aj5

The benefits of small government also apply to schools
Deseret News op-ed by Teresa Mull, a research fellow in education policy at The Heartland Institute

A recent trip across the countryside caused me to notice something I hadn’t paid much attention to before: small, empty neighborhood schools.
An old-timer I was with said when he traveled through the area for work 50 years ago, those schools were functioning, and little kids would be out playing in the schoolyard when he’d drive by. Most of those schools, however, now sit vacant.
Small American towns with small schools and small children playing in the schoolyards – the sort of darling image that’s reminiscent of the simpler, happier times portrayed in Norman Rockwell pictures – no longer seem to be a part of the modern educational landscape. When I drive by huge, modern school buildings and see kids being bused in from the hinterlands to spend all day in soulless structures far from home, my heart breaks.
Consolidating schools in tiny towns where enrollment has dropped to completely unsustainable levels may make sense, but in general, small school environments are better for students, and the reasons big-government advocates support creating massive schooling conglomerates are the same reasons why big-government types do anything: to get more power and money. If voters realized, though, the parallel benefits inherent in both small government and small schools, our society would be much better off.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiE

 

DeVos Should Take on Education’s Reformocracy
It’s time to reboot reform and rediscover the conviction that bureaucracy and paperwork are not tools for fostering terrific schools.
National Review op-ed by FREDERICK M. HESS, director of education-policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, & MICHAEL Q. MCSHANE, director of education policy at Missouri’s Show-Me Institute

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos has had her share of early missteps, but she has also emphasized a message with the potential to win over the nation’s families and teachers – even those skeptical of her enthusiasm for school choice. In June, at the annual gathering of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, DeVos declared, “Many who call themselves ‘reformers’ have instead become just another breed of bureaucrats – a new education establishment.”
For most of this century, Washington has extended its reach into our nation’s schools. Whatever their merits, efforts such as President George W. Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act and President Barack Obama’s Race to the Top program created intrusive new federal regulations and added new layers to our educational bureaucracy. The results were sadly familiar: over-testing, ineffectual school-improvement schemes, and bungled teacher-evaluation systems.
No wonder, then, that educators are frustrated and parents are bewildered. Yet too many of today’s school “reformers” have become enamored of their preferred dictates – on teacher evaluation, regulations for charter schools, achievement targets, and much else – and gradually morphed into a new bureaucracy.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aj3

 

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NATIONAL NEWS
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Alabama board votes to end contract with ACT Aspire
Birmingham (AL) News

Teachers in Alabama’s schools will implement new testing next year for students in public schools.
After only four years of testing students, but following months of discussion of concerns with the ACT Aspire, the Alabama state board of education voted unanimously on Wednesday to ditch the test.
State superintendent Michael Sentance told the board the U.S. Department of Education are working with Alabama education officials to find a way to use a different assessment.
Federal officials recently rejected a request for an assessment waiver and now say a waiver may not be necessary, Sentance said.
Alabama state board of education members were not pleased, telling superintendent Michael Sentance to ask again in a more formal way and bring Alabama’s Congressional delegation to the table as well.
Sentance did not have a replacement plan to present, but said plans for now are to use the Scantron, previously known as GlobalScholar, series of assessments for the 2017-2018 school year.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiy

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiU (AP)

 

Superintendents sound alarm over Medicaid changes in Obamacare repeal bill
Politico

Superintendents in school districts nationwide are writing their senators to warn that a vote to repeal Obamacare could jeopardize health coverage for the nation’s most vulnerable children. The letter-writing comes at the urging of Democratic Sens. Patty Murray and Bob Casey who have stressed that legislation to repeal and replace Obamacare could be moving fast. Republicans have been working behind closed doors to bring a bill to the Senate floor and leadership is preparing for a vote as early as next week, POLITICO reports. Letters have already been penned by superintendents in Washington, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Virginia, Wisconsin, Maine and Massachusetts.
– The superintendents’ concerns center on changes to Medicaid in a bill passed by the House last month. The House bill would convert the federal-state program for the poor and disabled from an entitlement program, in which the government pays all the health-related costs for those who qualify, to a grant program that would cap federal spending growth. The Congressional Budget Office estimated in March that the legislation would cut Medicaid spending by $880 billion over a decade. Dozens of education advocacy groups said last month that the change would force schools to compete for funds with hospitals, physicians and clinics that serve Medicaid-eligible children. That, in turn, would affect schools’ ability to fund vision and hearing screenings, pay for supplies like wheelchairs, and employ nurses, psychologists and occupational therapists, they said.
– In a letter to Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado, the Colorado Association of School Executives says school districts in the state now “receive a total of over $65 million in Medicaid reimbursement each year … Under the American Health Care Act, the bulk of the costs for health care coverage would be shifted to our state even though health needs and costs of care for children will remain the same or increase. States and local communities will have to compensate for this federal disinvestment in our children’s healthcare. If we cannot adequately make up the difference in federal funding, providers will be forced to cut eligibility, services, and benefits for children.”
– William Kerr, the superintendent of Norwin School District in Pennsylvania, writes in a letter to his senators Casey and Republican Pat Toomey that his school district receives about $275,000 in Medicaid reimbursement annually. If Medicaid is restructured into a grant program that gives states a set amount of money for each enrollee, then Kerr said his schools would “have to lay off school personnel like nurses, counselors and therapists since they won’t be able to supplement their salaries with Medicaid or raise taxes to make up for this funding shortfall.”
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiB

 

GOP Health Care Proposals: What Educators Should Know
Education Week

The Trump administration and congressional Republicans are in the midst of trying to replace the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act-better known as “Obamacare”-with big implications for the nation’s schools when it come to special education funding, teacher benefits, and more.
And Thursday, after weeks of work behind the scenes, the U.S. Senate released its version of legislation to replace the ACA. The bill, which lawmakers could vote on as soon as early next week, may eventually be merged with a bill that passed the House narrowly back in May, with only Republican support. That legislation is called the American Health Care Act or “Trumpcare” to the haters.
So just how would the Senate bill impact schools? How is it different from the ACA and the House bill in ways that might matter to educators? Advocates-and senators-were still combing through a 142-page Senate draft for details Thursday so stay tuned.
But, in the meantime, out a quick list of things to watch for in the debate over a new health care law:
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiW

 

Black Caucus Dumps Trump Meeting, Says DeVos Won’t Protect Civil Rights
Education Week

The Congressional Black Caucus has decided not to keep talks going with President Donald Trump, and issues like school diversity and civil rights are part of the reason why.
In a Wednesday letter to the president, the 49-member caucus said it was declining the Trump adminstration’s offer to meet with the president again-caucus leaders huddled with Trump at the White House in March. The letter points to a number of areas where the Trump administration ignored the group’s input, and says that the president’s proposed budget for fiscal 2018 would “devastate” the communities represented by the CBC.
“Secretary [of Education Betsy] DeVos has also refused to protect children from being discriminated against,” Rep. Cedric L. Richmond, D-La., the chairman of the caucus, wrote to Trump, “and terminated an Obama administration program focused on improving school diversity and student achievement in the lowest-performing schools across this country.”
Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Education announced a new approach to civil rights complaints in a memo to office for civil rights regional field offices. The memo stated that unless an individual complaint states otherwise, it won’t be considered as part of a potentially broader pattern of discrimination or other violation of civil rights.
The Education Department said this would cut down on the backlog of civil rights complaints that grew during the Obama administration and make the process more efficient, not weaker. But critics charged that the move would weaken federal protections for vulnerable students.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiX

 

Education Dept. regulatory reform task force finds over 150 rules to review
(Washington, DC) The Hill

Following President Trump’s directive, the Education Department said Thursday that its newly formed Regulatory Reform Task Force has completed an initial canvas of its rules, identifying 150 regulations for department offices to review.
The agency said the Office of Postsecondary Education had already identified the Gainful Employment and Borrower Defense to Repayment as two rules to repeal, replace or modify. Those rules, finalized under President Barack Obama, aim to reign in for-profit colleges.
The department is following an executive order Trump issued in February directing each agency to create a task force to evaluate existing regulations and make recommendations to the agency head regarding their repeal, replacement or modification, consistent with applicable law.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aj1

http://gousoe.uen.org/aj2 (ED)

 

Mentors for New Teachers Found to Boost Student Achievement-by a Lot
Education Week

If new teachers are paired with high-quality, trained mentors and receive frequent feedback, their students may receive the equivalent of up to five months of additional learning, a new study found.
The study, conducted by SRI Education, was an independent evaluation of the New Teacher Center’s induction program funded through the Investing in Innovation (i3) Validation grant. NTC was one of 20 organizations to receive the Obama-era federal grant in 2012 and has implemented induction programs in three sites: the Chicago school district, Broward County schools in Florida, and the Grant Wood Area Education Agency, which is a consortium of 32 school districts in eastern Iowa. This study reported on the findings from randomized controlled trials in just Broward County and Chicago.
The full-time mentors receive more than 100 hours of training every year from the New Teacher Center, and support up to 15 first- and second-year teachers. The new teachers receive two years of coaching and meet with their assigned mentors every week, for at least 180 minutes a month. The mentors focus on the teachers’ instructional practice and on equity and universal access, and the teachers take online formative assessments through the process, designed by the New Teacher Center.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiY

A copy of the study
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiZ (SRI International)

 

Project-Based Learning’s Next Project: Understanding When It Works
Education Week

Can project-based learning help close the achievement gap? New research focused on young elementary schoolers suggests that a well-designed and well-taught project-based-learning curriculum can help make a difference for students living in poverty.
Researchers Nell K. Duke, a professor at the University of Michigan, and Anne-Lise Halvorsen, an associate professor at Michigan State University, investigated whether a project-based social studies curriculum could help improve the literacy and social studies skills of 2nd graders. They wrote about the findings of the project, which they called Project PLACE: A Project Approach to Literacy and Civic Engagement, for Edutopia.
Second graders who were living in poverty from 20 different schools with low academic achievement were randomly assigned to two groups: one that used a project-based learning curriculum for social studies and another that taught history in a more traditional way.
Duke and Halvorsen provided detailed plans and some training and support to teachers in the group using the project-based learning program. The program was closely aligned to Michigan’s curriculum standards and covered four major topics: economics, geography, history, and civics and government.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiz

http://gousoe.uen.org/aiA (Edutopia)

 

10 who graduated thanks to testing errors will keep diplomas
Associated Press

JACKSON, Miss. – State education officials said Wednesday that 10 Mississippi high school students were allowed to graduate only because of testing errors in their favor, but the state won’t revoke their diplomas.
Associate state Superintendent Paula Vanderford said in a statement that no students failed to graduate because of scoring errors that worked against them.
The State Board of Education fired Pearson PLC last week after the company told Mississippi officials that it used the wrong table to score U.S. history exams for students on track to graduate. Out of 951 students, mostly seniors, the department says 197 passed. Of those 197, 36 students benefited from scoring errors, but 26 of those lacked other requirements to graduate.
Pearson lost a contract worth $24 million over the next six years to provide tests for history, high school biology, fifth-grade science and eighth-grade science. The board hired Minnesota-based Questar Assessment to administer the tests for one year for $2.2 million. The board will seek a new permanent vendor. Pearson had given the tests for Mississippi since 2000.
http://gousoe.uen.org/aiV

 

Forget fidget spinners, it’s the toothpick crossbow that is worrying parents
New toy taking China by storm can fire needles and nails as well as toothpicks, leading to concerns over safety
(Manchester) Guardian

Handheld mini-crossbows that can fire needles and nails are the latest must-have toy in China but anxious parents want them banned before a young child gets blinded or worse.
Selling online and in shops for as little as seven yuan ($1), so-called toothpick crossbows were originally designed to shoot out just that – toothpicks.
But if swapped out for needles they are potent enough to crack glass, said the Shanghai Daily newspaper, quoting shop owners as saying they were selling out of the gadgets fast.
Other Chinese state media said the mini crossbows can fire projectiles a distance of more than 20 metres and shoot iron nails in place of toothpicks.
The Shanghai Daily said: “The ‘toothpick crossbow’ toy has spread across China like wildfire among the nation’s primary and middle school children.”
“The unusual shooting toy may be very small but it is powerful enough to puncture a balloon and pierce cardboard. And when the toothpick is swapped for a metal needle it becomes a dangerous weapon.”
http://gousoe.uen.org/aj0

 

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

UEN News
http://www.uen.org

July 13:

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

July 14:

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

July 25:

Executive Appropriations Committee meeting
2 p.m., 445 State Capitol
https://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2017&com=APPEXE

July 26:

Public Education Appropriations Subcommittee meeting
8:30 a.m., 445 State Capitol
https://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2017&com=APPPED

August 11:

Utah State Charter School Board meeting
250 E 500 South, Salt Lake City
http://www.schools.utah.gov/charterschools/State-Board.aspx

August 23:

Education Interim Committee meeting
8:30 a.m., 445 State Capitol
https://le.utah.gov/asp/interim/Commit.asp?year=2017&com=INTEDU

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