Education News from Washington Post
Sarah Lawrence College, dropped from a U.S. News and World Report ranking several years ago because of an admissions policy shift, is happy to be back. This says something about how college leaders view the rankings they love to hate.Read full article >>
Strauss: Bill Gates wants your kids to learn history this way — and he’s paying to get it into schools
Bill Gates can’t seem to stop getting big ideas about public education — and then using part of his fortune to see them implemented.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has spent billions of dollars on various initiatives that Gates thought would help improve public education, including a small schools initiative that he abandoned when he didn’t get the results he wanted; pilot programs in creating controversial teacher evaluation systems linked to student standardized test scores; and promotion of the Common Core State Standards. The foundation has even funded an effort by the Council of Chief State School Officers to evaluate student work for things like creativity.Read full article >>
Last year, Khan, who started the now-famous Web site that offers thousands of free videos for students in a range of subjects, interviewed Education Secretary Arne Duncan about the future of education. (You can watch the video here or below.)Read full article >>
St. John’s College in Annapolis has long disdained the rankings game. The liberal arts school, which focuses on the great works of Western civilization, was known for not responding to requests from U.S. News & World Report for information that the magazine uses to sort the nation’s colleges.Read full article >>
A Towson University student died over the weekend after she was found unresponsive at an off-campus apartment.
Baltimore County police said Monday they were still investigating the circumstances that led to the death of 18-year-old Julia Margaret Ratnaraj, a freshman from Sewell, N.J., outside Philadelphia. Ratnaraj’s high school counselor said she was a talented artist who made a difficult decision to attend a different college than her twin sister.Read full article >>
ATLANTA -- Michelle Obama urged African American teenagers in a tough Atlanta neighborhood to push ahead with their studies and make it to college, whatever hardships they face on the way. She talked of her upbringing in working-class Chicago and said the students are “no different” from her.Read full article >>
A new report on growing resistance to high-stakes standardized testing around the country finds that the movement is growing and meeting some success in numerous states where officials have decided to cut back on the numbers of tests students must take and/or the consequences for students and educators.Read full article >>
The students at Brookland Education Campus added an extra minute of reading to their school day Monday, joining with readers around the world for International Literacy Day.
The annual event was started by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization to promote reading worldwide.Read full article >>
At one time many public schools gave students time to read books of their own choosing, an activity based on the common-sense theory that kids will read what interests them, and that kids who can choose what they read will learn to enjoying reading, and, hence, read more. Unfortunately, many schools no longer let students choose any of the materials that they read. Why this is a problem is explained in this post by Joanne Yatvin, a one time Principal of the Year in Wisconsin and a past president of the National Council of Teachers of English, who has never been able to kick the reading habit.Read full article >>
The District is looking for a “Chief Student Advocate” to lead a new effort to help students and their families navigate the school choice process and access educational resources they need.Read full article >>
A new study about college-level science shows that all students do much better when traditional lecture classes are made interactive — but those most helped are first-generation and black students.
The study — titled “Getting Under the Hood: How and for Whom Does Increasing Course Structure Work?” — looked at data from six semesters of large science lecture courses at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The researchers compared student achievement in classes with a traditional structure — in which students listened to a traditional lecture from a teacher and did not do any work until it was time to study the night before an exam — with student achievement in classes that had an interactive structure, in which students did homework that prepared them for performing activities during class, for which they received credit.Read full article >>
As Montgomery County grapples with a whooping cough outbreak, health officials are offering free immunizations to seventh grade students this week, part of a continuing effort to get students in line with new state requirements.Read full article >>
Strauss: ‘We must push back against the misguided and dangerous belief that a new generation of teachers can emerge spontaneously’
The Urban Teacher Education Consortium is a national consortium of teacher educators who are dedicated to development strong preparation programs for cities across the country. Members of the consortium have just released a position paper on the training of teachers, releasing it at a time of “encroaching dehumanization and disempowerment of both teachers and their students.”Read full article >>
When Jeremiah Heaton trekked across the desert and planted a flag in an 800-square-mile patch of land between Egypt and Sudan in June, he staked a claim to the area, calling it his “Kingdom of North Sudan.” He said he wanted the barren, craggy swath so his 7-year-old daughter Emily could be a princess, and he vowed to start an agricultural center there.Read full article >>
Montgomery County’s earliest sign of a whooping cough outbreak came during the first week of the school year, on Aug. 26, when health officials say they got a call about a newly diagnosed case involving a student who had attended a Pennsylvania summer camp.Read full article >>
The avuncular man with white hair shuffled through the classroom, diligently pushing his broom across every corner and crevice of the linoleum floor, just as he has for the past quarter- century.
Chin Park, 86, is the oldest staffer at Fairfax County’s Mount Vernon High School, and his pride for his custodial work hasn’t diminished even a bit. Neither the years nor his infirmities — he cradles his left arm close to his hips, the result of a 60-year-old war injury — have slowed him down.Read full article >>
Greg Jouriles works at the school from which I graduated, Hillsdale High in San Mateo, Calif. He teaches social studies. He was the teacher union representative for several years. He is part of an unusually collaborative staff that has raised instruction for all — with complex projects, more writing and oral exams — to a level nearly unheard of in a nonselective school.Read full article >>
WGRZ-TV, an NBC affiliate in Buffalo, N.Y., does a useful continuing series called Homework Helper that is designed to assist students and their parents to better understand schoolwork.
The series includes a set of 10 videos aimed at helping decipher Common Core math, with this explanation:Read full article >>
It may seem to make sense to hold back for a year a student who can’t read well but a mountain of research shows that it doesn’t actually help. Unfortunately, school reformers don’t seem to care what the research says. Here to discuss this is Paul Thomas, an associate professor of education at Furman University in South Carolina. This appeared on The Conversation.Read full article >>
In Florida, the state where former governor Jeb Bush (R) pioneered the use of high-stakes standardized tests for school “accountability” purposes, a testing revolt is unfolding.
Late last month, the Lee County school board voted to drop all state-mandated tests as an act of “civil disobedience,” though the vote was rescinded because of fear that students would suffer the consequences.Read full article >>