Education News from Washington Post

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The Washington Post Local Education section provides coverage and analysis of schools, home school and education policy for DC, Maryland and Virginia. With in-depth coverage and analysis of Washington, DC education and schools, including DC charter schools, DC Schools Chancellor, DC teacher contract news and map of DC schools.
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Strauss: Teacher fired for using broom to stop student fight wants her job back

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 11:12pm

Two students started fighting violently in a Detroit high school classroom knocking over desks and a teacher grabbed a broom to try to break it up. She struck one of the fighting boys and was fired for her action. Now she wants her job back — and she’s getting a lot of unexpected support.

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Categories: Education News

Lee High principal to resign, join Richmond City public schools

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 9:47pm

Lee High School Principal Abe Jeffers said he is leaving Fairfax County to join the Richmond public school system as an administrator overseeing sixth- through 12th-grade education.

Jeffers, who has served as principal at Lee in Springfield since 2009, said he will resign from Fairfax on May 23 and begin his new job May 27. Jeffers said he had applied for the position within the Richmond administration to work with new Superintendent Dana T. Bedden, who took over in January.

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Categories: Education News

Poe Middle in limbo as principal’s criminal trial is slated to begin this month

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 9:07pm

A majority of Fairfax County middle school teachers say they feel respected and empowered to lead their classrooms as they see fit. They also say their school is a good place for them to work and for students to learn. More than 80 percent say they intend to stay at the same school next year.

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Categories: Education News

Prince George’s charter school’s plans for new campus, sparks parental complaints

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 7:34pm

Rhonda Stewart has felt a mix of emotions in the weeks since her daughter was accepted by what she considers one of the top charter school programs in Prince George’s County.

First, she was elated by the lottery’s outcome. Then, two weeks ago, she was disappointed to learn that the new campus would not open near FedEx Field in Largo, as promised. Now she is appalled, Stewart said, after seeing the Forrestville building where Chesapeake Math and IT (CMIT) Academy wants her child to go to school.

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Categories: Education News

William and Mary’s tuition two-step: raise prices for freshmen, then freeze for four years

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 6:44pm

Tuition and fees for new Virginia students at the College of William and Mary in the next school year will be 14 percent higher than the in-state price for current freshmen, echoing a major increase approved the year before.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: 8th grade assignment: Write essay about whether Holocaust was real or made up

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 3:57pm

This  is a story about some school district leaders who need some education — fast.

In an effort to have students meet Common Core standards relating to critical thinking a group of eighth grade teachers in the Rialto Unified School District designed an assignment (see document below) that asked students to write an essay arguing whether the Holocaust was real or made up. A few thousand students completed it in April while reading “The Diary of Anne Frank.”

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: You have no clue what school nurses really do

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 3:08pm

School nurses matter enormously though you couldn’t tell by the amount of attention they get from policy-makers (and even parents when it comes time to distribute end-of-year gifts). School districts that cut their budgets have no problem eliminating school nurses or forcing a single nurse to cover a number of schools and increasingly teachers and others at school who haven’t been trained in medicine are being asked to do dispense medication and do other things that school nurses really should be doing.

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Categories: Education News

Math, reading performance is stagnant among U.S. 12th-graders, assessment finds

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 2:52pm

The nation’s high school seniors have shown no improvement in math and reading performance since 2009, and large racial achievement gaps persist, according to the results of a test administered by the federal government last year.

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Categories: Education News

Fairfax school board, supervisors unite against teen drinking

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 1:49pm

As prom seasons and graduation dates near, the Fairfax County School Board and the Board of Supervisors have joined forces to reduce underage drinking among teens.

Both boards designated May as “Parents Who Host, Lose the Most Month,” as part of a larger plan to address the dangers of alcohol consumption among the county’s youths. Sixty-five percent of underage youths say that they illegally obtain alcohol from friends and family, according to a Fairfax County schools statement.

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Categories: Education News

Congress to consider charter-school legislation

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 1:35pm

A bipartisan group of senators plans to introduce a bill Wednesday meant to encourage the growth of charter schools across the country, mirroring legislation expected to be taken up in the House later this week.

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Categories: Education News

Why coach wouldn’t let me quit cross-country

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 10:50am

My column last month on extracurricular activities crowding out time for schoolwork got a strong reaction from readers. The pressure of too much to do is central to our national debate over high school. But many comments came from an unexpected source — parents and teachers who think that kids can handle it and that adults should butt out.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: A rather unusual ‘thank you’ to teachers

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 10:33am

Here’s a rather unusual appreciation of teachers for Teacher Appreciation Week an annual event started back in 1984 by the Parent Teachers Association. The PTA offers a number of suggestions about how to appreciate teachers including writing letters of thanks to them and tweeting at #ThankATeacher though a number of teachers I know would feel more than appreciated if school reformers would simply stop trying to evaluate them by using the test scores of students they don’t have. (You can read about that here.)

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: U.S. judge: It’s ridiculous to judge teachers by test scores of students they don’t have, but it’s legal in Florida

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 4:01am
“Justice? You get justice in the next world in this world you have the law.”

A federal judge in Florida said that it is wildly unfair that the state evaluates many teachers on the standardized test scores of students they don’t have or subjects they don’t teach but he ruled that can’t stop it because it is legal.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: ‘Do You Wanna Go To Starbucks?’ (or ‘how to get through finals’) — a musical parody

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 10:37pm

If you or anybody you know is suffering through finals here’s some relief: a mini-musical parody on the song from the movie “Frozen” called “Do You Wanna Build a Snowman?” Done by two students from Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego it is called  ”Do You Wanna Go To Starbucks?”

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Categories: Education News

Appeal challenges Prince George’s board decision to let MGM casino use vacant school

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 10:30pm

The Maryland State Board of Education is reviewing an appeal by a nonprofit group and about two dozen Prince George’s County residents who allege that the county’s school system violated local and state rules when it voted to transfer a vacant school to the county so that MGM Resorts could use it as a casino training facility.

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Categories: Education News

Prince George’s schools officials, hoping cuts are done, await county action on budget

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 6:50pm

Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker III (D) cut $6 million from the county school system’s proposed budget as part of his overall $3.41 billion county spending plan. Now schools officials are hoping that the County Council keeps the rest of their budget intact.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: A Common Core math quiz. See how you do.

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 5:37pm

As the Common Core State Standards are being implemented in most states and the District new aligned tests are being designed for students to start taking next year. Right now millions of students around the country are taking field tests on these exams and by many accounts the questions are a lot more difficult than those on previous standardized tests given for accountability purposes.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: U.S. lawmakers thank their favorite teachers: ‘She flunked me — and rightly so!’

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 4:57pm
Thanks to all the teachers out there who are helping students #ReachHigher and achieve their dreams. You’re incredible! #ThankATeacher —mo

In honor of National Teacher Day on Tuesday a number of U.S. lawmakers from various states tweeted about their favorite teachers at #ThankATeacher. Here’s a list of those who participated along with the names of their teachers and what made them so great compiled by the National Education Association.

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Categories: Education News

An Ivy League degree doesn’t make you happier at work. Here’s why.

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 2:11pm

The bad news: This year only roughly eight percent of students who applied got into Ivy League schools. The good news: Those eight percent probably won’t be more satisfied professionally than the kids who went elsewhere.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: New report cites $100 million-plus in waste, fraud in charter school industry

Tue, 05/06/2014 - 1:32pm

A new report (see below) by two groups that oppose reforms that are privatizing public education finds fraud and waste totaling more than $100 million of taxpayer funds in 15 of the 42 states that operate charter schools.

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Categories: Education News
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