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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: Colorado student protest leader: ‘I’m learning how people need to act to make a democracy function’

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 4:13pm

Kyle Ferris is a student at Columbine High School in Jefferson County, Colo., and a leader of protests that have been rocking the school system there for weeks. In the following Q&A, Ferris explains why he started protests at his school and what he and others hope to achieve from their demonstrations as well as what he is learning about American democracy.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: How much data is being ‘mined’ from our kids? More than you know.

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 2:09pm

If you think that people are constantly collecting data about your and your kids but you aren’t exactly sure, here’s some information that can help you figure it out.

Below is an infographic from Marketplace.org showing just how data-mined our kids are every day. The graphic accompanies a story titled, “A day in the life of a data mined kid,” which says in part:

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Categories: Education News

Moody’s: Rising number of college applications doesn’t equal rising demand

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 11:16am

The more applications a college receives, the greater the consumer demand for that school, right?

Not necessarily, Moody’s Investors Service said in a report Thursday.

The credit rating agency, based in New York, found that applications to private colleges rose nearly 70 percent from 2004 to 2013 but that the annual total of new high school graduates rose a much more modest amount in that time, about 5 percent.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: ‘Schools of Opportunity’ — a new project to recognize schools that give all students a chance to succeed

Thu, 10/02/2014 - 6:00am

We all know about the many efforts to rate and/or rank schools by student standardized test scores and other data points — but without any of the out-of-school factors that play an enormous role in how well young people fare academically. Now two veteran educators are spearheading a new pilot initiative to identify and recognize public high schools that seek to close opportunity gaps through practices “that build on students’ strengths” — not by inundating them with tests and not by evaluating them with scores.

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Categories: Education News

No. 2 U.S. education official heads for exit

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 10:23pm

Jim Shelton, the deputy secretary and second in command at the U.S. Department of Education, will resign his government job by the end of the year, department officials said Wednesday.

Shelton, 47, has held several posts at the department since joining the agency in 2009 and has had a significant influence over the agency’s policies. Shelton ran the department’s innovations program and was a force behind its Promise Neighborhoods, a grant program that gives “cradle to career” help to students in selected poor communities.

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Categories: Education News

D.C. asks court to dismiss charter schools’ lawsuit alleging unequal funding

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 7:47pm

D.C. Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan has asked a federal court to dismiss a lawsuit that alleges the city has failed to provide uniform funding to public charter schools and traditional schools.

The lawsuit, which the D.C. Association of Chartered Public Schools and Eagle Academy and Washington Latin public charter schools filed this past summer, argues that charters receive less public funding than traditional schools, in violation of the D.C. School Reform Act.

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Categories: Education News

Whooping cough cases climb in Montgomery

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 5:47pm

The number of whooping cough cases in Montgomery County continues to climb, with health officials now reporting 38 since an outbreak during the first week of school.

The total includes two new cases identified this week at Gaithersburg High School and College Gardens Elementary School, both of which already had a confirmed diagnosis of the highly contagious illness.,

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: 2014 World University Rankings: ‘Worrying evidence’ of U.S. decline?

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 4:00pm

The 2014 “World University Rankings” were released Wednesday (yes, there is such a thing as World University Rankings),  and the outlook for the United States is described as not good. In fact, “worrying evidence” is cited for decline in the United States (which holds 74 of the top 200 spots, down from 77 last year) and Canada as Asian schools rise in the rankings.

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Categories: Education News

Audit begins of Prince George’s County school system

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 3:53pm

Prince George’s County Schools Chief Executive Kevin M. Maxwell said recently that auditors from CliftonLarsonAllen have started collecting information to ensure that no county school system funds were compromised during Colby White’s tenure as chief financial officer.

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Categories: Education News

U.S. Education Department issues guidance on racial disparity in nation’s schools

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 2:44pm

The Obama administration issued new guidance Wednesday to states and school districts aimed at reducing inequities in educational opportunity between students of color and their white peers.

“Even with all the good work that we see around the country, we also continue to see opportunity gaps that need correction,” said Catherine E. Lhamon, assistant secretary for civil rights at the U.S. Department of Education. She said the country needs to end “the tired practice of offering students of color less than we offer other students.”

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: College Board says it ‘revised’ controversial AP U.S. history framework (update)

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 2:41pm

(Update: More explanation of what changed on updated framework)

For weeks, the Advanced Placement U.S. history course based on a newly revised “framework” for teachers has been the target of intense criticism around the country from conservatives who charge that it is anti-American. While the Republican National Committee is attacking the resolution, saying the framework “emphasizes negative aspects of our nation’s history while omitting or minimizing positive aspects,” students and teachers in Jefferson County, Colo., are protesting a suggestion that the course be reviewed to ensure that it promotes patriotism.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Howard Gardner, creator of ‘multiple intelligences’ theory, launches new project on ‘good’ education

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 1:45pm

World-renowned developmental psychologist Howard Gardner revolutionized the fields of psychology and education when he published his 1983 book  “Frames of Mind: The Theory of Multiple Intelligences,” which detailed a new model of human intelligence that went beyond the traditional view that there was a single kind that could be measured by standardized tests. (You can read his account of how he came up with the theory here.) Gardner’s theory initially listed seven intelligences which  work together: linguistic, logical-mathematical,  musical,  bodily-kinesthetic, spatial, interpersonal and intrapersonal; he later added an eighth, naturalist intelligence and says there may be a few more.  The theory became highly popular with K-12 educators around the world seeking ways to reach students who did not respond to traditional approaches, but over time, “multiple intelligences” wrongly became synonymous with the concept of “learning styles.” (You can read a piece here by Gardner explaining the difference.)

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Categories: Education News

D.C. coalition pushes city leaders to commit to strong neighborhood schools citywide

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 12:58pm

The most salient criticism throughout the 10-month public process of redrawing school boundaries in the District was that the city should be investing in improving neighborhood schools everywhere rather than reshuffling school assignments.

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Categories: Education News

D.C. charter schools come in first in new quality ranking

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 11:21am

The District’s charter schools ranked first in the nation in a report released Wednesday that for the first time looks at the quality of the charter school movement.

The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, which released the report, has historically ranked states by the friendliness of their charter school laws. This is its first attempt at evaluating how charter schools are actually performing.

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Categories: Education News

UMUC cybersecurity team wins an international competition

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 7:15am

The University of Maryland University College, a largely online institution that targets the adult education market, has no football or basketball team to stir school spirit. But it does have the Cyber Padawans.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: How teachers sometimes fool themselves

Wed, 10/01/2014 - 4:00am

Here is a post about what goes on in classrooms and how teachers sometimes fool themselves into thinking that they are allowing students to direct their own learning when, in fact, they aren’t. This was written by Alfie Kohn (www.alfiekohn.org), who is the author of 13 books, including, most recently, “The Myth of the Spoiled Child: Challenging the Conventional Wisdom About Children and Parenting.”

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Categories: Education News

D.C. chancellor says schools on track to speed up progress this year

Tue, 09/30/2014 - 10:31pm

In her second annual address on the state of D.C. Public Schools, Chancellor Kaya Henderson said Tuesday night that the District’s public schools are on track to accelerate progress that has been underway in recent years.

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Categories: Education News

Report: Large racial, ethnic gap between students, educators in Montgomery schools

Tue, 09/30/2014 - 7:10pm

Students of color make up two-thirds of Montgomery County’s public school enrollment, but most educators in the county’s schools are white, and the district does not track whether they speak Spanish or other languages, according to a county report released Tuesday.

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Categories: Education News

Five public and private schools in the Washington area receive top honor

Tue, 09/30/2014 - 5:01pm

Three public schools and two private schools in the Washington area have been selected as 2014 National Blue Ribbon Schools by the U.S. Department of Education.

Cashell Elementary School in Montgomery County, Haycock Elementary School in Fairfax County and Robert Goddard French Immersion Elementary/Middle School in Prince George’s County were among 287 public schools and 50 private schools across the country that received the honor for exemplary performance.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: What is a STEM occupation?

Tue, 09/30/2014 - 3:24pm

A recent report by the U.S. Census Bureau said that 74 percent of all people who hold bachelor’s degrees in the four STEM subjects — science, technology, engineering and math — don’t have jobs in what are considered to be STEM occupations. So with a big national push to get young people to move into STEMS jobs, the question is: What is a STEM occupation?

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Categories: Education News
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