Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent by states and school districts on standardized tests every year, money that could be used for purposes far more helpful in improving student achievement. What are those purposes? Here are some suggestions, from Jim Arnold and Peter Smagorinsky. Jim Arnold recently retired from the superintendent’s position of the Pelham City Schools in Georgia and he blogs at drjamesarnold.com. Peter Smagorinsky is Distinguished Research Professor of English Education at the University of Georgia. His essays are archived here.Read full article >>
Fairfax County schools superintendent Karen Garza has announced a slew of new hires as part of her organizational shake-up of the administration that will take effect July 1.
The hires include five new “executive principals” who will serve as deputies to the assistant superintendents leading the recently created “regions” that will divide the county’s 196 schools, replacing the old eight clusters. Garza also created two new executive principals for school improvement, who will focus on student achievement in schools with lagging performance.Read full article >>
The Obama administration is tightening its oversight of the way states educate special-needs students, applying more- stringent criteria that drop the number of jurisdictions in compliance with federal law from 38 to 15.Read full article >>
The Obama administration is tightening its oversight of the way states educate special-needs students, applying more-stringent criteria that drop the number of states in compliance with federal law from 38 to 15.Read full article >>
Here’s how Education Secretary Arne Duncan just gave a speech that discussed the Common Core State Standards without actually mentioning the words “Common Core.”
Duncan was in Texas on a trip that included an appearance in Austin at the 2014 annual convention of the National PTA, at which he gave a speech after being introduced by National PTA President Otha Thornton. In the speech (titled “A Vision for Better Education: Areas of Surprising Agreement” by the U.S. Education Department, which posted the speech here), Duncan talks about various education issues, including “new, higher learning standards that many states have adopted.”Read full article >>
This week the Detroit Free Press is publishing results from its year-long investigation into charter schools in Michigan, which has more for-profit companies operating schools than any other state. The findings, based on tens of thousands of records spanning two decades as well as hundreds of interviews, paint a dismal picture of a charter sector that spends $1 billion annually with little accountability and lax oversight. Ultimately, the paper found, Michigan’s charter schools do no better in terms of student achievement than traditional public schools.Read full article >>