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Random Tips for Teachers
posted by: Jill | September 29, 2010, 11:15 am
This week has already produced a hodgepodge of activities for me. It started out with a visit to NBC's Education Nation in New York and moved quickly on to planning a Differentiated Instruction workshop, business lunches, charter school talk, and even a run to the store for some beloved Diet Mountain Dew.   Continue Reading...
Waiting for "Superman" is a Hit
posted by: Alix | September 27, 2010, 10:07 am

The numbers are in for the much-talked-about documentary, Waiting for "Superman" and it seems director Davis Guggenheim has another hit on his hands. Despite the fact that it only debuted in New York and Los Angeles the movie performed extremely well.

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NBC to host Education Nation
posted by: Alix | September 24, 2010, 04:06 pm

NBC will be hosting the upcoming interactive summit, Education Nation in New York City this weekend and next week.

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Education Reform Has Gone Mainstream
posted by: Alix | September 21, 2010, 11:04 am

If you caught Oprah yesterday afternoon you would have noticed that the new film, Waiting for "Superman" was showcased and revered as a new mainstream documentary about what is wrong with our schools.Oprah is doing a real service to her mainstream audience by focusing an hour of her show to the argument for real education reform. With this film and positive support from media powerhouses like Oprah, Director Davis Guggenheim will be able to reach average, everyday Americans, who, no doubt, will be outraged when they see this film.

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New York Magazine Features Waiting For ‘Superman’
posted by: Alix | September 10, 2010, 09:38 am

Not too often a forum for education reform, New York magazine ran a piece this week entitled, “Schools: The Disaster Movie”. The article features the upcoming release of the much anticipated film by An Inconvenient Truth director, Davis Guggenheim, and what most certainly will be a rallying cry for reformers and an outrage for the unions.  Continue Reading...

Show Some Teacher Appreciation on Facebook
posted by: Steph | August 03, 2010, 12:47 pm

Think back to your favorite class. Not the one where you got to goof off, but the one where you realized that learning could be fun. Perhaps you didn’t admit at the time that you actually enjoyed chemistry, or advanced algebra or Shakespeare, but that class changed your future. That critical class was taught by a teacher, and at the time you may not have had the time or the appropriate venue to thank your teacher. Today, Facebook gives former students a platform to thank their teachers.  Continue Reading...

19 Finalists Vie for Federal Funds
posted by: Steph | July 28, 2010, 02:42 pm

Finalists in the second round of the Race to the Top (RTTT) program are preparing to present their cases to Education Secretary Arne Duncan and the RTTT peer reviewers who will adjust each state’s scores based on their presentations. Some speculate that the presentations during the first weeks of August won’t substantially alter the scores, because scores changed little after interviews in RTTT’s first round.  Continue Reading...

Race to the Top Round 2 Finalists Named
posted by: Colin | July 27, 2010, 03:33 pm

Education Secretary Arne Duncan announced today the eighteen states plus D.C. who have a chance to compete for the final round of the Race to the Top funding program. $3.4 billion is still up for grabs after Delaware and Tennessee received $600 million in round one.  Continue Reading...

Trouble with Top-Down Federal Funding for Education
posted by: Colin | July 21, 2010, 09:47 am

Joyce Irvine is a casualty of bureaucratic necessity. A stellar principal by all accounts, Ms. Irvine was traded by her Burlington, Vermont school district for $3 million in federal stimulus funding. Despite a myriad of successes listed in a recent New York Times article, Ms. Irvine's couldn't significantly raise annual test scores during her six-year tenure as principal of Wheeler Elementary School. Under an Obama administration funding formula, Ms. Irvine has to lose her job if her school district is going to receive stimulus dollars.  Continue Reading...

Something Has to Give: Schools Cutting Lunch Options
posted by: Colin | June 09, 2010, 08:24 am

"Food justice" advocates are in an uproar over New York City's plan to save $23.7 million by cutting meal choices, food-service workers, and free lunches. According to The Wall Street Journal, Mayor Bloomberg's proposal cuts the number of hot-meal options from three to two or from two to one, depending on how many are currently offered at the school. The plan also cuts 276 food service jobs and would cut the number of schools that receive free lunches.  Continue Reading...

Politicians Targeting Teachers Unions in Budget Crunch
posted by: Colin | June 07, 2010, 08:31 am

Politico reports that Republican and some Democratic politicians have turned on public workers and their labor unions—particularly teachers unions, including the NEA and the AFT. According to Politico, "public employee unions [are] emerging as an intransigent public enemy number one in cities and state capitals across the country."  Continue Reading...

Having never served as a judge, Elena Kagan, current U.S. Solicitor General and President Obama's pick to replace retiring Justice John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court, has a "sparse" record on education policy, compared to nominees who have a record of judicial decisions and opinions. However, an analysis by Education Week has shed a little light on Kagan's record.  Continue Reading...

Traditional education schools are under attack, reports The New York Times. Alternative paths to becoming a teacher, like Teach for America and the American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence (the latter was not mentioned in the article), are becoming more popular, threatening the longtime monopoly the education schools have enjoyed.  Continue Reading...

Bad news this morning regarding teacher pensions, so I hope you've had your coffee. A recent study by the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research states that teacher pensions nationwide are underfunded by nearly $1 trillion—three times the estimate of government officials. The difference in estimates is because teacher pensions, unlike their private counterparts, assume a much higher—if unrealistic—return on investment and enjoy more freedom than private pension funds.  Continue Reading...

Senate Considering Bailout for Teachers
posted by: Colin | April 15, 2010, 09:23 am

Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa) is sponsoring a bill that would spend $23 billion of federal taxpayer money to help schools prevent impending layoffs. This $23 billion would be on top of the $100 billion provided to states as part of the 2009 economic stimulus. The bill follows warnings from Secretary of Education Arne Duncan that budget cuts could lead to 100,000 to 300,000 layoffs across the country.   Continue Reading...

Obama Reauthorization Blueprint for NCLB
posted by: Colin | March 22, 2010, 09:29 am

Last week the Obama administration released a reauthorization blueprint for the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, designed to advise lawmakers on reauthorization of his predecessor's signature education accomplishment: No Child Left Behind. Overdue for reauthorization since 2007, NCLB reform would fulfill a campaign promise and might offer an opportunity for bipartisanship after a grueling party-line health care reform battle.  Continue Reading...

Race to the Top Round 1 Finalists Named
posted by: Colin | March 04, 2010, 01:08 pm

Today the Department of Education announced the states that will advance as finalists for phase 1 of the Race to the Top competition. Race to the Top is a $4.35 billion effort to reward reforms, such as   Continue Reading...

Early College Schools for Less Fortunate Children
posted by: Colin | February 04, 2010, 10:56 am

An interesting New York Times article on early college high schools includes a dynamite quote from a 12th grader, Precious Holt, the daughter of a US Army Mechanic that captures the conflict and value of hard work:

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