NABE Weekly eNews
Sep. 6, 2012

Hispanic Heritage Month: Reflect, celebrate and act
By Yvette Donado via NABE
Some people question the term "Hispanic." Others decry the celebratory activities. And many non-Latinos scarcely notice the commemoration. If they do, many ask why the nation should mark Hispanic Heritage Month at all. Here's my take. Sure, we should celebrate our contributions to our nation's founding, independence growth and defense; our growing influence in government, fashion, food, music and the arts; and much more. For more than a decade, Educational Testing Service has done just that.

Click here to continue reading in English.

Click here to read the article in Spanish. More

Come aboard as Education Drives America
The Department of Education's Education Drives America back-to-school bus tour is coming soon. Details of each event will soon be released. To stay connected on all things bus tour, sign up for Education Drives America email updates.More

Dear NYSABE members and friends,
Please be informed that NYSABE's Newsletter, The Bilingual Times-Spring/Summer 2012 Issue, is posted on our website. Click here and enjoy. More

Bilingual Education: Magic Happens!!
Local contact: Nilda M. Aguirre at or (225) 209-0224
What: 42nd Annual International Bilingual Education Conference
Where: Disney's Coronado Springs Resort, Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
When: Feb. 7-9

Dear NABE members,

Mark your calendars — NABE is pleased to invite you to be a part of Bilingual Education: Magic Happens!! NABE's 42nd Annual Conference will be held at the Disney's Coronado Springs Resort, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Feb. 7-9. This event is to bring awareness to the magic behind Bilingual Education. It will be a week filled with educational speakers, exhibitors, sponsors, vendors, music, raffles, prizes, demonstrations, cutting edge presentations of all sorts and so much rich research, best practices in dual language and bilingual education, the new education wave on common core state standards, ESEA flexibility waivers, special interest group research and more.

Keynote speakers for this event include Dr. Alberto Carvalho, superintendent of Dade County Public Schools, Dr. Kenji Hakuta, professor from Stanford University, Dr. Ofelia Garcia from the Graduate Center City University of New York and Dr. Andrew Cohen from University of Minnesota.

We are thrilled to have with us featured speakers Dr. Catherine Snow, professor from Harvard University, Dr. Laurie Olsen, director of the Sobrato Early Academic Literacy Program, Shelly Spiegel-Coleman, executive director from Californians Together, Dr. Jim Cummins from Ontario Institute of Education, Tony Miller, deputy secretary from DOE, and Okhee Lee Salwen, Miriam Eisenstein Ebsworth and Lixing (Frank) Tang from NYU Steinhardt, N.Y.

Submit your proposals now

Click here to submit your proposal for the NABE 2013 Conference.
All proposals must be submitted by Sept. 12.
See attachment for more information on the conference or visit the NABE website:

Educator and bilingual-education foe remains in Romney's corner
Education Week
A decade ago, Lincoln Tamayo helped convince then-gubernatorial candidate Mitt Romney to support a ballot-initiative that would drastically change the education of English-language learners in Massachusetts. Tamayo now runs a pair of private middle schools, one of them in Tampa—not far from where the Republican National Convention is being held this week—the other in nearby St. Petersburg, Fla. He says he hopes a future President Mitt Romney will take the idea he endorsed back then nationwide. In 2001, Tamayo was overseeing middle and high schools in Chelsea, Mass., including bilingual education classes where students learning English were taking all or most of their subjects in their native languages.More

Digital teaching promises to improve grades
Technology in the classroom is not about putting a computer on everybody's desk anymore. It's about getting the right software so students can absorb the information universities and schools are teaching. Given all the high-tech help available, increasingly students may find it tough to explain why they can't maintain a 4.0 grade point average.More

How language change sneaks in
Linguistic Society of America via ScienceDaily
Languages are continually changing, not just words but also grammar. A recent study examines how such changes happen and what the changes can tell us about how speakers' grammars work. The study, The course of actualization, to be published in the journal Language, is authored by Hendrik De Smet of the University of Leuven/Research Foundation Flanders.More

From STEM to STEAM: Science and art go hand-in-hand
Scientific American (commentary)
In the wake of the recent recession, we have been consistently apprised of the pressing need to revitalize funding and education in STEM fields — science, technology, engineering and math. Doing this, we are told, will spur innovation and put our country back on the road to prosperity. Renewing our focus on STEM is an unobjectionably worthwhile endeavor. Science and technology are the primary drivers of our world economy, and the United States is in the lead. But there is a growing group of advocates who believe that STEM is missing a key component — one that is equally deserved of renewed attention, enthusiasm and funding. That component is the Arts. If these advocates have their way, STEM would become STEAM.More

5 technology skills every student should learn
eSchool News (commentary)
What are the most critical technology skills for students to learn? eSchool News recently asked their readers this question, and here's what they had to say. From having the courage to experiment with different technologies to possessing online literacy, readers said being a tech-savvy student in the 21st century is about much more than learning how to use a certain software program or device — it's about being able to adapt to what's constantly changing.More

Using No Child Left Behind waivers to improve English language learner education
Center for American Progress
The No Child Left Behind law fundamentally changed the expectations and data that schools should have for their English language learner students. The landmark 1974 Lau v. Nichols Supreme Court case concluded that students who speak English as a second language have a right to a "meaningful education." But No Child Left Behind — a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act — was the first law to hold schools and districts accountable for the achievement of their English language learner students. The law requires districts and schools to disaggregate and report data by student subgroups, including English language learners, and to take action if they do not make sufficient academic progress. More

More Texas elementary classes could be larger than state limit in new school year
The Dallas Morning News
Nearly 40 percent of elementary schools had oversized classes last year after state budget cuts took effect, and that record percentage could surge even higher as a deeper round of reductions kicks in.More

Potential pitfalls of using race in the K-12 admissions process
District Administration
The issue of whether race can or should play a role in school admissions has long plagued school districts and the courts. As districts across the country struggle to achieve diversity in a legally permissible way, whether and to what extent race may be used remains a thorny issue. Educators searching for answers encounter a complicated body of law that often leads to more questions than answers. More

Evaluating ELLs for special needs a challenge
Education Week
A kindergarten teacher in a San Diego public school last fall referred six of her students — all English-language learners — for evaluation for special education. All of them, as it turned out, needed eyeglasses; one needed a hearing aid. None needed to be placed in special education. A few years ago, such simple explanations for the students' academic difficulties might not have been picked up so early. But last year, the 132,000-student San Diego district — with a history of lopsided referrals of English-learners to special education — created a step-by-step process to make sure every explanation and intervention for a child's lagging academic performance had been examined before assigning a placement in special education.More

13 must-have gadgets and apps for educators
THE Journal
THE Journal asked Leslie Fisher and Hall Davidson, presenters at FETC's popular Tech Shootout session, to share some of the tools they're still excited about. From apps to gadgets, here are their must-haves for educators.More

America's poverty-education link
The Huffington Post (commentary)
Poverty and education are inextricably linked where education is a primary means of social mobility, enabling those born into poverty to rise in society. Powerful evidence of the link include the fact that 46 percent of Americans who grew up in low-income families but failed to earn college degrees stayed in the lowest income quintile, compared to 16 percent for those who earned a college degree. The link between poverty and education can be seen at all educational levels. From the earliest stage, pre-primary education, poorer Americans start disadvantaged. Children of parents earning less than $15,000 a year have pre-primary enrollment rates about 20 percent lower than children of parents earning more than $50,000 a year. More

Arizona reaches deal over education of English language learners
Reuters via Chicago Tribune
Arizona has agreed to offer targeted reading and writing instruction to tens of thousands of public school students who were wrongly denied services under an English Language Learner program, the Justice Department said. The settlement resolves a complaint filed with the Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights and the Department of Justice that students had been incorrectly identified as fluent in English over the past five school years or prematurely moved out of the language assistance program.More