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What districts should know about BYOD and digital learning
EdTech Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
As more schools open their networks and classrooms to student-owned devices, the need for instruction that makes the most of these tools becomes ever more pronounced. Transitioning to a truly 21st century learning environment is challenging, to be sure. Adapting effectively to a bring-your-own-device and digital learning environment is far easier for districts if they follow these strategies. More


11 states get failing grades on public school policies from advocacy group
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In just a few short years, state legislatures and education agencies across the country have sought to transform American public education by passing a series of laws and policies overhauling teacher tenure, introducing the use of standardized test scores in performance evaluations and expanding charter schools. Such policies are among those pushed by StudentsFirst, the advocacy group led by Michelle A. Rhee, the former schools chancellor in Washington. Rhee has generated debate in education circles for aggressive pursuit of her agenda and the financing of political candidates who support it. More

New draft of science standards to be issued
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A second public draft of proposed common standards for science will be issued for comment. This represents the last opportunity for the broader community to have input into the standards, which are being developed through a partnership that includes education officials from 26 "lead states," before they are released in final form in March. After that, it's up to states to decide whether to adopt what are being called the Next Generation Science Standards. More

Should schools offer social media etiquette classes?
Voxxi    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
As the world of social media continues to grow, its application in the education world also increases. More and more teachers are harnessing the power of social media to help students connect with one another as well as voice opinions and debate with one another properly. "I set up class blogs ... these are designed to help students develop their 'writer's voice' while providing them with an additional outlet for developing their opinions about complex topics in conversation with others," Elizabeth Hilts, an adjunct professor at Fairfield University, told Mother Nature Network. More

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Why American students are trailing in computer science
The Huffington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Imagine, if you will, a world where Americans don't teach their children math in elementary school. Imagine that children no longer learn addition in first grade, subtraction in second or multiplication and division in third and fourth. Imagine instead that children make it all the way through high school without having any formal presentation of mathematical concepts. Now imagine that a student is observant enough to realize that adults who have a firm grasp on mathematics have much better problem-solving life skills and financial opportunities than adults who don't. More

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A 21st century librarian helps students see through the cloud
THE Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Many schools have renamed their libraries Media Centers, and the people who help students access their resources need to be as tech-savvy as any IT person. Today's librarians have to know things like responsible use policies (also known as acceptable use policies) and how to guide students in the effective use of the Internet for research. For schools trying to incorporate technology into the curriculum these educators are key, because they speak the language of technology and education. More

9 templates to help educators leverage school data
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Educators and administrators are collecting an enormous amount of data about the progress of their students and schools. Now that this information has been collected, how can it be used to improve education? What administrators and teachers need is a practical system that organizes school and student data in a way that is easily understood and readily available during the school day, according to a collaboration by the American Association of School Administrators, the Consortium for School Networking and Gartner Inc. School districts are looking to purchase student information systems and learning management systems to help them with this task. More


Poll: Students less engaged the longer they stay in school
The Des Moines Register    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A new Gallup survey indicates the longer students remain in school, the less engaged they are. Here's how the Gallup poll describes the downward spiral: Nearly 8 in 10 elementary students who participated are engaged with school. By middle school that falls to about 6 in 10 students. And by high school, only 4 in 10 students qualify as engaged. More

Overcoming resistance to social and emotional character development in your school
Edutopia (commentary)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
There are three main sources of resistance to social, emotional and character development in schools. One comes from parents, some of whom feel that schools should not be addressing SECD, that matters of character and values are better left to the home. Another comes from teachers, who agree with parents about SECD being "the parents' responsibility." Teachers are also worried about how they are going to add SECD to their very full plates — and with an accountability structure highly centered around standardized test scores and related indicators of accomplishment in math, language arts and science. More

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Is homework worth the time?
eClassroom News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A recent study led by an Indiana University professor found that traditional homework assignments won't improve a student's grades but could boost standardized test scores. With many students reporting they spend more than 100 hours each year on homework, it begs the question: Is homework still worth the time? While most experts believe it is, some recommend that educators rethink their approach to giving homework. Traditional assignments might become a thing of the past as teachers move toward assignments that are more project-based or require more critical thinking, they say. More

Making charter schools more inclusive
Harvard Education Letter    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Two years ago, Elizabeth Marcell, the director of intervention services at ReNEW Schools in New Orleans, faced an unenviable challenge. As the charter network worked to open its first two schools in the city, she saw that every special education file she inherited from the schools the network took over failed to comply fully with federal and state laws. Marcell, who wrote her dissertation on charters and special education, knew she had to act quickly. More


4 key parts of successful online education programs
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Progress monitoring tools and proper training in online teaching are critical factors in supporting and sustaining successful online education programs, according to a survey of school leaders. The survey, released by K12 Inc. and conducted by MDR's EdNET Insight, included responses from superintendents, assistant superintendents, curriculum directors, principals and special-education directors who are experienced in implementing online education programs. The 220-plus respondents identified and ranked a number of key success factors. More

For many kids, winter break means hungry holidays
NPR    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Holidays are typically a festive time, with breaks from the routine, meals with loved ones, maybe even some gifts. But for many families across the U.S., the season comes with intense stress: Roughly 1 in 5 families with children are not getting enough food. For some, free or reduced-price school meals have become a major source of basic nutrition. When schools close for the holidays, many of those families struggle to fill the gap. More

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Deeper learning: Highlighting student work
Edutopia    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Ron Berger, chief program officer for Expeditionary Learning Schools, writes: "I travel with a heavy suitcase. Over my 35-year career as a public school teacher and educator at Expeditionary Learning, I have been obsessed with collecting student work of remarkable quality and value. I bring this work with me whenever I visit schools or present at conferences and workshops, because otherwise no one would believe me when I describe it." More

New UGA research helps explain why girls do better in school
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Why do girls get better grades in elementary school than boys-even when they perform worse on standardized tests? New research from the University of Georgia and Columbia University published in the current issue of Journal of Human Resources suggests that it's because of their classroom behavior, which may lead teachers to assign girls higher grades than their male counterparts. More


Lawmakers gear up for action on K-12 issues
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
State lawmakers will attempt to tackle a range of issues in legislative sessions getting under way, from making common academic standards a reality and funding schools based on performance, to allowing armed teachers and staff members on school grounds. Their task may be complicated by the still small and spotty economic recovery in many places, and by federal education funding uncertainties posed by the continued wrangling in Washington over the nation's fiscal future. More

District Race to Top winners turn to implementation
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The first federal Race to the Top competition that reaches down to the local level leaves most large, urban districts out of the winners' circle in favor of charter schools, midsize systems, and two large consortia of school districts — all of which must now turn to implementing proposals that collectively have won them $400 million. The 16 winners, announced by the U.S. Department of Education, beat out more than 350 other applicants and include three charter school organizations, traditional districts such as Carson City, Nev., and Guilford County, N.C. and a group of 22 rural districts from Kentucky. More

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California schools face rising special education costs
The Associated Press via San Francisco    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
California's school districts are shouldering an increasing share of the rising cost of educating students with disabilities as state and federal funding remains flat, according to a state report. The 25-page report by the state Legislative Analyst's Office found that school districts must keep dipping deeper into their general funds to pay for special education. More

Common Core funds lacking in Arizona
The Arizona Republic    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Arizona leaders have called for tougher new education standards, but the cost to implement them in classrooms has fallen primarily to school districts, which have seen state funding drop by about 15 percent since 2008. Arizona is one of 46 states to adopt advanced national standards known as Common Core Standards, and next fall, teachers in every public-school classroom in Arizona are supposed to teach with more rigorous materials and methods. More

Don't miss early bird registration for NAESP's 2013 Conference
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Early birds get the worm for NAESP's 2013 Best Practices for Better Schools™ National Conference. Join fellow educators in Baltimore on July 11-13 for the ultimate professional development event for principals, featuring presentations on the Common Core, teacher recruitment, leading school change and much more. Register by Jan. 31 and save with the early bird rate. More

Help your teachers be their best with Principal magazine
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The January/February issue of Principal is packed with ideas to help you with staff development. Read Todd Whitaker's tips for supporting teachers and psychologist Adam Sáenz's strategies for bolstering wellness. Plus, discover innovative approaches for mentoring, working with parents and building a professional development library. More


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