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Curriculum    School Leadership   Federal Advocacy & Policy   In the States   Association News   Buy Books   Contact NAESP


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US officials step up efforts to help students learning English
Los Angeles Times
Concerned that too many public schools are failing to adequately help students learning English, federal officials unveiled guidelines on the legal requirements to identify and support them. The U.S. Departments of Justice and Education, which jointly issued the guidelines, have increased their enforcement of laws passed more than four decades ago that require such services amid growing numbers of students who are struggling with English. Nationwide, such students number about 5 million — about 9 percent of all public school pupils — and they have increased in most states between 2002 and 2012.
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Can schools cultivate a student's ability to think differently?
MindShift
Entrepreneurship is often associated with people who assume the risk of starting a business venture for financial gain. However, entrepreneurs exist in many forms: They may be writers, carpenters, computer programmers, school principals or fundraisers, to name just a few examples. What they have in common is an "entrepreneurial mindset" that enables them to see opportunities for improvement, take initiative and collaborate with others to turn their ideas into action. Everyone is born with some propensity for entrepreneurship, which at its core is about solving problems creatively, according to Yong Zhao, a professor at the University of Oregon's College of Education.
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Study finds reading to children of all ages grooms them to read more on their own
The New York Times
Cue the hand-wringing about digital distraction: Fewer children are reading books frequently for fun, according to a new report by Scholastic, the children's book publisher. In a 2014 survey of just over 1,000 children ages 6 to 17, only 31 percent said they read a book for fun almost daily, down from 37 percent four years ago. There were some consistent patterns among the heavier readers: For the younger children — ages 6 to 11 — being read aloud to regularly and having restricted online time were correlated with frequent reading; for the older children — ages 12 to 17 — one of the largest predictors was whether they had time to read on their own during the school day.
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Survey: Principals differ on definition of computer science
Education Week
There is little agreement among administrators on what computer science is, how it should be taught, and what kind of requirement it should fulfill. That's the upshot of a recent survey of 500 high school principals and assistant principals. The online survey, conducted by the Computer Science Teachers Association and Oracle Academy, asked administrators about computer science opportunities being offered at their schools.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keywords PRINCIPALS.


Surveying the Common Core chatter: How will the standards fare in 2015?
Education Week
If you're closely watching how the Common Core State Standards fare in states this year, there's been plenty of coverage and commentary about the standards for you to enjoy at the start of 2015. Discussions about the fate of the English/language arts and math standards have in some cases begun to resemble those around the stock market: Was last year's turbulence around the common core a small market correction that will leave its long-term trajectory largely unharmed?
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Strategies for getting and keeping the brain's attention
Edutopia
The human brain has an amazing capacity to wield a potent cognitive strategy: selective attention. When we consciously focus our attention on something, we bring the power of the prefrontal cortex to this endeavor. By honing our ability to focus attention at will, we can more effectively screen out two types of distractions: input through our sensory organs and our emotional responses.
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Schools on guard as flu deaths rise
The Wall Street Journal
Schools are taking precautions such as disinfecting buildings and reminding parents to keep sick youngsters at home as an intensifying flu season nationwide has led to a higher number of deaths among children so far. At least 21 children have died from influenza, the federal government said, compared with six at the same point a year ago. Still, officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it was too early to ascertain whether this season would be worse than in years past. Cases may rise as students return after winter break, school officials said.
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    1. WHICH ONE IS YOU?
       A. I have to push students through the basic language art skills.
       B. I have to teach what comes along even if students cannot understand it.
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Schools provide educational and mental health support to influx of undocumented teens
PBS Newshour
Ever since a surge of unaccompanied minors crossed the U.S. border last year, many California schools have seen a flood of undocumented teens. Special correspondent Spencer Michels reports on how one school is learning to adapt to their new students and how Obama's immigration announcement may change education systems nationwide.
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School buses bring Wi-Fi to impoverished families
eSchool News
Near the shore of the murky Salton Sea in the Southern California desert, a bus drives up to West Shores High School each day with a critical connection: A Wi-Fi router mounted behind an interior mirror, providing internet access for students whose homes aren't wired. At night, the bus driver parks more than 15 miles away on a sand driveway in a mobile home park. There, the hotspot is available to students as long as the battery lasts. On most nights, it fades after one hour.
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Student success better predicted by personalities than intelligence; why being smart isn't enough
Medical Daily
The importance of preparing for school early has been emphasized time and again throughout the years. Kids need an early start on learning, such as reading and math, in order to succeed in school, especially if they're from a lower socioeconomic background. But parents shouldn't only be focusing on a child's intelligence, a new review finds. They should also be nurturing their kids' personalities.
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How using technology can keep parents in the loop
eSchool News
Six years ago most of Maine Township High School District 207's parent communication efforts were one-way in nature. According to Hank Thiele, assistant superintendent of technology and learning, parent newsletters, email blasts, and website announcement were the communication mainstays for the 7,000-student district in Park Ridge, Ill.
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What should we expect from the 114th Congress?
Education Week
Welcome to the 114th Congress! Recently, lawmakers gathered on Capitol Hill for the start of the new legislative session, one which we at Politics K-12 hope will be exciting on the education policy front. Republican leaders in both chambers have highlighted immigration, the Keystone pipeline, and a veterans' jobs bill as early priorities. But our hope for a busy education calendar is bolstered by the education committee chairman, Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., who has signaled his intention to send a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to through committee by Valentine's Day.
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Quality education reform starts in the states
The Hill (commentary)
Conservatives and liberals alike may rejoice at the notion that 2015 brings with it a chance to revamp the controversial 2001 No Child Left Behind Act. Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) will be the new chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, and has said that his top priority is a revision of NCLB. Alexander is on the right track. The top issue facing our country is the education of our children, and it's clear that however well intentioned NCLB was, it's not producing the desired effects. To improve America's schools we need to first work on the people issues: teaching, leadership and governance. But we need to do so at the statehouse, not in Washington, D.C.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    How big is digital education in the United States? An end of year review (Brookings)
Outlook on instruction: Class around the clock (District Administration Magazine)
Why active listening should be an integral part of the daily lesson plan (By: Shirley Veldhuis)
3 different ways to go 1:1 (Scholastic Administrator)
Should teachers be judged on student performance? (Education Week)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


Report: New York's school schedule wastes billions of dollars
The Huffington Post
School schedules with afternoon dismissals and long summer breaks contribute to an achievement gap between low-income and wealthier students and waste billions of dollars a year, according to a report from ReadyNation, which advocates education policies that prepare students for work. Students tend to forget what they've learned over summer break, according to research, and low-income students lose more because their families are less likely to afford care and activities that promote learning. ReadyNation says low-income students lose an average of two months of education each summer — more than higher-income students.
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Purposeful Leadership
NAESP
Education research shows that, considered separately, most variables have (at most) small effects on learning. The real payoff comes when individual variables — such as excellent instruction and positive climate — combine to reach critical mass. Creating the conditions in which these variables can occur is the job of the principal, as explored in the Wallace Foundation's 2013 report, The School Principal as Leader: Guiding Schools to Better Teaching and Learning.
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Order Pre-K-3 Report at discounted NAESP member rate
NAESP
NAESP has released an updated, principal competency guide: Leading Pre-K-3 Learning Communities: Competencies for Effective Principal Practice. This standards document defines new competencies, and outlines a practical approach to high-quality early childhood education that is critical to laying a strong foundation for learning for young children from age three to grade three. The publication is available to NAESP members at a special discounted rate.
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Before the Bell is a digest of the most important news selected for NAESP from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. The presence of such advertising does not endorse, or imply endorsement of, any products or services by NAESP. Neither NAESP nor Multiview is liable for the use of or reliance on any information contained in this briefing.

Feedback about an article? Contact NAESP Liaison Meredith Barnett at MBarnett@naesp.org.
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
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