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Food allergies become a bigger legal issue
The Associated Press via St. Louis Post-Dispatch    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Allergic to gluten? What about peanuts? Federal disabilities law may be able to help. The Justice Department said in a recent settlement with a Massachusetts college that severe food allergies can be considered a disability under the law. That gives those who suffer from such allergies a new avenue in seeking menus that fit their diet. But some say it goes too far. The decision leaves schools, restaurants and other places that serve food more exposed to legal challenges if they fail to honor requests for accommodations by people with food allergies. More

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More US children diagnosed with ADHD
HealthDay News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
More and more U.S. children are being diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, a new study suggests. Exactly why these rates are climbing isn't clear. But increased awareness of ADHD is likely a contributing factor, the study authors said. According to the new findings, the rate of children who were diagnosed with ADHD jumped by about 24 percent between 2001 and 2010. This increase was most pronounced with white children, and there was a 90 percent increase in ADHD diagnosis among black girls during the same time frame. More



Writing across the K-12 curriculum
District Administration Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Back in 2010, then-elementary school principal Catherine White focused on writing in the Attleboro, Mass., Public Schools. And with that, the school's fourth-graders beat the state average for long composition on the Massachusetts Comprehensive Assessment System. "Not one kid cried during long comp 2010," she recalls. More

Next-generation science standards open for comments
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A second draft of the Next Generation Science Standards, which are being developed with input from 26 states, is open for public review and comment until Jan. 29. The revised draft continues to focus on what the National Research Council calls its "three dimensions" of science proficiency: practices, cross-cutting concepts and core ideas in various science disciplines. School leaders, educators, and other stakeholders who'd like to weigh in on the second draft can read learn how to do so here. The final standards are expected to be released in March. More

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How math is getting its groove back
MindShift    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Carrie Lewis and Kelly Steele's fifth-grade students slide and spin across the classroom floor, doing the hustle, the robot and the running man. While it may look at first glance like goofing off, these students are actually dancing for a higher cause — math. Lewis and Steele, both teachers involved in Sweet Briar College's STEM teacher certification program, are math enthusiasts eager to instill in their students a love of the subject. And dancing, they hoped, might be just the thing to help tackle a common fifth grade learning deficit — number patterns. More

Study: Daily physical education could increase youth physical activity by 23 minutes per day
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Combination of school, community policy changes could help young people meet national recommendations for daily physical activity. Requiring daily physical education in school could help young people be active for 23 minutes per day, which is more than a third of the total amount of daily physical activity experts recommend for young people. The new estimates were published in a study in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. More


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Colleges overproducing elementary teachers, data find
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Though universities' economics departments preach the gospel of supply and demand, that principle is not always followed when it comes to their education departments. Data, while imprecise, suggest that some states are producing far more new teachers at the elementary level than will be able to find jobs in their respective states — even as districts struggle to find enough recruits in other certification fields. For some observers, the imbalances reflect a failure of teacher colleges — by far, the largest source of new teachers — and their regulatory agencies to cap the number of entrants. More

Mapping our online communications — from bullying to relationships
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
When we typically think of kids who are the victims of school bullying, what comes to mind are isolated youth who do not fit in. A new study, however, shows that when that harassment occurs online, the victims tend to be in mainstream social groups at the school — and they are often friends or former friends, not strangers. The research is part of a burgeoning field of study into the effects of social media on everyday relationships and behavior. Personality and social psychologists are finding surprising ways in which people's online environments and relationships reflect and influence their real-world ones, as presented at the Society for Personality and Social Psychology annual meeting in New Orleans. More

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US mental health experts urge focus on childhood screening
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. mental health system has huge gaps that prevent many children with psychological problems from receiving effective treatment that could prevent tragic consequences later in life, experts told U.S. lawmakers. Just over a month after the shooting rampage in Newtown, Connecticut, mental health experts said psychological disorders usually emerge before people enter high school but that only one-quarter of children with problems see trained professionals and often the care is not enough. More

The benefits of using social media in the classroom
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Hesitation on administrators' part is often cited as a top barrier to incorporating more social media tools in classrooms. But with a carefully crafted social media policy, educators and administrators can learn to use social media tools effectively with students. Advocates of social media in the classroom say that, when used properly, social media tools can boost student engagement, link students to content experts and real-world examples of classroom lessons and help them establish an online body of work. More


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Teachers' test boycott draws growing support
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Frustrated with the amount of testing their students must undergo, a group of Seattle teachers is boycotting the district's use of a computer adaptive test as a formative assessment tool — and their stand has drawn nationwide attention. Eleven years ago, Rachel Eells saw value in the formative assessments that she and other teachers at Seattle's Garfield High School are now refusing to give their students. More

Teachers, staffers to learn what to do in a school shooting
Detroit Free Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Teachers and staff members from various Oakland County, Mich., school districts won't learn how to run down the hall and take out an armed intruder during "active shooter training." But the sessions — which are to include representatives from the Troy, Walled Lake and Waterford districts, among others — will focus on how to escape or defend against the kind of horror represented by the school shootings at Sandy Hook, Columbine and others. More

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State finance lawsuits roil K-12 funding landscape
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
As state budgets slowly recover from several years of economic contraction and stagnation, significant court battles continue to play a related yet distinct role in K-12 policy, even in states where the highest courts have already delivered rulings on the subject. This year, meanwhile, marks the 40th anniversary of a U.S. Supreme Court decision that was a turning point for the role of property taxes in financing school districts and that continues to complicate fiscal decisions for state policymakers. The 5-4 ruling, in San Antonio Independent School District v. Rodriguez, held that the state did not have to justify the higher quality of education for wealthier districts that might result from their local property taxes. More

Duncan addresses gun violence in new 'Ask Arne' video series
ED.gov Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Dan Brown, a Teaching Ambassador Fellow at the U.S. Department of Education, writes: "As a teacher and a parent, what our nation's education leaders think, really matters to me. And with Secretary of Education Arne Duncan about to begin a second term, it matters even more. Today, we're excited to announce the launch of a new #AskArne video interview series, where the Secretary addresses the hot topics and burning questions in education today. In light of the president's announcement to address gun violence, the first episode, titled 'Free from Fear,' focuses on gun violence, school safety, and out of school factors influencing student achievement." More


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In these 19 states, teachers can still spank kids
TakePart    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
If John Tate, a North Carolina State Board of Education member, has his way, North Carolina will no longer allow teachers to spank their students. Tate has asked the State Board to recommend that the North Carolina General Assembly and local school boards prohibit corporal punishment in every school in the state. "The good news is that the vast majority of North Carolina's districts ban the use of corporal punishment," Tate said in an interview. More

Maryland governor recommends expanding free breakfast program to needy schools
The Gazette    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley listened to the local elected officials and 23 organizations he heard from last month asking him to increase state funding for a program that feeds breakfast to students at needy schools. O'Malley announced his recommendation for $1.8 million to be added to the state's budget for Maryland Meals For Achievement, which provides free breakfast for all students in their classrooms in schools that qualify. This school year, the state is spending $3.38 million for services that provide breakfasts to 33,000 students at 271 schools. More

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Lawmakers unveil their 'Texas solution' for K-12 school security
The Dallas Morning News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Three lawmakers announced plans for what they called the "Texas solution" to securing K-12 campuses. If passed, the Texas School District Security Act would allow taxpayers to decide through a local election whether to increase taxes to create a funding source for enhancing school security. The money would help beef up security with the presence of licensed and trained peace officers, metal detectors or other measures only at the campuses taxpayers and school districts approve. More

Major test coming for Arizona kids in 3rd grade
Arizona Daily Star    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Think high-stakes testing, and you're likely to conjure up images of stressed-out teenagers pulling all-night study sessions in a desperate attempt to graduate from high school. But this time, we're talking about third-graders. Starting next school year, children in Arizona must be approaching or reading at grade level in order to be promoted to the fourth grade. More


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Healthy school lunches served up in California through farm-to-school program
The Huffington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
President Bill Clinton has stepped alongside first lady Michelle Obama in the fight against childhood obesity by taking his message to schools. Speaking to Katherine Finchy Elementary School students in Palm Springs, Calif. Clinton spoke of creating healthier campuses with better food and more opportunities for physical activity in the fattest country in the world. More



School event explains new state curriculum to parents
The Marietta Daily Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Parents are headed to the classroom for a lesson in new, statewide education standards. The training, held for about 40 of Georgia's Norton Park Elementary School parents and their children, focused on ways to boost understanding of the Common Core State Standards, which are changing how students participate in their math classes by teaching young people the process of learning and not just right or wrong answers. More



Countdown to Digital Learning Day
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
NAESP is joining more than 50 national organizations, 45 states plus the District of Columbia and over 17,000 teachers to celebrate Digital Learning Day, taking place Wednesday, Feb. 6. Created by the Alliance for Excellent Education, Digital Learning Day is a nationwide celebration of innovative teaching and learning through digital media and technology that engages students and provides them with a rich, personalized, educational experience. More

Save the date: Jeans and Jerseys
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Join NAESP for Jeans and Jerseys, Wednesday, July 10 at 7:30 p.m., at The Center Club in Baltimore. Admission includes music, food, drinks, book signings by a celebrity author, a silent auction and much more! Get your tickets by Jan. 31 and only pay $40. After Jan. 31, pay $50. Tickets will also be available at the door. For more information, email foundation@naesp.org. More

 
 


Before the Bell is a benefit of your membership in the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP). For information about other member benefits, visit www.naesp.org or contact us at naesp@naesp.org.

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 Cynthia Rosso at crosso@naesp.org.
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