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How can research inform education technology decisions?
eSchool News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Education stakeholders often ask for research to justify education technology purchases. But instead of using research to rationalize a large-scale, expensive purchase, school leaders first should identify the problem for which they believe technology is the answer, according to an expert panel at the Consortium for School Networking's 2012 Technology Leadership Conference in Washington, D.C. More

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Pink slime — Good enough for school meals, not McDonald's
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
School meals containing ammonium hydroxide, also known as treated ground beef or "pink slime", are OK, says the Department of Agriculture, despite growing opposition from parents and various groups. Even McDonald's, a company not exactly known for healthy, wholesome foods, stopped adding ammonium-treated meat into its hamburgers in August 2011. Vocal critics, including celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, pressed McDonald's into excluding the additive. Other fast-food outlets have also stopped using it, including Burger King and Taco Bell. More



School standards wade into climate debate
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
After many years in which evolution was the most contentious issue in science education, climate change is now the battle du jour in school districts across the country. The fight could heat up further in April, when several national bodies are set to release a draft of new science standards that include detailed instruction on climate change. More

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Study: Nonfiction curriculum enhanced reading skills
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Children in New York City who learned to read using an experimental curriculum that emphasized nonfiction texts outperformed those at other schools that used methods that have been encouraged since the Bloomberg administration's early days, according to a new study. More

Are you ready for Common Core math?
District Administrator    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
With new Common Core State Standards assessments in K-12 mathematics due to be in use by the start of the 2014-2015 school year, many district administrators and teachers do not know what they should know about them now and are not taking steps they should be taking to prepare for them. More

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A crystal ball for student achievement
District Administrator    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Predicting the future is now in the hands of K-12 administrators. While for years districts have collected thousands of pieces of student data, educators have been using them only for data-driven decision-making or formative assessments, which give a "rear-view" perspective only. Now, using predictive analysis — the pulling together of data over time and using it to forecast student needs — administrators can determine students’ futures, experts say. With the help of several software programs and experts who know how to collect the data, K-12 districts have started to use this method, which is common in business and government. More

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Single-district virtual education seen growing fastest
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Single-district online learning programs were the fastest-growing sector of virtual learning in the United States in 2011. Whether it is to provide more options for students, keep more students from seeking virtual learning options outside the school district, or simply to move toward 21st century teaching and learning, many districts are launching and sustaining their own virtual learning programs. As districts move in this direction, they are taking a harder look at how they will evaluate their local models of virtual education, which is gaining popularity even though reviews on its effectiveness compared with that of more traditional approaches are still mixed. More

Surveys: 1 in 3 kids with food allergies teased or harassed
WebMD Health News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Parents of kids with food allergies should be aware that their children may be teased or harassed because of their condition, experts say. Some bullies even chase kids with the allergy-producing food or throw it in their faces, says Dr. Erika Morrisof at the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson. She headed one of two surveys that showed that about 1 in 3 food-allergic kids is taunted or physically abused at school due to their allergies. More

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Teachers, parents, students outline clear challenge for professional learning
Learning Forward    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Data from the new MetLife Survey of the American Teacher: Teachers, Parents and the Economy indicate that teacher satisfaction is at its lowest point in more than 20 years, signifying a greater need for professional learning that strengthens leadership and acknowledges educator expertise while building teacher capacity and improving student achievement. More

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Study finds higher doses of ADHD drug may disadvantage children in the classroom
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
New research with monkeys sheds light on how the drug methylphenidate may affect learning and memory in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. The results parallel a 1977 finding that a low dose of the drug boosted cognitive performance of children with ADHD, but a higher dose that reduced their hyperactivity also impaired their performance on a memory test. More

Closing the loop between students, teachers and technologists
KQED    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In the public school system, many argue there's a disconnect between teachers, students and technologists. Educators and students don't have enough tech training, and those who create the technology to be used in schools don't work closely enough with teachers and students. To close the loop, a newly launched program in Baltimore will bring together a network of students, technologists and educators linking teacher professional development to student after-school programming. More

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Variety of models fuels hybrid charter growth
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In innovation-friendly pockets across the country, the number of hybrid charter schools — those that blend online and face to face instruction — has been growing over the past five years. But now, the educational model seems to have shifted into overdrive. Major philanthropies — most notably, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation — have launched funding initiatives directed specifically at hybrid school models, which because of their unorthodox ways of allocating resources often are able to operate best as charter schools. More

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Gesture-based tech: A future in education?
ZDNet    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Not all schools are able to provide modern technology for their students, writes Charlie Osborne, a medical anthropologist and former teacher. However, according to Osborne, schools that can and are willing to invest in such devices may be interested in gesture-based technology. In this article, she explains how this active-learning technology could change the way students learn; she also offers four limiting factors that may prevent its widespread adoption. More

Can stereotyping girls harm boys too?
KQED    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
When Larry Summers, then the president of Harvard, made his infamous remark in 2005 about "intrinsic aptitude" in explaining part of the gap between men and women's performance in math and science, he was accused of making it harder for women and girls to succeed in those fields. He wasn't blamed for hobbling the performance of men and boys — but maybe he should have been. According to new research, both males and females do worse on a spatial reasoning task when they're told that intrinsic aptitude accounts for the gender gap in the test's results — even though the gap favors men. More

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Minority students are punished more than whites, US reports. Is it racism?
The Christian Science Monitor    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The disproportionately high rate at which black students are suspended from school represents a violation of a civil right inherent in the "American promise" of equal education, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said. Secretary Duncan was speaking after the Department of Education published a new report that found that black students, whether poor or wealthy, are more than three times more likely to receive out-of-school suspensions than white kids in U.S. schools. More

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Push for action to curtail restraining students
The Associated Press via ABC News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Tens of thousands of students, most of them disabled, are strapped down or physically restrained in school, and disability advocates hope that a new Education Department report detailing the practice of "seclusion and restraint" will spur federal action to end it. The report, compiled and made public for the first time by the department's civil rights arm, shows that 70 percent of students subjected to the techniques have disabilities. There are no current federal standards on the use of the techniques in schools. More

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States loosening 'seat time' requirements
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
States have established an array of policies in recent years to free schools from having to award academic credits based on "seat time," with the goal of making it easier for struggling students to catch up, exceptional students to race ahead, and students facing geographic and scheduling barriers to take the courses they need. Thirty-six states have adopted policies that allow districts or schools to provide credits based on students' proving proficiency in a subject, rather than the time they physically spend in a traditional classroom setting, according to the National Governors Association. More

California court: Schools liable for hiring molesters
The Associated Press via MSNBC    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The California Supreme Court has ruled that a school district can be held liable for administrators who hire or supervise an employee who molests children. The court ruling overturns an appellate court decision that upheld the dismissal of a lawsuit filed by a student who was sexually molested over eight months in 2007 by a guidance counselor at a Santa Clarita high school. The decision has far-reaching implications for Los Angeles Unified School District, which is facing dozens of lawsuits involving a former elementary school teacher who is charged with 23 counts of lewdness against students. More

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Public will be able to see Tennessee teachers' ratings
The Commercial Appeal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The job review scores of thousands of Tennessee teachers will be made available to the public, starting this summer. The data, a 1-5 ranking based on student test scores and principal evaluations, has not been released in the past. The move puts Tennessee in a league with places like New York City, where an appellate court ruled that teacher-effectiveness data on 18,000 teachers must be released to the public. More

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Gym 'fishing' teaches kids skills for classroom, life
Fort Worth Star-Telegram    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
"I caught a heart!" Wendy Rodriguez shouted as she reeled in a plastic fish. "When you catch a heart fish you get a sticker for your T chart," the 10-year-old Bellaire Elementary School fourth-grader said. The five-day derby is one of a handful of mentoring programs at Bellaire, the Hurst Police Department's adopted school. With a toy called Backyard Bass, physical-education teacher Scott Metheny and his volunteers can teach a lot of skills. More

Program helps students keep up with their homework, peers
Fremont Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A program at Nebraska's Arlington Elementary School is helping students get back on track with their homework assignments. Elementary principal Chad Radke, though, believes the Lunch Bunch program has long-term benefits as well by teaching such things as organizational skills and stressing the importance of finishing work on time. More

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Parents buy paper for schools
Dothan Eagle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Parent Teacher Organizations at Alabama's Ozark city schools have been doing much more this year than meeting and hosting events. They've been using their own money and holding fundraisers to provide a basic school need: paper. Ozark City Schools Superintendent Mike Lenhart said each school in the district was given a specific supply of printing paper at the beginning of the school year, which he said was less than in the past but more than many districts nearby. Those allotments have since run out — as well as some teacher allocations for printing paper — as late as the beginning of this semester. Lisenby Elementary School Principal Meghan Lowery said parents have stepped up and purchased more paper, which is used for assignments, tests and much more in the elementary, middle and high schools. More



Check out NAESP Convention News Online
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Start gearing up for the NAESP Annual Conference and Expo — BEST PRACTICES FOR BETTER SCHOOLS™ — with Convention News Online, your hotspot for all things conference-related. Check back frequently for the latest articles, blog posts, tweets and photos from Seattle. And if you haven't registered for the conference yet, hurry — it's just a week away. More

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Principal magazine brings you best classroom practices
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The March/April issue of the magazine is packed with innovative ideas to help you foster success in your school. Delve into articles on schoolwide RTI, bridging research and practice, teacher assessment and professional development for new teachers. More
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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 Cynthia Rosso at crosso@naesp.org.
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