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10 ways computers are changing public schools
eSchool News
There's a reason many school administrators and teachers get excited when they're talking about one-to-one computer programs. Many new learning possibilities open up when each student is equipped with his or her own device.
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Testing to, and beyond, the Common Core
Principal
After more than a decade of test-driven, high-stakes accountability in the No Child Left Behind era, many educators and policymakers in the United States are looking to move toward a more thoughtful approach. A critical piece in this roadmap will be new assessments, which have the potential to give school leaders new and better tools to guide instruction, support teachers and improve outcomes.
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Strategies to reach every student, regardless of language barrier
MindShift
Helping every student experience meaningful, deep learning is a constant challenge, in no small part because no two learners are alike. To reach students who are particularly challenged — whether because of their ability to speak English or some other reason — educators can find a way in by tapping into students' interests and passions.
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20 tips and features of blended learning programs
eSchool News
Blended learning programs are growing in popularity across the U.S., as more educators and students seek to personalize teaching and learning through education programs that combine face-to-face learning with online instruction and content delivery. Research from Digital Learning Now! indicates that blended learning increases student and teacher productivity, and provides school leaders with "more and better data that creates an integrated and customizable learning experience."
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Teaching students to embrace mistakes
Edutopia (commentary)
Hunter Maats and Katie O'Brien, authors of "The Straight-A Conspiracy", write: "For the last ten years, we've worked one-on-one with students from elementary school through graduate school. No matter their age, no matter the material, when you ask what they're struggling with, students almost universally name a subject: 'math,' 'English' or, in some instances, 'school.' Doubting that all of school is the issue, we then ask to see their last test."
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Q-and-A: A crash course on Common Core
NPR
Confused about the Common Core State Standards? Join the club. That's not to say the new benchmarks in reading and math are good or bad, working smoothly or kicking up sparks as the wheels come off. It is simply an acknowledgement that, when the vast majority of U.S. states adopt a single set of educational standards all at roughly the same time, a little confusion is inevitable.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    What the US can learn from Finland, where school starts at age 7 (NPR)
A new way to hire school personnel? (eSchool News)
Social and emotional learning intervention can lead to academic gains (Medical News Today)
A big early schooling shift (The San Diego Union-Tribune)
Lawmakers press for full funding of special education (Disability Scoop)

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Virtual Judges Needed for eCYBERMISSION

eCYBERMISSION, a web-based STEM competition for middle school students and sponsored by the U.S. Army, is seeking dedicated individuals over the age of 18 with a background or interest in STEM—to serve as a virtual judge for the program. Virtual Judge registration closes on Saturday, March 4, 2014. MORE.




United Way, Michigan schools partner for Club Connect
Midland Daily News
United Way of Midland County, Mich., is partnering with Bullock Creek Public Schools to launch Club Connect, an innovative new national program to inspire a love of reading and giving back. It provides students a fun place online to engage in reading, play educational learning games, explore new books and be inspired by kids who are making a difference in their communities.
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New study: Elementary students are doing more homework than they used to
The Washington Post
Homework is a perennial topic of griping among parents and students both. Recently, Stanford researchers released a survey of students at high-performing high schools, finding that students report an average of 3-plus hours of homework per night. The conclusion? "Too much homework can negatively affect kids, especially their lives away from school, where family, friends and activities matter."
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Protecting student data in the age of marketing and advertising
District Administration Magazine
District CIOs need to have a complete understanding of a district's legal obligations to protect student data as more student information is stored with online, third-party providers and parents' privacy concerns reach new heights, technology experts say. Some 89 percent of adults are concerned that third-party providers will use students' personal data for marketing purposes, according to a new survey.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword STUDENT DATA.


Punishing students for gadget use will make their tech etiquette worse
Wired (commentary)
At the start of this year, the President Barack Obama administration made a New Year's resolution for schools nationwide. It urged them to drop the "zero tolerance" approach to discipline, joining a growing chorus of critics of policies that dispense serious punishments for small rule violations. The recommendation from the Department of Justice is nonbinding, but comes as schools across the country have been edging away from zero tolerance on their own. It's about time.
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Top 4 ways district leaders deal with funding obstacles
eSchool News
School budgets show a marked increase from a year ago, with one in three districts reporting budget increases this year, according to the second annual K-12 IT Leadership Survey from the Consortium for School Networking. Released on the first day of CoSN's annual conference, the survey reveals that although more districts are seeing their financial restrictions ease a bit, nearly half of participants said they still lack the funding to support enhanced ed-tech and implement new classroom technologies.
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Report: As teacher demographics change, districts must prioritize retention
Education Week
It's been recently documented that the K-12 teacher workforce is greener than ever: In 2007-2008, the amount of experience that the most teachers reported having was just one year. Now, a new report takes a look at what that phenomenon means for the teaching profession as a whole. In sum, districts and programs that prepare teachers will need to seriously rethink how they retain and cultivate these new teachers, concludes the report, issued by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.
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The worst state for food insecurity changes course with school breakfasts
TakePart
Surrounded by elementary school children, Jeff Bridges holds a deck of cards in his hands. "If you have had a yummy, healthy breakfast, clap three times," he says. Every student claps. "If you've had cold pizza, stand on one foot," Bridges says. A few kids do, and Bridges, who's long advocated for the end of hunger, tells them he's not sure that's a good idea because it's better to have fruit or something healthier. On Monday the Academy Award–winning actor was at Stephens Elementary School in Little Rock, Ark., as the spokesperson for Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign, which is kicking off a challenge to the nation to connect a million more children to classroom breakfasts in the next two years.
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Schools turn to bandwidth management to handle the surge of mobile demand
EdTech Magazine
IT staff at Charlotte County Public Schools in Port Charlotte, Fla., had two main reasons for optimizing the district's networks. A few years ago, the state of Florida began requiring districts to administer online tests, so the district needed a way to prioritize bandwidth when students were taking the exams, says Chris Bress, executive director of the district's Learning Through Technology & Media department.
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Testing to, and beyond, the Common Core
Principal
After more than a decade of test-driven, high-stakes accountability in the No Child Left Behind era, many educators and policymakers in the United States are looking to move toward a more thoughtful approach.

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5 common myths about school administration
eSchool News
It's not always teachers who face criticism in the U.S. Many school administrators say that misconceptions about their career motivations and the position in general still exist today — and many myths have survived for decades.

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How much teachers get paid — State by state
The Washington Post
How much do teachers across the United States get paid? Here is data, state by state, collected from the National Center for Education Statistics by Jon Boeckenstedt, associate vice president at DePaul University in Chicago.

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Using law to get rid of mascots
District Administration Magazine
The names of professional sports teams like the Washington Redskins have generated national controversy in recent years — to the point that three news publications will no longer publish the word "Redskins," and instead refer to the team as "Washington." In this political climate, some states have enacted laws to ensure K12 school mascots are culturally sensitive. Wisconsin passed a first-of-its-kind law in 2010 in which just a single complaint from a school district resident could trigger a state review of a mascot. Under this law, the district had to make a case that the mascot did not promote discrimination.
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Electric school buses roll out in effort to reduce emissions
EdSource
An all-electric school bus quietly began transporting students in the Escondido Union High School District on Thursday, part of a state-funded pilot program meant to introduce districts to the merits of bus fleets that are electric-powered, emissions-free and silent. "When you come to a stop, it's dead quiet," said Robert Berkstresser, director of transportation for the Escondido Union district in north San Diego County.
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Another brick in 'the wall'
Connected Principals Bog (commentary)
A visitor checking out classrooms at the Memorial Elementary School might be surprised at how traditional everything looks. But one artifact stands out. We refer to it as "The Wall." It's a writing wall that represents the writing analysis that the entire faculty engaged in and has been reviewing over the course of the school year. The writing wall is an example of how we are working with the standards and reviewing students' work.
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Building rapport with inclusion students requires extra steps
MiddleWeb
Building a rapport with students is on every What Effective Teachers Do list. The value of the teacher and student connection is discussed in all teacher preparation programs. And it is part of the professional evaluation process, as administrators observe teachers with students. The New York State Teaching Standards identify the first of seven standards as "Know your students and student learning." You probably have something similar in your state, speaking to the important connections educators need to make with those they teach.
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Who's afraid of math? Genetics plays a role, but researchers say environment still key
Medical Xpress
A new study of math anxiety shows how some people may be at greater risk to fear math not only because of negative experiences, but also because of genetic risks related to both general anxiety and math skills. The study, which examined how fraternal and identical twins differ on measures of math anxiety, provides a revised view on why some children — and adults — may develop a fear of math that makes it more difficult for them to solve math problems and succeed in school.
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Race to Top Reports detail winners' progress, challenges
Education Week
Annual progress reports from the U.S. Department of Education showcase just how far the 12 state-level Race to the Top grant winners have come as they seek to deliver on the promises that won them, collectively, $4 billion in the Obama administration's signature education-improvement program. On a call with reporters Tuesday in advance of the reports' release, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan called out four states for leading the Race to the Top effort: Delaware, Hawaii, North Carolina and Tennessee, based on the implementation of their plans and their resulting increases in student performance.
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GOP leaders: States need power to decide education standards
The Tennessean
Tennessee and other states should have the power to decide how to educate students, but ensuring that they can do it well should be a top national priority, a trio of Republican leaders said Wednesday. Joining Gov. Bill Haslam and U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander for a discussion hosted by several business groups at The Hermitage Hotel, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush said Tennessee students' recent gains on the National Assessment of Educational Progress have been impressive. He encouraged the audience to "spread the word."
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In rural Mississippi, a district copes with Common Core changes
The Hechinger Report
Mississippi is one of the 45 states that has adopted the education standards known as Common Core. For the first time, students across the county will have the same education goals in math and English. In August, every teacher in Mississippi will teach Common Core. The Hechinger Report's Jackie Mader visited rural Forrest County to see what's changing, and how teachers and students are handling the shift to new standards.
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NAESP launches National Panel of New Principals
NAESP
Calling all first- and second-year principals! The National Panel of New Principals is the only initiative of its kind that is dedicated to principals in the first or second year of their principalship. By participating, new principals will contribute to a dynamic knowledge base about what it's really like to be a new principal today.
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Register for upcoming mentor trainings in Chicago and Nashville
NAESP
Being a principal is a tough job, especially with today's increasing demands on school leaders. Mentoring can provide crucial support to new principals. The NAESP National Mentor Program is designed to engage retired and experienced principals to give back to their profession by supporting new, newly assigned, or even experienced principals through mentoring. Ready to dive in? The next mentor training session is this May in Chicago.
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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 Meredith Barnett at MBarnett@naesp.org.
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