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How social media can help, and not hinder, during a crisis
eSchool News (commentary)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
All it takes is a quick read of the headlines to recognize the added stress on all educators and students as they deal with the potential for violence. Today's news contains a rising number of stories about disruption at our schools — from an altercation between staff or students to disastrous events like shootings. It's important for school leaders to understand basic crisis management principles — and how social media might play a role in the event of a crisis, for better or worse. More

Study: Arts integration a key to school reform
The Associated Press via The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A study by the President's Committee on the Arts and the Humanities says arts education is an effective tool for school reform, even as arts education funding has declined. The "Reinvesting in Arts Education" study released examined recent data from schools in Maryland, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Chicago and New York City. It finds integrating the arts with other subjects is particularly effective at raising achievement in math and reading. More

Conservative 'manifesto' blasts shared curriculum, tests
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A group made up largely of conservatives has issued a "manifesto" arguing against development of shared curriculum and tests for the common standards. The manifesto, issued and signed by more than 100 leaders in education, business and politics, is a response to a document issued in March by the Albert Shanker Institute, which argued for common curriculum for the standards. It's also a response to the U.S. Department of Education's $360 million investment in the development of assessments for the common standards. More

Girls get a handle on science and technology
The Intelligencer    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In a large classroom packed with girls, forensic chemist Antoinette Thwaites demonstrated how to use cabbage juice to determine whether several powders were acids or bases. The solution turns red for acidic, purple for a neutral and greenish-yellow for basic. It was just one of many tests to help identify the powders. About 200 middle- and high-school girls from public and private schools throughout Bucks County, Penn., gathered to learn about technology-related career opportunities, ranging from computer game design to regenerative medicine to forensic science. More

Lessons Learned Educating a Community

Over 1000 volunteers work for a week to rebuild and transform a Louisiana elementary school as part of NBC's new School Pride reality TV show.

Guidance plan will stress: Good jobs require degree
The Tennessean    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The kindergartners in Gayle Dye's class at McGavock Elementary in Nashville, Tenn., have some interesting ideas about college. Surrounded by alphabets, seashells and two pet parakeets, they try to define the word. "It means you're grown up," Hunter Morrison said. That's the basic definition about 76,000 Metro Nashville, Tenn., Public Schools students will get next school year. More

Teachers, staff help nurses as needs rise
Dayton Daily News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
At a time when more children require medical care for chronic conditions, most Dayton, Fla., area schools do not staff on-site nurses. In fact, most local districts fall well short of a student-to-nurse guideline of one nurse for every 750 students set by the National Association of School Nurses. To address these needs in lieu of staffing, most school nurses are assigned to multiple buildings and their districts train teachers, secretaries and other personnel to administer medication and respond to emergency medical needs. More

TeachersFirst - a FREE, ad-free, teacher resource site. TeachersFirst’s Exclusive lessons/units and 12,000+ value-added reviews highlight the best of the web. Practical, teacher-friendly implemen-tation ideas and best practices promote effective integration of technology as a tool for teaching and learning. Sign up for FREE weekly update emails. more

Schools may ban chocolate milk over added sugar
The Associated Press via San Jose Mercury News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Chocolate milk has long been seen as the spoonful of sugar that makes the medicine go down, but the nation's childhood obesity epidemic has a growing number of people wondering whether that's wise. With schools under increasing pressure to offer healthier food, the staple on children's cafeteria trays has come under attack over the very ingredient that made it so popular — sugar. Some school districts have gone as far as prohibiting flavored milk, and Florida considered a statewide ban in schools. Other districts have sought a middle ground by replacing flavored milks containing high-fructose corn syrup with versions containing sugar, which some see as a more natural sweetener. More

US reminds schools of obligations to immigrant student
The Associated Press via San Francisco Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. Department of Education sent a letter to districts around the country, reminding them that all students — legal or not — are entitled to a public education. The letter comes amid reports that schools may be checking the immigration status of students trying to enroll, and reminds districts they are federally prohibited from barring elementary or secondary students on the basis of citizenship status. More

Illinois Schools Implement Lexia, Improve

75% of kindergartners in Des Plaines, IL elementary school had no letter recognition. Lexia Reading software helped bring 88% up to speed by end of 1st grade.

Early education a priority of new federal grant pool
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Armed with a fresh $700 million in an otherwise austere federal budget year, the U.S. Department of Education is trying to figure out how to leverage the money through a new round of state-level competitions focused, in part, on early-childhood education. The new funding — viewed as an extension of the Obama administration's signature Race to the Top program — was part of the congressional budget deal that cut nearly $1 billion in funding from the U.S. Department of Education through September, after adjusting for the Pell Grant program. More

Education reform: Shorter week, more learning
Los Angeles Times (commentary)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The general assumption is that when it comes to educating American kids, more is more. Longer school hours. Saturday school. Summer school. Yet more than 120 school districts across the nation are finding that less can also be more — less being fewer days spent in school. The four-day school week has been around for decades, according to the National Council of State Legislatures, but it's quietly spreading as a money-saving tactic, especially after several states — including Montana, Georgia, Missouri and Washington — passed legislation allowing school districts to make the switch as long as they lengthened each school day so that there was no reduction in instructional hours. More

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Ohio governor's proposal would close schools that stay in bottom 5 percent for 3 years
The Akron Beacon Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Ohio Gov. John Kasich's education adviser has told school officials that schools that remain in the state's bottom 5 percent for three years will be closed if the governor's proposals pass the legislature. "We believe in ranking schools," said Robert Sommers, director of the Governor's Office of 21st Century Education. "We feel it's time to end a school that is not providing the resources and support for students to succeed." More

Texas House passes bill to help keep students from being bullied
Fort Worth Star-Telegram    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Texas House gave final approval to a bill that cracks down on school bullies by defining bullying and requiring school districts to help prevent it, to assist students who are targeted and to protect whistle-blowers who tell about it. "Parents deserve to know that their children are within safe walls at school," said Rep. Diane Patrick, R-Arlington, who collaborated on the bill with members of the House Public Education Committee. More


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Oklahoma governor signs bill intended to end social promotion in
public schools

The Oklahoman    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Public schools no longer will be able to promote third-grade students who cannot read at appropriate levels under a bill signed into law. "It has been said that in the first through the third-grade a child learns to read, but the fourth-grade on a child reads to learn," said Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin, who signed Senate Bill 346 and another education measure into law during a bill-signing ceremony. "If our children are not able to read at grade-appropriate levels, they can't learn the math, the science, the social studies as they continue to go through the education system. More

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Music, art, physical education at center of discussion
The Coloradoan    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Budget cuts and conflicting priorities have placed the future of art, music and physical education classes at the center of a discussion about curriculum in the Poudre School District in Fort Collins, Colo. While some parents and students want to see classes such as math, science and English emphasized, others say the arts, music and physical education are essential to educating the "whole child." In PSD, principals determine budgets and curriculum at their schools, often guided by local teams of parents and teachers. More

NAESP election ends at 11:59 p.m. tonight
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Vote now for Board of Directors officers and members for the coming year. Help shape the future direction for NAESP. For eligible members, e-ballots are available at Click on "Vote Now" to take you to the log-in page. For help, send an email to, or call 800-386-2377 and ask for Membership. More


'Report to Parents' — a member benefit that makes your job easier
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
You can download, reproduce and circulate this monthly report for parents to give them practical information on a range of family-friendly topics that support your school's goals and help their children thrive in school. Check out past issues today. More

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Study shows BULLYING reduced 41%

Researchers from University of Illinois at Chicago just released findings from a randomized-control trial in 14 schools in Chicago. Schools using the Positive Action program from 3rd to 5th grade reduced bullying by 41%, violence by 37% and substance use by 31%. Academic effects will be released soon.
Learn more
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Bring the World to Your School with Educational Seminars!

Educational Seminars, fully funded by the U.S. Department of State, are short-term international exchanges for U.S. teachers and administrators that focus on sharing best practices and professional development.

Look for program applications for teachers and administrators in late summer/fall 2011. Email edseminars
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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 or contact us at

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.

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