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Text Version   RSS   Subscribe   Unsubscribe   Archive   Media Kit June 12, 2015

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


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How E-rate 2.0 helps schools afford broadband and Wi-Fi
EdTech Magazine
The Federal Communications Commission recently made the biggest changes to E-rate since the program was created 19 years ago to help schools pay for telecommunications and Internet services. Public K-12 schools and districts should be aware of what these changes mean to funding and eligible services. The changes, which went into effect this year, include increased funding and the phasing out of some services and technologies, as well as increasing support for broadband and wireless networks in classrooms.
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In limited survey, principals say they're happy with new Common Core materials
Chalkbeat New York
Two years after city schools adopted new curriculum materials as part of their transition to the Common Core, a small-scale survey found that principals are happy with their choices. Seventy-two percent of the principals said they were satisfied or very satisfied with their math curriculum, and 65 percent reported being satisfied or very satisfied with their reading curriculum, according to a survey conducted by the Manhattan Institute. The think tank, which supported the new standards' introduction, reached out to all 1,100 elementary and middle school principals in the city but heard back from just 65.
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All learning relies on literacy
District Administrator Magazine
The biggest changes in reading instruction in the coming year center on embedding literacy across all subjects a student studies during the school day. Engineering concepts, for example, can be used to break down the plots of stories and analyze characters. And ESL specialists should collaborate with subject teachers to align instruction so students are learning the same words and concepts.
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Kindergartens ringing the bell for play inside the classroom
The New York Times
Mucking around with sand and water. Playing Candy Land or Chutes and Ladders. Cooking pretend meals in a child-size kitchen. Dancing on the rug, building with blocks and painting on easels. Call it Kindergarten 2.0. Concerned that kindergarten has become overly academic in recent years, this suburban school district south of Baltimore is introducing a new curriculum in the fall for 5-year-olds. Chief among its features is a most old-fashioned concept: play.
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Creating a culture of integrity in the classroom
Edutopia (commentary)
Children are not born with integrity or the behaviors we associate with it, like honesty, honor, respect, authenticity, social responsibility, and the courage to stand up for what they believe is right. It is derived through a process of cultural socialization — influences from all spheres of a child's life. In their school environments, students acquire these values and behaviors from adult role models and peers, and in particular, through an understanding of the principles of academic integrity. When students learn integrity in classroom settings, it helps them apply similar principles to other aspects of their lives.
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The kindergarten testing mess
The Washington Post
Kindergarten wasn't what Kimberley Asselin expected when the school year started last fall — and, unfortunately, that turned out to be a bad thing. Asselin, a first-year teacher in Virginia who had dreamed about teaching since she was a child, learned what many new teachers around the country have: That the K-12 experience has become dominated by standardized testing. And if there is one grade where it seems most detrimental and concerning, it is kindergarten
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11 mistakes schools make when buying charge and storage carts and how to avoid them
K-12 TechDecisions
A laptop cart is a laptop cart, right? Wrong! All charge and storage solutions are not created equal. That's rule number one when choosing a mobile device management solution. Unfortunately, not all schools realize this and they spend money on a product that it isn't exactly what they need. Correcting technology problems can be time consuming as well as disruptive if class time is affected. Educators don't have time for that. They're counting on you to make the right tech decision from the get go.
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The parent's guide to privacy rights
Scholastic Administrator Magazine
Data privacy is the issue of the day — not only in the broader society but also in our nation's schools. As districts increasingly rely on technology to improve student-learning outcomes, collect and store electronic data for administrative efficiency, and provide online resources for students, many parents have expressed confusion about their rights to information that concerns their child's privacy.
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Educating parents of the Siri generation
eSchool News (commentary)
Carl Hooker, a contributor for eSchool News, writes: "What ever happened to the good old days? When I was a kid I used to listen to music my parents didn't like and stay out riding my bike until the street lights came on. Today, our kids have scheduled playdates and a steady stream of organized activities, and spend the rest of their time connecting to others online. We no longer live in an analog world, yet why do we think our parenting should look the same as it did back then?"
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Report: Latest word on optimal length for education videos
THE Journal
While video usage is growing in the classroom, it's far from pervasive. Less than a quarter of schools and colleges report that more than half of their educators regularly incorporate video in their classes. In K-12, the most common use case is video shown in the classroom (88 percent), followed by use in student assignments (66 percent) and supplementary course material (60 percent). The biggest growth has happened in library media collections, which grew in use from 36 percent in 2014 to 54 percent in 2015.
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This is where school funding is the least 'fair,' according to new reports
The Huffington Post
In Mississippi's Carroll County school district, there are no advanced placement courses, no foreign language classes and not enough textbooks for children to take home at night. Until last year, students on the high school football team had to change clothes in a makeshift room that previously functioned as a chicken coop. Two years ago, the district's superintendent, Billy Joe Ferguson, cut his own salary from $87,000 to $18,000 in order to free up funds for the schools.
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This summer, the cafeteria comes to the kids
NPR
"Chow bus! Chow bus! Chow bus!" chants Gunner Fischer, 3, as a custom-painted school bus rounds the corner and rumbles toward his apartment complex in Murfreesboro, Tenn. About 21 million students nationwide eat free and reduced-price meals throughout the school year, but getting those same kids fed during the summer is a challenge. Only a fraction of those make it to schools or community centers for summer meals. So some school districts are getting creative in the way they're using USDA funds: Murfreesboro City Schools is taking the cafeteria to the kids. The district calls it the Combating Hunger on Wheels Bus — or the CHOW bus.
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Why education technology is not transforming how teachers teach
Education Week
Public schools now provide at least one computer for every five students. They spend more than $3 billion per year on digital content. And nearly three-fourths of high school students now say they regularly use a smartphone or tablet in the classroom. But a mountain of evidence indicates that teachers have been painfully slow to transform the ways they teach, despite that massive influx of new technology into their classrooms. The student-centered, hands-on, personalized instruction envisioned by ed-tech proponents remains the exception to the rule.
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18 ways to advocate for your child with disabilities
By: Howard Margolis
With summer vacation here, scores of IEPs are in disrepair. And many parents feel bewildered. They know they must advocate for their children, but don't know what to do and how to do it. Consequently, many act in self-defeating ways, inadvertently undermining their children's education. If you're a parent (or teacher) who feels unprepared for your child's IEP meeting, you can still take advantage of the IEP process — which uses the summer to complete and improve the IEP.
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What do teachers really think of data tools?
eSchool News
Two-thirds of teachers in a Gates Foundation study said they are not completely satisfied with the data, or tools designed to help them work with data, which they are able to access on a regular basis. Teachers Know Best: Making Data Work for Teachers and Students examines digital instructional tools that help teachers collect and use student data and attempts to outline the challenges teachers face when working with these digital tools.
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House looks to resurrect ESEA Bill
Education Week
Months after Republican leaders in Congress yanked a GOP-backed Elementary and Secondary Education Act reauthorization off the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives amid sinking support from their own caucus, they appear poised to call it up again. As early as next week, according to sources, the Student Success Act could be brought to the floor under a new rule that allows members to vote on three new amendments in addition to final passage of the bill. The momentum comes after a difficult three months of whipping the bill which began losing support from Republicans after the Club for Growth and Heritage Action — two powerful conservative lobby organizations — announced their opposition to it.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Why are so many states replacing Common Core with carbon copies? (The Hechinger Report)
How do we help our least motivated, most disruptive students? (The Washington Post)
Positively managing student behavior in the classroom (By: Savanna Flakes)
The case for starting sex education in kindergarten (PBS Newshour)
Play: Far more than purposeless activity (By: Debra Josephson Abrams)

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


How ineffective government funding can hurt poor students
The Atlantic (commentary)
Two new national reports paint a grim picture of unfair and inequitable funding of public education across states, with schools serving the highest proportion of impoverished students most often on the losing end. According to the first report, from the Leadership Conference Education Fund and the Education Law Center, states are forcing schools to continually do more with less, despite the country's gradual economic recovery from the recession. Case studies from individual schools and districts in four states — Colorado, Mississippi, Pennsylvania and South Carolina — are used to highlight the funding disparities outlined in the civil-rights advocacy group's report.
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Study: City Year schools twice as likely to see math, English boosts
Education Week
Pleasant View School was one of a slew of high poverty schools in Providence, R.I., marked for an overhaul in 2012, but three years later, it is not only out of academic crisis, but thriving. Pleasant View Principal Gara B. Field credits a big part of the school's revival to a team of young adult AmeriCorps members who have adopted the school as part of the City Year program's "Whole School, Whole Child" school wide initiative. "It's been a huge partner," she said.
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An innovative mindset
NAESP
Voxer, Remind, Touchcast, Diigo. The list of go-to apps and tools continues to expand, and it can be a challenge in itself for busy school leaders to know the difference between what's worth it, and what's not. The May/June issue of Principal magazine underscores two main truths for staying on the cutting edge of innovation, even while avoiding platforms that might soon become obsolete.
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Share your NAESP story
NAESP
We want to hear from you! Tell us how NAESP has influenced the programs you've implemented, the leadership techniques you've employed, the way you deal with families and manage staff, or the technology you've applied.
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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 Ned Colbert at EColbert@naesp.org.
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