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Government report: Schools were getting much safer until 2010
The Huffington Post
American public and private schools are generally much safer than they were 10 years ago, but school crime began a slight climb in 2010, according to a government report. The rate of non-fatal incidents in which students felt victimized at school decreased to 35 per 1,000 students in 2010, from 181 per 1,000 students in 1992, according to the 2013 School Crime and Safety Report. The rate rose to 52 per 1,000 students in 2012, the report found. Any type of school crime, the report noted, increases the likelihood of dropouts, teacher turnover and student transfers.
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Size matters: Smaller classes spark better learning
By: Archita Datta Majumdar
The move to reduce class size and bring about higher-quality education is a not new one, but it has gained new momentum with a new study. Research by Australian educator David Zyngier shows that there can be significant difference in student performance with a smaller class size. Zyngier analyzed 112 peer-reviewed studies from 1979-2014 to prove how the size of the class can narrow the achievement gap. With smaller classes, teachers can be less occupied with maintaining discipline, and can instead focus on the individual growth of their students.
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Gates Foundation: Wait 2 years before attaching consequences to Common Core
Education Week
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has announced its support for a two-year moratorium on tying results from assessments aligned to the Common Core State Standards to teacher evaluations or student promotions to the next grade level. The June 10 statement from Vicki Phillips, the Gates Foundation's director of college-ready programs, said that while the Common Core is having a very positive impact on education, that doesn't mean teachers and schools shouldn't be given more time to adjust.
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Computer recycling: What school CIOs need to know
District Administration Magazine
The boom in affordable laptops and mobile devices has left the clunky computers of the past piling up in storage rooms in many schools. Recycling is the best way to properly dispose of outdated technology instead of allowing it to collect dust or to break down in landfills, says Jim Lynch, director of green technology at TechSoup Global, a nonprofit that connects charities and public libraries with tech products and services. Electronic devices represent the fastest-growing part of the world's waste stream, Lynch says.
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To get ahead in STEM, the key is C — Computers
U.S. News & World Report (commentary)
STEM is more than a buzzword or a fad. President Barack Obama has built a significant portion of his education policy around increasing interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, from hosting White House science fairs to launching a "master teaching corps" of STEM educators. The STEM focus is based, in large part, on an assessment that STEM fields will produce the most high-wage jobs and entrepreneurial innovation in the near and long term. Focusing on STEM is a smart investment based on pretty solid evidence. But at the same time, we may be under-emphasizing the best STEM opportunities out there.
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Report: Principals need more autonomy, support from central office
Education Week
A great deal has been written on what it takes to be an effective principal and the training that's required to become one. But a smaller number of studies have been done about the district conditions that are necessary to enable all principals to be effective — not simply the few who defy the odds and rise above often less-than-ideal circumstances.
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4 ways technology can improve the hiring process
eSchool News
In many districts across the country, the process for hiring teachers could stand to be improved. While there are many facets of the process that could be changed, a few key areas standout: there is a lack of multi-dimensional data on individual candidates, the hiring process is either overly manual, creating inefficiencies, or too automated, leaving out quality candidates, and technology and process are difficult to integrate.
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Making learning relevant
Connected Principals Blog (commentary)
Early in the school year, a father of a child in our middle school challenged me, stretching my thinking and sending me on a quest to consider ways of making learning more relevant. Why is it, he asked, that schools don’t teach financial literacy? So, I came up with what I feel is a start: a two-pronged approach to making learning more relevant and taking career readiness and financial literacy seriously.
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Does the way a classroom is decorated affect learning?
The New York Times
A new study tries to determine whether there might be a correlation between how a room is decorated and kindergartners' learning. The researchers wanted to know if too many decorations could actually be distracting or overstimulating for young minds. But similar questions could be asked about how classroom environment might influence older students' academic performance as well. Does the way your classroom is decorated affect your learning?
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US school shootings: Map shows 74 incidents on campuses since 2012 Sandy Hook massacre
The Independent
A day after an unnamed teenage gunman shot dead a 14-year-old at a high school in Oregon, before police suspect he killed himself, a startling map has been published pin-pointing 73 other shootings at U.S. campuses since the Sandy Hook massacre in December 2012. The majority of the 74 shootings following the death of 26 students and teachers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, took place at K-12 institutions — accommodating children from kindergarten to their last year of high school.
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E-rate demand increasing
THE Journal
Demand for E-rate funding is increasing, especially in rural and remote districts, according to a new report from Funds for Learning, an E-rate consulting firm. The report, "FY2014 E-rate Funding Requests: Telecommunications and Internet Access By Schools & School Districts," which analyzes funding requests for funding year 2014 (July 1, 2014 to June 30, 2015). It does not include funding requests by libraries or consortia. According to the report, requests for Internet access and wide area network services have continued the trend of shifting to higher broadband speeds.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Cultivating teacher leaders at your school (By: Brian Stack)
Study finds reading possible despite low IQ (Disability Scoop)
Common Core State Standards face a new wave of opposition (The New York Times)
What does a good Common Core lesson look like? (NPR)
Schools get road map for improving discipline practices (The Washington Post)

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


School lunch debate: What's at stake?
NPR
School lunches have never been known for culinary excellence. But to be fair, the National School Lunch Program — which provides free or reduced lunches to about every day — has never aimed to dazzle as much as to fill little bellies.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword SCHOOL LUNCH.


Principals learn strategies to help math teachers
KIDK-TV
School may be out for the kids, but today, class was in session for Idaho Falls principals. It is part of a week-long conference focused on math instruction. "It is absolutely essential to have productive struggle. The teaching and learning of mathematics, the doing, means running into roadblocks," said Cory Bennett, who led the conference. Bennett is an assistant professor of mathematics at Idaho State University.
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6 ways to make digital content universally accessible
eSchool News
As school districts move toward a digital transition and attempt to create content repositories, ensuring that the digital content is accessible for students of all abilities is especially important. A new policy brief from the State Education Technology Directors Association, "The Accessibility of Learning Content for All Students, Including Students with Disabilities," notes that "digital learning materials ... can improve the classroom experience for all students, and they may hold particular promise for students with disabilities."
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The payoffs and pitfalls of flagging 'at-risk' kids in early grades
MindShift
Long before students have even entered ninth grade, teachers are looking to detailed data to figure out which kids are most likely to drop out of high school. Though this flagging system can call attention to a need for additional help to a potential dropout, there may be concerns, like inaccurate predictions, or worse, lowered expectations. At Clinton Middle School in East Los Angeles, teachers are using a system called Early Warning Indicators, or EWI, which is part of a school transformation program called Diplomas Now, currently used in 14 cities around the country.
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Possible redemption for No Child Left Behind?
The Atlantic
In the ten years since its implementation, the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 has been blamed for causing a decade-long decline in teacher job satisfaction and eroding teacher autonomy by taking control of curricula out of their hands. But a new study published online in Educational Evaluation and Policy Analysis, "Estimating the Effects of No Child Left Behind on Teachers and Their Work Environment," suggests that NCLB has not actually affected teacher happiness in these ways — on the contrary, some measures of job satisfaction, including classroom control and teachers' perceptions of administrator support, have increased on average since the implementation of the legislation.
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Eric Cantor to step down as Majority Leader; shakeup may threaten education bills
Education Week
U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, R-Va., will step down from his No. 2 post in the U.S. House of Representatives at the end of next month. A shakeup that leaves in jeopardy a short list of bipartisan, education-focused bills awaiting a vote in the House. The announcement comes after a stunning upset, in which the seven-term House veteran lost in the Republican primary for the 7th District of Virginia to Tea Party challenger Dave Brat.
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Report: Principals need more autonomy, support from central office
Education Week
A great deal has been written on what it takes to be an effective principal and the training that's required to become one.

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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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This is how much more states spend on prisoners than on students
The Huffington Post
Perhaps if states spent more money on educating students, they would not have to spend so much money keeping prisoners incarcerated. New maps compiled by research engine FindTheBest show how much states spend on funding their average K-12 pupil, compared to what the average prisoner costs for state taxpayers. FindTheBest used research compiled in 2012 from the Vera Institute of Justice, which analyzed the full cost of prisons to taxypayers in 40 states, and 2010-2011 information from the National Center for Education Statistics, which used federal, local and state data to glean its results.
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California court rules teacher tenure creates impermissible unequal conditions
The Washington Post
A Los Angeles judge struck down teacher tenure and other California laws that offer job security to educators, a decision that is expected to trigger widespread challenges of teacher job protections nationwide. Plaintiffs in the case argued that California children who are poor receive an inferior education because they are saddled with the weakest teachers, who are entrenched in their jobs and are difficult to fire. Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu sided with the plaintiffs against some of the most powerful labor unions in the country, striking down California's teacher employment laws because he determined that they violate students' civil rights.
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Join #pennedchat this Saturday, June 14
NAESP
Start your weekend with a free professional development and networking opportunity. Join NAESP for a Twitter chat on pre-K-3 learning communities this Saturday, June 14, from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. EST.
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Discuss 'Teach Like a PIRATE' on Tuesday, June 17
NAESP
Make history with NAESP this summer as we undertake the world's largest principal book study! This two-part book discussion will give principals across the country a chance to swap ideas and connect with one another around a common topic: the principles of Dave Burgess's best-seller "Teach Like a PIRATE." The first chat is this Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. EST
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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.
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
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