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Should students have a right to mock educators online
TIME    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Do students have a First Amendment right to make fun of their principals and teachers on Facebook and other social-media sites? Or can schools discipline them for talking out of school? In a pair of free-speech rulings, a federal appeals court in Pennsylvania came down on the side of the students. In both cases, the court said that schools were wrong to suspend students for posting parodies of their principals on MySpace — one in which a boy made fun of his principal's body size, and another in which a girl made lewd sexual comments about her principal. More

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8 technology trends for school libraries
Harvard Education Letter    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The school library — and the job of the librarian — have both morphed into something that most adults these days would hardly recognize. Helping kids find books to read is only part of the job, say those on the profession's leading edge. Today, a major mission of the librarian is to teach students digital literacy by showing them how to use the Internet to efficiently find, organize and share information with peers. More



Common Core State Standards sparks cursive debate
Bright Education    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
More than 40 states across the country have chosen to adopt the Common Core State Standards in order to give the nation a shared curriculum. The rapid spread of this system has sparked academic debate in many areas, including handwriting. The Common Core State Standards does not specify whether children should write in print or cursive, only stating that students should have a solid knowledge of typing skills by the end of the fourth-grade. More



CDC Report: US kids not making grade for physical education
Medical News Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A new report released by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention states that only a small percentage of youth have met objectives for aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities outlined in the Healthy People 2020 physical activity guidelines. More



Reducing chronic absenteeism in public schools
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Throughout New York, educators and politicians have been increasing their focus on attendance in recent years, and their efforts appear to be paying off, at least in elementary schools: 1 in 15 elementary students were absent on a given day this year, compared to 1 in 13 four years ago and 1 in 9 in 1995. And there have been even more significant strides in combating chronic absenteeism in early grades, according to a new study. More

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Study finds core cause of math disability
NBC Washington    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A new decade-long study has pinpointed the core cognitive differences between students who sometimes struggle with math and those who have dyscalculia, a severe mathematical learning disability. According to the study, led by Dr. Michele Mazzocco of the Baltimore Institute, students' poor "gut sense" of numbers can lead to dyscalculia. More

For good teachers, class size matters
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution (commentary)    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
One of the debates surrounding public education centers on the question of whether or not size matters — in this case, class size. A recent report on Education Policy concludes that, compared to other investments in schools, reducing class size has a relatively low payoff. The study found that large reductions — seven to 10 students — can improve student achievement, most notably in the early grades and for low-income students. But increasing or decreasing enrollment by one or two students has little to no effect on how well students perform, the study found. More

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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.
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States cautious on Duncan's NCLB-flexibility offer
Education Week    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
States seeking relief from the requirements of the 9-year-old No Child Left Behind Act are taking a wait-and-see approach to United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan's plan to offer those that embrace his reform priorities wiggle room when it comes to the law's mandates. But the idea of waivers is already facing hurdles on Capitol Hill—drawing criticism even from the administration allies. And while the department points to waiver powers that Congress included in the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, some naysayers are wondering whether Duncan has the legal authority to offer states broad leeway on the law's accountability requirements. More



Nevada governor OKs faster path to teacher license
Reno Gazette-Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Aspiring teachers are going to have more ways to get a license to get into the classroom in Nevada. Republican Gov. Brian Sandoval signed a law authorizing a streamlined path to a license. Proponents say the measure passed by the Legislature opens teaching to people who are highly qualified but don't have time for the traditional route to a license. More

Texas House approves new system for school materials
The Associated Press via Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Texas House approved a new system to pay for textbooks and other school materials. If signed into law, the bill would combine the textbook and technology allotments to public schools. The bill now goes back to the Senate to consider minor amendments added. The education commissioner previously made two different payments to schools based on the number of students in attendance, one for textbooks and another for technology. More

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Rich schools, poor schools: North Carolina's gap may be growing
Charlotte Observer    Share    Share on
FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
North Carolina's 1.5 million public school children depend on the state to pay the majority of their educational costs, but that long-held tradition may be changing. What started as the state's promise during the Great Depression has eroded during the Great Recession. Lawmakers, facing gaping state budget shortfalls in the past two years, began to force cuts onto local school districts. That discretionary reduction was $225 million two years ago and $305 million last year. More

Gov. Rick Snyder to announce sweeping DPS reforms
Detroit Free Press    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Gov. Rick Snyder will create an authority to run several failing Detroit public schools as part of sweeping changes to be announced for the city's struggling school system, sources said. The plan would restructure the failing Detroit Public Schools, which has a $327-million deficit on an operating budget of about $1.5 billion, by moving its underperforming schools under an authority to be run by the district's emergency manager, Roy Roberts, according to sources. More

Georgia cracks down on teachers getting advanced degrees from non-accredited institutions
The Associated Press via The Republic    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Georgia teachers will soon have to be pickier about where they enroll in graduate programs if they want a raise. New state rules prohibit teachers looking to qualify for the $6,000-per-year average pay bump for advanced degrees — or a "certification upgrade" — from getting a master's or doctorate at non-accredited institutions. More

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Education laws in Ohio, Idaho subject of repeal campaigns
The Huffington Post    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Two states are pushing back against new education reforms by putting recently passed laws up for popular vote. We Are Ohio, a volunteer group of public workers that shares a building with the Ohio Education Association, announced that it had surpassed its goal in receiving enough signatures to put up to popular vote a law passed in March that strips public employees of most collective-bargaining rights and mandates merit pay for teachers. More

Texas House passes bill letting schools compensate for cuts in state funding
Fort Worth Star-Telegram    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Texas House gave preliminary approval to Senate-passed legislation that would enable school districts to reduce salaries, impose furloughs and alter contract-notification requirements to absorb the effects of reduced state funding. The measure appears on track for passage in the special session, which is to end no later than June 29. More



Free online resource for supporting struggling learners
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The RTI Action Network is now accepting applications for the Leadership Network, a free online leadership mentoring program that equips building and district leaders to implement effective Response to Intervention, a system for identifying and supporting special needs students. More

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Help build a school in the Dominican Republic with NAESP!
NAESP    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
NAESP has partnered with Lifetouch to provide members the opportunity to participate in the 2011 Memory Mission. Apply today for this once-in-a-lifetime trip! More


ASHA's New Practical RTI Book


The classroom-ready book about RTI with tiered activities that focus on enhancing oral language. More.

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Headsprout - Creating Successful Readers!
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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
@americancouncils.org
to be added to our notification list.


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 Cynthia Rosso at crosso@naesp.org.
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
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