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Tools for tailored learning may expose students' personal details
The New York Times
If the efforts by state legislators to restrict the use of student data are any guide, the email addresses and search queries of the nation's schoolchildren are a hot commodity. In May, Georgia adopted a law barring online services designed for elementary through high school from selling or sharing students' names, email addresses, test results, grades or socioeconomic or disability information. It also bars them from using the data to target students with ads.
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Many new principals lack early education knowledge
EdCentral
Of all the various hats that a principal wears, perhaps none is more important than that of instructional leader. As emphasis on school accountability has grown, expectations for principals have shifted from management functions, such as making sure the buses run on time, toward visiting classrooms and providing real-time feedback on teacher instruction. Along with this emphasis on principals as instructional leader, comes a concern from many in the early education field about whether principals have the knowledge and skills they need to provide quality feedback to teachers of students in pre-K, kindergarten, and the first, second, and third grade.
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Encouraging nonfiction reading and writing
Scholastic Administration Magazine
Lynn Castiglione, a contributor for Scholastic Administration Magazine, writes: "Touch screens, 3-D printing, robots. When I first started teaching at Bellair Elementary School in Glendale, Arizona, 24 years ago, none of these existed — let alone had a place in the classroom. But technology is now an integral part of our lives, so therefore it should play a large role in the daily instruction of students. Bellair Elementary, where I teach gifted education in grades 4-6, is part of Deer Valley Unified School District, the fifth-largest district in Arizona with 35,000 students and 38 schools."
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Inside the unique STEM school for students with learning difficulties
eSchool News
Eye-opening statistics about career readiness are seemingly everywhere these days, and nowhere is that more apparent than when it comes to the future of STEM, where jobs are rapidly growing — up to 17 percent from 2014 to 2024 by one estimate — and could reach 8.6 million by 2018. In that light, the scramble to provide students with hard skills, like robotics and coding, coupled with related soft skills, such as critical thinking and collaboration, seems only natural.
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The idea vs. the on-the-ground reality of Common Core standards
The Washington Post
The Common Core State Standards that most states have adopted have triggered plenty of political debate. But have they transformed how teachers are teaching — and what students are learning? Not nearly enough, according to Education Trust, a nonprofit dedicated to closing achievement gaps. Teachers are often assigning work that asks far less of students than the Common Core standards require, according to the organization. Children are rarely asked to write more than a few sentences at a time, for example, and are seldom asked to grapple with complex ideas and arguments.
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Washington, DC area minority-owned business is the first American company to be awarded foreign publishing code in China
Science Weekly Magazine
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New approach to teaching science gets test run
EdSource
Ten school districts across California are riding another wave of education reform that could significantly change how a core subject is taught throughout the state — the Next Generation Science Standards. Over the next three years the districts will lead the "California K-8 NGSS Early Implementation Initiative," which will try out lesson plans, instructional materials and professional development programs aligned with the new science standards. Often compared with the Common Core standards for math and English language arts, the new science standards stress the deeper learning of broad scientific concepts over the memorization of facts, and place a greater emphasis on introducing students to the workplace practices of scientists and engineers.
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Creating safe, strength-based classrooms
Edutopia
Schools are not machines. Schools are a network of human beings who feel, think, behave and function within a human system that is alive and never static. Inside living systems, we need to feel safe and felt. This system is wired to thrive, even through difficult times. We're here for deep learning, which is profoundly relational, and connection to one another is a prerequisite for our collective emotional, social, spiritual, and cognitive growth and development.
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5 strategies for supporting students with autism
eSchool News
Transitioning to a new school year often is challenging for students with autism, but technology can help support those students as they become more independent in their learning. During an edWeb webinar, visual strategist and speech language pathologist Linda Hodgdon shared five tips to help students with autism begin the school year successfully. Lauren Stafford, vice president of Research and Instructional Design at Monarch Teaching Technologies, offered technology tips to support each of the five strategies.
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What's a leader to do?
District Administration Magazine
The Interstate School Leaders Licensure Consortium Standards are now available. The seven standards, redrafted after the public comment period ended last fall, identify areas that school leaders should be able to demonstrate competency. An initiative of the Council of Chief State School Officers, the final versions yield some significant changes in wording, but the spirit of the draft is largely upheld. For example, the draft version of the vision and mission standard stated leaders would "facilitate the development, articulation, implementation, and stewardship of a vision of learning that is shared and supported by all stakeholders." In the final version, leaders "ensure the development, articulation, implementation, and stewardship of a child-centered vision of high quality schooling that is shared by all members of the school community."
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Can design thinking help schools find new solutions to old problems?
MindShift
Principal Kamar Samuels had a problem: how to reach the most disaffected students at Bronx Writing Academy, a middle school serving mostly low-income students. The usual discipline methods weren't working and Samuels knew that if he could figure out how to engage his toughest students, he'd have a playbook to reach them all. So, he decided to make those students his focus group, asking them what they liked about school, and really listened to the answers. That technique is part of a user-centered design approach he's trying out in order to tackle some of the age-old problems in education, like low achievement for Latino and African-American boys, with a new lens.
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Chronic absences hinder young learners
The Atlantic
While too many students at all grade levels are regularly skipping school, many preschoolers and kindergarteners are missing nearly as much seat time as teenagers, according to a new report. The lost learning time, particularly in the younger grades, translates into weaker math and reading skills that become long-term deficits for students even years down the road, according to the new report from Attendance Works, a national advocacy organization, and the nonprofit Healthy Schools Campaign.
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Hiring more minority teachers in schools gives fairer perception of discipline
University of Kansas via Science Daily
Black students in schools with more black teachers have more positive attitudes and higher perceptions of fairness in school discipline, according to a new study. The study also found white students who attend schools with a higher number of minority teachers are more likely to believe discipline from school officials is fair as well.
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Research: 9 in 10 teachers don't use social media in the classroom
THE Journal
Nearly nine of 10 — 87 percent — of teachers have not incorporated social media into their classrooms, according to a new survey conducted by Harris Poll on behalf of the University of Phoenix. The survey also found that more teachers, 62 percent, said they are reluctant to incorporate social media in their classrooms than in 2013, when 55 percent reported such hesitation. Only 44 percent of teachers surveyed said that social media can enhance a student's educational experience.
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Children should be informed about alcohol dangers from age 9, say experts
Medical New Today
Given the high prevalence of binge drinking among adolescents, parents and pediatricians should talk to children about the dangers of alcohol use from the age of 9 years. This is according to a clinical report from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
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Why summer vacations should be shorter
The Atlantic (commentary)
Laura McKenna, a contributor for The Atlantic, writes: "I'm shaking sand from the beach towels and tucking bathing suits into plastic storage bins in the hall closet. The paperwork for fall sports and music classes is waiting on the kitchen counter. Tomorrow, we'll make the obligatory annual trips to Supercuts for new hairdos and Staples for $300 worth of three-ring binders, tissue boxes, and other supplies. The last week of summer — the week before school starts up again — is always bittersweet. We certainly need a break from homework, class projects, and the relentless after-school schedule."
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PRODUCT SHOWCASE
  Pilot Program: World Cultures Curriculum

All Around This World,
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School discipline: Standing up for all children in the public school system
The Huffington Post
Two kindergartners were sent to the principal's office during their second week of school. One hit a little girl after she refused to share a toy. The other smacked a little boy after he cut to the front in the lunch line. At the principal's office, each child was asked what happened in their respective confrontations. Both admitted they used their hands, and both knew they were in the wrong. As would happen in many American schools, both boys were issued two-day suspensions. One child, Bobby, had been removed from his parents' care and lived with a foster family. The other child, Sam, lived with his parents, both college educated and involved at the school.
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Rep. John Kline won't seek re-election; adds pressure on ESEA rewrite
Education Week
Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., chairman of the House education committee, announced that he will not be seeking re-election in 2016. "Strengthening our nation's classrooms and workplaces has been at the forefront of the committee's agenda since I was first selected to serve as chairman, and it will continue to be my leading priority in the months ahead," he said in a press release. "Whether it's replacing No Child Left Behind, holding the Obama administration accountable for its harmful policies, or strengthening higher education, there is a lot of work to do over the next 16 months."
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Online training course helps schools meet new USDA standards
District Administration Magazine
As of July, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is enforcing new professional guidelines, including increased training requirements, for school nutrition staff. According to the School Nutrition Association, the USDA created the professional standards to help employees build skills, stay current on school nutrition programs and ensure proper training for school nutrition staff.
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Districts must provide buses for split-custody children
The Legal Intelligencer
Pennsylvania school districts are required to provide free transportation to students whose parents live at two different residences within the same district, the state Supreme Court has ruled. On Aug. 26, a divided court ruled that a school district must provide transportation to the homes of both parents if they have split custody and both live within the district. The decision in Watts v. Manheim Township School District upheld a ruling from the Commonwealth Court. The high court's analysis focused on the interplay between the transportation and compulsory attendance provisions in the state School Code, and rejected the district's argument that language in the transportation provision was not mandatory.
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Texas school finance needs repair again
San Antonio Express-News
The state's long-running school finance battle will be back before the Texas Supreme Court today as justices hear the latest version of familiar arguments. This latest case was brought by some 600 school districts representing about 75 percent of the state's schoolchildren. The lawsuit was filed four years ago after lawmakers slashed education funding, but even before those cuts, it was clear that the most recent attempt to repair the system was not working. And students in property-poor areas are stuck in school districts with less access to funding than richer districts.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    Report: More than half of students struggle with reading (eSchool News)
Common Core testing takeaways (District Administration Magazine)
Why pushing kids to learn too much too soon is counterproductive (The Washington Post)
This map shows how many more students are living in poverty than 9 years ago (The Huffington Post)
3 tips to boost student health and improve learning (Education Dive)

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




#NAESP16 call for proposals is now open
NAESP
You are invited to submit a proposal for NAESP's 2016 Best Practices for Better Schools Conference. NAESP is the ONLY national conference devoted specifically to pre-K-8 educators. Come join other nationally recognized speakers and shape our professional conference program by sharing your knowledge, expertise and best practices. As one of the premier national educational conferences, your presentation will reach educators from around the country and can ultimately have an impact on student success.
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Register for upcoming webcast: How leaders drive student learning
NAESP
Based on The Wallace Foundation 5 Key Practices, panelists will discuss what values, beliefs and personal dimensions they bring to their role as building administrators to meet the specific needs of their school. The behaviors that make a principal successful as they drive student learning, such as resilience, self-confidence, self-analysis, flexibility, situational awareness, relational awareness, positivity and mindfulness will be explored to drive student learning.
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