Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Letting teachers re-invent their own wheel - The Answer Sheet - The Washington Post

Letting teachers re-invent their own wheel - The Answer Sheet - The Washington Post

Letting teachers re-invent their own wheel

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Joanne Yatvin, a vet­eran public school educator, author and past president of the National Council of Teachers of English, wrote this piece in 1990, when it was published in Education Week. I am republishing it now as a reminder of how some things change over time — and some don’t. Yatvin is now teaching part-time at Portland State University.

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Last Stand for Children First: Last Stand for Children and Peterson Testing Partner to Create New Assessments

Last Stand for Children First: Last Stand for Children and Peterson Testing Partner to Create New Assessments

Last Stand for Children and Peterson Testing Partner to Create New Assessments


It was with a great deal of excitement here in the Last Stand for Children First home office that we reacted to the announcement that the second round of the Race to the Top initiative would focus on early childhood education. That is because for the last several months, Last Stand has partnered with Peterson Testing, a purveyor of the finest in standardized testing materials for education.

We are currently designing the next generation of tests for the next generation of students and by Fall well will be ready to roll out our line of testing materials for children between 3 and 5 years of age. It had previously been

Schooling in the Ownership Society: Murdoch's new fixer, Joel Klein

Schooling in the Ownership Society: Murdoch's new fixer, Joel Klein

Murdoch's new fixer, Joel Klein

Reforming the "reformers"

Murdoch
Klein
Johnny-come-lately school reform profiteer Rupert Murdoch has to deal with yet another scandal. It seems his people have been doing some phone hacking, bribing and spying on police on behalf of some murder suspects -- or something like that. Who the hell can understand this latest Murdoch mess?

So who does he call on to bail his News Corp conglomerate out of trouble? None other that fixer Joel Klein, former N.Y. schools chancellor. It was Klein who recently engineered the $400 million-dollar deal between News

Kline Unhappy With Duncan's Lack of Details on NCLB Waivers Plan - Politics K-12 - Education Week

Kline Unhappy With Duncan's Lack of Details on NCLB Waivers Plan - Politics K-12 - Education Week

Kline Unhappy With Duncan's Lack of Details on NCLB Waiver Plan

So, Rep. John Kline, R-Minn., the chairman of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, is less than thrilled with the response from U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to his request for more information about the department's plan to give states leeway on parts of the No Child Left Behind Act in exchange for signing onto a package of reforms-to-be-named-later.

Here's Duncan's response. To summarize, if you expected the department to provide Kline & Co. with a thorough, detailed explanation of the waiver proposal, you'll be sorely disappointed.

The letter lays out the rationale for the waiver plan (the law is overdue for reauthorization, states are clamoring for an update, the vast majority of the nation's schools will be identified as failing). And, in response to Kline's query on the legality of waivers, Duncan cites a section of the law that gives the department flexibility to waive

Another question for the blogger. « Fred Klonsky's blog

Another question for the blogger. « Fred Klonsky's blog

Another question for the blogger.

A teacher writes:

Do you think that with so many NEA members complaining about the endorsement to the fact that some have threatened to “quit” the union it gives ammo to those that are currently doing their best to bust the unions? I can see them spinning it now: largest union’s own members say unions are no good!

This is not aimed at you in any way…I respect your viewpoints and know you’re a huge union supporter; you just disagree with some of the decisions that are made up top, and lots of the time I agree with you. I’m talking about the people who spout off about it who you know are many of the same people who never attended a union meeting in their lives, never even tried to make a difference in their union.

Just thought you’d have a good take on this, and I respect that you’re always honest when you

Digital Native Myth Buster « My Island View

Digital Native Myth Buster « My Island View

Digital Native Myth Buster

After a wonderful experience at the ISTE11 Conference in Philadelphia, I finally made the decision to get away from any computer and get myself to the beach for a week to decompress. Of course, I have my Droid, so I am still somewhat connected, but frustratingly so. A mobile device doesn’t yet fully replace the speed and convenience of a loaded laptop or desktop. Yet, it is that very inconvenience with only a mobile phone at the beach that enables me to say to my family that I am, for the most part, disconnected. If truth be told I have gotten a few socially oriented Tweets off with beach and sunset pictures. I needed to share some of those moments. I guess my reality is that I am not so good at decompression by disconnecting.

During my stay at the beach, I am constantly asked by folks what is it that I am doing these days. Of course explaining my involvement in Social Media in Education is a discussion that eradicates decompression, so I try to simplify. “I am involved with using technology as a learning tool in education.” This often brings the response about how kids today know everything they need to know about computers. They are “Digital Natives!”

It is that very attitude by adults that had a generation of kids programming the family VCR’s to record shows, or to at least stop the blinking “12 AM” light. That single task may have marked the very time when adults relinquished responsibility for technology to kids. It is true that when it comes to Technology stuff, kids approach

Jonathan P. Raymond, SCUSD Superintendent Budget Update

July 6, 2011
Dear Colleagues:
As SCUSD’s year began on July 1, I would like to wish you all a belated happy new year! Let’s hope the positive momentum from the past 12 months keeps growing as we work to improve our schools for the children we serve.
Of course, that work cannot be accomplished without our many great employees. From bus drivers to principals, office managers to teachers, each of you play a itally important role in preparing students for college and careers – our mission as we move forward.
Last month, we rescinded 191 certificated and classified lay-off notices. This week, we will begin the process of rescinding more certificated lay-off notices to bring as many of our teachers and counselors back to their campuses in the fall as we can, given our fiscal constraints.
You may have heard in the news that the recently signed state budget provides “flat funding” for schools. But “flat funding” doesn’t mean we are without challenges. Our costs – health benefits, chief among them – continue to rise. And our state funding is actually less than what we received last year due to fluctuations in our ADA (Average Daily Attendance) and reductions in categorical dollars. Confounding these challenges, the state budget partly relies on an anticipated future climb in tax revenues. Therefore, we believe it is prudent to move ahead with rescissions but to proceed cautiously.
As teacher positions are tied to class sizes, we are planning at this time to:
·         Retain the 25-to-1 ratio in kindergarten and first grade as per our agreement with  CTA
·         Return to 2010-11’s 33-to-1 ratio in fourth through sixth grades
·         Return to 2010-11’s 31-to-1 ratio for seventh and eighth grades
·         Return to 2010-11’s 35-to-1 ratio for ninth through 12th grades

Given that we are still delving into the details of the state budget and many uncertainties remain, we will continue to monitor and review staffing levels and layoff rescissions throughout this month. We should have a clearer picture by early August.
For now, and as a precautionary measure, we are continuing with plans to increase second- and third-grade classroom size to 29-to-1. With the specter of mid-year cuts looming, and projections that 2012-2013 will be another tough year for schools, we need to retain flexibility should state revenues fail to materialize as projected.

With these formulas in place, we will be bringing back 142 full-time equivalent (FTE) teachers beginning this week. In addition, we will be bringing back all 14.6 FTE counseling positions and three of the four pink-slipped high school assistant principals.
This is the plan for now. I know this is hard. I understand the stress that comes with the noticing process – and with all budget matters in this frustrating time of state underfunding. Our intention is to alleviate that stress for as many of our employees as possible as quickly as possible while keeping our financial responsibilities as stewards of taxpayer dollars in mind.
I will continue to update you as more information becomes available.
Sincerely,
Jonathan P. Raymond
Superintendent 

Big Education Ape: 7-6-11 PM Invitation to a Dialogue: Fixing the Schools Edition

Big Education Ape: Ed News Now
Big Education Ape: Ed News Now
Published by Coopmike48 – 7 contributors today

Invitation to a Dialogue: Fixing the Schools

nytimes.com - To the Editor: Re “Smells Like School Spirit,” by David Brooks (column, July 1): Mr. Brooks has misrepresented my views. While I have criticized charter schools, I am always car...

DianeRavitch

Swanson’s swan song. « Fred Klonsky's blog

preaprez.wordpress.com - Walking out of the hall yesterday, I walked by lame duck IEA President Ken Swanson. It will most likely be the last time I see him. I have been told by people who know him far better than me that h...

fklonsky

Win the Future! Teach Your Children . . . Less | MyFDL

bigeducationape.blogspot.com - Win the Future! Teach Your Children . . . Less | MyFDLWin the Future! Teach Your Children . . . Lessfrom Firedoglake by ScarecrowSchool districts all over the country are reducing school days, firi...

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The Brooks/Ravitch Dialogue Expands - Living in Dialogue

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Invitation to a Dialogue: Fixing the Schools

nytimes.com - To the Editor: Re “Smells Like School Spirit,” by David Brooks (column, July 1): Mr. Brooks has misrepresented my views. While I have criticized charter schools, I am always car...

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Stop labeling teachers, label the lawmakers

bigeducationape.blogspot.com - Stop labeling teachers, label the lawmakersStop labeling teachers, label the lawmakersBy John KuhnApr 14, 2011, 08:39Email this articlePrinter friendly pageProvided by John Kuhn as printed in the M...

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Sacramento Press / State Assembly Passes Fair Education Act

bigeducationape.blogspot.com - Sacramento Press / State Assembly Passes Fair Education ActState Assembly Passes Fair Education Actby Ken PierceTuesday, the California State Assembly passed a bill that would require schools to fa...

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Another Blow to Farmworkers

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N.J. Senate President Sweeney targeted by GOP robo-calls

northjersey.com - TRENTON — First, Senate President Stephen Sweeney felt the wrath of fellow Democrats for partnering with Republican Governor Christie on a landmark employee benefits overhaul. Now he's being thank...

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At Twitter Townhall, Obama Dodges 14th Amendment Question

news.firedoglake.com - The Twitter town hall with President Obama actually produced a decent question. Renegade Nerd asked: “Mr. President, will you issue an executive order to raise the debt ceiling pursuant to section ...

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Have You Ever Partied for a Policy? « MomsRising Blog

momsrising.org - Getting together with friends is great. Getting together with friends for a purpose is even better. With so many important policy initiatives happening across the country at both the state and nati...

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Ms. Jablonski's Class Blog: Once Again...

bigeducationape.blogspot.com - Ms. Jablonski's Class Blog: Once Again...Once Again...by L. Jablonski...trying to make this class blogging thing work. My goal: a one-stop place for class assignments, agendas, readings, comments...

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Our Middle Fingers Are The Same Color, Too | The Jose Vilson

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Stop labeling teachers, label the lawmakers

bigeducationape.blogspot.com - Stop labeling teachers, label the lawmakersStop labeling teachers, label the lawmakersBy John KuhnApr 14, 2011, 08:39Email this articlePrinter friendly pageProvided by John Kuhn as printed in the M...

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School Tech Connect: Rahm's Kids

schooltechconnect.com - Hear, Hear! And here, here! I fully intend to examine the length of the school day, the length of the school year, the curriculum, the use of data, the access to recess, exercise and nutritious f...

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The Presidential Planner: #AskObama Twitter Town Hall

blogs.abcnews.com - « Previous | Main July 06, 2011 7:56 AM ABC News' Mary Bruce (@marykbruce) reports: It’s Twitter day at the White House. The Twitterer in Chief, who just started tweeting himself a few weeks ago, w...

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Troops to Teachers ESEA/NCLB Newsletter Signup

k12newsnetwork.us2.list-manage.com - Yes, let's put returning veterans back to work as teachers under the Troops to Teachers part of No Child Left Behind! Sign me up for newsletter updates to ESEA/No Child Left Behind education legisl...

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