In the News
Report: Delco schools see rise in low-income students
Philadelphia Inquirer, November 18, 2013
With a lower median income and denser pockets of poverty than neighboring communities, Delaware County is struggling to educate all of its students, according to a report from an education advocacy group.Arlington schools invite data analysts to help reduce dropout rate
Washington Post, November 18, 2013
Arlington public schools are kicking off a competition Monday that invites data analysts from around the country to help solve one of the most vexing problems in public education: how to keep kids from dropping out.
Southern WV Schools Set Anti-Bullying Campaign
Eyewitness News Online, November 16, 2013
Schools in southern West Virginia are taking a stand against bullying.
Md. excluded large number of special-education students in national test
Baltimore Sun, November 16, 2013
Maryland's scores on a national reading test may have been inflated because the state's schools excluded a higher percentage of special-education students than any other state, according to data from the U.S. Department of Education.Pa. Study Asks: Has 'Zero Tolerance' Gone Too Far?
Education Week, November 14, 2013
Policies originally designed to keep guns out of schools have instead kept excessive numbers of Pennsylvania students out of their classrooms as educators applied the rules in an overly broad manner, says a new report by the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania.
Want to Close the Achievement Gap? Require Pre-K
Education Week, November 14, 2013
We are a nation convinced our schools need to be different, our students more successful, and our graduates more ready. In our quest to achieve this, opposing camps have formed regarding standards and assessment. It seems common sense and common ground are receding to the background. Let's bring them forward and start at the beginning. There are some fundamentals that could help. W.Va. joins national campaign to improve third-graders' reading proficiency
The Republic, November 14, 2013
West Virginia plans to join a national initiative aimed at improving third-graders' reading proficiency. The Campaign for Grade Level Reading focuses on ensuring that children in low-income families are reading at grade level by the end of third grade.Delaware officials says all-girls charter school closing because of poor academic performance
Washington Post, November 12, 2013
Delaware education officials say a predominantly black, all-girls charter school with a history of financial and academic struggles will close at the end of the school year. Secretary of Education Mark Murphy said Wednesday that he would not recommend renewal of the charter for Reach Academy for Girls in New Castle, citing the school as the worst-performing academically in Delaware.Disadvantaged Students Receive Less-Effective Teaching, Study Says
Education Week, November 11, 2013
Students who qualify for federal lunch subsidies receive less effective instruction in school, on average. And that disparity appears to be a function of the schools those students attend, rather than the classes they're assigned, concludes a federally financed study released last week.ELLs and Nation's Report Card: No Change in Reading and Math Performance
Education Week, November 11, 2013
The reading and math achievement of the nation's English-language learners in 4th and 8th grades shows few signs of budging, according to national test data results released last week. Results from the 2013 National Assessment of Educational Progress, better known as NAEP, or the nation's report card, show that 8th grade English-language learners posted an average score in math that rose by two points since 2011, the last time the test was given, and one point in reading on the exam's 500-point scale, though neither is a statistically significant gain. For 4th grade ELLs, the average math score was exactly the same as two years ago and for reading, it dropped by one point, which was not a statistically significant change.N.J., Va. Governors May Face Legislative Hurdles
Education Week, November 11, 2013
The two gubernatorial contests this year produced the re-election of a staunch foe of teachers' unions in New Jersey and the election of a solid friend of public school funding in Virginia. Both winners, though, must deal with legislatures controlled by the opposite party as they consider new K-12 policy pushes.
Pre-K suspensions common in Maryland schools
Baltimore Sun, November 11, 2013
Dozens of pre-kindergartners were suspended last school year in Maryland, with the most suspensions in Baltimore, highlighting a little-known practice that some education experts say is too extreme for toddlers who are just being introduced to educational settings.
Book highlights desegregation battle in Delaware
Delaware NewsZap, November 9, 2013
A higher education professor who grew up in Wilmington has written a book that chronicles the struggles between the proponents and the opponents of desegregation in education in Delaware and the important legal role that cases in the First State played nationally.Amid testing gains, D.C. students exhibit achievement gaps
Washington Post, November 8, 2013
Students in the District’s public schools made significant gains in math and reading achievement during the past two years, including progress among black, white, Hispanic and low-income students, according to national exam results released this week.Minorities More Than Whites Embrace the Value of College, Survey Finds
Education Week, November 8, 2013
While minorities worry more than whites about paying for higher education, a new survey finds that Latinos, Asian-Americans and African-Americans are more likely to see value in the investment for themselves and for the country overall. Delaware's scores on national student tests show progress
Delaware Online, November 8, 2013
Delaware’s scores on a major national test show big gains over the past 10 years and some modest advances in the past two. State education officials hope implementation of Race to the Top programs will fuel a bigger boost, saying there are still areas of serious concern.U.S. Math, Reading Achievement Edges Up, But Gaps Remain
Education Week, November 7, 2013
The reading and mathematics achievement of the country’s 8th grade students improved in the last two years, but the performance of 4th graders remains stubbornly mixed, with progress in math, but not in reading, according to national test data released Thursday.
Education Week, November 7, 2013
Adding the element of race to a discussion makes people uncomfortable. It is as if some illusive, powerful force has entered and takes up all the air. For all the hope we hold as our national image, we can be a hard place. In fact, we have a horrible and unhealed history. It becomes difficult to move forward because we are not expanding our understanding. It is a rare moment....and one of true opportunity...when someone opens a door to welcome a different perspective and a dialogue is entered that can hold multiple truths of those whose life experiences are vastly different. Yet, educators cannot avoid these face to face encounters...in fact, we must seek them out... if we aspire to create environments safe for all students and produce a generation of young adults who will lead well in a multi-cultural, multi racial world.Education summit stresses every child has the ability to learn
The State Journal, November 7, 2013
At the Education Alliance's education summit titled "Excellence in Education: It's Everyone's Business," the echoing answer by speakers and presenters was accountability and early literacy, along with the belief that every child has the ability to learn.
D.C. posts significant gains on national test, outpacing nearly every state
Washington Post, November 7, 2013
The District’s fourth- and eighth-graders made significant gains on national math and reading tests this year, posting increases that were among the city’s largest in the history of the exam.
High School Dropout Rate: Causes and Costs
Education Week, November 6, 2013
On Monday I dug into the current state of high school dropouts and where American students today stand in historic statistics. In my research, I discovered that while dropout percentages are much lower today than they were a few decades ago, there is still a lot of room for improvement.Delaware principals need to be tougher in evaluating teachers, state says
News Journal, November 6, 2013
Only 1 percent of Delaware teachers were rated ineffective during the first full year of the state’s evaluation system, according to new Department of Education figures. State officials say that shows school leaders aren’t making the tough evaluations needed to give honest feedback and weed out low-performing teachers.Schools Still See Surges in Homeless Students
Education Week, November 5, 2013
In the year after Hurricane Katrina buffeted the Gulf Coast, Denise Riemer and Larissa Dickinson, both homeless education liaisons for their school district, saw more than 2,000 homeless students and their families in the public schools in Mobile, Ala.
Rethinking Parent Engagement
Education Week, October 30, 2013
It's that time of the school year, where droves of parents descend upon their children's schools for parent-teacher conferences. Unfortunately, for many, this will be the first and last time parents and teachers see each other this year. We might see them at the book fair or the field trip to the museum, but the challenge for schools is to engage parents in more meaningful ways.High school graduation rates fall in Prince George’s County, but improve statewide
Washington Post, October 30, 2013
The high school graduation rate has improved across Maryland, according to figures released Wednesday, but Prince George’s County saw its graduation rate fall by 3.3 percentage points, leaving the school district more than 10 percentage points behind the state average.Delaware Readiness Teams collaborate to improve early childhood education
NPR, October 29, 2013
A collaboration between educators and community members to improve early childhood education in Delaware is getting off the ground. The Delaware Office of Early Learning hosted 19 Delaware Readiness Teams from across the state in Dover Tuesday to offer a progress report.
W.Va. graduation rates on the rise
Herald Mail Media, October 29, 2013
The Eastern Panhandle’s seven high schools mirror their counterparts across West Virginia in improving graduation, dropout and attendance rates, according to figures supplied by superintendents in Morgan, Berkeley and Jefferson counties.Most States Surpass Global Average in Math, Science
Education Week, October 24, 2013
A new analysis of how all U.S. states stack up against countries around the world shows that 8th grade students in 35 states outperformed the international average in math and those in 46 did so in science.
Why We Don’t Use the Word “Bully” to Label Kids
StopBullying.gov, October 23, 2013
The labels bully, victim, and target are used often by media, researchers and others to refer to children who bully others and children who are bullied. Yet, you won’t find these terms used in this way on StopBullying.gov. For example, rather than calling a child a "bully," our website refers to "the child who bullied."
Who Is an 'English-Language Learner'?
Pew Charitable Trusts, October 22, 2013
If a U.S. student learning English were to drive across the country, he would find that in some states he would be classified an “English-language learner,” eligible to receive extra support. In other states, the same student would not qualify for the special designation—or the additional help.Common Core and Disadvantaged Students
Education Week, October 22, 2013
It's no secret that there has been plenty of heated debate about the Common Core State Standards. Supporters say we need the standards to strengthen our workforce. Opponents contend that control over educational expectations should rest with local school boards and teachers, causing some lawmakers to back away from the standards. In May, Indiana Gov. Mike Pence signed legislation delaying common-core implementation in his state; funding for the standards has stalled in Michigan; and bills scrapping the common core are pending in Pennsylvania and elsewhere.Fairfax schools chief to propose deep cuts
Washington Post, October 21, 2013
During the past five years, the schools have seen a surge in student enrollment as the county continues to attract immigrants and families seeking a top public education. Enrollment has increased by 15,000 students since 2008, outpacing school funding from the county, schools administrators said. At the same time, populations of students taking classes for English as a second language and those who qualify for free and reduced-price meals — a measure of poverty — have climbed dramatically.Language-Gap Study Bolsters a Push for Pre-K
New York Times, October 21, 2013
Nearly two decades ago, a landmark study found that by age 3, the children of wealthier professionals have heard words millions more times than those of less educated parents, giving them a distinct advantage in school and suggesting the need for increased investment in prekindergarten programs.For many young D.C. parents, city schools remain a sticking point
Washington Post, October 21, 2013
De’Andre Anderson and his wife don’t have children yet. But when the couple bought a home in Southeast Washington after years of renting on Capitol Hill, Anderson, 43, began mulling what they could do to help the neighborhood schools. Now Anderson is leading a campaign to persuade Schools Chancellor Kaya Henderson to establish the first application-only secondary school east of the Anacostia River.Community forum a great way to involve parents and friends in education
Bluefield Daily Telegraph, October 19, 2013
Almost without exception, the parents we heard from in our school district area are totally tired of what they perceive as the excessive standardized testing that the Commonwealth of Virginia has implemented upon the children. They said in no uncertain terms that everyone is stressed to the limit and there was no argument on that point.
Rural, Urban Students in Poverty Show Different Working Memory Problems
Education Week, October 18, 2013
Students in poverty have been repeatedly shown to have poorer working memory than higher income students, but those working memory problems seem to differ between students in rural and urban poverty.Pennsylvania Will Release School Funds
New York Times, October 16, 2013
Gov. Tom Corbett said Wednesday that he has agreed to release $45 million for the Philadelphia schools as the district goes through its worst financial crisis in memory and questions swirl about a student’s apparently asthma-related death after attending a school without a nurse on site.Fewer expulsions in D.C. public charter schools in 2012-13 year
Washington Post, October 15, 2013
The District’s charter schools expelled far fewer students in the 2012-13 school year than the school year before, but individual charters’ expulsion rates continued to vary widely, according to D.C. Public Charter School Board data released Tuesday.
In Fairfax, graduation rates improve slightly
Washington Post, October 11, 2013
The four-year graduation rate for Fairfax County seniors reached 92 percent last year, beating the statewide average by almost three points, according to recently released data from the Virginia Department of Education.Common Core: N.Y. districts with more Spanish-speaking students struggle on new tests
The Journal News, October 10, 2013
Most school districts are trying to come to terms with disappointing results on the new, harder state tests for grades 3 to 8.
But districts with large numbers of Spanish-speaking students got absolutely blasted on the new tests and now have to figure out how to move forward.Hispanic students outnumber other groups in Montgomery County’s early grades
Washington Post, October 8, 2013
Hispanic students for the first time make up more of Montgomery County’s kindergarten and first-grade classes than children from any other ethnic or racial group, a significant shift that marks the increasing diversity of the high-performing school district.
Building a District Culture to Foster Innovation
Education Week, October 2, 2013
In the 13,200-student Albemarle County school district in Virginia, many students spend their summers in “maker spaces,” building spaceships out of cardboard or participating in computer-programming workshops to learn how to code.
Textbooks are out, iPads are in for fifth grade SASD social studies
The Reporter, September 28, 2013
The old approach to fifth-grade social studies in the Souderton Area School District was teachers lecturing to students with lessons centered around a textbook.
New Research Consortium Targets D.C. Schools
Education Week, September 25, 2013
Schools in the nation's capital end up the guinea pigs for many new education programs and policies, but now they will get a stronger say in research to figure out which of...
Clinton school uses incentives to boost MSA scores
Gazette, September 24, 2013
Incentives have gone a long way at James Ryder Randall Elementary School, helping a struggling school post gains on state assessment tests while most other elementary and middle schools posted losses.
Philadelphia Seeks Salvation in Lessons From Model School
Education Week, September 24, 2013
In little more than two years, the Philadelphia school district has stripped $400 million out of its annual budget, closed 30 schools, eliminated nearly 7,000 jobs, and lost more than 20,000 students. City has nearly a third of Va.'s low-performing schools
Times Dispatch, September 17, 2013
Nearly a third of the lowest performing schools in the state are in the city of Richmond, according to test results released today by the Virginia Department of Education.Higher grad rate could help W.Va. crime costs
The Shepherdstown Chronicle, September 16, 2013
A policy group says a 5 percent increase in the high school graduation rate among males in West Virginia could save $100 million each year in crime-related costs as well as boost the state's economy. - Attack on desegregation: Virginia activists simultaneously helped lead the fight for free, fair education
The Daily Progress, September 15, 2013
Fifty years ago today, four African-American girls, dressed in white, gathered in the basement of the Sixteenth Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala. Addie Mae Collins, Carole Robertson and Cynthia Wesley — all 14 — and Denise McNair, 11, chatted about the first week of school as they prepared to participate in the morning’s service.
State and Locals to U.S. Senate: Rewrite No Child Left Behind Act
Education Week, September 12, 2013
A collection of big-name state and local government groups really, really wants U.S. Senate leaders to bring a bill to the floor to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, and soon. Expecting the Best Yields Results in Massachusetts
The New York Times, September 12, 2013
Conventional wisdom and popular perception hold that American students are falling further and further behind in science and math achievement. The statistics from this state tell a different story. Va. Battle Brews Over Law Authorizing State-Run District
Education Week, September 10, 2013
School boards in Virginia are planning a legal fight against a new law signed by Gov. Robert F. McDonnell that creates a state-run K-12 district for schools performing poorly academically. Such a move would challenge a policy that has been put to use in various ways by officials in such states as Louisiana, Michigan, and Tennessee seeking more direct control over struggling public schools.Governor Jack Markell weekly address: Implementing Common Core Standards
WDDE, September 6, 2013
Education was the focus of Governor Jack Markell’s weekly message as he discussed the state’s transition to the new common core standards.District officials turn to home visits to boost schools
Washington Post, September 6, 2013
After years of focusing their attention on the quality of teaching inside city classrooms, District public schools officials are turning to a new front in their efforts to improve the schools: family living rooms.States May Move Closer to Uniform Way of Identifying ELLs
Education Week, September 5, 2013
The widespread adoption of the common-core standards and the imminent rollout of shared content assessments is pushing states to find common ground in yet another dimension of schooling: how best to serve the growing population of English-language learners.Calling Black Men To The Blackboard
Shanker Blog, September 4, 2013
The parallels between prisons and schools are well-documented. The term “school-to-prison pipeline” refers to the fact that many school systems are unable to provide struggling students with enough skills and support, thereby increasing their likelihood of entering correctional facilities. Those students most trapped in this pipeline are Black males. Given this reality, like Attorney General Holder, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan described a policy initiative aimed at improving the in- and out-of-school outcomes for Black boys: increase the number Black male teachers in U.S. public schools.WV releases new student performance data
The State Journal, September 4, 2013
Data released under a new education accountability system shows less than one-third of West Virginia public schools are meeting goals for both student learning and improvement. Fewer than half the schools are meeting just one of those goals.Federal Survey Examines Parent Engagement in Education
Education Week, September 3, 2013
A new national survey finds that most parents are attending their schools' parent-teacher conferences, receiving school notes and e-mails, and helping their children with homework.After Crisis, Philadelphia Students Head Back to School
Education Week, September 3, 2013
Before they start the school year together, the staff at the Kensington High School for Creative and Performing Arts will grieve: They'll hold a wake of sorts for laid-off colleagues, reviewing a DVD of their photos and recounting their accomplishments, and then they'll head across the street to eat.