Home » Daily Headlines » Daily Headlines for January 18, 2012

Daily Headlines for January 18, 2012

Charter School Laboratories
Wall Street Journal, January 17, 2012

Todd Ziebarth, vice president of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, on which states are most supportive of charter school growth.

FROM THE STATES

ARIZONA

Arizona School-Voucher Push Is Revived
Tucson Citizen, AZ, January 17, 2012

As he has before, Rep. Jack Harper proposed a bill this month that would let voters decide whether to change the Arizona Constitution to permit the use of school vouchers.

Charter-School Story Left Out Facts
Arizona Republic, AZ, January 18, 2012

The article on Tuesday “Arizona charter schools put to test” earns a woefully incomplete grade. Focusing entirely on schools whose charters will not be renewed, there is no mention of the thousands of kids who receive a superb education in charter schools.

Charters Must Improve Record
Arizona Republic, AZ, January 18, 2012

Advocates of Arizona’s charter-school system never believed the hybrid, lightly regulated schools would be the answer to the woes of public schooling in Arizona.

CALIFORNIA

Whistle-Blowing Teachers To Open A Charter School
Los Angeles Times, CA, January 18, 2012

They lost their jobs during a cheating scandal at Crescendo schools. Former union chief and charter foe A.J. Duffy will lead them.

Creating Teacher Evaluations Systems Californians Can Believe In
Mecury News, CA, January 17, 2012

While it is increasingly difficult to find consensus about most education issues, two related ideas have earned nearly universal acceptance. First, good teaching matters. Effective teachers make a significant difference in students’ learning and their lives. Second, teacher evaluation methods are inadequate. They fail to differentiate good teaching from bad.

COLORADO

I’m Pro-Choice When It Comes To Schools
Denver Post, CO, January 18, 2012

In fact, when I point out to them that, based on the School Growth Model, their school’s test scores aren’t that great, it doesn’t matter. Instead, they talk to me about high expectations, challenge, and their firm opinion that their school is less hostile to their beliefs than the traditional public school.

Calling for Change in Douglas County
Education News Colorado, CO, January 18, 2012

Some 20 speakers, many of them teachers, used the occasion to vent concerns about deep cuts to schools that have swollen class sizes and to accuse board members of starving public education in their quest to implement the state’s first district-run voucher program.

Denver School Choice Program Offers Parents Ease, Options
KDVR, CO, January 17, 2012

Under DPS’s new, centralized school enrollment program, families can apply to five schools — traditional neighborhood schools, charter schools, magnet schools — with one, uniform application.

CONNECTICUT

Report Shows Connecticut Losing Ground In Ranking of Charter Schools
New Haven Register, CT, January 18, 2012

Connecticut lost ground in the annual ranking of state laws that govern charter schools, mainly because other states such as Maine and New Mexico passed more progressive reforms in the past year.

Charter Revision Panel Members Approved
Connecticut Post, CT, January 18, 2012

Education reform was the main topic of conversation Tuesday among Mayor Bill Finch’s choices for the Charter Revision Commission

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

‘Levy Report’: DCPS Gets Millions More Than Charters
Washington Post Blog, DC, January 17, 2012

In September 2010, D.C. Chief Financial Officer Natwar M. Gandhi hired education finance expert Mary Levy as a consultant to study the funding of public and public charter schools.

FLORIDA

Charter Schools Open To Homeless Students
News Chief, FL, January 18, 2012

All students deserve an education, including homeless children. For the first time, the Lake Wales Charter School System is responsible for making sure that happens.

Bay Haven Plans Expansion
Panama City News Herald, FL, January 17, 2012

Bay Haven Charter Academy officials have notified Bay District Schools of their intent to expand the current enrollment of their elementary and middle school by 15 percent next year.

HAWAII

What To Do With Extra Money For Charter Schools
Honolulu Civil Beat, HI, January 17, 2012

There’s an account overflowing with money, and the Hawaii Charter School Administrative Office wants to use it to help fund school facilities. But lawmakers have their eye on some of that $5 million for other things.

KENTUCKY

Charter School Mirage
Louisville Courier Journal, KY, January 17, 2012

Like an unwelcome relative at family gatherings, the push for charter schools has returned to Kentucky.

LOUISIANA

Gov. Bobby Jindal Details School Voucher, Teacher Tenure Proposals
Times Picayune, LA, January 17, 2012

Gov. Bobby Jindal outlined a far-reaching plan aimed at improving education in Louisiana on Tuesday, one that would expand the use of private school vouchers statewide, make it easier to open new charter schools and all but eliminate the job protections afforded teachers by the state’s tenure laws.

Transfers Would Open Floodgates
Monroe News Star, LA, January 17, 2012

Students in all but three schools in the Monroe City School System and nearly half of Ouachita Parish Schools could be eligible for vouchers to attend private schools under Gov. Bobby Jindal’s proposed plan for education released Tuesday.

MASSACHUSETTS

Mayor Menino Vows To Overhaul School Lottery
Boston Herald, MA, January 17, 2012

Boston Mayor Thomas M. Menino tonight pledged the city will “radically” overhaul its oft-criticized school assignment program and move back toward neighborhood schools, in a wide-ranging speech before a host of local, state and national leaders, including Gov. Deval Patrick, U.S. Rep. Stephen F. Lynch, U.S. Sen. Scott Brown and Democratic Senate hopeful Elizabeth Warren.

MARYLAND

Education Advocacy Group To Focus On Pre-K Funding, Charter Schools
Baltimore Sun, MD, January 17, 2012

A new education advocacy group, formed late last year, has pledged to lobby for charter schools, funding for pre-kindergarten education and leave time for parents attending meetings with teachers.

MISSOURI

Candidates Are Scarce for Seats on KC School Board
Kansas City Star, MO, January 18, 2012

With the future of its elected school board under fire, Kansas City mustered a scant slate of candidates at the filing deadline Tuesday.

St. Louis Schools Are Near Reaccreditation, Data Show
St. Louis Post-Dispatch, MO, January 18, 2012

Louis Schools Superintendent Kelvin Adams showed data to the state’s school board Tuesday that indicate the school system is just a handful of students away from receiving the academic points needed to regain accreditation.

Sinquefield Ally Wants Teacher Tenure Abolished
St. Louis Post-Dispatch, MO, January 18, 2012

Teacher tenure in Missouri would be abolished under an initiative petition filed Tuesday by a Jefferson City attorney who has worked with retired investor Rex Sinquefield to overhaul Missouri ‘s income tax and give St. Louis control of its police department.

Governor Pushes For More Funding of Missouri K-12 Schools
News Leader, MO, January 18, 2012

Calling Missouri public schools “beacons of hope, opportunity and excellence,” Gov. Jay Nixon urged lawmakers to protect — and even boost — basic funding for public schools.

NEVADA

Another Victory for School Choice
Las Vegas Review-Journal , NV, January 18, 2012

A judge upheld Indiana’s private school voucher law last week, rejecting opponents’ arguments that the largest such program in the nation unconstitutionally uses public money to support religion.

In Era of Stagnant Growth, School Overcrowding Baffles Parents
Las Vegas Sun, NV, January 18, 2012

Of all the hot-button issues facing a school district, only a few things are more contentious than redrawing attendance zone boundaries and reassigning students to a different campus. Yet it’s a nightmarish exercise that the School District engages in annually, even as student enrollment districtwide has stabilized in recent years.

Charter Schools Thrive Amid Tough Environment
8 News Now, NV, January 17, 2012

Nevada is making the grade when it comes to charter schools. The state jumped three spots this year in a nationwide ranking. So are charter schools the way to go to ensure success in education?

NEW JERSEY

For Christie, 2012 Is the Year to Act on Education Reform — Again
New Jersey Spotlight, NJ, January 18, 2012

There was no declaration that it would be the year of education reform this time at Gov. Chris Christie’s State of the State address, and certainly no star educator of national prominence in the audience.

NEW YORK

Cuomo Pushes Teacher Evaluations
Wall Street Journal, January 18, 2012

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday told school districts to adopt new evaluation systems for teachers or risk losing a portion of their state funding, employing his expansive budgetary powers to set education policy.

Ending Unions’ Occupation of Albany
New York Post, NY, January 18, 2012

Using his state budget plan as an unprecedented vehicle for education reform, Cuomo boldly sought to end the longtime occupation of Albany by the state’s two powerful teachers unions — by linking adoption of a new teacher-evaluation system to receipt of some $800 million in increased state funding.

NORTH CAROLINA

Illusions of Choice
News Observer, NC, January 18, 2012

I reviewed the Wake County school board work session materials this past weekend. They are available online. The elementary school seat capacity charts are very discouraging. Michael Alves, the consultant who helped WCPSS develop this school choice plan, said that having adequate capacity was essential to a successful choice program. In much of Wake, we don’t have capacity. Choice is an illusion.

OREGON

New Law Leads To Major Changes in Public Schools
KLCC, OR, January 18, 2012

Starting January 1, parents in Oregon may without penalty or restriction send their children to any public school within their home district or any other. The only hitch is the school has to be willing to accept them.

PENNSYLVANIA

In New Jersey, Nonprofit at Center of Education Conflict
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, January 17, 2012

New Jersey education officials had a dilemma last summer: Following the approval of a record number of charter schools, questions were flying about how closely the applications had been screened.

U.S. Orders $3.2 Million Advance to Chester Upland
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, January 18, 2012

A federal court judge ordered Tuesday that the state keep the bankrupt Chester Upland School District afloat for a few more weeks by advancing it $3.2 million.

Bethlehem Area School District Institutes Charter School Review
Express Times, PA, January 17, 2012

The Bethlehem Area School District plans to heighten its oversight of charter schools within its borders. Charter schools will be evaluated annually to ensure students are being educated in line with state standards and their finances are in order, said Jack Silva, the district’s chief academic officer.

TENNESSEE

Haslam: State Committed to Charter Schools
Memphis Daily News, TN, January 18, 2012

The leader of a charter school company from out of state asked Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam in Memphis last week if there is anything he and other charter school leaders in the room should know about Memphis City Schools and Shelby County Schools.

VIRGINIA

School Leaders Decry Plan Mcdonnell’s Plans
The Virginian-Pilot, VA, January 18, 2012

Virginia’s school superintendents took aim at a couple of Gov. Bob McDonnell’s key legislative initiatives Tuesday, calling them unfunded mandates that would cause crippling budget cuts in local school divisions across the state.

WASHINGTON

Here’s What Can Be Done To Reform K-12 Education In Another Tough Budget Year
Seattle Times, WA, January 17, 2012

This bill also would allow for the creation of public charter schools. The state Board of Education would be given the authority to authorize public charter-school applications from local school districts, public colleges and public universities. These public charters would be free, optional and open to any student in Washington.

It’s Time To Take A Look At Charter Schools (Again)
Tri City Herald, WA, January 17, 2012

Washington voters have rejected charter schools three times but things are different now. Today, we are one of only eight states that don’t allow charter schools. It’s not always a good idea to follow the herd, but when everyone else is on a different path, it’s prudent to find out why.

WISCONSIN

Maple Grove Charter School Moves Forward
Wausau Daily Herald, WI, January 18, 2012

With a closure scare behind them and grant money in hand, organizers for a new Maple Grove charter school are steaming full speed ahead with a planned opening next fall.

VIRTUAL EDUCATION

Proposal Urges More Flexibility In Education
Kennebec Journal, ME, January 18, 2012

The plan he presented aims to promote rigorous standards while allowing flexibility in how students learn. Digital learning and independent study are examples of ways students can do that, the report says.

Pasco High Student Gets Head Start On College With Extra Classes
Tampa Bay Times, FL, January 18, 2012

Dombrowski has one Advanced Placement U.S. History class and an online science class to complete before earning his high school diploma on June 1 with the rest of his class.

Board Wants Online Classes For Students
Marietta Journal, GA, January 17, 2012

The Marietta school board intends to require all students who enter high school as freshmen next year to have completed at least one online class by the time they graduate.

Online Schools Aren’t Answer For Education
Times Herald, MI, January 18, 2012

Why are Republicans in the Michigan Legislature, including state Sen. Phil Pavlov, promoting a massive increase in the number of online or “cyber” classes offered to our children?

Testimony At Online Course Rule Hearing Overwhelmingly Against ‘Asynchronous’
Spokesman Review Blog, WA, January 17, 2012

Among the testimony at this afternoon’s hearing on Idaho’s new rule requiring high school students to take two online courses to graduate: