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Daily Headlines for June 8, 2012

Education Reform Is Much More Than Partisan Politics
Huffington Post Blog By Kevin P. Chavous, June 7, 2012

Hold on! Say what you want, but the truth is that the emerging cry for parental choice is warranted, and it’s not coming from the Republican Party playbook. In fact, the national education revolution is being driven by low-income parents who are disgusted with the fact that they are forced to send their kids to bad schools with no other options.

Scott Walker’s Education Victory
Wall Street Journal, June 7, 2012

Union reforms have freed more money for classrooms in Wisconsin . And not only in Wisconsin

Who Should Teach Our Children?
New York Times Blog , NY, June 7, 2012

In every other area of intellectual endeavor, we have succeeded by creating a professional class drawn from those who have excelled as college undergraduates. We need to do the same for primary and secondary education.

Home-School Convention ‘Quite A Cross-Section of Society’
Richmond Times-Dispatch, VA, June 8, 2012

Thousands of home-schooling parents and students are converging on Richmond for the annual meeting of the Home Educators Association of Virginia.

FROM THE STATES

CALIFORNIA

Open Enrollment Unlocks Path To Choice
Sacramento Bee, CA, June 8, 2012

Getting any school choice legislation passed in California is a daunting task. The Legislature, in thrall to the teachers unions, is unwilling to disrupt the moribund status quo, which has led to disastrous consequences for public education. But the Open Enrollment Act has jumped through various legal and political challenges and miraculously survived, though efforts are under way to have it weakened.

COLORADO

Denver School In Cheating Scandal Ponders Fate; DPS Says Upheaval Not Slated
Denver Post, CO, June 8, 2012

With the cheating investigation behind them and their beloved principal fired, the question for Beach Court Elementary School’s 363 students, their families and teachers is: What now?

CONNECTICUT

Charter School Grads Celebrate Success
Concord Monitor, CT, June 8, 2012

But now the 50 members of the Class of 2012 have their high school diplomas from the CSI Charter School . And they all had smiles on their faces as they tossed their caps into the air last night on the school lawn during their graduation ceremony.

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

SIMMONS: D.C.’s Incentive For Teachers To Live In City Is A Good Idea
Washington Times, DC, June 7, 2012
Introduced by D.C. Council member Vincent B. Orange, the Public School Teachers Income Exclusion Act proposes granting tax breaks to teachers who work for D.C. public schools and live in the city. The only major caveat appears to be that a teacher must have taught a full academic year to become eligible.

INDIANA

Matthew Tully: Stakes Are High In Outcome of Takeovers of 4 IPS Schools
Indianapolis Star, IN, June 8, 2012

Historic changes will come to four Indianapolis schools in the weeks ahead. Students and teachers will walk out of the buildings after the last day of the school year next week, and those who return several weeks later will enter what is essentially a grand experiment in education.

LOUISIANA

Teachers Challenge Tenure, Voucher Bills
Shreveport Times, LA, June 8, 2012

The Louisiana Federation of Teachers is challenging the constitutionality of Gov. Bobby Jindal’s education package using public school funds to pay for private and parochial school vouchers and making what the governor calls “significant changes” in the ways schools operate.

MARYLAND

Lowery Faces Tough Task As Education Leader
Maryland Gazette, MD, June 8, 2012

Dr. Lillian Lowery, Maryland’s new state superintendent of schools, proved herself a force to be reckoned with in Delaware , where she led the state to receive the first federal Race to the Top grant. We know great schools change everything — from the economy, to our communities, to a child’s future. But to have great schools, we need great leaders.

Bill Would Establish Review for New Charter Schools, Nix 5-Mile Radius
WGMD, MD, June 7, 2012

Noting that dozens of Delawareans have raised concerns in recent months, Representative Earl Jaques has introduced legislation aimed at improving communication between school districts and charter schools and increasing access to charter schools.

Montgomery County’s First Charter School Tells Rejected Students They Were Admitted
Washington Examiner, DC, June 7, 2012

Montgomery County’s first charter school botched its first year of admissions, notifying at least 72 children who did not receive seats at Community Montessori Public Charter School that they had been admitted.

MASSACHUSETTS

Stand For Children Has Record Of Winning Concessions From Teachers
Boston Globe, MA, June 8, 2012

Stand for Children, a group that arrived in Massachusetts less than a decade ago, is on the brink of pulling off a major coup: using hardball tactics to compel the state’s largest teachers union to give up some of its cherished seniority rights.

Boston Parents And Students Voice Frustration Over Teacher Contract Impasse
Boston Globe, MA, June 8, 2012

Parents and students expressed frustration at a City Council hearing Thursday on the impasse in contract negotiations between the Boston public schools and the Boston Teachers Union, saying the deadlock is affecting the quality of education.

Charter School Performances Get A Free Pass
Worchester Telegram, MA, June 8, 2012

In 2010, when the state identified Union Hill and Chandler Street Elementary Community as being among the state’s lowest performing schools, residents and city officials launched an acrimonious public debate on how to cure the academic ills the schools were facing.

NEW JERSEY

New Player At Table as Lawmakers Fine Tune Teacher Tenure Reform
New Jersey Spotlight, NJ, June 8, 2012

With a new twist coming out of the state Assembly, Democratic legislators continued this week to fine tune language and negotiate compromises in an effort to come up with a teacher tenure reform bill by the end of June.

60 Organizations Ask Statehouse Democrats To Reject Christie’s Budget, Upset With Loss Of School Funding
Star-Ledger, NJ, June 7, 2012

Sixty organizations that represent minorities, poor students, teachers and others delivered a letter Thursday to Democrats in Trenton , urging the legislators to reject the governor’s proposal to change the way public schools are funded.

NEW MEXICO

District To Reduce Drop-Offs For Charter Students
The New Mexican, NM, June 7, 2012

In an effort to save about $300,000 in transportation costs, Santa Fe Public Schools plans to reduce the number of afternoon bus drop-off locations for students attending the Academy for Technology and the Classics, Monte del Sol Charter School and Tierra Encantada Charter School .

NEW YORK

Charter-School Advocates Buy TV Ad
Wall Street Journal Blog, June 7, 2012

A feel-good commercial touting the benefits of charter schools will be running for the next week on cable television in New York City and Albany , paid for by the New York City Charter School Center .

NORTH CAROLINA

Corvian Shifts To Public Charter School Status
Charlotte Observer, NC, June 8, 2012

Stacey Haskell wanted her daughters to get the best education possible. So after Cora and Vivian Haskell were not selected to attend the Community School of Davidson, Stacey Haskell decided to start her own private school.

OHIO

City Schools Might Share Their Money With Charters
Columbus Dispatch, OH, June 8, 2012

Columbus City Schools would share local property-tax money with some charter schools under a plan put forward by Superintendent Gene Harris yesterday.

PENNSYLVANIA

School Director Files For Duquesne Charter
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, PA, June 8, 2012

An elected Duquesne school director, who has expressed her dissatisfaction with state plans for the district, has filed an application to start a charter school there for the 2012-13 school year.

Charter School Overhaul Tops Corbett To-Do List
Pocono Record, PA, June 8, 2012

Gov. Tom Corbett and his fellow Republicans who lead the state Legislature worked behind closed doors Thursday to develop a package of public school and education-related legislation that they can complete before lawmakers leave Harrisburg for their traditional summer break.

House GOP Shops Around Hybrid School Choice Plan
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, PA, June 8, 2012

In budget negotiations with the governor and Senate, House Republican leaders are advocating to expand tax credits to businesses that provide scholarship donations.

SRC Push For More Power Over Unions Riles Legislators
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, June 8, 2012

It was an uncomfortable meeting. In Harrisburg, the Philadelphia Democratic House delegation had gotten word that the School Reform Commission was shopping legislation that would give it the absolute right to cancel union contracts and set salaries and benefits. It was a surprise and a revelation.

SOUTH CAROLINA

School Choice Among Losers During Legislature’s Last Day
The State, SC, June 8, 2012

House backed bill, but its time ran out in Senate; supporters must begin again in 2013

TENNESSEE

Gov. Haslam Looking To Both Pre-K Funding, Vouchers
Knoxville News Sentinel, TN, June 8, 2012

Gov. Bill Haslam is weighing both an increase in funding for the state’s public pre-kindergarten program and creating a school voucher system in Tennessee, though the Republican says he doesn’t consider the two proposals linked.

VIRGINIA

Richmond Schools: Study Brawl
Richmond Times-Dispatch, VA, June 8, 2012

When the General Assembly debated elected school boards back in the 1990s, some observers — ourselves included — warned that granting them political independence without revenue responsibility inevitably would generate friction.

ONLINE SCHOOLS

Grads: Charter School Made A Big Difference
Exeter News-Letter, NH, June 8, 2012

Saying goodbye was a tough task for the 30 graduates of the Great Bay eLearning Charter School .
During Wednesday evening’s commencement exercises at the Tuck Learning Campus, a number of student speakers talked about how the charter school had a profound impact on their lives.

Virtual Trouble
News & Observer , NC, June 8, 2012

Is there any limit to how far North Carolina and other states will go in breaking up their public education systems in the name of parental choice and school reform? An emerging conflict here over a “virtual” – that is, online – statewide charter school, which would be managed for profit by an out-of-state company, using taxpayer dollars transferred from local school districts, may provide an answer.