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Daily Headlines for July 30, 2012

To Earn Classroom Certification, More Teaching and Less Testing
New York Times, NY, July 30, 2012

New York and up to 25 other states are moving toward changing the way they grant licenses to teachers, de-emphasizing tests and written essays in favor of a more demanding approach that requires aspiring teachers to prove themselves through lesson plans, homework assignments and videotaped instruction sessions.

Addressing Poverty in Schools
New York Times, NY, July 28, 2012

Creating schools that are designed from the start to deal with the predicable challenges of poverty — it is the most important thing we can do next.

Is a Charter School Chain Called Rocketship Ready to Soar Across America?
Washington Post, DC, July 29, 2012

Inside a prefabricated beige building hard by the freight tracks, John Danner thinks he has solved one of the nation’s most vexing problems.

Catholic Schools See Marketing Aid Enrollment
Associated Press, June 29, 2012

Call it educational evangelism. Roman Catholic schools are seeing years of marketing efforts starting to pay off in spite of tough competition from charter schools and the lingering effects of a devastating recession.

Biden: Romney Doesn’t See Value In Education
Associated Press, July 29, 2012

Vice President Joe Biden, in a speech Sunday to the nation’s second largest teachers unions, said Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney doesn’t treat public education as a priority and distrusts the hardworking teachers who struggle to create opportunity for the nation’s young people.



Hawthorne Charter Plans One-Stop Campus: Da Vinci Sees Merging High School, Community College, University
Los Angeles Daily News, CA, July 29, 2012

Da Vinci Charter High School in Hawthorne is angling to open a new campus in southeast Culver City with an approach so novel it might be without precedent: a one-stop-shop high school, community college and university

Adelanto School Parents Seek Charter Operator
Los Angeles Times, CA, July 28, 2012

Adelanto parents’ first choice was a partnership with the district that would retain most employees and services but give parents control to hire a principal with more power over curriculum, budgets and staffing decisions.

‘Parent Trigger’ Clarity
Los Angeles Times, CA, July 27, 2012

A judge’s ruling ends the bureaucratic nonsense involving Desert Trails Elementary School and opens the door to reform at the troubled school.


Greeneville Parents Plan School Partnership
Norwich Bulletin, CT, July 29, 2012

They may not have a school of their own anymore, but a growing group of parents in Greeneville want to make sure their ideas for education reform are included in the district’s turnaround plan.


More Evidence That D.C. Education Reforms Are Working
Washington Post, DC, July 28, 2012

TEST SCORES for D.C. public school students released last week provide unmistakable proof that reforms instituted under mayoral control are working.


Parents Scrambling As Charter School Closes
Tampa Bay Tribune, FL, July 28, 2012

Less than a month before the school year begins, parents of nearly 200 students at a charter school that has closed are scrambling to find new classrooms for their children.

Palm Beach County Right To Delay Teacher Evaluation System
Palm Beach Post, FL, July 28, 2012

The Palm Beach County School District effectively has decided that teachers will get a one-year freebie on the new evaluation system. For the school year that starts next month, teachers who score “unsatisfactory” or “needs improvement” nevertheless will be rated “effective.”


Schools, Step Up
Chicago Tribune, IL, July 28, 2012

For nearly a decade, public schools in Illinois and across the nation have struggled to meet academic standards set by the federal No Child Left Behind law. Many schools have flunked.


Gary Mayor Exploring Charter School Option
Post Tribune, IN, July 29, 2012

Legislation enacted last year allows mayors of first- or second-class cities, like Gary , to sponsor charter schools. Until last year, only the mayor of Indianapolis could authorize a charter.

Joshua Academy, Celebrating ISTEP Gains, Adds Sixth Grade
Courier Press, IN, July 28, 2012

Joshua Academy is adding a sixth-grade class to its lineup this year while celebrating some of Indiana ’s largest year-to-year gains in ISTEP pass rates.

Indiana Voucher Program: 41 More Schools, Some Non-Religious Join
Indianapolis Star, IN, July 28, 2012

Tim and Kathy Parks knew for years that their son Chakotay, who has autism, would outgrow traditional public school. They also knew that finding a new school for him — one that would meet his needs and that they could afford — would be a challenge.


Hasten: Questions Surround Louisiana’s School Voucher Program
Alexandria Town Talk, LA, July 29, 2012

After the Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education approved state Superintendent John C. White’s version of accountability for voucher schools this week, some people were asking “what accountability?”

‘Whatever Means Necessary’
Wall Street Journal, July 29, 2012

In some parts of the antebellum South, it was illegal to teach blacks how to read. Are teachers unions in Louisiana trying to turn back the clock?

Caddo Dodges Bullet To Save Four Schools
Shreveport Times, LA, July 29, 2012

Department of Education officials are telling Caddo Schools to fix four failing Shreveport high schools or the state ultimately could make them charters.

Education Menu Expands
News Star, LA, July 29, 2012

Efforts to reform the state’s public education system have opened the door to many new educational options for all Louisiana students.


LePage’s Plan To Force Schools To Reimburse Colleges For Remedial Education Rejected In Other States
Bangor Daily News, ME, July 27, 2012

Gov. Paul LePage overstated claims about how badly Maine students do academically as well as the uniqueness of his plan to fix the problem, according to some education and state policy experts.


New Bids For Charter Schools Somerville Group Bids Again For Charter School
Boston Globe, MA, July 29, 2012

A group of parents and educators in Somerville, whose proposal was rejected by the state last year, has reapplied to establish a new charter school in the city.


Going Broke for Reform
Wall Street Journal, July 28, 2012

Muskegon Heights and Highland Park —two of Michigan’s most insolvent school districts—this year are handing their classroom keys over to charter school operators to save money. That’s good news for local taxpayers, but the biggest beneficiaries may be the kids.


Dakota County Magnet Schools Ponder How To Stay Compelling
Pioneer Press, MN, July 28, 2012

As the educational options for Dakota County students continue to grow, some schools are focusing on ways to keep successful unique programs viable long term.


Teacher Merit Pay in MS Up for Debate Once Again
WLOX, MS, July 29, 2012

Governor Phil Bryant wants to raise teacher pay, but there’s a catch. They would get the extra money only if their students do well on state tests. Now, raises are based on longevity.


Charter School Transportation Issue May Be Revisited in Manchester
Union Leader, NH, July 29, 2012

Members of the School Committee might decide tonight whether to accept the realities of state law and rescind a decision that provided an additional $82,000 for teachers’ salaries during this year’s budget battle.


Norcross Takes Big Step Closer to ‘Renaissance Schools’
New Jersey Spotlight, NJ, July 30, 2012

With assistance visible and invisible, Democratic leader could bring a network of new schools to Camden

Teacher Ratings Won’t Be Made Public
Daily Record, NJ, July 28, 2012

Gov. Chris Christie’s education chief is OK with keeping reports on teacher performance secret.


Lawmakers, Skandera Spar About Tying Teacher Evaluations To Student Test Scores
Alamogordo Daily News, NM, July 28, 2012

A showdown over teacher evaluations is under way in New Mexico. State legislators never approved a bill to tie part of the evaluations to student performance on standardized tests. But Hanna Skandera, the state’s secretary-designate of public education, is moving forward anyway with a pilot program, beginning this fall.


Schools Get Ready To Grade Teachers, Principals
Post-Star, NY, July 29, 2012

Beginning in September, schools across New York will take on a new approach to giving students a first-class education.


CEO Chosen For Company Associated With ECOT Charter School
Columbus Dispatch, OH, July 30, 2012

Scott Kern has been promoted to CEO of Altair Learning Management. Kern will direct daily operations of Altair and its associated companies, including IQ Innovations and ECOT, the state’s largest online K-12 charter school, the company announced last week.


Restructuring Schools: State Officials Foresee the Future of Oklahoma Schools
The Oklahoman, OK, July 29, 2012

The landscape of Oklahoma school districts has changed over the last century, and many state officials say they see it changing even more.


PSSA-Cheating Reforms Yield Lower Scores Across Pa.
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, July 29, 2012

After authorities imposed unprecedented security measures on the 2012 statewide exams, test scores tumbled across Pennsylvania, The Inquirer has learned.

Feds Charge Charter School Founder With Fraud
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, PA, July 29, 2012

Within five months of securing a charter from the Pennsylvania Department of Education for the Agora Cyber Charter School, Dorothy June Brown and a second person created The Cynwyd Group in order to defraud the school of more than $5 million over the course of two years, a federal indictment filed last week in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania alleges.

Few Details Exist On Scholarships For Kids In Low-Performing Schools
Republican Herald, PA, July 30, 2012

In one month, students in three low-performing schools could be enrolled elsewhere. The state’s new Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit Program allows those schools’ students from families with low to moderate incomes to apply for money to attend a different public or private school.


Tennessee Directs Nashville to Back Charter School
Wall Street Journal, July 30, 2012

The Tennessee State Board of Education has cleared the way for a charter school backed by neighborhood parents to open in middle-class West Nashville.

Great Hearts Charter Could Continue Metro Schools’ Progress
The Tennessean, TN, July 30, 2012

At last, Metro public schools are beginning to get somewhere. The release of district TCAP scores showed more Nashville students hit the target of being proficient or better at grade level than ever before. That’s the good news. The bad news? Fewer than half of elementary and middle school students scored at grade level in math, reading and science.

Knoxville Charter Academy Loses State Appeal, Will Not Get More Time
WBIR, TN, July 28, 2012

The Knoxville Charter Academy has lost its appeal to the state.
The decision from the Tennessee State Board of Education came Friday after a hearing in Knox County earlier this week.


40 New School Principals Hired In Richmond Area
Richmond Times-Dispatch, VA, July 30, 2012

Darby will be one of 40 new principals for the 2012-13 school year in the city of Richmond and the counties of Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico.


Charter Schools: Not A Cure-All, But A Sign Of Health
News-Tribune, WA, July 29, 2012

Other education reforms are more urgent than charter schools. Washington could have a fantastic public school system without them.


Virtual School Company Gets Low Grade In Report
Charlotte Observer, NC, July 30, 2012

A recent report on virtual charter schools being managed by a for-profit company that wants to set up shop in North Carolina should disturb state leaders – and the rest of us. According to “Understand and Improving Virtual Schools ,” an assessment by the nonprofit research group the National Education Policy Center, K12 Inc. students across the nation perform worse and drop out of courses more frequently than students in brick-and-mortar schools.

Church Continues Learning Center With New Cyber School
Tribune Democrat, PA, July 29, 2012

An after-school program, summer feeding program and now a cyber school learning site are all part of the “Destiny Outreach” mission to help children from Johnstown’s troubled neighborhoods, Pastor Joseph McGauley III said.

Students Can Choose When, Where, How To Learn
Springfield News Sun, OH, July 29, 2012

Springfield’s ‘blended learning’ could attract more students and prepare them better, superintendent says.

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