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Daily Headlines for May 7, 2013

NEWSWIRE IS BACK! Click here for the latest weekly report on education news and commentary you won’t find anywhere else, spiced with a dash of irreverence, from the nation’s leading voice in school reform.


New Course Recommended for Some High-School Students
Wall Street Journal, May 7, 2013

Amid a national push to lift high-school standards in the U.S., a new study recommends a different approach for students who go on to community college, one that emphasizes basic subjects to provide them with only the skills they would need to succeed in their future careers.

Republicans Should Love ‘Common Core’
Wall Street Journal, May 6, 2013

The Common Core State Standards are a set of rigorous academic standards in mathematics and English language arts. They are the culmination of a meticulous, 20-year process initiated by the states and involving teachers, educators, business leaders and policy makers from across the country and both sides of the aisle. The standards form a foundation for a high-quality education, have been adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia, and are slated for full implementation in 2014.

State School Systems Rethink Common Core Standards
Washington Post, DC, May 6, 2013

The growing backlash against the nationwide K-12 school standards known as Common Core, bubbling to the surface in Indiana, Michigan and elsewhere, has become the hottest story in education.

Assemblyman Diegnan’s Charter Bill Flies in Face of (Rare) Consensus
New Jersey Spotlight, NJ, May 7, 2013

One of the few things educators and administrators agree on: charter schools need multiple authorizers

Teacher Pay Hurt by Recession, Report Says
New York Times, NY, May 7, 2013

During the recession and its aftermath, public schools took a hit as both state coffers and local property taxes shriveled. That showed up in shrinking employment, but also in teacher salaries.

Charter Schools: The Report Card
MSNBC, May 7, 2013

On Friday the White House issued a presidential proclamation naming May 5 -11 “National Charter School Week.” Charter Schools are publicly funded schools that are governed by an independent organization through a contract–or charter–with the state.

Corruption is Destroying America’s Schools
Richmond Times-Dispatch, VA, May 7, 2013

The recent 65-count cheating indictment against 35 Atlanta school officials, including the superintendent, has reignited an intense national debate on the use of standardized test scores as a key feature in teacher evaluations.



Alabama’s Private Schools Don’t Want State Involvement
Montgomery Advertiser, AL, May 6, 2013

Private and parochial schools want to make sure Alabama’s new tax credits and scholarships for private school attendance don’t lead to the state government having a role in their operations.


Bullis, LASD Battle ‘Escalating’
Mountain View-Voice, CA, May 6, 2013

The ongoing battle between Bullis Charter School and the Los Altos School District appears to be escalating — with officials from both organizations accusing the other of breaking the law.

LA Mayoral Candidates: Boost Education Reform
My Fox Atlanta, CA, May 7, 2013

The countdown is on for the May 21st election and the candidates are coming-a-courting. While officially the Mayor of Los Angeles has no role in how the public school system is run, extra-officially, he/she can play a big role. The Mayor’s office is a great bully-pulpit.


Weingarten Proclaims Victory In New Haven
New Haven Independent, CT, May 6, 2013

Three thousand miles away from New Haven, the city became Exhibit A in a showdown between a national union president and a charter school proponent about the future of school reform.


D.C. Charter School Waitlists Vary Widely
Washington Post, DC, May 6, 2013

Charter school waiting lists vary widely across the District, according to data released Monday by the D.C. Public Charter School Board that suggests demand tends to be greatest for early childhood programs and schools rated high-performing.


Pasco County Charter Schools, By The Numbers
Tampa Bay Times Blog, FL, May 6, 2013

Pasco County School Board members plan a wide-ranging discussion on charter schools on Tuesday, discussing the future of charters in the district as well as the impact of newly adopted legislation.


Charter School Funding A Hot Topic At APS Board Meeting
WXIA-TV, GA, May 6, 2013

Parents are putting pressure on the Atlanta Public Schools Board concerning charter school funding.


One Vote, Many Lives
Chicago Tribune, IL, May 7, 2013

The Chicago City Council will vote on many items Wednesday. None likely will be more important than the zoning change on tap for the property at 2245 W. Pershing Road. That is where Concept Schools, a top-quality charter operator, wants to open the Horizon Science Academy-McKinley Park.


Charter’s Opening Is Set For ’14 After Snafu
The Journal Gazette, IN, May 7, 2013

A technology-centered charter school approved to open this fall with some conditions will delay opening until 2014, according to a statement from the school.


Teachers Want Higher Standards, Delayed Consequences, Poll Says
Times-Picayune, LA, May 6, 2013

Higher educational standards, yes; consequences based on them, not yet. That’s the conclusion of a nationwide poll of 800 members of the American Federation of Teachers. The union released the results on May 3.

Louisiana House Backs Bill Allowing Parents To Shift RSD-Controlled Schools Back To Local Systems
Times-Picayune, LA, May 6, 2013

A bill allowing parents to petition to transfer control of their child’s school from the Recovery School District into the local school system easily cleared the House on Monday.

House Puts Teacher Evaluation Impact On Hold
Monroe News Star, LA, May 7, 2013

Some kinks in Louisiana’s teacher evaluation need to be straightened out before teachers’ futures are decided using the instrument, House members said Monday in unanimously approving legislation by Rep. Gene Reynolds, D-Minden.


City Schools Chief Alonso Resigns
Baltimore Sun, MD, May 6, 2013

His six-year tenure has been marked by bold yet divisive reforms; Tisha Edwards will be interim superintendent

Andres Alonso’s Departure: An Opportunity for Baltimore to Move Beyond the Traditional District
Dropout Nation Blog, May 7, 2013

School reformers in Baltimore, along with those in the city looking to keep the city from becoming the next Detroit, can’t help but be pensive about yesterday’s news that Andres Alonso is departing as chief executive officer of its traditional district to take a gig at Harvard University’s education school.


Bill Would Loosen Cap On Mass. Charter Schools
Boston Globe, MA, May 7, 2013

Supporters of legislation to lift the cap on charter schools in the state’s lowest performing school districts will be making their case before lawmakers.

66 Percent Support More Charter Schools
Cape Cod Today, MA, May 6, 2013

Charter school proponents on Monday morning were promoting new poll results showing voters in the Boston area support lifting caps on the number of charter schools by a nearly three to one margin.


U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan ‘Very Encouraged’ By Visit To Michigan’s Reform District
Detroit Free Press, MI, May 6, 2013

Gov. Rick Snyder joined U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan today at Thirkell Elementary School and Brenda Scott Academy of Theater Arts in Detroit as part of three school tours highlighting local education reform and the importance of investing in preschool.

Michigan Schools Leave Food Subsidies On Table
Detroit News, MI, May 7, 2013

Every year, the federal government buys more than $1.4 billion in chicken, beef, butter and dozens of other products from U.S. farmers and then offers them at substantial discounts to America’s schools.


Mississippi Prepares New Push On Education
Associated Press, May 6, 2013

Republicans’ statewide solutions include making it easier to create charter schools and holding back third-graders who can’t read. Other changes approved by lawmakers are state-funded prekindergarten and higher qualifications and merit pay for teachers.


Paranoia About ‘Common Core’ Is A Lousy Way To Fix Schools
St. Louis Post Dispatch, MO, May 7, 2013

The anger is being fueled by conspiracy theorists, including some in the Missouri Legislature, who see the common core movement as some evil federal takeover of schools, rather than the thoughtful and bipartisan attempt that it is to raise standards and unify them across state lines so that the United States can do a better job of competing in a global economy.


Newark Charter Is A Scam On Schoolchildren
Star Ledger, NJ, May 7, 2013

Here’s what we know about Fredrica Bey, founder of Adelaide L. Sanford Charter School in Newark: She has consistently taken money intended for kids in order to enrich herself and her organizations.


4 On Your Side Investigation Reveals Charter School Rent Problems
KOB, NM, May 6, 2013

A 4 On Your Side Investigation has found taxpayers are paying hundreds of thousands of dollars in rent money for school buildings they already own.


Quinn Offers Plan to Add Slots for Gifted in City Schools
New York Times, NY, May 7, 2013

Seeking to address pervasive racial disparities at the top echelons of New York City schools, Christine C. Quinn, the City Council speaker, plans on Tuesday to propose a significant overhaul of gifted and talented programs that would provide space for more children and loosen admissions requirements.

Charter Schools: A Skeptical Look
Brooklyn Eagle, NY, May 6, 2013

In his third term, Mayor Bloomberg is increasingly showing his true colors. Nowhere is this more evident than in his advocacy of charter schools. Bloomberg has constantly pushed for more charter schools, and unsuccessfully lobbied for the state to raise the cap on the number of charter schools that are permitted.

Charter School Success Spurs More To Act
Utica Observer Dispatch, NY, May 6, 2013

Utica With one charter school opening in the fall, the area might have two more schools on the horizon — one in Utica, another in Rome.

It’s Unfair To Ask Taxpayers To Subsidize Private Schools
Buffalo News, NY, May 7, 2013

Providing tax credits for those who choose a private or parochial school education for their children is no different. Parents, of course, have every right to choose what kind of education they believe is best for their children, but they shouldn’t be asking the public to subsidize their personal choices through back-door voucher schemes masquerading as charitable giving.


Next Step For Charter Schools
Salisbury Post, NC, May 6, 2013

The strongest argument for charter schools when the concept gained widespread recognition in the 1990s was their ability to experiment with education techniques and curriculum. The schools could innovate free of many state and local regulations. The best practices developed from these living laboratories could be adopted by public schools, thereby improving education for everyone, advocates said.

Charter School Bill Would Lower Teacher Quality Standards
Progressive Pulse, NC, May 6, 2013

Tomorrow afternoon, the North Carolina Senate is set to vote on SB 337, which creates a Public Charter School Board that is separate from the State Board of Education and does away with the Charter School Advisory Council. This bill would needlessly exempt charter schools from any requirement that teachers be certified.


Another Blow To City Schools
Columbus Dispatch, OH, May 7, 2013

Thursday’s records seizures at 20 Columbus high schools by the state auditor ought to prove convincing to those who have blindly defended the district or downplayed the seriousness of a monumental cheating scandal in the district.


Auditor: Kensington Charter School Had Longtime Money Woes
Philadelphia Inquirer, PA, May 7, 2013

A Philadelphia School District auditor testified Monday about long-standing financial issues at a Kensington charter school during a district hearing to determine whether the school should remain open.

Wrong Reform
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, PA, May 7, 2013

The Bethel Park School Board recently passed a resolution asking the Pennsylvania Legislature to reform charter school funding. We agree, but not with Bethel Park’s proposed solution.


Wausau Schools Deal With Minority Achievement Gap
Wausau Daily Herald, WI, May 6, 2013

Minority students overall lag significantly behind their white peers in the Wausau School District, reflecting the racial achievement gap that affects students across the state.


To Embrace Virtual Schools Would Be To Shortchange Maine Students
Portland Press Herald, ME, May 7, 2013

Instead, Maine should boost funding for the ‘bricks and mortar’ system that responds to the public.

Cincinnati’s First Tuition-Free Charter School To Open In August
Soap Box Media, May 7, 2013

Carpe Diem-Aiken will offer a blended learning model of digital curriculum with blended learning experiences, says Rick Ogston, founder of CDLS.

‘Blended Learning’ Charter High School Impresses One Grand Rapids Lawmaker, Another Raises Concerns
Grand Rapids Press, MI, May 6, 2013

State lawmakers visited the new Nexus Academy of Grand Rapids charter high school Monday to gain greater perspective on the model being used in Michigan and Ohio.

Board Approves Virtual School Proposal
Garden City Telegram, KS, May 7, 2013

USD 457 Board of Education members Monday night approved a virtual school be put into place at the Alternative Education Center.

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