May 21

“Wisdom…. comes not from age, but from education and learning.”   ―     Anton Chekhov
   This article may seem a little off the subject but read it through (especially the last paragraph) to see how it relates to education and teachers in particular.  Any idea who the highest paid STATE employee is?  The governor, or a big-city mayor perhaps or a college or university president?   You know it’s not a school teacher.  Check out this story from Care2 make a difference to answer the question and see the connection to schools:  http://www.care2.com/causes/whos-your-highest-paid-state-employee.html
   This brief item from Common Dreams describes the 3-day march sponsored by the Chicago Teachers Union (CTU) that kicked off on Saturday to protest the proposed closing of over 50 schools in Chicago:  https://www.commondreams.org/headline/2013/05/18-0
Despite the ongoing battle over school closures in the Chicago Public School (CPS) system fewer than 5 campuses may be spared when the board meets tomorrow to take a final vote on the proposal reports the Chicago Tribune:  http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/education/ct-met-school-closing-march-0521-20130521,0,6364864.story
   Sandy Banks, in her Saturday column for the L.A. Times, wades into the discussion over student suspensions for “willful defiance” that the LAUSD board voted to ban last week:  http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-banks-suspensions-20130518,0,2038695,full.column
   How successful are teacher training schools at turning out effective teachers?  Currently, there are very few ways to measure this.  The HECHINGER REPORT describes how Florida plans to monitor its programs more closely in order to get a better idea of how they are doing:  http://hechingerreport.org/content/florida-plans-increased-scrutiny-for-education-schools_12081/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+HechingerReport+%28Hechinger+Report%29
   The number of California teachers who received lay-off notices over the past five years may have finally peaked.  EdSource reports on this very encouraging news:  http://www.edsource.org/today/2013/teacher-layoffs-lowest-since-economic-downturn-cta-reports/32287#.UZqM5__n-ov
   LAUSD officials have reversed a decision, based on an apparent bureaucratic error, that denied Title I funds to the L.A. Center for Enriched Studies (LACES) and 5 other campuses according to this story in yesterday’s L.A. Times:  http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-school-funding-20130520,0,2231694.story
   Valerie Strauss provides a copy of the blog written by the current president of the National School Boards Association who takes a look at why “school choice” is not a good option for school reform:  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2013/05/20/whats-wrong-with-school-choice-heres-what/
   Gov. Brown continues to take incoming fire from his own party’s legislators for his proposed new spending formula for state schools.  THE SACRAMENTO BEE provides the details:  http://www.sacbee.com/2013/05/19/5431408/gov-browns-school-funding-plan.html

   This short video (6:48 minutes) from DemocracyNOW! features an interview with Jesse Hagopian, history teacher and union rep at Garfield High School in Seattle, who discusses the victory his teachers won last week when their district decided to give them the option of administering a standardized test to their high school students.  It also includes a full transcript:  http://www.democracynow.org/2013/5/20/seattle_teachers_students_win_historic_victory
   Valerie Strauss reprints a blog from a past president of the National Council of Teachers of English and a current supervisor of student teachers at Portland State University who makes a persuasive case against the idea of grouping students by ability:  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/answer-sheet/wp/2013/05/21/why-ability-grouping-in-schools-is-a-mistake/
   It does not look encouraging for California’s attempt to get a waiver from the NCLB requirement that all students in the state be proficient in reading and math by 2014.  The SI&A CABINET REPORT describes how talks have broken off between California officials and the U.S. Dept. of Ed over a number of issues delineated in this article:  http://www.siacabinetreport.com/articles/viewarticle.aspx?article=3820  A related story in the L.A. Daily News put a more local spin on the issue:  http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_23285581/california-will-not-again-no-child-left-behind?source=rss&utm_source=feedly
   And finally, despite steep budget cuts and tuition hikes the UC system drew a record number of applications for the 2013-14 school year.  NPR station KPCC has the details and the numbers for you:  http://www.scpr.org/blogs/education/2013/05/20/13735/uc-schools-draw-record-application-numbers-ucla-as/?utm_source=feedly&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+893KpccSouthernCaliforniaNews+(KPCC%3A+News)
 
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