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01 November 2012  
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Education News from Around the World

  Learning and Teaching 
  • Teachers in Ontario are using social media in lessons
    In Ontario, Canada, the school curriculum requires the inclusion of technology, and now, some teachers say they are using social media, blogging and smartphones as part of classroom lessons. Andrew Campbell, a primary-school teacher in Brantford, says he keeps a shared Twitter account for his class, and also has taught students proper etiquette when using social media. The Toronto Star (30 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Bulgarian school checks out chess lessons
    Slivnitsa, Bulgaria, is the first municipality in the European Union to adopt chess as a subject in school. Silvio Danailov, president of the European Chess Union and the Bulgarian Chess Federation, said the goal was for chess to be part of the school curriculum in other countries. This year, 80 students at a secondary school in Slivnitsa are enroled in chess. Novinite (Sofia, Bulgaria) (27 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Australia could adopt new civics curriculum
    Australia is considering adopting a new national civics curriculum, which now is available for public comment. The proposal calls for a focus on the history and culture of aboriginal populations, sustainability and the country's relationship with Asia. The draft curriculum also calls for lessons in Australia's laws, legal process and political system. The Age (Melbourne, Australia) (30 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Professional Leadership 
  • Hong Kong steps up effort to recruit teachers
    Officials in Hong Kong are hoping to recruit about 40 teachers from New Zealand and Australia and are using incentives to generate interest. Aside from high salaries, the country also is offering housing allowances, flights, medical insurance and payouts that would occur after their contracts have expired. Stuff (New Zealand) (01 Nov.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Regional Spotlight 
ASCD Worldwide Edition SmartBrief highlights education practices and policies in specific regions to give readers more in-depth insight into that country or region's education system. This edition focuses on Brazil.

  • Plan in Brazil calls for increased education spending
    A proposed target for education spending in Brazil -- 10% of the country's gross domestic product -- is the largest share of any other country. The current leader, Denmark, sets its education spending at 8.7% of GDP. Brazil's 10-year National Education Plan has been approved by the country's lower house and is now under consideration by the Senate. One critic, however, suggests that Brazil reconsider spending more money in favor of spending existing funds more wisely. The Economist (28 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Migraines may influence Brazilian children's performance at school
    Brazilian researchers looked at 5,671 children and found that those diagnosed with episodic or chronic migraines had a greater likelihood of performing poorly in school than those without migraines. The study published in the journal Neurology showed that the severity and duration of migraine attacks, as well as abnormal mental health scores and nausea, were tied to school performance. DoctorsLounge.com/HealthDay News (29 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Reform and Research 
  • Poland, Lithuania buck trends in education funding
    Spending on education in some countries in East and Central Europe has declined in the wake of the global financial crisis in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia and elsewhere. Among other things, the limited funding has affected teachers, who are earning low salaries and given few incentives to enter the classroom. Poland and Lithuania, however, have managed not to decrease education funding. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (30 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Spike in private schools in Africa sparks criticism
    The expansion of private schools in Africa could lead to great inequity among students, according to a report from Unesco, which takes issue with the high student fees. "The idea that African governments can't afford to deliver decent quality basic education is frankly fatuous," said Kevin Watkins, a senior fellow at the Centre for Universal Education. "So is the claim that private-sector providers are more efficient." The Guardian (London) (30 Oct.) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  ASCD News 
  • Getting beyond the scoreboard with teacher evaluation
    To Educational Leadership contributor Paul Bambrick-Santoyo, getting beyond the scoreboard when it comes to evaluating educators means transitioning to a coaching model -- one that calls for "shorter, more frequent observations and a focus on tracking growth over time." He speaks with Julie Jackson, an education leader at Uncommon Schools, about the "bite-sized" actions that will help teachers grow and shares takeaways in the Inservice blog. Learn more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Empowerment is still key
    "Tapping into and building human capacity has always been and continues to be the most essential ingredient for organizational success," writes ASCD EDge community member Mamzelle Adolphine. In her post, Adolphine explains why our current focus on accountability in education is a good opportunity to put in place initiatives that empower educators. "Just as flour strengthens the base of pastries and breads, empowerment lays a solid foundation for building strong buy-in, which promotes continuous improvement," she explains. Read on. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  SmartQuote 
Without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible."
--Frank Zappa,
American singer-songwriter


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