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February 9, 2012
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News for the Education Profession

  Learning and Teaching 
  • More students take AP exams, though many are opting out
    The number of public high-school seniors who took and passed at least one Advanced Placement class rose to 18.1% in 2011, compared with 16.9% the year before, a new report from the College Board shows. The report also shows that many students who may have succeeded on AP tests chose not to take them or lacked access to the courses, and this gap particularly was apparent for minority students. The states with the highest percentages of students taking and passing AP exams were Maryland, New York, Virginia, Massachusetts and Connecticut, the data show. Education Week (premium article access compliments of (2/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • How do educators, parents feel about student testing?
    Interim and formative assessments are seen as more valuable than summative tests, according to a new survey of parents, educators and school administrators. The survey results also revealed support for testing in subjects other than math and English, and the development of broader methods for assessing student progress. The online survey, commissioned by the nonprofit Northwest Evaluation Association, aimed to determine attitudes toward testing, as policies are revised at both the state and federal levels. Education Week (premium article access compliments of (2/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Narrowing the Achievement Gap
“This volume replays an instructive history—pinpointing what hasn’t worked—and then carves a path forward to build schools that narrow disparities...a must-read for those dedicated to uniting our society.”Bruce Fuller, UC Berkeley Look Inside the Book.
  School Leadership 
  • Teachers must be part of the reform process, says R.I. schools leader
    Rhode Island is undergoing a series of school reforms under the leadership of Deborah Gist, the state's Commissioner of Elementary and Secondary Education. In this interview, Gist suggests other states taking on similar initiatives should include teachers in the conversation. "Communication is the key, beginning with involving teachers in the development and design process," she said. The Hechinger Report (2/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
A journey that will make a difference
As travelers on the journey to help educators improve their schools, these authors focus on district, principal, and team leadership to address how individual teachers can be most effective in leading students—by learning with colleagues how to implement the most promising pedagogy in their classrooms. Learn more!
  Technology in the Classroom 
  • Educators mix and match online, open source, print resources
    As more schools begin to employ digital resources in the classroom, educators increasingly are combining online and print materials from various sources to create their own curricula. The explosion of Internet-based resources, as well as those created by curriculum developers, has given teachers new flexibility while pressuring them to choose top-notch materials. "The old curriculum model was one-size-fits-all. The new model is open, shared, and mobile across multiple devices," digital-learning consultant Wesley Fryer said. Digital Directions (premium article access compliments of (2/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Global-learning project is made possible by social media
    Students at an elementary school in Charlotte, N.C., are using social media to connect with students in schools across the world. The kindergartners use the ePals Global Community social network to study the weather with students in France, while first-graders study animal habitats with their peers in Taiwan. Time differences prevent the use of videoconferencing, but students also use e-mail to send videos to their pen-pal friends in other schools. The Charlotte Observer (N.C.) (2/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Use classroom assessments more effectively in 2012
Join Assessment Training Institute author Jan Chappuis for a practical, two-day workshop on high-quality classroom assessment, including how to facilitate effective PD in classroom assessment using a learning team model. Register today for events in Portland, St. Louis, Charlotte, and Seattle.
  The Whole Child 
  • Positive-behavior program may reduce bullying in elementary grades
    A school program designed to improve student behavior may help reduce bullying in elementary schools, a new study shows. Teachers at schools that have implemented the School-Wide Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports program, in place now in about 16,000 U.S. schools, reported less bullying, teasing and aggression among students, the report found. Chicago Tribune/Reuters (2/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Schools embrace healthful meals, beyond USDA rules
    Some San Francisco Bay Area school districts plan to go beyond the USDA's health guidelines for lunch, which must include whole grains and eliminate chocolate milk, among other changes, starting July 1. "We have to look at helping young people develop patterns in their lives that will support a healthy lifestyle," said Rami Muth, superintendent of the Martinez Unified School District, which is planning an organic garden and cooking classes. The Oakland Tribune (Calif.) (2/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

What happens when students, not planned teaching points, lead instructional decisions about writing? When Writers Drive the Workshop shows teachers how to empower students in every aspect of writing workshop—conferring, responding to writing, self-assessment, & mini-lessons. Includes ideas for using digital tools. Preview the entire book!
  Policy Watch 
  • 10 states are expected to receive NCLB waivers
    President Barack Obama is expected to grant 10 states waivers today from No Child Left Behind. Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, Oklahoma and Tennessee would be excused from portions of the federal education law -- which requires all students to be proficient in reading and math by 2014. New Mexico applied but did not receive a waiver. About 28 other states, as well as Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico, have said they intend to apply. USA TODAY/The Associated Press (2/9) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Plan to eliminate transitional kindergarten is criticized in Calif.
    Some educators and parents are protesting a plan by California Gov. Jerry Brown to eliminate a new transitional-kindergarten program to help balance the state's budget. While the move would save the state $224 million in the first year and about $675 million annually by 2014, critics of the proposal say transitional kindergarten would help close the achievement gap by boosting the cognitive and academic skills of young students. Los Angeles Times (2/8) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  ED Pulse 
  • ASCD has launched a petition asking the White House to focus national attention on children by creating a President's Council on the Whole Child. What, if anything, would be your primary reason for supporting such a council?
    To promote a new vision of the comprehensive education needed to prepare our youth for college, career and citizenship.  30.04%
    To highlight the importance of ensuring each child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported and challenged.  21.67%
    To improve collaboration among schools, families, communities and policymakers in support of children.  18.68%
    Don't support.  18.54%
    To increase the effectiveness of federal programs for children by coordinating government services.  8.67%
    Other.  2.39%
  • In your school or district, what tool has proven to be most effective in monitoring teacher knowledge and practice in the context of Common Core State Standards?
Classroom walk-through processes.
Teacher-survey instruments.
Standards surveys.
Resources such as online, text-dependent applications.
None of the above.
My state is not implementing the Common Core State Standards.

  Faculty Lounge 
  • Student science fair focuses on solving problems
    Students at an Oklahoma elementary school participated in a science fair aimed at solving real-life problems. As part of the "Invention Convention," one student designed a rack to house scooters upright in the garage, while another invented a device for stashing money in his shoe. "They can be as creative as they want to. We had some excellent ideas this year. The kids really seem to enjoy the process," science teacher Lacey Bleem said. The Oklahoman (Oklahoma City) (2/7) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

3-Minute Motivators is a collection of over 100 simple, fun activities for any grade that will help you use "a little magic" to take a quick break, engage students, and refocus them on the task at hand. Click here to browse Chapter 1 online!

Robert Marzano said, “An experienced teacher who uses the [SMART™] board appropriately for 75% of the class time—and has the proper training to be comfortable with the technology—will see the highest student achievement.” Register staff for SDE’s online course, Teaching Smarter with SMART Boards. Register a group for as little as $110 per registration. 1-800-462-1478.

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  ASCD News 
  • Educators nationwide urged to sign the Whole Child petition
    Three educators -- Tony Frontier, director of Teacher Education in Wisconsin; educator Marnie Hazelton in New York; and fifth-grade teacher Jason Flom in Florida -- recently spoke out about the importance of the Whole Child petition. Watch their video clips on and learn more about the petition, which calls on President Barack Obama to create a President's Council on the Whole Child to help students be healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged. Sign the petition now. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • What your rules say about you
    Are there student conduct rules posted in your classroom? If so, their focus may be a reflection of the level of engagement that you are creating in your classroom, explains ASCD EDge user and administrator Lori Cullen. In her ASCD EDge blog post, Cullen discusses the attributes of highly engaging classroom tasks, tasks that are student-created, allow for student choice, and consider learning styles. She makes the connection between these types of tasks and classroom rules that focus on encouraging students to do their best and to display respect. Cullen similarly examines how a lack of engaging tasks may translate into a need for classroom rules like, "stay in your desk during work time." Read on. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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Position TitleCompany NameLocation
PK-12 Jobs in Private/Independent Schools in the SouthSouthern Teachers AgencyMultiple cities & states around the South, VA
Founding Principal-Academic DirectorCentral Queens Academy Charter SchoolElmhurst, Queens, NY
K-12 School TeacherThe International EducatorMultiple Locations, International
Teaching and Learning SpecialistThe Southern Poverty Law CenterMontgomery, AL
Principal-Southside Academy Charter SchoolNational Heritage AcademiesSyracuse, NY
Principal- Burton Glen Charter AcademyNational Heritage AcademiesBurton, MI
ChairpersonBall State UniversityMuncie, IN
National K-12 Sales ManagerNBC LearnNew York, NY
Overseas EducatorsInternational Schools ServicesMultiple Locations, International
Elementary/Middle School PrincipalCity Invincible Charter SchoolCamden, NJ
Click here to view more job listings.

If you do not feel yourself growing in your work and your life broadening and deepening, if your task is not a perpetual tonic to you, you have not found your place."
--Orison Swett Marden,
American writer

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