How one Texas district kept students learning, fed | CTE teacher launches virtual FFA chapter | App engages young people with construction
June 5, 2020
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How one Texas district kept students learning, fed
(Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)
A Texas school district quickly worked to adopt "teacher pages" -- online sites where students could access assignments -- during prolonged school closures, according to Cameron Shaw, the district's technology director. In this commentary, he shares how his district kept students learning and fed through free meal distributions.
Full Story: eSchool News (free registration) (6/5) 
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Survey: The role of edtech coaches during COVID-19
Digital Promise wants to highlight the important role edtech coaches have played during the COVID-19 school closures. We invite coaches to tell us how their duties have changed by taking this survey for a chance to win one of 40 $25 gift cards.
CTE teacher launches virtual FFA chapter
Amber Lewis, a teacher and fifth-generation farmer in Indiana, has launched the first virtual Future Farmers of America chapter at her school, which now has about 40 members. Lewis, who teaches career and technical education courses in criminal justice and agriculture at a digital school, says the virtual FFA program is preparing students for their "future aspirations."
Full Story: WRTV-TV (Indianapolis) (6/5) 
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Systems Management
More than 40% of school districts in the US have facilities issues that could prove problematic as schools reopen, including faulty heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems, according to a report published Thursday by the Government Accountability Office. The report is the first assessment of K-12 schools by the GAO in over two decades.
Full Story: U.S. News & World Report (6/4) 
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Managing Budgets
House and Senate Democrats are urging the passage of a $1 billion bill that would include provisions to help pay for internet access for low-income college and university students. The provisions are part of a larger coronavirus stimulus package.
Full Story: Inside Higher Ed (6/4) 
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Schools and Social Media
TikTok is responding to accusations that it censors black creators by launching a creator diversity council, assessing moderation strategies, developing a new appeals process and starting a creator portal that includes information for the broader TikTok community. The social platform also apologized for a system error that made posts with #BlackLivesMatter and #GeorgeFloyd appear as though they had zero views and pledged to donate $3 million to nonprofits serving black communities.
Full Story: The Verge (6/1) 
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Last Byte
College students file pandemic-related lawsuits
A Drexel University student's lawsuit is one of at least 100 closure-related lawsuits filed nationwide against colleges and universities, alleging students didn't get what they paid for when the schools switched to remote learning due to the coronavirus pandemic. Some legal experts say the cases will be hard to win in part because the pandemic made it impossible to operate normally and universities provided online instruction that allowed students to earn credit toward degrees.
Full Story: Stateline (6/2) 
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Editor's Note
Call for Proposals: SmartBrief Education's 7th Annual STEM Pathways Summit
What effect will the coronavirus have on STEM and STEAM education? We want to explore this topic at STEM Pathways Summit 2020. We are seeking sessions from educators demonstrating ways to develop students' STEM and STEAM skills in this new reality. What are you doing to foster creativity, risk-taking, problem-solving, communication and collaboration among your learners? How are you teaching them to think differently about STEM and STEAM and how they can use these skills to contribute to the world? Tell us about your practices and programs that are redefining STEM and STEAM education in a COVID-19 world. Submit your proposal.
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He who faces no calamity gains no courage.
Rudyard Kipling,
writer, poet, journalist
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