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May 21, 2013
- Hunter College High School is warning students against playing Assassin, which uses fake guns. (NBC)
- The latest co-location fight is over a charter school’s planned addition to an adult learning center. (NY1)
- The city is under fire for paying principals who heard the chancellor’s political speech. (GothamSchools)
- City schools are being asked to address hate crimes and bullying once more this year. (GothamSchools)
- The Post says the city needs extra tutoring for poor students, not more accessible gifted programs.
- Private schools in the city are unhappy that parents are having nannies fill in on family tasks. (Post)
- Oklahoma’s sweeping tornado damage includes seven schools where students were killed. (USA Today)
- Chicago officials might take a few schools off the chopping block, but not more than five of 54. (Tribune)
May 20, 2013
- A teacher lists 10 reasons educators should write for the public. (We take submissions.) (Chicago Now)
- Pam Cantor, of Turnaround for Children, is one of the new Ashoka Fellows for entrepreneurship. (Forbes)
- Neverware, a city firm that aims to help schools maintain technology, has raised $1 million. (TechCrunch)
- Alaska, Hawaii, and West Virginia are the latest states to get No Child Left Behind waivers. (Politics K-12)
- A city charter school teacher is shortlisted for TNTP’s “superlative classroom practice” prize. (GS Twitter)
- The latest dispatch from inside a school that shares space is about lunch inequities. (Inside Colocation)
- It seems that Karen Lewis’s continued success in Chicago might be influencing the AFT. (Teacher Beat)
- Parsing KIPP’s annual report reveals data that raises concern and further questions. (Gary Rubinstein)
- Rick Hess has suggestions, based on his research, for districts facing leadership change. (Straight Up)
- An education professor says it would be better to have late teacher evaluations than bad ones. (Shanker)
May 20, 2013
Hundreds of top-rated upstate science and math teachers will be eligible for $15,000 in annual stipends under a new mentorship program announced by Gov. Andrew Cuomo this afternoon.
New York City teachers aren’t eligible for the stipends, in part because they still lack an evaluation system to identify them according to a four-tiered ratings scale. But the state is relying heavily on a highly-regarded city-based mentoring organization to implement the program in selected higher education institutions.
Under Cuomo’s “Master Teacher Program,” 250 teachers from schools located in four upstate regions — North Country, Mid-Hudson, Central New York and Western New York — will be selected to receive a total of $60,000 in extra pay over four years. In exchange, the teachers will be trained at State University of New York education colleges and tasked with mentoring new teachers in the science and math subjects.
Recruiting and rewarding top teachers to work in high-demand subject areas was one of the recommendations put forth by Cuomo’s Education Reform Commission last year. Cuomo also secured $11 million in the 2013-2014 state budget to develop the program, which is scheduled to expand to more districts.
“As part of the state’s work to transform our education system and put students first, we are committed to investing in great teachers to educate our students and create a highly-trained workforce to drive our future economy,” Cuomo said in a statement. “This program will reward those teachers who work harder to make the difference and whose students perform better as a result.” (more…)
May 20, 2013
City principals who heard Chancellor Dennis Walcott deliver a stemwinding political speech on Saturday will get an extra day of summer vacation to make up for it.
This year, for the first time, the Department of Education told principals that they could take a day off during the summer to compensate for attending the citywide principals conference, held Saturday at Brooklyn Technical High School.
“To encourage attendance, any principal who attends the conference will receive one compensation day that can be used between June 27 and August 30,” the department’s weekly bulletin to principals said for at least the last two weeks.
The tradeoff isn’t sitting right with some, including UFT President Michael Mulgrew, whose union frequently battles the department to ensure that teachers are paid for time they spend working outside of the regular school day. Mulgrew cited the prohibition on city workers participating in political activity on the job.
“You’re using taxpayer dollars to pay New York City workers to come in and listen to you do a political rant,” Mulgrew said. ”It’s at least inappropriate, but it really borders on questionable ethics.” (more…)
May 20, 2013
“Every time it rains, like last week, the first words my son asks me” is if the house will flood, said Maryrose Spiteri. “He panics.”
Spiteri was part of a small group of parents and teachers from P.S. 38 on Staten Island who met in the school’s library this morning with three Regents: Chancellor Merryl Tisch, Buffalo’s Robert Bennett, and Staten Island’s Christine Cea. Principal Everlidys Robles estimated that 85 percent of her families “were devastated” by the storm and that 40 students — about 12 percent — had not returned. (more…)
May 20, 2013
New York City schools are being asked to add one more lesson to the packed weeks before the end of the school year: about bullying.
In light of recent bias-motivated violence, including the murder of a 32-year-old gay man in the West Village this weekend, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and Chancellor Dennis Walcott said all schools would be asked to hold at least one event before the end of the school year to educate students about hate crimes and bullying.
“I don’t know why it feels like we’ve taken a step backwards but that is the case,” Quinn said. “What we’re going to do is push forward and make sure we do the organizing, education, and public safety work we need to do to make sure we don’t go backwards.”
Quinn, who is vying to be the city’s first openly gay mayor and used to be the director of the New York City Gay & Lesbian Anti-Violence Project, reached out to Walcott to help implement the “emergency additions” to the city’s expectations for schools. (more…)
May 20, 2013
In the self portrait, her wild, curly blonde hair is tousled to one side of her face, the two sharp arrows from her lip ring poke out the left corner of her mouth and her eyebrows arch upward in a look of skepticism.
Samantha Morales said drawing this picture was the hardest thing she’s ever done.
“I was backing out of it so many times because in the picture I had curly hair, and it was really hard to draw,” she said. “But it made me learn not to give up on anything.”
Morales is a student at ROADS Charter School 2 in the Bronx, a charter transfer school that enrolls 15- to 17-year-olds who are overage and under-credited and have either been homeless, in jail, in foster care or child protective services, or who have dropped out of high school. (more…)
May 20, 2013
- Chancellor Walcott criticized mayoral candidates at an event for principals. (Times, NY1, Daily News)
- The New York Times backs the candidates, saying their education criticism is reasonable and overdue.
- Eva Moskowitz: The candidates aren’t saying how they would meet charter school demand. (Daily News)
- The NYC Charter Center’s CEO: Mayoral candidates are ignoring parents as they pander. (Daily News)
- A new civil rights complaint accuses the city’s high school admissions system of racial bias. (Daily News)
- The Board of Regents and State Assembly will work this week on a local DREAM Act. (GothamSchools)
- Field testing of standardized test questions is again angering some city educators and parents. (Times)
- Some city principals say they won’t use test scores to help screen students in protest. (GothamSchools)
- A judge decreed that the city cannot send out gifted admissions letters while they are contested. (WSJ)
- In the South Bronx, locals have carved out influence in school safety agent training. (GothamSchools)
- Some principals have earned bonuses of more than $50,000 since 2008, and one got $92,000. (Post)
- The new Promise Academy 1 charter school is opening soon in fancy new publicly funded space. (Post)
- Chicago teachers union chief Karen Lewis was reelected with 80 percent of votes. (Tribune, Sun-Times)
- Florida is the latest state to plan to hold its education schools accountable for outcomes. (StateImpact)
May 17, 2013
- After Chicago’s teachers union concludes its election, it will start three days of protests. (Answer Sheet)
- A parent offers a dispatch from the frontiers of urban schools’ field trips by subway. (NYC Taught Me)
- Newark’s Cami Anderson: Reform efforts focus too much on principals, not their managers. (Rick Hess)
- Eight mayoral candidates said in surveys that they’d emphasize the arts more in schools. (Metropolis)
- On the future of Teach for America, which is in the middle of a long-awaited transition. (Education Next)
- Enrollment in American private schools is shrinking, for a variety of surprising reasons. (Atlantic)
- What to do if you received a dreaded “promotion in doubt” letter about your child. (Insideschools)
- Alternative routes to teaching are growing in popular, even without proof to support them. (Hechinger)
- Philadelphia’s efforts to offer quality summer programming have dwindled with its budget. (Notebook)
- “Rocket Boy” Homer Hickam is encouraging the Florida teen whose experiment exploded. (The Root)
May 17, 2013
The Board of Regents and the Assembly are teaming up next week to push for legislation that would give New York’s roughly 150,000 undocumented students access to financial aid for college.
On Monday, the board will convene a forum in Queens on immigration and education to wrap up their monthly meeting. The forum will discuss ways to increase opportunities for English language learners and undocumented students who were brought to the United States as children.
That has been part of the board’s legislative agenda for the past two years. The bill, the New York Dream Act, would give undocumented students access to state financial aid through the $1 billion-funded Tuition Assistance Program, or TAP. It would also allow them to open tax-advantaged savings accounts with private banks.
The TAP funding in this year’s budget is up from $885 million in 2010-2011. The Fiscal Policy Institute, an independent research organization, has estimated that the state would need to spend an additional $17 million annually to afford tuition assistance for the roughly 4,500 undocumented seniors who graduate from New York high schools every year. (more…)