Posts from May 29th, 2012
May 29, 2012
- The market for cell phone storage continues to thrive under the city’s school phone ban. (Mashable)
- Tottenville High School’s softball coach won’t let players talk to the press, against city policy. (Post)
- A teacher sends himself back to the ATR pool rather than face “turnaround” hiring. (Chaz’s School Daze)
- The nonprofit behind the Common Core helped Michelle Rhee launch StudentsFirst. (Teacher Beat)
- Heroic pilot Sully Sullenberg cites Rhee as an American hero. (North Jersey Record via NYC Educator)
- Mitt Romney and President Obama seem to have similar positions on whether class size matters. (TPM)
- A parent whose high-scoring child lost out in a high school lottery receives advice. (Insideschools)
- A Texas judge sent an honor student who works two jobs to jail for sleeping through school. (KHOU)
- Says a teacher: “The time is now to consider all the things that happened since September.” (Jose Vilson)
- John Chubb, the interim head of Education Sector, has left Mitt Romney’s new education team. (Russo)
- The head of a football team-less school questions the future of high school football. (Practical Theory)
- Boston’s single K-8 teacher of Spanish as a foreign language talks teacher evaluations. (Hechinger)
- Just in time for TFA’s summer institute, Gary Rubinstein launches an “Occupy TFA” blog. (Teach for US)
- A teacher admires the cheerful tenacity of a student whose disability has left her behind. (Mr. Foteah)
May 29, 2012
New York State will be freed from the most onerous requirements of the decade-old No Child Left Behind law, under the terms of a waiver awarded today by the U.S. Department of Education.
In exchange, the state will begin assessing districts and schools on their students’ progress instead of simply their performance — and districts that fall short will get extra funding and support starting this fall.
Lists of lagging schools, which will now be known as “Focus” schools, will be released by the end of June, according to a State Education Department spokesman. The state will also publish lists of “Reward” schools that will merit extra funds because of their strong performance.
The Obama administration introduced the waiver program as a way around Congress, which so far has declined to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, renamed No Child Left Behind during George W. Bush’s presidency. NCLB required all students to be “proficient” by 2014 in a quixotic that goal left more schools labeled as failing each year without urging states to action.
“The waiver lets New York move away from NCLB requirements that were unproductive or unrealistic,” said State Education Commissioner King in a statement. “We can evaluate schools in terms of both student growth and proficiency and recognize schools in which students are making good progress toward meeting standards of college and career readiness.” (more…)
May 29, 2012
A legal change that Chancellor Dennis Walcott announced he wanted in March now has a legislator standing behind it.
State Sen. Stephen Saland is sponsoring a bill that would give school district chiefs the right to fire teachers who have been found to have engaged in inappropriate sexual contact with a student.
Under the current disciplinary process, once the city files charges against a teacher accused of misconduct, an independent arbitrators determines whether teachers have behaved inappropriately, and determine the punishment, no matter the offense.
This bill would create a new disciplinary process for the small number of teachers accused of sexual misconduct. The special process would send the arbitrator’s ruling back to school district officials, who could overrule it. The district would have the power to fire any teacher found to have engaged in sexual misconduct. Termination would be the default consequence, although the district could opt for a lesser punishment.
Walcott and Mayor Bloomberg announced the proposed legislation today at Gracie Mansion, the mayor’s official residence on the Upper East Side. Flanked by Saland, the superintendent of Yonkers Public Schools and several other representatives of state district superintendents, Walcott and Bloomberg said those who might oppose the legislation would be choosing to protect teachers over students.
“If city government can’t take care of them, I don’t know who is going to,” Bloomberg said about city students. “We are calling on the United Federation of Teachers to join us.” (more…)
May 29, 2012
The phone calls are bad, but the visitors are the toughest to reject.
That’s how Daniel Rubenstein feels about the admission requests that his charter school, Brooklyn Prospect, gets each summer from families who moved to the neighborhood after the school’s April lottery.
“This is a population that needs to be in a good school,” Rubenstein said. “Our school — which is a small, relationship-driven, intimate environment — would be better for someone that needs a community.”
But by law, Rubenstein must turn the families away. The state’s charter school law does not make provisions for schools to reserve seats for students who arrive to the city from far-flung locales after their April admissions lotteries. That means that charter schools, which are charged with serving the city’s neediest students, must exclude some of the students with the greatest need.
But after lobbying by Rubenstein and other charter operators, as well as by officials at the city Department of Education, one of the state’s charter authorizers is working on an option that would allow charter schools to open their doors in the middle of the year. (more…)
May 29, 2012
- Without official “rubber rooms,” teachers charged with misconduct languish in other locations. (Post)
- Alleging that a teacher had an affair with her teenaged son, a mother is suing the city. (Post, Daily News)
- Sources say an education department network leader is living with a principal she supports. (Daily News)
- Nearly all city principals scored at least satisfactory on their evaluations last year. (GothamSchools, NY1)
- Michael Winerip: The mayor’s proposed cuts to after-school programs are catastrophic if real. (Times)
- Admissions letters to city gifted and talented programs went out Friday. (Insideschools, SchoolBook)
- York Prep stands out among city private schools for taking challenging students — and a profit. (Times)
- In letters, representatives of education nonprofits weigh in on Joe Nocera’s Bill Gates interview. (Times)
- AQE’s Billy Easton: Budget cuts and tax caps make improving schools in the state a tough ask. (Times)
- The Daily News says Gov. Cuomo’s education reform panel should turn its watchful eye toward Pearson.
Last week on GothamSchools:
- The city and the unions that sued it have agreed to unusually speedy “turnaround” arbitration. (Friday)
- Judges extended the lives of two charter schools the city wants to close, at least temporarily. (Thursday)
- The Panel for Educational Policy approved a controversial special education budget plan. (Thursday)
- Advocates want the state to take more time to phase in more stringent diploma standards. (Wednesday)
- Parent activists are weighing political campaigns as they look toward Bloomberg’s exit. (Wednesday)
- Some parents are resisting next month’s field tests, when the state will try out new questions. (Tuesday)
- Math teachers, whose topic builds sequentially, see a rocky transition to the Common Core. (Tuesday)
- Proposed rules for a district-level Race to the Top contest could be hard for the city to follow. (Tuesday)
- Olympus Academy uses a blended learning model to let students advance at their own pace. (Monday)