Posts from July 10th, 2012
July 10, 2012
- Administrators at Norman Thomas HS are suing Google to get defamatory results quashed. (Daily Intel)
- Their court papers say that the top results for their names are blogs alleging pedophilia. (Smoking Gun)
- The City Council wants help getting books about LGBT issues into city schools. (Insideschools)
- To make money, three Lower East Side schools have rented out their yard to a noisy tenant. (DNAInfo)
- A teacher remembers how a ninth-grade vocabulary test induced lasting test anxiety. (Music and Beyond)
- Liza Featherstone: The biggest issue with state tests is their creators’ anti-intellectualism. (Brooklyn Rail)
- Mike Petrilli: The idea that better schools will increase social mobility is more complicated. (Flypaper)
- Crowding in one of Chicago’s toniest neighborhoods has schools rooting out fake addresses. (Russo)
- Two reports warn about the potential effect of sweeping federal budget cuts on education. (Politics K-12)
- A report out today finds that teachers increasingly think that unions should be reformers. (Hechinger)
July 10, 2012
Legal battles between the city and the United Federation of Teachers are typically long, drawn-out affairs. Not today.
In just 40 minutes this afternoon, Judge Joan Lobis of the New York State Supreme Court made up her mind about the city’s request to suspend an arbitrator’s ruling in the UFT’s favor while she considers the city’s formal appeal. There will be no restraining order, Lobis ruled.
That means that hiring and firing decisions that have been made at 24 struggling schools that the city was trying to overhaul will be reversed. The Department of Education will have to reinstate hundreds — and possibly thousands — of teachers and administrators cut loose from the schools as part of the “turnaround” process.
“They no longer have an excuse for not complying with the arbitrator’s award,” Ross said about the city.
Asked by reporters about the education department’s immediate plans for allowing the teachers to reclaim their positions, Deputy Chancellor Marc Sternberg said, “Talk to the law department.”
The city’s top lawyer, Michael Cardozo, said in a statement that he was confident that Lobis would side with the city as the case moves forward.
The hearing was a first step in the city’s appeal of a ruling handed down two weeks ago by an arbitrator who found that the city’s hiring and firing decisions — a key aspect of the Department of Education’s turnaround plans — violated the city’s contract with the teachers union. (more…)
July 10, 2012
If Wes Edwards had his way, the middle-school teacher would regularly invite parents into the classroom to help bridge the language divide between his Spanish-speaking students and educators.
More than 90 percent of students at his Washington Heights charter school, New Heights Academy, speak Spanish at home. But only about a third of the staff speaks Spanish, Edwards estimates — leading to communication problems among students, parents, and teachers.
“In order to really have support in the classroom and from families, you need to have translation for everything. Parents need to feel comfortable speaking Spanish,” Edwards said, adding that he understands just enough Spanish from growing up in Texas to speak to his students’ parents.
Edwards said he thought the language barriers contributed to low test scores for students like his because they cannot always get help from their parents, who often barely speak English. He said he also thought his students often feel disconnected from what they study in school.
Edwards said he would like to use his students’ language challenges and cultural heritages as assets, rather than see them as challenges, but he wasn’t sure how to.
He hoped he would find answers last week at a daylong conference on how to incorporate lessons on diversity and cultural sensitivity into the classroom. The conference, organized by New York University Metropolitan Center for Urban Education, drew nearly 300 educators from across the city and state for speeches, panel discussions, and workshops. (more…)
July 10, 2012
- A $1 million donation is seen as a chance to merge Stuyvesant HS’s long-divided alumni groups. (WSJ)
- 71 Stuy students who cheated will retake exams. (GothamSchools, Times, Post, Daily News, WSJ, NY1)
- The Post says the consequences for the Stuy students were too light; they should have been expelled.
- Schools that try to run “bridge” programs for students who aren’t behind get little help. (GothamSchools)
- A program to train city high school students in computer programming is recruiting now. (Daily News)
- Parents from the Children’s School in Brooklyn want the city to offer space for expansion. (Daily News)
- The Daily News says the turnaround arbitrator didn’t understand: Schools are not buildings but cultures.
- Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed off on a law to combat cyberbullying starting next year. (S.I. Advance)
- A new report crunches federal data and finds that many students say school is too easy. (USA Today)
- David Brooks: Poor children are losing ground because affluent parents are doing more. (Times)
- Cleveland’s teachers union is working with bipartisan leaders to overhaul how teachers are fired. (WSJ)
- The head of the Cato Institute says America has too many teachers, unless they are used better. (WSJ)