Posts from July 11th, 2013
July 11, 2013
- Success Academy is suing to halt the state comptroller from auditing charter schools. (Courthouse News)
- Tennessee is the latest state to begin to move away from “step increases” in teacher pay. (Teacher Beat)
- A Townsend Harris High School teacher explains why she’s left the classroom to write. (SchoolBook)
- Philadelphia poets are taking on the city’s sweeping school closures through verse. (Apiary Magazine)
- U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan has used “no excuses” vocabulary in a new way. (Answer Sheet)
- The lines between high school and college are blurring, and that might be a good thing. (Jay Greene)
- Like Anthony Weiner, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn wants to help private schools. (Forward)
- Everybody talks about urban school leadership. Here’s a view from a rural principal. (Larry Cuban)
July 11, 2013
Love it, hate it, or reserve judgment — just don’t call it “the city’s new teacher evaluation system.”
The Department of Education has a new name for the evaluation system that State Education Commissioner John King imposed on the city a month ago: Advance.
The name, which comes with a snazzy logo, got its first public airing today as the department launched a series of summer training sessions aimed at preparing schools to begin implementing the evaluation system this fall. The department held five training sessions across the city today and plans to hold 53 total before the end of next month.
At Brooklyn Law School, where administrators and teachers from 32 schools convened, department officials said they had decided to give the evaluation system a name to communicate the purpose of the changes. The new system will help teachers advance professionally, Chancellor Dennis Walcott said, and it is also an advance from the system that was in place until now. (more…)
July 11, 2013
This morning, after the class of rising fourth-graders at P.S. 211 established what they want to know about the Bronx, they divided into four different groups to come up with projects that would help teach them. One group wanted to know what animals live in the Bronx, so they decided to create a magazine about wildlife. Another group wanted to know what some of the most famous restaurants are in the Bronx, so they’re creating a menu for their own Arthur Avenue eatery.
Their project-based learning is the hallmark of the Department of Education’s Summer Quest program, which is designed to prevent students from losing ground over the summer. It differs from regular summer school, which is geared toward helping students pass state math and reading exams, because it enrolls students who struggle but are not the lowest-performing, a rarity among city-funded summer programs.
Summer Quest, which is part of Chancellor Dennis Walcott’s focus on middle schools, launched last year with 1,120 elementary and middle school students in 12 schools and includes 1,800 students this year. Community-based organizations including the Children’s Aid Society, Building Educated Leaders for Life, and Good Shepherd Services have partnered with 11 South Bronx schools to provide staff and support services for five-week, nine-hour-a-day program.
At P.S. 211, which Chancellor Dennis Walcott toured Thursday morning, the theme for all Summer Quest learning is “Our New York City.” Students in different classrooms drew maps of the Bronx and its landmarks, sketched and shared objects that were significant to their cultures, learned to cook a vegetable frittata, and practiced a choreographed dance routine — which Walcott enthusiastically joined. (more…)
July 11, 2013
For most of the mayoral race up to now, the focus has been on developments in the crowded Democratic field. On Wednesday night, three Republican contenders had a chance to distinguish themselves on a number of policies and issues during their first debate of the 2013 campaign season, hosted by NY1.
On education, the candidates — billionaire businessman John Catsimatidis, former MTA Chairman Joe Lhota, and Doe Fund founder George McDonald — spoke vaguely about problems facing the school system. There isn’t enough parent voice, they said, the dropout rates are too high, and teachers aren’t adequately trained to do their job.
The candidates also did not offer many new proposals, with one exception. McDonald said he’d use city funds to open a $50 savings account for every child who registers for kindergarten. The accounts would be matched occasionally throughout the course of a student’s public education and allow for contributions from private donors. When the student is 18, he said, “there’s sufficient money” for college under the plan. (more…)
July 11, 2013
- The school year extended into July for a Bronx charter school, with a focus on new experiences. (NY1)
- Students who want to transfer from closing schools will be able to under new policies. (GothamSchools)
- Brooklyn Latin’s principal was hired at Harlem Village to be its high school’s new leader. (DNAInfo)
- Anthony Weiner detailed his plan to enhance government’s roles in private schools. (GothamSchools)
- A judge ruled that Paul Vallas must leave step down immediately while appealing his case. (WSJ)
- School data reigns under the Bloomberg administration, whether schools like it or not. (Schoolbook)