Posts from August 21st, 2013
August 21, 2013
- A parent who “won” the school choice lottery thinks about all the families that could not. (Flypaper)
- Why are polls finding divergent opinions about testing? Maybe because of their phrasing. (Teacher Beat)
- The polls offer evidence for almost every point of view people could take on education now. (Eduwonk)
- In letters to the editor, educators offer advice and cautious optimism about the Common Core. (Times)
- A Stuyvesant High School junior offers advice for ninth-graders, including to get sleep. (Insideschools)
- For parents, high school means finding a balance between vigilance and backing off. (Insideschools)
- Meet the Georgia school administrator who talked an armed intruder out of attacking students. (Slate)
- Librarians and parents joined together to protest the city’s bid to not hire school librarians. (Metropolis)
August 21, 2013
After the state released lower test scores earlier this month, city and state officials disagreed over whether the achievement gap had gotten bigger. But all agreed that performance disparities between subgroups of students — most notably between white students and black and Latino students — were far too wide.
In 2011, Chancellor Dennis Walcott created a standalone Division of Equity and Access within the Department of Education to focus on what he said were “our most vulnerable students.” Last week, we spoke to Dorita Gibson, the division’s deputy chancellor, about the division, which includes District 79, the alternative schools district; adult education; partnerships such as the Young Men’s Initiative; and other initiatives designed to boost outcomes for high-need students.
Here are some of the most interesting takeaways from our conversation.
Why the Department of Education needs a separate Division of Equity and Access
Walcott’s decision to create the division sent the message that improving the school system does not mean the hard work is done, Gibson said.
“We’ve done such great work in the last 11, 12 years of this administration. We have great schools. We have great programs,” Gibson said. “But how do we as a school system make sure that all of our kids, regardless of their color and socioeconomic background, succeed in these programs?” (more…)
August 21, 2013
A former top New York City schools official is New Jersey’s pick to run the Camden school district, which the state took over this year because of poor performance and mismanagement.
Paymon Rouhanifard, who has been a top deputy in Newark since last November, will take over the struggling district as its first state superintendent. N.J. Gov. Chris Christie announced Rouhanifard’s appointment this morning during a press conference at H.B. Wilson Elementary School in Camden.
The choice signals the direction that Christie and N.J. schools chief Christopher Cerf are planning for the 14,000-student, 30-school district near Philadelphia that Christie has called “a human catastrophe.” Since announcing in March that they planned to make Camden the fourth urban district under their authority, officials have overhauled staff, curriculum, and other resources in the district and flooded it with people with experience in education and management.
“Paymon has a proven track record of improving the lives of hundreds of thousands of students in Newark and New York City, and brings innovative leadership that Camden needs moving forward,” Christie said in a statement. “Under his leadership, I know Camden’s schools will improve on the progress of these last few months.” (more…)
August 21, 2013
News from New York City:
- Christine Quinn said she might provide emergency contraception to middle-schoolers. (Post, Daily News)
- Schools explain the challenge of helping students with asthma, the subject of a CSA campaign. (NY1)
- New York City reduced its reliance on testing to assess an ambitious summer program. (GothamSchools)
- A report turned the question of city schools’ internet connection quality into a debate. (GothamSchools)
- Bill Thompson’s latest TV ad focuses on education but doesn’t explain how he’d be different. (Times)
- Eliot Spitzer’s new ad is also about education, focusing on his role in boosting city school funds. (Metro)
- A Queens student hurt when her school bus crashed in April is suing the Department of Education. (Post)
- Pearson faces a test this week when it rolls out an N.C. district’s new data system. (Charlotte Observer)
- A new poll finds wide education policy ambivalence and Common Core ignorance. (HuffPo, Politico)
- British schools are steeling themselves for the second straight year of declining test scores. (Guardian)
- No one was injured after a man with an AK-47 sneaked into an Atlanta-area school. (AJC, Times)
- Schools across the country are installing “panic buttons” as a low-cost tool to boost safety. (WSJ)
- Low-income teenagers of color continue to struggle most to access summer job opportunities. (WSJ)