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May 21, 2013
- The man who just made $250 million by selling Tumblr to Yahoo dropped out of Bronx Science. (Times)
- A city teacher proposes himself to replace the departed education aide to Gov. Cuomo. (Mr. D’s Nabe)
- Believe it or not, free computers don’t actually eliminate wealth gaps in achievement. (TechCrunch)
- More city high schools are opening with business partnerships already lined up. (Epoch Times)
- Voters in other school districts voted on their districts’ budgets today. Why not here? (NYCDOEnuts)
- Bill Thompson discussed his stint at the Board of Education on the Road to City Hall. (CapitalNY)
- Assemblywoman Cathy Nolan, the education chair, says she’s glad Vito Lopez is gone. (Daily Politics)
- A middle-class Ohio father describes his family’s effort at school choice, which fell short. (Flypaper)
- Recent graduate Nikhil Goyal explains why he didn’t fuel his district’s teacher evaluations. (Nation)
- A 9-year-old who spoke at a Chicago school closure rally captured the crowd’s attention. (YouTube)
- Chicago’s protests are seen as reminiscent of the city’s 1963 boycott against segregation. (Reader)
- Mike Petrilli: All schools should get to propose their own accountability rules. (Bridging Differences)
May 21, 2013
The New York City Council is calling on state officials to do away “immediately” with standalone field tests, just weeks before thousands of city students are scheduled to take the tests.
Speaker Christine Quinn and Education Committee Chair Robert Jackson made the demand in a letter today to State Education Commissioner John King, and the full council is expected to pass a resolution Wednesday calling for the same change.
Test-makers use field testing to try out questions before they count, to see whether they are likely to provide useful results about student achievement in the future. Last month’s state reading and math tests, which were aligned to new standards known as the Common Core for the first time, included some field questions that did not factor into students’ scores. Now, 3,300 schools across the state are being told to administer hourlong, standalone field tests to some students next month.
That requirement has elicited consternation from families and educators who believe that students have already spent enough time taking tests for the year. Some of them plan to boycott the field tests, as a number did last year when field tests were given for the first time. (more…)
May 21, 2013
The city will clear school buildings of light fixtures containing PCBs, a carcinogen, by the end of 2016, five years ahead of schedule, under an agreement announced today.
The agreement was struck between the city and New York Communities for Change and New York Lawyers for the Public Interest, which filed suit over the city’s timeline for replacing the toxin-containing light fixtures in July 2011. A mediator stepped in to try to broker a compromise last month.
A year and a half ago, the city said 754 school buildings had the problematic light fixtures, and until recently, officials had said they would clear them all by 2021.
But two weeks ago, after 11 students and a teacher were taken to the hospital after a light fixture containing the chemicals began emitting smoke at a Harlem school, the city announced that it would accelerate the timeline. The announcement also followed a dispute over the light fixtures in a Brooklyn building where a charter school replaced its lights without city permission while schools the district operates continued to have the old fixtures. (more…)
May 21, 2013
Until now, only Kentucky has administered state assessments aligned with the new Common Core standards, and the results were frightening. … I’ve made some projections of New York City’s likely performance on the new state assessments, based on what happened in Kentucky. (more…)
May 21, 2013
Banks, a former principal who is now the president and CEO of the Eagle Academy Foundation, is not running for mayor. But he hopes to influence the candidates who are.
Banks was one of four people to appear on a panel this morning to discuss ways to bring schools and the business community together to improve student achievement and the city. The panel was moderated by NY1′s Errol Louis and convened by Morty Ballen, the CEO of Explore Schools, a network of four charter schools in Central Brooklyn.
Ballen said he organized the panel, titled “Achieving the Brooklyn Dream,” because he wanted to spur a public conversation about educational inequities in the borough. The borough was recently named “the coolest place on the planet” by GQ Magazine, he said, ”yet at the same time our borough’s students aren’t all getting what they need to be part of the American dream that’s taking place right here.” (more…)
May 21, 2013
- Hunter College High School is warning students against playing Killer, 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…)