Our weekly roundup of the week’s most important news, information and blog posts about curriculum, teaching, education policy and other items of interest to the Core Knowledge community.
Best of the Blogs
Social Justice Teaching at Eduwonkette
Sol Stern, Bill Ayers, Diane Ravitch, yours truly and a cast of dozens debate what it means to teach for “social justice.” Another reason to love edublogs. Where else would this happen?
Choice is a Winner at Joanne Jacobs
School choice works and it’s politically viable.
Ability grouping may matter most for gifted black kids at Gifted Exchange
The average academic performance at an average predominantly black school is lower than the average academic performance at a predominantly white school. This affects all children, but it affects one particular group in a particularly horrible way: gifted black students.
Low ability teachers, low ability students? at Dangerously Irrelevant
Almost a fourth of teachers with high college entrance exams leave the profession within a decade, compared to 11% of individuals with low scores.
A child miseducated is a child lost at The Fierce Urgency of Now
Let us stop bickering. Let us stop with these useless partisan fights. And let us commit to not lose another child in America.
Teaching, Content and Curriculum
Searching for Science to Guide Good Teaching
By Maria Glod, Washington Post
The Bush administration’s chief of education research says teachers too often rely on “folk wisdom” instead of proven methods to help students learn reading and math.
An Initiative on Reading Is Rated Ineffective
By Sam Dillon, The New York Times
President Bush’s $1 billion a year effort to teach reading to low-income children has not helped improve their reading comprehension, according to the Department of Education.
Schools Use Cash as an Incentive to Boost Attendance and Scores
By Sean J. Miller, Christian Science Monitor
Baltimore schools teach students about the stock market and let them keep money from their portfolios. Are cash rewards bribery or a creative way to inspire students?
Value of college tuition is called into question
By Mary Beth Marklein, USA Today
As college tuitions continue to climb, a study fuels concern about whether the investment in higher education by families and taxpayers transltes into better results.
Oregon science teacher honored as 2008 teacher of the year
By Matthew Daly, The Associated Press
Oregon middle school teacher Michael Geisen got to meet President Bush Wednesday when he was celebrated as the national teacher of the year
Districts Experiment With Cutting Down on Teacher Absence
By Bess Keller, Education Week
With new evidence that teacher absences harm student achievement, some districts are experimenting with attempts to cut down on the absences.
Big gains in U.S. education reform, but holes remain
By Jennifer Davis, National Center on Time and Learning, USA Today
“A Nation at Risk” called for the U.S. to consider moving to a seven-hour school day and a 220-day year. A quarter-century later, most American schools operate on the same schedules as they did in 1983–less time in school than many of their international counterparts.
Judge Dismisses Connecticut’s Challenge to Education Law
By SAM DILLON, The New York Times
A federal judge ruled that Connecticut failed to prove that federal officials had forced the state to spend its own money to comply with President Bush’s signature education law.
Teachers, Testing, & Civil Disobedience
Educators debate Seattle teacher Carl Chew’s refusal to administer the Washington Assessment of Student Learning.
Debate on teacher pay bill turns ugly
By Jason Rosenbaum and Janese Heavin, the Columbia Tribune
Lawmakers come to blows in the state Capitol over legislation meant to boost teacher salaries in Missouri.
Parenting and Homeschooling
Keeping Our Daughters Active
By Sanjay Gupta, M.D., TIME Magazine
Although girls’ participation in organized sports is on the rise, adolescent girls are only half as likely as teen boys to be physically active.
Truancy up despite fines for parents
By Graeme Paton, The Telegraph (U.K.)
Fines for parents who fail to send their children to school are failing to cut truancy
Homeschooling an option
By Tatiana Tripp, The Justice (Brandeis University)
To believe that every homeschooled child is sheltered, lacking social opportunities or indoctrinated with religion is ignorant and yet remains a prevalent belief among otherwise intelligent individuals.