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November 2016 Newsletter Trump's Education Pick: Privatization Without Accountability
By Justin C. Cohen

Nov 29, 2016- Donald Trump nominated Betsy DeVos to be United States Secretary of Education, and her public record is long. DeVos has been a fixture in GOP politics for decades, while her family's financial largesse has supported the conservative movement since the 1970s. Read more

The prospects of DeVos’s school choice agenda as Ed Secretary
By Elizabeth Mann
Brookings

Nov 29, 2016- By now, you have almost certainly heard that president-elect Trump nominated Betsy DeVos for the position of Secretary of Education last week Wednesday. DeVos is well-known for her activism promoting school choice via charter schools and vouchers, inspiring an outpouring of both hopes and fears following her nomination announcement. Read more

Betsy DeVos and the Wrong Way to Fix Schools
By Douglas N. Harris
New York Times

Nov 25, 2016- NEW ORLEANS — President-elect Donald J. Trump’s selection of Betsy DeVos as secretary of education has sent shock waves through the educational establishment. Understandably so, since this is a clear sign that Mr. Trump intends a major national push to direct public funds to private and charter schools.  Read more

U.S. students still lag many Asian peers on international math and science exam
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Nov 29, 2016- Eighth-grade students across the United States showed some improvement in math and science over the past four years, but fourth-graders’ performance was stagnant and students in both groups continued to trail many of their peers in Asia, according to the results of a major international exam released Tuesday. Read more

Civil Rights Advocates React Warily to Betsy DeVos, Trump's Pick for Ed. Sec.
By Andrew Ujifusa
Education Week

Nov 29, 2016- Betsy DeVos, the major Republican Party donor who's been nominated by President-elect Donald Trump to be his education secretary, is best known as an advocate for school choice of various kinds, including vouchers and tax-credit scholarships. But her views on civil rights issues for students and protections for disadvantaged learners and other student groups aren't as clear. Read more

National Advocacy Group Launches Charter School Legal Defense Fund
By Arianna Prothero
Education Week

Nov 28, 2016- The nation's largest charter advocacy group has launched a legal action and defense fund.  The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools describes its new Charter School Legal Defense Fund as a "watchdog and resource" that will help defend charters in lawsuits and further charter causes through litigation. Read more

Obama administration to release new rules for judging schools
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Nov 28, 2016- The U.S. Education Department on Monday released final regulations governing how states should judge which schools are doing well and which are struggling and require help, a contentious set of rules that has pitted the Obama administration and its civil rights allies against an unusual alliance of teachers unions and GOP leaders. Read more

Using America's National Parks as Classrooms (Video)
By Carmen Rojas
Education Week

Nov 23, 2016- 'America's national parks have been called the country's "largest classroom," in part because they provide millions of hours in free educational programming every year. The National Park Service has worked to encourage "experiential learning" through the creation of hundreds of lesson plans, virtual resources for schools, and professional development for teachers.  Read more

Bowser’s pick for new D.C. schools chancellor is a safe choice
By Editorial Board
Washington Post

Nov 22, 2016- IN CHOOSING the superintendent of schools in Oakland, Calif., to take over as chancellor of the D.C. public school system, Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) bypassed internal candidates groomed during the reforms of the past decade. It seems Ms. Bowser wanted to put her own stamp on education by bringing in someone unfettered to previous administrations and possessing fresh eyes and urgency. Read more

Antwan Wilson, schools chief in Oakland, Calif., expected to be nominated for D.C. schools chancellor
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Nov 21, 2016- D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser is expected to name Antwan Wilson — the superintendent of schools in Oakland, Calif. — as her nominee to lead the District’s school system on Tuesday, according to city officials, betting that an outsider with fresh eyes will bring new ideas for addressing wide achievement gaps between the city’s needy and affluent children. Read more

 
D.C.’s public charter school system turned 20 this year. Now what?
By Perry Stein
Washington Post

Nov 20, 2016- The District’s finances were in shambles. The city’s schools were widely underperforming. Drugs and violence continued to decimate the city’s poorest neighborhoods in the 1990s, rendering Washington the nation’s murder capital. Malcolm “Mike” Peabody, a real estate developer and activist, believed that the failing schools and a lack of opportunities for poor black residents were a civil rights issue. Read more

Black Boys in Crisis: How to Solve the Black Boy-Special Education Problem
By Matthew Lynch
Education Week

Nov 18, 2016- The statistics on high numbers of black and Latino boys in special education programs is more than an interesting tidbit - it's a call to action. What can we do to identify true learning delays and isolated behavior problems and disseminate them from disabilities? Read more

Five Steps for Reimagining World-Language Learning Goals
By Guest Blogger
Education Week

Nov 17, 2016- Language programs in the 21st century must help students gain the language and literacy proficiency they will need to succeed in the real world. This means that relying only on traditional ways of measuring student progress (e.g., time spent in a class), without measuring what students can actually do in the language, is not enough.  Read more

The Power of Measuring Social-Emotional Learning
By Matthew Lynch
Education Week

Nov 17, 2016- As districts around the country work to broaden our definition of student success, one of the most challenging questions we face is: How do we measure social-emotional learning (SEL)? Read more

ACT Offers First Accommodations for English-Language Learners
By Catherine Gewertz
Education Week

Nov 14, 2016- ACT Inc., announced Monday that it will provide, for the first time, accommodations for English-learners who take its college-entrance exam. The options will become available in the fall of 2017. Students will have to apply for them through their school counselor's office. The accommodations announced Monday include Read more

Northwest D.C. high school ranked no.1 public charter school
By Kellye Lynn
ABC7

Nov 29, 2016- Teachers and students at BASIS DC High School have something to celebrate. "I've known from day one we were number one but it's really nice that other people are taking notice," 17-year-old Elle James chuckled. Read more

D.C. adult public charter school expands to offer hope through education
By Kellye Lynn
ABC7

Nov 15, 2016- WASHINGTON (ABC7) — Many of the students at Academy of Hope Adult Public Charter School in Northeast are parents; even grandparents like Reggie Bryant who are getting back to the education they left behind. "67-years-old and getting my high school diploma and I am happy about it," he proudly expressed to ABC7 News. Read more

D.C. students walk out of class to protest Trump
By Perry Stein and Joe Heim
Washington Post

Nov 15, 2016- The students poured out of class, then crammed into Metro stations throughout the city. They crowded downtown streets carrying signs, marching and chanting until they arrived at the Trump International Hotel on Pennsylvania Avenue NW. Many couldn’t vote in this election, but they wanted to put a voice to their frustrations. Read more

Parents of transgender children speak out as election results put LGBT advocates on defense
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Nov 15, 2016- Peter and Sarah Tchoryk want you to know that their child — who they thought was their daughter, but who insisted he is their son — was anxious and despairing until he started living as a boy, with a haircut and a new name.  Read more

D.C. releases report of city’s best- and worst-performing charter schools
By Perry Stein
Education Week

Nov 18, 2016- BASIS DC High School is the District’s top-performing charter school, according to annual D.C. Public Charter School Board rankings released this week. The annual School Quality Reports examine the city’s more than 100 charter schools to determine if they are meeting citywide standards. Read more

Civil rights group makes legal case for controversial Education Dept. regulation
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Nov 7, 2016- A chorus of opponents has accused the Obama administration of overstepping its legal authority with a proposal to regulate the spending of billions of dollars meant to help educate children from poor families. The nonpartisan Congressional Research Service bolstered that criticism, finding in May that the proposed regulation appeared to “go beyond what would be required by a plain reading of the statute. Read more

D.C. Parents Wary Over Plans to Reduce School Nursing Hours
By Shantella Y. Sherman
Afro

Nov 2, 2016- In an effort to streamline the traditional position of the school nurse, the D.C. Department of Health plans to change the way nurses are assigned to city schools reducing many full-time workers to part-time status. And while the new approach to in-school health care for students would incorporate a more preventative and community-based model, parents fear the changes would eliminate a necessary first-responder in cases of emergency. Read more

Adult charter school helps immigrant thrive in U.S.
By Emily Leayman
Washington Post

Nov 1, 2016- Dominican-American Geovanny Vicente Romero left a comfortable government career in Santo Domingo to move closer to family and seek new opportunities in the U.S. capital. He had the policy experience that could help him navigate D.C.’s job market, but he arrived in the U.S. speaking minimal English. Read more

Number of home-schooled students has doubled since 1999, new data shows
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Nov 1, 2016- Approximately 1.8 million U.S. children were home-schooled in 2012, more than double the number that were home-schooled in 1999, when the federal government began gathering data on national home-schooling trends, according to estimates released Tuesday.  Read more

Advocates confident about D.C. vouchers under Trump administration
By Emily Leayman
Education Watchdog

Dec 1, 2016- Advocates are hopeful that President-elect Donald Trump’s education platform of expanding school choice could lead to more than a renewal of the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program. Trump has suggested a $20 billion voucher program for use at public and private schools, but it is unclear where the money would come from.  Read more
 
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