DCPCSA March 2016 Newsletter
 
 

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March 2016 Newsletter Not just college: Technical education as a pathway to the middle class
By Michael J. Petrilli
Brookings

April 1, 2016- Education reformers are obsessed with getting many more low-income students "to and through" four-year colleges. Understandably so, a bachelor's degree is the closest thing we have to a guaranteed ticket to the middle class. Read more

Don’t Grade Schools on Grit
By Angela Duckworth
New York Times

March 26, 2016- Philadelphia — THE Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once observed, “Intelligence plus character — that is the goal of true education.” Evidence has now accumulated in support of King’s proposition: Attributes like self-control predict children’s success in school and beyond. Over the past few years, I’ve seen a groundswell of popular interest in character development. Read more

Is the Common Core past its peak and heading toward oblivion?
By Jay Mathews
Washington Post

Mar 27, 2016- Intelligent discussion of schools has disappeared from the presidential campaign, replaced by low comedy, such as Sen. Ted Cruz’s promise to repeal every word of the Common Core State Standards. Cruz would have to persuade many state officials who loathe him to do this, as the standards are largely immune to presidential decree. But his vow passed so quickly that few remember what he said. Read more

New Infographic: Lifting All Children Up
By Schott Foundation

Mar 18, 2016- What will it take to ensure that all children have an opportunity to learn, regardless of their background or which school they attend? The work of the National Education Policy Center at the University of Colorado has long pointed out that the problems of inequity in public education aren’t just contained within our public schools, but also stem from larger structural issues in the community like unemployment, poverty, and disinvestment of public resources. Read more

Rethinking School Discipline: Disability Law and the Case for Reform Panel
By American Bar Association

Feb 29, 2016- Disparities in school discipline are an issue of national concern. Data show that students with disabilities are more than twice as likely to receive an out-of-school suspension as students without disabilities, and that students of color with disabilities are more likely to be suspended than their white peers. Read more

Teen's Google doodle honors black heritage
By Jessica Guynn
USA Today

Mar 21, 2016- SAN FRANCISCO — Akilah Johnson, a 10th grader from Washington, D.C., is Google's top student doodler. Johnson's doodle, which honors her African-American heritage, is featured prominently on the Internet giant's home page on Monday. It was selected from 100,000 submissions to the "Doodle 4 Google" competition for young artists. Read more

A legal loophole might be exposing children to lead in the nation’s schools
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Mar 18, 2016- Children drinking from water fountains at the nation’s schools — especially in aging facilities with lead pipes and fixtures — might be unwittingly exposing themselves to high levels of lead, which is known to cause brain damage and developmental problems including impulsive behavior, poor language skills and trouble remembering new information. Read more

So What Exactly is a Math Circle
By Katherine Kinzler
New York Times

Mar 11, 2016- BEING bilingual has some obvious advantages. Learning more than one language enables new conversations and new experiences. But in recent years, psychology researchers have demonstrated some less obvious advantages of bilingualism, too. Read more

The Superior Social Skills of Bilinguals
By Anemona Hartocollis
New York Times

Feb 8, 2016- GFor thousands of college hopefuls, the stressful college admissions season is about to become even more fraught. The College Board, which makes the SAT, is rolling out a new test — its biggest redesign in a decade, and one of the most substantial ever. Chief among the changes, experts say: longer and harder reading passages and more words in math problems. Read more

In Charters, Using Weighted Lotteries for Diversity Hits Barriers
By Arianna Prothero
Education Week

Mar 8, 2016- While many of the nation's public schools remain stubbornly segregated by race and income, charter schools are well-positioned to buck that trend: Untethered from neighborhood boundaries, they can draw students from across a city. But the charter movement—fueled in part by high-profile networks geared strictly toward serving inner-city, low-income students—has mostly fallen short of creating schools that are more integrated than their traditional school counterparts.Read more

Weighted Admissions Lotteries: Will They Reshape Charter Demographics?
By Katie Ash
Education Week

Mar 20, 2016- New federal regulatory guidance that now allows charter schools to hold weighted admission lotteries in favor of disadvantaged students may affect a small number of charters now, but could have a greater impact in the future, experts say. Already the guidance has spurred conversations about the use of weighted lotteries and brought greater attention to the demographic makeup of charters around the country. Read more

Are We Building a Wall Inside Our Schools?
By Joyce Nuttan
Harvard Education Publishing Group

Mar 15, 2016- There’s been a lot of talk lately about walls—walls that separate areas and people from one another. The scale of the wall some are calling for exceeds any other manmade barrier in the American landscape, dividing residents to its north and south by masses of cement and steel.  Read more  
Ed. Department ESSA Negotiators, Key Areas of Discussion
By Alyson Klein and Andrew Ujifusa
Brookings

March 4, 2016- Get ready, get set: Negotiate rules for the Every Student Succeeds Act! Later this month, a group of negotiators (names below) will gather at the U.S. Department of Education to hash out regulations for certain parts of the newest version of the Elementary and Secondary Act. ESSA requires the department to go through the "negotiated rulemaking" process on three sections of the law—standards, assessments, and supplement-not-supplant, which deals with how states and districts spend their own funds in relation to federal money. Read more

\Population D.C. children growing, moving west of the Anacostia
By Ryan M. McDermott
Washington Times

Mar 31, 2016- Call it the gentrification generation: Census statistics show that the number of children in the District is increasing, but the greatest concentration of children has moved from east of the Anacostia River to neighborhoods dominated by young professionals, such as Petworth. Read more
Exclusive Interview with Mary Shaffner, DCI Executive Director
By Mark Lerner
Parents Have School Choice Kids Win

April 4, 2016- I recently caught up with Mary Shaffner, the executive director of the District of Columbia International School which is now in its second year of operation. Ms. Shaffner explained to me that 404 students now attend the charter, with 776 children in sixth grade, 126 pupils in seventh grade, and 102 kids in eighth.  Read more

International education comes to Ward 5
By Rictor Craig
Current Newspaper

Mar 31, 2016- An important anniversary beckons. This year marks the 20th anniversay of the introduction in D.C. of public charter schools, which now educate 44 percent of the city's public school children. Read more

There’s nothing wrong with grade inflation
By Mark Oppenheimer
Think Progress

Mar 4, 2016- The first grade I got as a clueless, sweater-vest-wearing Yale freshman in 1992 was a C-plus. As a typically self-regarding 18-year-old, I felt the only thing to do was to complain during my professor’s office hours. He listened as I pleaded my case, then patiently explained that, although the grade stood, he was certain that I would do better next time. “Thanks,” I said, defeated. “I just didn’t think I’d be a C student in college.” Read more


Exclusive interview with Hilary Darilek, CEO E.L. Haynes PCS
By Mark Lerner
Parents Have School Choice Kids Win

Mar 28, 2016- I had the distinct pleasure of sitting down recently with Hilary Darilek, the new chief executive officer of E.L. Haynes Public Charter School. She has the challenging job of succeeding Jennie Niles in this position. Of course, Ms. Niles is the current District of Columbia Deputy Mayor for Education under Mayor Muriel Bowser and the founder of E.L. Haynes. Read more

DC Prep Recognized for its Success in Closing the Achievement Gap
By DC Prep

Mar 26, 2016- Today, the Education Equality Index (EEI), the first national comparative measure of the achievement gap featuring school, city, and state-level data covering the nation's 100 biggest cities in 35 states, identified seven DC charter schools with small or nonexistent achievement gaps between low-income students and their more advantaged peers.  Read more

10 students receive GW Trachtenberg Scholarships
By Mark Lerner
Parents Have School Choice Kids Win
Mar 21, 2016- Last Thursday 10 D.C. high school students were surprised with the gift of a Stephen Joel Trachtenberg Scholarship to the George Washington University. The award covers tuition, room, board, and books for four years at GW. Traditional public school, charter, and private school students are eligible for the prize which has been given out since since 1989 to more than 160 kids. Read more

D.C. early childcare has big funding, but a study says it still needs $38 million more
By Perry Stein
Washington Post

Mar 10, 2016-The education achievement gap starts appearing well before children enter kindergarten, several studies have shown. Now, a new report says the solution for providing quality and meaningful infant and early toddler care for families across all socio-economic levels in D.C. is straightforward: A whole lot more funding. Read more

White teacher: I thought I could reach my black and Latino students. Then one told me why I couldn’t.
By Valerie Strauss
Washington Post

Mar 9, 2016- Here is the personal story of a well-regarded veteran teacher who left the classroom to pursue an EdD and then returned to the classroom, finding an environment that he did not expect. The post, by Brock Cohen, speaks to just how complicated and difficult teaching can be — even for educators who have been doing it for many years. Read more

A principal met a student she expelled, and it changed her approach to discipline
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Mar 8, 2016- Nancy Hanks was standing in an elevator, her eyes fixed on her cellphone, when the doors opened onto a familiar face. It was one of her former students, a boy she had expelled from the school she led in one of Chicago’s toughest neighborhoods. She was flooded with fear. What had become of the student’s life? Had her decision helped set him on a path toward failure? Read more

NINA REES: A D.C. charter school success story
By Nina Rees
Washington Times

Mar 16, 2016- One of the responsibilities of education reformers is to constantly evaluate and improve the ways in which we’re shaping public education. We have to be honest about what works and what doesn’t, and encourage policymakers and school leaders to learn from the states, districts and individuals who are getting it right. Read more

Brookland college campus finds a buyer with a low-density redevelopment plan
By Michael Neibauer
Washington Business Journal

Mar 16, 2016- One of the most prime sites in booming Brookland, spanning 9.5 acres of largely open space, is on the verge of a sale to a D.C.-based developer. The Missionary Society of Saint Paul the Apostle has found a buyer for its expansive property in the Bethesda-based Boundary Cos. Read more

Historic Shaw school building approved for condo conversion sells to different developer
By Michael Neibauer
Washington Business Journal

Feb 23, 2016- The historic former Shaw home of Hospitality High School has been sold, but, in a twist, not to the developer that recently earned approval for its conversion to condos. Read more

Wallace Foundation to invest $47 million in redesigning principal preparation
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

Mar 16, 2016- Strong principals are critical components of successful schools, and yet school leaders usually receive far less attention than teachers in the national conversation about education. The Wallace Foundation has been seeking to change that for years, investing millions of dollars in research into what makes a principal effective. Read more

Why Teach for America Is Scrapping Its National Diversity Office
By Emily Deruy
Washington Post

Mar 21, 2016- TA shakeup at Teach for America, the controversial nonprofit that places recent college graduates in low-income school districts across the country, will eliminate the organization’s Office of the Chief Diversity Officer this fall. The announcement comes amid layoffs that will shrink the national staff about by 15 percent. Read more

New report highlights the health of the charter school movement
By Amelia Hamilton
Watchdog.org

Mar 8, 2016- The National Alliance for Public Charter Schools has released a follow-up state-by-state look at the health of charter schools, approximately a year and a half after the first, aiming to “provide data about the health of the charter public school movement along 13 indicators of growth, innovation, and quality.” Read more
 
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