DCPCSA April 2013 Newsletter
 
 

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April Newsletter 2013
  1. New Fairfax County superintendent brings fresh thinking
  2. Corrupt educators are threatening school reform
  3. Admissions 101: why smart, poor students are dumb
  4. With Thousands of Schools Curbing Suspensions, There's No Excuse for the Growing Discipline Gap
  5. D.C., Montgomery schools named National Green Ribbon schools
  6. Evidence of widespread cheating leads to probe at D.C. charter school
  7. D.C. Councilman David Catania proposes selective middle school
  8. Criminalizing Children at School
  9. New $500,000 prize planned for teaching
  10. GED high school equivalency test to get major overhaul, become more difficult
  11. The First Race to the Top
  12. Moving Ahead With Common Core
  13. The First Race to the Top
  14. Mike Peabody’s focus on city schools led him to help establish D.C. charters
  15. D.C. public schools get about $13k more per student than charters
  16. Those Irritating Verbs-as-Nouns
  17. Catania hires law firm to help craft D.C. school legislation
  18. D.C. Council, residents criticize school-funding formula
  19. Measure Education Reform by Quality, Not Quantity
  20. D.C. charter board rejects request from BASIS to expand
  21. Emphasis on standardized test scores is not the way to evaluate teachers
  22. What teachers need and reformers ignore: time to collaborate
  23. D.C. charter schools deserve fair funding
  24. Obama budget's big education items: Preschool for All, college Race to the Top (+video)
  25. Bill Gates: A fairer way to evaluate teachers
  26. Study: Charters get less funding than traditional public schools
  27. The racket with standardized test scores
  28. Essay-Grading Software Offers Professors a Break
  29. The Washington Post announces 2013 Distinguished Educational Leadership and Agnes Meyer Awards
  30. Proposal would let D.C. charter schools favor neighborhood kids
  31. Neighborhood preference in D.C. charter schools would be allowed under bill
  32. D.C. starts over with Franklin School redevelopment
  33. Hidden power of teacher awards
  34. DCPS budget cuts due in part to lower-than-expected enrollment
  35. District of Columbia student achievers poised for success
  36. Preschool Network Puts 'Innovation' Grant to Test
  37. The Power of Talking to Your Baby
  38. From Poverty to a Top-Tier College
  39. Investments in Education May Be Misdirected
  40. Teacher Knows if You’ve Done the E-Reading
  41. America's most challenging high schools
  42. Teachers in 18 classrooms cheated on students’ high-stakes tests in 2012
  43. Teachers: Will We Ever Learn?
  44. 11 campuses seek enrollment boosts
  45. Sidwell Friends alumni aim to open public charter school in the District
  46. Should charters also be neighborhood schools?
  47. With Police in Schools, More Children in Court
  48. Believing self-control predicts success, schools teach coping
  49. Creating capital citizens: César Chávez Public Charter Schools for Public Policy and civic education
  50. City backs off private schools for special ed
  51. Nine D.C. charter school applicants to present ideas at public hearing
  52. D.C. schools brace for population boom
  53. Barry Pushes Preschool Legislation
  54. The Key to Successful Expanded Learning Programs Is Mastery
  55. Announcements
  56. Save the date
  57. Grants
  58. Resources
New Fairfax County superintendent brings fresh thinking
By Editorial Board
Washington Post

April 25, 2013- “I AM NOT a one-size-fits-all leader,” said Karen Garza, newly named Fairfax County school superintendent. Ms. Garza currently runs a system that is a fraction of Fairfax’s size, but she also was a top deputy in one of the nation’s largest districts. Read more

Corrupt educators are threatening school reform
By Robert C. Bobb
Washington Post

April 25, 2013- The recent 65-count cheating indictment against 35 Atlanta school officials, including the superintendent, has reignited an intense national debate on the use of standardized test scores as a key feature in teacher evaluations. Read more

Admissions 101: why smart, poor students are dumb
By Jay Mathews
Washington Post

April 25, 2013- Selective colleges get plenty of applications from the top-scoring children of affluent parents, including many in this region. What the colleges need, their admissions officers say, are more high-achieving, low-income applicants. Read more

With Thousands of Schools Curbing Suspensions, There's No Excuse for the Growing Discipline Gap
By Jane Ellen Stevens
Huffington Post

April 9, 2013- When you see school discipline numbers like these: 1 out of 9 students, including 36 percent of all male African-American middle and high school students with disabilities were suspended at least once during the 2009-2010 school year. Read more

D.C., Montgomery schools named National Green Ribbon schools
By Emma Brown and Lynh Bui
Washington Post

April 22, 2013- U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan on Monday honored five Washington-area schools and the Montgomery County school system as National Green Ribbon Schools for their exemplary environmental education programs and sustainable facilities. Read more

Evidence of widespread cheating leads to probe at D.C. charter school
By Washington Examiner
Washington Examiner

April 22, 2013- Meridian Public Charter School has begun an internal investigation into cheating on standardized tests after a District investigation found "strong circumstantial evidence" that cheating efforts were orchestrated throughout the school, officials announced Monday. Read more

Council questions push for special-ed students in D.C. public schools
By Emma Brown
Washington Examiner

April 22, 2013- D.C. Council members, advocates and parents raised questions Monday about Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s push to reduce the number of special-education students who attend private schools at public expense.. Read more

Criminalizing Children at School
By Editorial Board
Washington Examiner

April 18, 2013- The National Rifle Association and President Obama responded to the Newtown, Conn., shootings by recommending that more police officers be placed in the nation’s schools. But a growing body of research suggests that, contrary to popular wisdom, a larger police presence in schools generally does little to improve safety. Read more

New $500,000 prize planned for teaching
By Nick Anderson
Washington Post

April 22, 2013- Entrepreneurs seeking to build an elite global university based on new ways of teaching online announced Monday the creation of a $500,000 prize to be awarded each year to an educator “whose innovations have led to extraordinary student learning experiences.” Read more

GED high school equivalency test to get major overhaul, become more difficult
By Michael Alison Chandler
Washington Examiner

April 20, 2013- Hundreds of thousands of high school dropouts hoping to earn an equivalency diploma will have to pass a more challenging GED test that is being designed to improve the prospects of low-skilled workers in a high-tech economy. Read more

The First Race to the Top
By William J. Reese
New York Times

April 22, 2013- FOR the nearly 50 million students enrolled in America’s public schools, tests are everywhere, whether prepared by classroom teachers or by the ubiquitous testing industry. Central to school accountability, they assume familiar shapes and forms. Multiple choice. Essay. Aptitude. Achievement. NAEP, ACT, SAT. Read more

Moving Ahead With Common Core
By Examiner Editorial
New York Times

April 20, 2013- New York City parents are understandably nervous about tough new state tests that were rolled out last week. And some parents whose children have already taken the tests are outraged. Read more

The First Race to the Top
By William J. Reese
New York Times

April 20, 2013- FOR the nearly 50 million students enrolled in America’s public schools, tests are everywhere, whether prepared by classroom teachers or by the ubiquitous testing industry. Central to school accountability, they assume familiar shapes and forms. Multiple choice. Essay. Aptitude. Achievement. NAEP, ACT, SAT. Read more

Mike Peabody’s focus on city schools led him to help establish D.C. charters
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 21, 2013- Malcolm E. “Mike” Peabody began lobbying to establish charter schools in the District nearly two decades ago. At the time, D.C. charters were just a concept; now they are a thriving part of the city’s education landscape, serving nearly half the children in D.C. schools. Read more

D.C. public schools get about $13k more per student than charters
By April Burbank
Washington Examiner

April 17, 2013- The District's charter schools received about $13,000 less in funding per student in fiscal 2011 than traditional public schools, according to a report released Wednesday by the Walton Family Foundation. Read more

Those Irritating Verbs-as-Nouns
By Henry Hitchings
New York Times

Mar 30, 2013- “Do you have a solve for this problem?” “Let’s all focus on the build.” “That’s the take-away from today’s seminar.” Or, to quote a song that was recently a No. 1 hit in Britain, “Would you let me see beneath your beautiful?” Read more

Catania hires law firm to help craft D.C. school legislation
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 17, 2013- The chairman of the D.C. Council’s education committee is using private donations to hire an outside law firm to help him craft a package of school reforms that would aim to lift student achievement and address points of friction between the city’s traditional and charter schools. Read more

D.C. Council, residents criticize school-funding formula
By Rachel Baye
Washington Examiner

April 17, 2013- The District's funding of schools based on the number of students they enroll is flawed, D.C. Council Education Committee Chairman David Catania said Wednesday. Read more

Measure Education Reform by Quality, Not Quantity
By Dr. Ramona Edelin
The Afro

April 17, 2013- High-quality public education is critically important to America’s future, and we are falling behind globally. Read more

D.C. charter board rejects request from BASIS to expand
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 16, 2013- The D.C. Public Charter School Board on Monday rejected a request from BASIS DC to expand, citing concerns about the high number of students who have withdrawn from the charter school since fall. Read more

Emphasis on standardized test scores is not the way to evaluate teachers
By Mark Lerner
Washington Post

April 16, 2013- The Washington Post's Emma Brown revealed the other day that the D.C. Office of the State Superintendent of Education has determined that cheating occurred in 18 public school classrooms during the taking of the 2012 D.C. CAS... Four charter schools were listed as having cheated on the standardized test Read more

What teachers need and reformers ignore: time to collaborate
By Valerie Strauss
Washington Informer

April 11, 2013- One of the primary things that teachers value but that school reformers have given short shrift is time to collaborate. Here, Stanford University Professor Linda Darling-Hammond, an expert on teaching and teacher education, writes about why this is so important to the profession. Read more

 
D.C. charter schools deserve fair funding
By Editorial Board
Washington Post

April 20, 2013- One of the arguments that has been used to justify the shortchanging of D.C. charter schools for public dollars is that they have the advantage of being able to draw on more private funds. The findings of a new study shatter that defense Read more

Obama budget's big education items: Preschool for All, college Race to the Top (+video)
By Stacy Teicher Khadaroo
The Christian Science Monitor

April 10, 2013- With his budget proposal Wednesday, President Obama signaled once again that education – from early childhood all the way through college and career training – is a priority investment. Read more

Bill Gates: A fairer way to evaluate teachers
By Bill Gates
Washington Post

April 3, 2013- Tom Brady may be the best quarterback in football, but he is also infamously, hilariously slow. YouTube videos of his 40-yard dash have gotten many thousands of hits from sports fans Read more

Study: Charters get less funding than traditional public schools
By Lyndsey Layton
Washington Post

April 17, 2013- Public charter schools received significantly less funding than traditional public schools in five cities, including the District, between 2007 and 2011, according to a new study released Wednesday. When it comes to per-pupil spending, the District had the largest gap Read more

The racket with standardized test scores
By Eugene Robinson
Washington Post

April 1, 2013- It is time to acknowledge that the fashionable theory of school reform — requiring that pay and job security for teachers, principals and administrators depend on their students’ standardized test scores Read more

Essay-Grading Software Offers Professors a Break
By John Markoff
New York Times

April 4, 2013- Imagine taking a college exam, and, instead of handing in a blue book and getting a grade from a professor a few weeks later, clicking the “send” button when you are done and receiving a grade back instantly, your essay scored by a software program. Read more

The Washington Post announces 2013 Distinguished Educational Leadership and Agnes Meyer Awards
By Washington Post

April 8, 2013- The Washington Post recognizes 18 principals with the Distinguished Educational Leadership Awards and 20 teachers with the Agnes Meyer Outstanding Teacher Awards. Read more

Proposal would let D.C. charter schools favor neighborhood kids
By Rachel Baye
Washington Post

April 9, 2013- Students who live near a top-performing charter school would have greater odds at winning a seat in the school's lottery under a bill introduced in the D.C. Council Tuesday. Read more

Neighborhood preference in D.C. charter schools would be allowed under bill
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 9, 2013- New D.C. public charter schools would be allowed to give admissions preference to neighborhood children under a bill introduced Tuesday Read more

D.C. starts over with Franklin School redevelopment
By Michael Neibauer
Washington Business Journal

April 10, 2013- The District released on Wednesday a request for qualifications for redevelopment of the historic Franklin School in the heart of downtown D.C. Read more

Hidden power of teacher awards
By Jay Mathews
Washington Post

April 8, 2013- I used to think student test score gains were a good way to rate teachers. I don’t think that any more... Rating schools, rather than teachers, by test score gains is better Read more

Mayor Gray: DCPS budget cuts due in part to lower-than-expected enrollment
By Emma Brown

April 8, 2013- D.C. schools are slated to receive more money per pupil next year under Mayor Vincent Gray’s proposed budget. So why are parents at some traditional schools sounding alarms about cuts to staff positions and programs? Read more

District of Columbia student achievers poised for success
By Donald L. Hense
Washington Examiner

April 7, 2013- Just before Spring Break, I was privileged to recognize the success of 111 young scholars from Friendship Collegiate Academy in earning Achievers scholarships, which help promising District of Columbia students from low-income families pay for college. Read more

Preschool Network Puts 'Innovation' Grant to Test
By Christina A. Samuels
Education Week

April 10, 2013- At the start of the school day at AppleTree Early Learning Public Charter School’s campus in the Columbia Heights neighborhood of Washington, the 20 wiggly students in Monique Twyman’s preschool class are as attentive as a group of 3-year-olds can be. Read more

The Power of Talking to Your Baby
By Tina Rosenberg
New York Times

April 10, 2013-By the time a poor child is 1 year old, she has most likely already fallen behind middle-class children in her ability to talk, understand and learn. The gap between poor children and wealthier ones widens each year, and by high school it has become a chasm. Read more

From Poverty to a Top-Tier College
By Editorial Board
New York Times

April 10, 2013- Because educational opportunity has much to do with upward mobility, it is distressing that low-income students who qualify for top-tier colleges rarely end up there. Read more

Investments in Education May Be Misdirected
By Eduardo Porter
New York Times

April 2, 2013- James Heckman is one of the nation’s top economists studying human development. Thirteen years ago, he shared the Nobel for economics. In February, he stood before the annual meeting of the Nebraska Chamber of Commerce and Industry, showed the assembled business executives a chart, and demolished the United States’ entire approach to education. Read more

Teacher Knows if You’ve Done the E-Reading
By David Streitfeld
New York Times

April 8, 2013- Several Texas A&M professors know something that generations of teachers could only hope to guess: whether students are reading their textbooks. Read more

America's most challenging high schools
By Washington Post

Feb 26, 2013- America's Most Challenging High Schools ranks schools through an index formula that's a simple ratio: the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Advanced International Certificate of Education tests given at a school each year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated that year. Read more

D.C. report: Teachers in 18 classrooms cheated on students’ high-stakes tests in 2012
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 12, 2013- Teachers in 18 District classrooms cheated on high-stakes standardized tests last year, according to a report released Friday by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education. The findings come one day after journalist John Merrow published a 2009 document that raised questions about whether the District adequately investigated past cheating allegations. Read more

Teachers: Will We Ever Learn?
By Jal Mehta
Washington Examiner

April 12, 2013-IN April 1983, a federal commission warned in a famous report, “A Nation at Risk,” that American education was a “rising tide of mediocrity.” The alarm it sounded about declining competitiveness touched off a tidal wave of reforms Read more

11 campuses seek enrollment boosts
By Rachel Baye
Washington Examiner

April 14, 2013-Just over 3 percent of applicants got into Elsie Whitlow Stokes Community Freedom Public Charter School this year, making the D.C. elementary and middle school more selective than Harvard University. Read more

Sidwell Friends alumni aim to open public charter school in the District
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 13, 2013- Democratizing access to a Sidwell-quality school is an appealing idea to the charter board, but members said it’s too early to judge One World’s chances of approval. The board must vet One World’s plans to ensure that the founders have the wherewithal to execute their vision. Read more

Should charters also be neighborhood schools?
by Rahul Mereand-Sinha
Greater Greater Education

April 12, 2013- At-large councilmember David Grosso has introduced a bill to allow DC charter schools to give priority to students in their neighborhood for admissions. Supporters say it will strengthen neighborhoods, while opponents worry it would further disadvantage children from poorer areas. Read more

With Police in Schools, More Children in Court
By Erik Eckholm
New York Times

April 12, 2013- As school districts across the country consider placing more police officers in schools, youth advocates and judges are raising alarm about what they have seen in the schools where officers are already stationed Read more

Believing self-control predicts success, schools teach coping
By Andrew Reiner
Washington Post

April 11, 2013-At first blush, Julia King’s middle-school classroom at D.C. Prep Public Charter School seems like any other middle school. Seventh-graders are busy reviewing math skills that they struggled with on a recent test. Walls are plastered with motivational posters: “Willpower, Improve, Never Give Up!” But look more closely. Something else is going on here Read more

Creating capital citizens: César Chávez Public Charter Schools for Public Policy and civic education
By Richard Lee Colvin
American Enterprise Institute

April 10, 2013- Chukwuma Isebor, an 18-year-old high school student whose father immigrated to the United States from Nigeria for college, says that prior to his senior year he was cynical and distrustful "of the government and the way it treated lower-income citizens and minorities."  Read more

City backs off private schools for special ed
By Elizabeth Wiener
The Northwest Current

April 10, 2013- (page 1) The District’s continuing effort to reduce the number of special needs students sent to private schools could yield big savings — $30 million projected for the next fiscal year alone. But, Mayor Vincent Gray said at a budget briefing Monday, that’s not the main point. Read more

Nine D.C. charter school applicants to present ideas at public hearing
By Emma Brown
Washington Post

April 3, 2013- Nine groups seeking to open new charter schools in the District will present their ideas at a D.C. Public Charter School Board hearing Monday. The hearing is a chance for charter board members to ask questions before voting to approve or deny each of the nine applications on May 20. Read more

D.C. schools brace for population boom
By Rachel Baye
Washington Examiner

April 3, 2013-City needs space for 33,000 youngsters over next five years The District is seeing a boom in its population of children younger than 5, prompting local education experts to question whether the city's schools can handle the growth. Read more

Barry Pushes Preschool Legislation
By WI Web Staff
Washington Informer

April 3, 2013- D.C. Council member Marion Barry is following President Barack Obama's lead to expand educational opportunities for the District's toddlers with a proposal that makes it mandatory for three- and four-year-olds to enroll in early childhood programs. Read more

Governance in the Charter School Sector: Time for a reboot
By Adam Emerson
Thomas B. Fordham Institute

When they first emerged more than two decades ago, charter schools represented an innovation in public school governance and much else. No longer would school districts enjoy the “exclusive franchise” to own and operate public schools Read more

 
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