Daily School Reform News Roundup, July 9 to 13

Published July 13, 2012

The U.S. Department of Education granted Alaska a No Child Left Behind waiver, though the state has not adopted the required Common Core standards.

The D.C. council should be careful about meddling with schools, opines the Washington Post.

Los Angeles school district officials are fighting a court order requiring the district to offer more space to charter schools.

School districts have a monopoly on school buildings, writes Nelson Smith in Education Next. Here’s how to end the monopoly.

What are teachers unions spending their money on lately?

The president of K12, the country’s largest online education provider, discusses the war against online education.

Andrew Gillen discuses what’s wrong with college accreditation.

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett signed a bill addressing the state’s financially profligate districts.

From Thursday:

More than 10,000 Louisiana students have applied for vouchers so far–five times more than the state expected. 

One of the U.S.’s largest school districts won’t apply for a federal Race to the Top grant. “Sounds like selling your soul for $6 million,” said a board member.

The ACLU is suing Michigan for leaving thousands of children “functionally illiterate.”

President Obama’s imperialism isn’t limited to education policy, writes Kimberly Strassel.

In a speech to the NAACP, Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney emphasizes school choice.

Utah families packed an auditorium to hear a panel discuss problems with Common Core education standards.

A new guide outlines how parents can have more influence in their child’s school. 

The Chicago Tribune discusses politics, cronyism, and the end of the state’s abused legislative scholarship program.

Time for the college bubble to burst, says George Leef.

From Wednesday:

Alabama is one of a few states opting to keep teaching children cursive as the largely adopted Common Core elsewhere phases it out. 

A Louisiana judge has refused to pause the state’s sweeping education reforms because doing so would put state agencies into deficit. He continues to consider the legality of the state’s new voucher and school funding laws.

The next few years will decide whether teachers unions continue to exist, says the NEA’s executive director.

Though 27 percent of its seniors could not pass the state graduation exam, Indianapolis Public Schools allowed them to graduate

New Mexico’s new grades for public schools came out this week; 39 earned As, while 69 earned Fs. Student surveys counted for 5 percent of a school’s grade.

Charter school graduates discuss their experience and futures. 

The results from this year’s Maryland state tests suggest Baltimore’s education reforms are running out of steam, editorializes the Baltimore Sun.

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn will sign legislation today ending state lawmakers’ ability to earmark scholarships for employees and supporters. 

Florida Gov. Rick Scott says he’s considering ways to reduce the standardized tests the state requires of K12 students. 

Utah parents critical of the Common Core were recently able to make their case to their governor.

Alabama should not give up on passing charter school legislation, editorializes the Press-Register.

North Dakota’s teacher shortage was predictable, says the Bismarck Tribune.

From Tuesday: 

Does the U.S. have too many teachers?

Large numbers of K-12 students report that their schoolwork is too easy.

Louisiana parents have filed to join a lawsuit in support of the state’s voucher program.

Cleveland’s education reforms stand out among bigger cities for its cooperation and significance, reports Stephanie Banchero. 

The U.S. House is considering giving states $10 to $15 million in grants for bullying prevention.

It’s getting harder and harder for schools to spur social mobility, says Charles Murray.

Equality of opportunity is disappearing for children, writes David Brooks.

Just to pay existing state and local pension obligations, the average household will have to pay at least $$42,000 more in taxes over the next 30 years for no additional government services, says Frank Keegan.

The IRS held a hearing on proposed regulations that may kick 90,000 charter school teachers out of state retirement plans.

From Monday: 

Texas legislators and educators say they’re not the least interested in Common Core K-12 national science standards. Louisiana begins to implement CC as a leader who helped write them says the state’s old standards were better.

Public schools are worse for black children than the KKK, said Walter Williams.

Learn more about Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s record on education.

Why single-sex education is spreading across the country.

Wisconsin and Washington have received NCLB waivers, bringing the total states exempted from the federal education law to 26. State officials are not yet releasing what changes they had to make to receive the federal favor.

Six months in, no one seems to be interested in Minnesota’s alternative teaching certification, apparently due to the continuing glob of bureaucracy. Daniel Lautzenheiser explains some of the reasons good teachers are hard to find

Meanwhile, North Dakota can’t find enough teachers for every subject but elementary and physical education.


For last week’s School Reform News roundup, click here.

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Image by Mo Riza