Lisa Gibes is 50CAN’s vice president of strategy and external relations. She lives in San Francisco, CA.

Here are news and opinion stories educators, advocates, policy wonks and makers are talking about today:

News and Analysis:
Charter School Proponents To Announce Major Focus On Shutting Down Failing Schools

Charter schools are about to get a reality check. As someone who has observed the breakneck pace of the growing charter school movement up close, Greg Richmond, who leads the National Association of Charter School Authorizers (NACSA), is taking a step back. (Huffington Post) 

Four Questions on Common Core and Reading Assessment
A high level of scrutiny and uncertainty surrounds the first assessments tied to the Common Core State Standards. Questions abound. How will these assessments interact with other assessments? How will they affect reporting trends in student achievement and/or graduation requirements? How can states and districts work together to help teachers meet this new challenge? (Education Week) 

Next Draft of Common Science Standards to Hit in January
An ambitious effort to develop common science standards across states will soon face a second—and final—round of public vetting and feedback. The new draft, crafted through a partnership that has brought together education officials from 26 states, is now slated to arrive the first week of January. That’s later than the promised fall release signaled earlier by organizers. (Education Week – Curriculum Matters) 

Report: Online Schools Use Tax Dollars to Gain Students
Parents are accustomed to being advertising targets for companies wanting to sell clothes, toys and activities for their children, but a new USA Today report shows that parents increasingly are being targeted as “online education consumers” for their children—by businsses using taxpayer dollars. (Education Week – K-12 Parents and the Public) 

Cunningham, Chief of Messaging, To Leave U.S. Dept. of Ed.
One of U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan’s most trusted advisers is returning home to Chicago. Peter Cunningham’s last day is Nov. 30. His official title is assistant secretary for communications and outreach; in reality, he helped shaped the department’s—and Duncan’s—message and served in the secretary’s inner circle. (And, he’s quite the musician to boot.) (Education Week) 

New York:
Deadline Fast Approaching on Teacher Evaluation Deal

Negotiations for a new evaluation system for teachers and principals are coming down to the wire in New York City, with a Jan. 17 deadline for having a plan submitted and approved by the New York State Education Department. At stake is a $300 million increase in state education aid which city officials have already budgeted for this school year. (School Book) 

Group May Sue Over Money Owed to Poor New York School Districts
Six years after New York’s highest court forced the state to substantially increase financing to poor school districts, the group that won that ruling is threatening a new lawsuit unless Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo and the Legislature come up with billions of extra dollars for those districts. (New York Times) 


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