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 & analysis:
Guide: Tying Common Core and English-Proficiency

As school districts forge ahead in putting the common academic standards into practice, many states are still revising or creating new English-language-proficiency standards to spell out for teachers the sophisticated language skills that their English-learner students will need to succeed with the rigorous new academic expectations. (Education Week) 

Justices Weigh Race in Texas Admissions
Conservatives on the U.S. Supreme Court came out aggressively today against the race-conscious admissions plan at the University of Texas at Austin, while liberals raised jurisdictional issues and defended affirmative action. Somewhere in the middle was Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, who asked several questions that appeared skeptical of the plan. (Education Week) 

Study: Parents More Influential Than Schools in Academic Success
Parents who want their children to succeed academically in school have more influence over that outcome than the schools themselves, according to a study by researchers from three universities. “The effort that parents are putting in at home in terms of checking homework, reinforcing the importance of school, and stressing the importance of academic achievement is ultimately very important to their children’s academic achievement,” Dr. Toby Parcel, professor of sociology at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, N.C. and a co-author of the study, told Education Week. (Education Week) 

The Real Problem With Helicopter Parents: There Aren’t Enough of Them
Today’s hyperventilating “helicopter parents” are comic fish in a barrel. Playing Mozart to their babies in utero and dangling Baby Einstein gewgaws over their bassinets. Obsessing over peanut allergies, turning school science fairs into arms races of one-upmanship, and hiring batteries of private tutors to eke out another 10 points on the SAT. When we stop giggling, it’s only to cluck with disapproval. Katie Roiphe, writing in Slate, says that overparenting “is about too much presence, but it’s also about the wrong kind of presence. In fact, it can be reasonably read by children as absence, as not caring about what is really going on with them, as ignoring the specifics of them for some idealized cultural script of how they should be.” (The Atlantic) 

View Points:
Marion Brady: How long one teacher took to become great

In today’s education world, young college graduates accepted by Teach For America get five weeks of summer training and are considered by some to be “highly qualified teachers.” Here’s a different sort of story, from veteran educator Marion Brady, who explains how long it took him to become a good teacher. A few weeks ago I flew into Buffalo, New York, rented a car, and drove down to northeastern Ohio for a high school class reunion — the 55th  — for students I’d taught when they were 9th graders in 1952. (Washington Post) 


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