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:
How Did SIG Schools Do on Graduation, Attendance, and Other Factors?

Back in 2009, the Obama administration and Congress gambled $3 billion on a big nationwide effort to turn around the lowest performing schools. The grants—as much as $500,000 per school per year—were supposed to be used over three years. That means the school year that just concluded is the last for the supercharged-by-the-stimulus School Improvement Grant program. (Education Week – Politics K-12) 

Arne Duncan: Common Core Transition Will Give States More Time To Make Evaluations Count
In what some see as a tacit recognition of the Obama administration’s overreach into nitty-gritty management of America’s schools, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan will give states a reprieve from certain aspects of teacher evaluations’ consequences and the new wave of testing tied to the Common Core. (Huffington Post) 

Why Indiana Is Scaling Back Participation In Common Core Testing Consortia PARCC
We dropped by the PARCC governing board meeting in Washington, D.C. — you know, just happened to be in the neighborhood — and noticed an absence: Indiana. (State Impact) 

U.S. education spending tops global list, study shows
The United States spends more than other developed nations on its students’ education each year, with parents and private foundations picking up more of the costs, an international survey released Tuesday found. (CBS News) 

Va. superintendents worry grading scale will only measure poverty
As Virginia’s Board of Education begins to develop a formula for calculating letter grades for each of its public schools by fall 2014, superintendents across the state are getting nervous. (Washington Post) 

Lessons from the ultimate public servant: Nelson Mandela
It’s a too-familiar story: Wayward politicians violate the public trust and find themselves behind bars. But lately I’ve been thinking about a man whose service and leadership were partially forged in prison, long before he held elective office — Nelson Mandela, the ultimate public servant. (Washington Post) 


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