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:
Under New Standards, Students See Sharp Decline in Test Scores

Large numbers of New York students failed reading and math exams last school year, education officials reported on Wednesday, unsettling parents, principals and teachers, and posing new challenges to a national effort to toughen academic standards. (New York Times)

CPS to cut back on standardized tests
Chicago Public Schools officials are cutting back some of the standardized tests the district requires for students, especially for its smallest ones, freeing up more time for instruction and saving some money for the cash-strapped system in the process. (Chicago Sun Times) 

National Test-Score Declines Are Likely
New York state students’ math and reading scores on standardized exams plunged this year, which federal and state officials said could be a harbinger of results in dozens of states moving to tougher tests tied to new curriculum standards. (Wall Street Journal) 

Arne Duncan gives No Child Left Behind waivers to California districts
The Obama administration will grant waivers to eight California school districts to free them from the requirements of No Child Left Behind, a precedent-setting move that creates a direct relationship between the federal government and local school systems. (Washington Post) 

New York:
The good news in lower test scores

This week is a watershed moment in the history of public schools in New York City and state. This morning, the state will release the results of the math and English exams administered to students this past spring. While end-of-year testing isn’t new, the knowledge that was tested last spring is. For the first time, students across the state were assessed based on the new, more rigorous Common Core standards. (New York Post) 

School Improvement Is Citywide Effort in Syracuse
For Syracuse, N.Y., “educating the whole child” is not just a mantra for school improvement but a strategy to save a struggling urban community, too. (Education Week) 

North Carolina:
New report shows that only 31 percent of North Carolina 8th graders are proficient in reading

CarolinaCAN: The North Carolina Campaign for Achievement Now launched today as an education reform advocacy organization with the release of its inaugural ‘State of North Carolina Public Education’ report. (Wilmington Journal) 


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