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

Analysis: How Will a Janus Ruling Impact Teachers and Unions in Each State? Data & Interactive Maps Tell the Story
At long last, the Supreme Court has heard the oral arguments on the much-discussed Janus v. AFSCME case. Given the makeup of the court, most anticipate a ruling in favor of the plaintiff, Mark Janus, meaning that teachers who choose not to be union members will no longer have to pay annual fees. Because states take different approaches to teachers unions, a decision in favor of Janus will have considerable impact in some states and little to no direct effect in others. (The 74)

An integration dilemma: School choice is pushing wealthy families to gentrify neighborhoods but avoid local schools
When Francis Pearman was studying at Vanderbilt, he and a fellow graduate student noticed a striking phenomenon in Nashville: white, affluent families were moving into low-income neighborhoods without sending their children to the neighborhood schools. “We were really curious to see what that relationship looked like at the national level,” said Pearman, now a professor at the University of Pittsburgh.When he and that student, Walker Swain, looked at national data, a pattern emerged. The ability to opt out of the neighborhood school increased the likelihood that a mostly black or Hispanic neighborhood would see an influx of wealthier residents. (Chalkbeat)

Extensive Data Shows Punishing Reach of Racism for Black Boys
Black boys raised in America, even in the wealthiest families and living in some of the most well-to-do neighborhoods, still earn less in adulthood than white boys with similar backgrounds, according to a sweeping new study that traced the lives of millions of children. White boys who grow up rich are likely to remain that way. Black boys raised at the top, however, are more likely to become poor than to stay wealthy in their own adult households. (The New York Times)

Graduation rate rises in Delaware, officials point to emotional support from schools
Delaware’s high school graduation rate went up last year, but the dropout rate also rose. Still Department of Education officials say they expect graduation rates to continue to rise. Overall, more kids in the First State dropped out of high school last year compared to the year before—with the dropout rate increasing from 1.4% to 1.7%. But the class of 2017 had a graduation rate of 85.75%, which is the highest of any since the state changed its calculation method in 2010. Lindsay Lewis is an education associate in the Delaware Department of Education’s technology operations workgroup. She says these numbers are encouraging, because 2016’s dropout rate saw a significant decrease, and she believes the 2017 uptick is just leveling out. She also says she believes the increased graduation rate is part of an upward trend. (Delaware Public Media)

New Mexico
New Mexico School for the Arts expands its horizons at Sanbusco
The old Sanbusco Market Center echoed with energy Friday morning as the New Mexico School for the Arts and community supporters celebrated the start of a construction project to create a new Railyard District campus where the 8-year-old, state-chartered high school will have room to nearly double its enrollment. School officials said they have reached the fundraising goal of $30 million for Phase 1 of a three-phase project overhauling what was long an upscale shopping center. The first phase includes complete renovations to create classrooms, rehearsal spaces, art studios, offices and a kitchen. The campus is expected to open to the school’s fine arts and performing arts students in fall 2019. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

New York
Senator to introduce bill scaling back mayoral control over city school closures, changes
A Harlem state senator is set to introduce a bill Monday that would require formal community input any time the city wants to close or scale back a school. The bill by state Sen. Brian Benjamin, a Democrat, would weaken mayoral control over the schools by requiring majority support from the state senator, Assembly member, congressional representative, borough president and City Council member representing a district targeted for “proposed school closings or significant changes in school utilization.” (NY Daily News)

South Carolina
SC counties gave businesses tax breaks worth more than $200 million in 2016
S.C. counties and others gave tax breaks worth more than $221 million to new and expanding businesses in 2016. For the first time, the counties and others that levy taxes – including school districts, cities and airports – are being required to disclose the value of tax breaks they give businesses. But the $221 million is just the tip of the iceberg. (The State)

Mimi Woldeyohannes is the Executive Assistant to the CEO at 50CAN. She lives in Maryland.


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