Curtis Whatley is a past member of the 50CAN team. 

Here’s what educators, advocates, wonks and policymakers are talking about today:

News & analysis

Where King once marched, now a dedication
They came from across the country, some arriving before dawn, carrying folding chairs, cameras and a strong, proud sense of history. Thousands stood and sat together under a bright blue sky Sunday as a memorial to the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. — the first honoring an African-American in the area of the Mall — was dedicated at last. (New York Times)

For children of same-sex couples, a student aid maze
It took five attempts for one prospective college student and her mother to fill out the 106-question federal form that would determine whether she would be eligible for financial aid. And that was not just because the form was frustratingly complicated. What tripped them up was the fact that the student had two legal mothers — and the form had room for only one. (New York Times)

Key ed groups tell Harkin to slow down on ESEA
Five key education groups, including the National Education Association and the American Association of School Administrators, are urging Sen. Tom Harkin to put the brakes on the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. (Politics K-12)

District of Columbia: A year later, Rhee’s legacy is in sharper focus
The first chancellor in a new era of mayoral control of D.C. schools, Rhee was granted total authority by the man who hired her, Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D), to turn the low-achieving system on its head. Today, teachers are better paid and evaluated more closely. A landmark labor contract gives school principals more control over who is in classrooms. Basic central functions including purchasing, textbook delivery and food service, although not perfect, are viewed as much improved. Private foundations, enthused by Rhee’s emphasis on teacher quality and willingness to take on a politically potent union, poured millions of dollars into the public schools. (WaPo)

Minnesota: Committee recommends increasing U of M undergraduate enrollment
A University of Minnesota committee recommends a small increase in undergraduate enrollment over the next few years. The proposal suggests adding a thousand students in science and technology programs, increasing the number of undergrads at the university to about 33,000. Bob McMaster, university dean of undergraduate education, told the school’s board of regents Friday the committee considered adding even more students, but decided that would cause problems. (MPR)

Maryland: Bullying reports surge in Baltimore schools
The number of bullying incidents reported in city schools more than doubled last school year from the previous year — a surge that officials attribute, in part, to Shaniya’s story, which thrust Baltimore into a national dialogue about how bullying, once considered a childhood rite of passage, can take a dangerous or deadly turn. “Bullying is no longer a situation of ‘kids will be kids;’ it strikes at the heart of a safe and supportive school environment,” said Jonathan Brice, who oversees student support and safety for the city school system. “It causes students to internalize very harmful thoughts and feelings about themselves, and that can come out in harmful ways, not just to themselves but the school community.” (Baltimore Sun)

New York: Regents to vote on change of teachers test-tampering
The New York State Board of Regents will decide Monday whether to bar teachers from grading their own students’ standardized tests, a longstanding practice that state officials say creates a temptation for educators to cheat in an era of high-stakes exams. (New York Times)

Alabama: Part of Alabama immigration law blocked
A federal appeals court in Atlanta temporarily blocked two provisions of Alabama’s far-reaching immigration enforcement law on Friday, but left much of it in effect as the state and the United States Justice Department continued to fight over the law in the courts. (New York Times)

Rhode Island: Central Falls HS gets flood of applications for tough courses
For the first time, AP biology is being offered at Central Falls High School as part of an ambitious expansion of AP courses in a school that historically has not pushed many students toward the highest academic levels. As a state, Rhode Island has lagged in the number of students participating in Advanced Placement courses, particularly among low-income and minority students. (ProJo)

New Jersey: Proposed bill would require voter approval of charter schools
A New Jersey Assemblywoman wants her Senate colleagues to pass two charter school oversight bills she’s sponsoring. One of Mila Jasey’s bills requires voter approval of new charter schools. The other seeks to increase the schools’ accountability and provide more transparency on their operations. (Star Ledger)


Teacher quality — and their preparation — important to economic future
AEROSPACE, software, biotechnology, telecommunications and other innovative industries drive our state economy. As a result, Washington’s future depends on having a well-educated, technically proficient workforce. But we rank in the bottom third nationally in high school graduation rate. Too many of those who do graduate require remedial courses before they can begin their college careers. (Seattle Times)

The Center for American Progress reviews the Fordham Institute’s “High Flyers” study
…there are a number of problems with both the study and the conclusions that are flying around the pundit-sphere. For starters, Fordham Institute’s research does not support its claims—even the statisticians who performed the study have distanced themselves from the conclusions about the effect of NCLB on high achievers. (CAP)


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