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 and Analysis:
Boston Schools Drop Last Remnant of Forced Busing

The Boston School Committee, once synonymous with fierce resistance to racial integration, took a historic step Wednesday night and threw off the last remnants of a busing system first imposed in 1974 under a federal court desegregation order. (New York Times) 

Amplify Insight Wins Contract from Common-Core Testing Consortium
One of the two consortia developing tests for the Common Core State Standards has awarded a $12.5 million contract to Amplify Insight to develop a digital library of formative assessment professional learning tools for educators. (Education Week – Marketplace K-12) 

The State of Global Competence
North Carolina has been at the forefront of providing a globally competent education for its students for a long time. The state supports teachers with professional development, works with legislators on policy, provides exchange opportunities, offers world language programs, and much more. But as the new report by the North Carolina State Board of Education, released on January 8, points out, having a number of strong programs and significant district initiatives in place “won’t cut it.” A coordinated and comprehensive strategy is required. (Education Week – Global Learning) 

New Jersey:
New Report Shows Nearly 75 Percent Of NJ Black And Latino 4th-Graders Are Not Proficient In Math Or Reading

Former Gov. Tom Kean to co-chair new education reform advocacy group. JerseyCAN: The New Jersey Campaign for Achievement Now launched today as an education reform advocacy organization with the release of its inaugural ‘State of New Jersey Public Education’ report. (Paramus Post) 

School Boards from Newark, Paterson Demand Return of Local Control
In a rare joint meeting, the school advisory boards of Newark and Paterson Thursday discussed strategies to restore local control to the districts, including staging a Trenton protest and supporting a pending lawsuit and initiating another against the state education bureaucracy that has run the cities’ schools for decades. (Newark Patch) 

New York:
New York’s Education Deficit

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state legislative leaders are hammering out the $142 billion state budget for the 2013-14 fiscal year, which must be approved by April 1. It is crucial that more financing be allocated to public schools, both in upstate areas and in New York City. (New York Times) 

View Point:
Marc Tucker: Diane Ravitch: Wrong on the Common Core

A couple of weeks ago, Diane Ravitch came out against the Common Core State Standards, saying that they “…have been adopted in 46 states and the District of Columbia without any field test. They are being imposed on the children of this nation despite the fact that no one has any idea how they will affect students, teachers, or schools. We are a nation of guinea pigs, almost all trying an unknown new program at the same time.” (Education Week – Top Reformers)


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