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:
Seattle Teachers Approve Contract, Avert Strike

With a show of hands last night, Seattle teachers voted to approve a new two-year contract, ending the possibility of a strike and ensuring that students returned to school on time today. (Education Week – Teacher Beat) 

Students Are Returning to School. After More Than a Decade of Reform, How Have Schools Changed?
American students returning to public schools this year are part of a distinguished class. For the first time, the Department of Education projects total enrollment in America’s public schools will exceed 50 million students. Since 2005, the United States has added over a million students to its rolls. Over the same time period, our public schools also have recorded some impressive gains in student achievement. (DFER) 

Common Core can reduce teacher bashing
For many years, my son Ted has been principal of the elementary grades of a K–12 public charter school in Massachusetts. It uses the Core Knowledge Sequence (a grade-by-grade outline of essential content) as a primary tool for developing its curriculum. His school ranks in the top-performing group of schools in the nation’s top-performing state. Needless to say, the school has long followed the rightly admired Massachusetts standards. Indeed, the Massachusetts standards are so good that some of the most vocal opponents of CCSS are claiming that the Common Core State Standards will represent a watering down. But Ted’s school justifies a very different inference. (Education Gadfly – Common Core Watch)

Four Questions About Common-Core Implementation
With the Common Core push in full swing, a bunch of intriguing issues are about to start cropping up. While much popular press coverage has justifiably focused on the political debates, and the trade press (especially Ed Week’s invaluable Catherine Gewertz) has considered what this all means for instructional practice in schools, some crucial but less visible rubber-meets-road questions have pretty much gotten lost. Here are four big implementation questions that haven’t yet gotten much attention in state and local papers, and that would benefit from a serious look. (Education Week – Rick Hess Straight Up) 

States May Move Closer to Uniform Way of Identifying ELLs
The widespread adoption of the common-core standards and the imminent rollout of shared content assessments is pushing states to find common ground in yet another dimension of schooling: how best to serve the growing population of English-language learners. (Education Week) 

New York:
New standards for nationally accredited teachers of teachers

The bar for teacher preparation programs seeking national accreditation just got higher. Last week, the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation adopted new, more rigorous standards, which teacher preparation programs must meet to keep (or earn) their national accreditation. (NYCAN) 


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