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:
Gates Foundation MET Report: Teacher Observation Less Reliable Than Test Scores

A few years ago, Bill Gates decided to learn more about whether a teacher’s effect on student learning could be measured. Three years, 3,000 teachers and about $50 million later, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation thinks it has the answers. (Huffington Post) 

More coverage of the Gates Foundation Study:
Good Teachers Linked to Test Success (Wall Street Journal) 
Gates Foundation study: We’ve figured out what makes a good teacher (Washington Post) 
Timely advice from Gates Foundation as evaluation talks resume (Gotham Schools) 

The 2013 RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Presence Rankings
Today, we unveil the 2013 RHSU Edu-Scholar Public Presence rankings. The metrics, as explained yesterday, are designed to recognize those university-based academics who are contributing most substantially to public debates about K-12 and higher education. The rankings offer a useful, if imperfect, gauge of the public impact edu-scholars had in 2012, both due to short-term activity and longer-term contributions. The rubric reflects both a scholar’s body of academic work–encompassing books, articles, and the degree to which these are cited–and their 2012 footprint on the public discourse. (Education Week – Rick Hess Straight Up) 

Senate Panel to Take a Closer Look at NCLB Waivers
So far, without much public scrutiny from Congress, the U.S. Department of Education has been able to issue 35 waivers that made big, big changes to the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. (Education Week – Politics K-12) 

New Science-Standards Draft Includes Many Changes
A second and final public draft of common standards aimed at reshaping K-12 science education was released today for comment, following eight months of review and rewriting. (Education Week) 

New Jersey:
Education advocates pleased with issue’s inclusion in State of the State

Paul Shelly expected Gov. Chris Christie’s State of the State address Tuesday to focus heavily on Hurricane Sandy’s effect on the state. So the spokesman for the New Jersey Association of State Colleges and Universities was pleasantly surprised when the governor also mentioned excellence in education as a top priority for the state this year in improving the state economy. (Press of Atlantic City) 

New York:
NYC erases the ‘unsatisfactory’ ratings of lousy teachers – if they agree to quit

The city has a secret weapon to rub out incompetent teachers — an eraser. If a teacher who is deemed a dud agrees to quit or retire before a termination trial, the Department of Education will wipe out all of his or her “unsatisfactory” or U ratings and — voilà — change them to S for “satisfactory,” thus helping that teacher land a job elsewhere. (New York Post) 

North Carolina:
School Project Blurs Line Between Public, Private

An unusual public-private school improvement partnership in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg, N.C., school system is raising hopes about its potential for improving the lives of some of Charlotte’s neediest students and generating concerns about its nontraditional funding and governance structure.
Project Leadership and Investment for Transformation, orProject LIFT, is a $55-million dollar investment from corporate and family foundations aimed at improving the academic outcomes for a cluster of public schools in west Charlotte that serve some of the city’s most disadvantaged students. (Education Week) 

View Point:
Jay Matthews: Lessons From 30 Years Of Education Reporting

Jay Mathews writes the Class Struggle column for The Washington Post, and looks at issues like educational disparities and access to higher education. He’s documented persisting problems and highlighted creative solutions. He talks with host Michel Martin about the past, present and future of education in America. (NPR) 


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