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

News and Analysis

President Trump’s Budget Proposal Calls For Deep Cuts To Education
President Trump’s full budget proposal for fiscal year 2018, to be released Tuesday, calls for a $9.2 billion, or 13.5 percent, spending cut to education. The cuts would be spread across K-12 and aid to higher education, according to documents released by the White House. None of this can be finalized without Congress. And the political track record for Presidents who want to reduce education funding is not promising, even in a far less poisoned atmosphere than the one that hovers over Washington right now. (NPR)

DeVos: It Would Be a ‘Terrible Mistake’ for States Not to Expand School Choice
U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos used a speech at the American Federation for Children’s national summit in Indianapolis on Monday to rally states behind the cause of expanding school choice—even though the Trump administration won’t force them to do so. In the speech before the school choice advocacy group that DeVos used to lead, the education secretary said President Donald Trump soon will propose “the most ambitious expansion of education choice in our nation’s history.” (Education Week)

Plucker: Gifted Education, Race & Poverty — How Do We Join Forces to Close America’s ‘Excellence Gap’?
As I travel the country, working with educators and policymakers on narrowing gaps in advanced performance among groups of students (“excellence gaps”), I’m usually struck by two themes, one encouraging and the other worrisome. On the positive side, people are starting to understand that advanced achievement matters and become passionate about eliminating the excellence gaps that prevent the majority of our students from ever approaching it.​ (The 74)​

Report: Poor roads on tribal lands lead to school absences
The federal government released a report Monday that casts a critical light on the poor conditions of roads on tribal lands nationwide, highlighting the widespread challenge of getting Native American children to school during bad weather.​ (U.S. News & World Report)​

Unsayable Truths about a Failing High School
​E​arlier in the month, my high-school alma mater in the prosperous Montgomery County suburbs of Philadelphia went viral. A video of a student brawl injuring four security officers and eight teachers appeared on YouTube, bolstering long-whispered rumors of the district’s decline. Four students were taken into custody; one of them, 18 and charged as an adult for four counts of aggravated assault, is still in jail as I write. All four of the students were black females.​ (National Review)​

New York
Federal Judge Denies NYC KIPP School’s Effort to Block Arbitration of Teacher Grievances
A federal judge has blocked an attempt by a South Bronx charter school, part of the national KIPP network, to prevent its teachers from having an arbitrator hear their workplace grievances at the request of the city teachers union. The ruling by Judge Deborah Batts on Thursday in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York means that a June 14 arbitration hearing on behalf of the KIPP Academy Charter School teachers can likely move forward. They would be represented by the United Federation of Teachers. (The 74)

Rhode Island
The Latest: Mark Zuckerberg visits Rhode Island school
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg has visited a Rhode Island public school and met with the governor to talk about education initiatives. WPRI-TV reports that Zuckerberg visited Del Sesto Middle School in Providence on Monday. The school posted pictures on Facebook showing him and his wife, Priscilla Chan, touring classrooms. The couple also met with Democratic Gov. Gina Raimondo. Raimondo’s office says they talked about the state’s work to create a statewide “personalized learning” initiative. (ABC News)​

Washington D.C.
Despite D.C.’s pledges, hundreds of families a year bypass city’s public middle schools
Every year hundreds of D.C. parents with children in traditional elementary schools yank them out of the system before they can reach their neighborhood middle schools, preferring to hunt for other educational options. City records show that more sixth- and seventh-graders now enroll in charter schools — privately operated but publicly funded — than in traditional public schools. D.C. Public Schools holds a numerical edge in all other grades, from kindergarten through high school.​ (The Washington Post)​

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


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