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

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

News and Analysis

​Is the Bar Too Low for Special Education?

In fourth grade, Drew’s behavioral problems in school grew worse. Gripped by extreme fears of flies, spills, and public restrooms, Drew began banging his head, removing his clothing, running out of the school building, and urinating on the floor. These behaviors, which stemmed from autism and ADHD, meant that Drew was regularly removed from the classroom in his suburban school outside of Denver and only made marginal academic improvement, according to court documents.​ (The Atlantic)​

DeVos receives praise at ‘National School Choice Week’ rally
Betsy DeVos, President Trump’s nominee for education secretary, has come under increasing fire since stumbling over basic education policy at her confirmation hearing last week. Democrats and civil rights groups are calling her unfit for the job, while late-night comics ridicule her statement that schools might need guns to protect against “potential grizzlies.”​ (The Washington Post)​

Messer has allies in push to expand school choice
WASHINGTON — Three years after starting a congressional group to promote private school vouchers, Rep. Luke Messer, R-Shelbyville, has powerful allies in his quest to allow federal tax dollars to be spent on private schools.​ ​President Donald Trump campaigned on directing $20 billion to private school students, an issue also important to Vice President Mike Pence.​ (Indy Star)​

New York
Harlem Schools Are Left to Fail as Those Not Far Away Thrive

Some of the best public elementary schools in New York City are in Community School District 3, on Manhattan’s West Side. At those schools, the vast majority of children pass the annual state tests, gifted and talented programs buzz with activity, and special programs attract promising young musicians or families who want a progressive approach to education.​ (The New York Times)​

Washington D.C.
​Washington – In conjunction with National School Choice Week, U.S. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) today introduced the Creating Hope and Opportunity for Individuals and Communities through Education Act (S. 235), or CHOICE Act. The CHOICE Act would give military families, families of students with disabilities, and low-income students in Washington, D.C. – together totaling more than 6.2 million students nationwide – access to greater educational opportunity.​ (U.S. Senate)​


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