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

Pence plans to use tie-breaking vote to confirm Betsy DeVos for education post

Vice-president Mike Pence said on Sunday he expects that the billionaire Republican donor Betsy DeVos will be confirmed as education secretary with his tie-breaking vote.​ ​​Pence blamed the tie on DeVos in the Senate – the first-ever on a cabinet nominee – on “obstruction by the Democrats”, despite the fact that two Republican defections have caused it.​ (The Guardian) ​

While DeVos Drama Took Center Stage, Congressional Republicans Push School Choice Bills
As congressional Sturm und Drang swirled around Betsy DeVos’s confirmation vote, Republican school choice advocates aren’t wasting any time, starting the legislative process on several bills that stand a greater chance becoming law now than in years past.​ (The 74)​

H​ow High Schools are demolishing the classroom
Nothing reveals as much about a society, and its future, as its high schools. Yet amid accelerating change — widening inequality, unprecedented globalization and technological advances — they’ve woefully lagged behind. There are, of course, exceptions. Follow OZY’s special series “High School, Disrupted” to find out about the global leaders, cutting-edge trends and big ideas reimagining secondary education — for the better.​ (OZY)​

Washington D.C.
D.C. program aims to curb need for remedial college math

While graduation rates are on the rise in D.C. public high schools, many students who go on to college find that they face a significant academic deficit: They are forced to take remedial math.​ ​But the D.C. College Access Program wants to change that. ​ ​(The Washington Post)

The Healthy-Lifestyle Curriculum

At Perea Preschool in Memphis, Tennessee, a teacher introduces mango to a circle of 16 4-year-olds for the first time. Another day, the children discover pumpkin during a play activity. Most of these children come from impoverished families where lettuce is considered a luxury item. According to Vicki Sallis Murrell, a professor of counseling, educational psychology, and research at the University of Memphis, parents are making tough choices between a $1 head of lettuce and five boxes of macaroni and cheese.​ ​(The Atlantic)


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