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

Parties Gird for Supreme Court Showdown Over Union Fees
Is there any reasonable chance that the teachers’ unions and other public-employee labor groups can pull off an unexpected victory in the latest U.S. Supreme Court battle over a 40-year-old precedent that has been a bedrock of their financial and bargaining strength? Judging by the tone of a joint press conference the four largest public-employee unions held last week about Janus v. American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Council 31 (Case No. 16-1466), the labor movement is girding for an era in which they will no longer be able to charge “agency fees” to employees in a bargaining unit who refuse to join the union to cover those workers’ share of collective bargaining costs. (Education Week)

Financial education stalls, threatening kids’ future economic health
Financial education in schools has come to a halt in recent years. Only 17 states require high school students to take a class in personal finance — a number that hasn’t budged in the past four years, according to the newly released 2018 Survey of the States: Economic and Personal Finance Education in Our Nation’s Schools. More than half of states still don’t require high school students to take an economics course, it found. And since 2014, the number of states that require students to be tested on economics concepts has stayed flat at 16. (CNBC)

How Betsy DeVos softened her message on school choice
Betsy DeVos became famous — and infamous in some quarters — as the leader of an education movement that pushed for public funding for private schools, including religious education. But a year into her tenure as President Donald Trump’s Education secretary, DeVos generally steers clear of the words, “school choice,” a phrase she once used often that’s freighted with racial, demographic and religious implications. Instead, she opts for gentler terms such as “innovation” and “blended learning,” and speaks of coming together and “finding solutions.” (Politico)

DelawareCAN is excited to host their first TEDxWilmingtonED Conference today in partnership with the TEDxWilmington team. They will be broadcasting all the talks online via live stream at:!

Hawaii Schools Can’t Seem To Give Breakfast Away
Nearly all of Hawaii’s public schools participate in the federal School Breakfast Program, but only 43 percent of low-income students who qualify for free or reduced-price school lunches also take advantage of subsidized school breakfast. Now a new report by the Hawaii Appleseed Center for Law & Economic Justice aims to draw further attention to the issue by releasing a school-by-school participation analysis. (Honolulu Civil Beat)

New Mexico
Proposed amendment to tap land grant endowment for early ed passes House
The state House of Representatives voted Tuesday to ask New Mexicans for an additional piece of the state’s $17 billion Land Grant Permanent Fund to pay for early childhood education. The House passed the proposed constitutional amendment by a vote of 36-33 that fell mostly along party lines after hours of debate that were both wonkish and visceral — dealing with a facet of the state’s finances that is arcane but deeply rooted in New Mexico’s history. In the Land Grant Permanent Fund, lawmakers argued alternately, there is an opportunity to break generational cycles of poverty or a risk of imperiling the state’s financial future. (Santa Fe New Mexican)

New York
Graduation rates see uptick statewide: See how your high school fared
The high school Class of 2017 continued to push graduation rates upward, both in the Buffalo region and across New York State. Roughly half the high schools in the area saw graduation rates rise from the previous year, including Grand Island, Williamsville East, Eden, Sweet Home, Maryvale and Cleveland Hill, according to new figures released Wednesday. Buffalo held steady. (The Buffalo News)

Washington D.C.
D.C. charter school enrollment has slight bump, while public schools show slight drop
Enrollment in the District’s traditional public schools declined slightly this academic year, breaking six years of consecutive growth, according to figures released this week by the Office of the State Superintendent of Education. But enrollment in public charter schools grew by 4.5 percent, with those institutions accounting for nearly half of all public school students in the District. (The Washington Post)

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


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