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

Reality Check: What Vouchers Can — And Can’t — Do

Betsy DeVos’ most fervent supporters and opponents agree on one thing: that she would like to divert federal funds from existing public schools and cause a mass migration into private schools. But simple arithmetic tells us that these expectations about what she can accomplish—or destroy, depending on your point of view—are wildly inflated. (The Huffington Post)

Trump Reportedly Wants $6 Billion in Education Cuts — but History Shows He Likely Won’t Get Them
Washington greets the president’s annual budget release the way it does a forecast of a few inches of snow — which is to say, often with a huge overreaction. Much like there’s little need to rush out for bread and milk, advocates probably shouldn’t worry that the federal budget house will immediately come crashing down. The Trump administration is days away from releasing its first budget proposal, and it reportedly will request big changes — and cuts — to the Education Department. What’s most important to remember is that Trump’s budget is, in essence, an opening bid in an ongoing negotiation with Congress. (The 74)

Did Betsy DeVos just ask states to ignore part of federal education law?
Did Education Secretary Betsy DeVos just ask states to ignore a part of the K-12 federal education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act? Let’s look at what she said — and what the law says — about whom state officials should consult as they draw up ESSA accountability plans to be submitted to the Education Department for approval. These plans are supposed to show how states will establish student performance goals and create a system to hold schools “accountable” for student progress. (The Washington Post)

What’s Next for the Common Core and Its Assessments?
Millions of dollars and thousands of development hours have been spent creating a common set of standards and standardized tests that every state can use. But state after state is declining to use them. So what should we do with the Common Core State Standards and two related assessments? Answering that question requires an understanding of what went right with the standardization effort – and what went wrong. (Future Ed)


House committee kills Hogan’s bill on Maryland charter school authority
A House of Delegates committee has killed a flagship item on Gov. Larry Hogan’s legislative agenda, turning down a measure setting up a statewide authority to oversee charter schools.
The Ways and Means Committee voted, 15-8, to not send the measure to the House floor. The vote split along party lines, with Democrats opposed and Hogan’s fellow Republicans supporting it. (The Baltimore Sun)

Philly School District savings means headaches for charter schools

The School District of Philadelphia has warned the 86 charter schools in the city to brace for less funding this spring.​ ​Uri Monson, the district’s chief finance officer, told charter officials he anticipates that the state soon will conclude that the district has been overpaying charters this academic year and certify lower rates.​ ​Monson estimates that charter schools will be asked to repay the district more than $300 per student in regular classes and more than $1,000 for every special education student.​ (The Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News)​


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