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

Texting, Personalization, Free Computers for All: New Report Tells Where Ed Tech Works — and Fails
Thousands of dollars spent outfitting a classroom with laptops might not improve student grades, while a simple series of text messages could inspire a student to attend college. When it comes to finding education technology that works, it’s not always the most expensive interventions that lead to the best academic outcomes, reports the National Bureau of Economic Research in a new review of rigorous studies of education technology. (The 74)

All Eyes on Congress in Battle Over ‘Dreamers’
Despite legislation already on the runway in Congress, it’s unclear whether lawmakers will approve permanent legal protections for undocumented immigrants brought to the United States illegally when they were minors—even as President Donald Trump sends strong signals he wants such a deal for the so-called “Dreamers.” Also unclear: what if any role education policy will play in those arguments in Washington. (Education Week)

This top-rated black teacher may lose her job over one test. Are ‘high standards’ working?
In her first year teaching fourth grade in Baltimore, Tamika Peters earned the highest rating possible on her official evaluation. Peters brought a deep well of experience to her work: over a decade at her school as a long-term substitute and paraprofessional. More recently, she had earned a master’s degree in education and completed the Baltimore City Teacher Residency training. (Chalkbeat)

Harford schools doing ‘disservice’ to students without adequate technology
If the Harford County public school system doesn’t provide students now with tools they’re going to be using daily in the future, it is doing a “great disservice” to those young people it is trying to educate, school board members said at their meeting Monday night. “There are a great number of our students who have graduated in the last year or two, who are going to start a job where they’re going to be handed a tablet computer. … they’re going to be expected to be comfortable with how to use it as a daily tool for business,” board member Tom Fitzpatrick said. (The Baltimore Sun)

New York
NYC Education Dept. must make school cafeteria health inspection results public
ALBANY — New York City will soon have to post school cafeteria health inspection reports online for public consumption. Under the bill signed into law Wednesday by Gov. Cuomo, New York City Department of Education on its website must post the results of any inspection of city school district cafeterias or kitchens. The posting must be searchable by school and include the nature of any violations, citations, and corrective actions taken. (NY Daily News)

North Carolina
5,000 CMS third-graders failed a test required for grade 4. What happened to them?
In 2012 North Carolina lawmakers decided they could improve education by requiring third-graders to show they could read at grade level before advancing to fourth grade. The idea was that educators, students and families would be more motivated to develop reading skills early.But five years later, the law that was billed as ending “social promotion” hasn’t created a more literate student population. In North Carolina and CMS, third-grade reading proficiency has actually dropped slightly in the ensuing years, according to 2017 data released last week. (The Charlotte Observer)

South Carolina
It’s never too late to get a high school diploma. This 83-year-old Richland 2 grad proves it
Willie Dell Grimes sat eagerly, and perhaps just a bit nervously, at a high school desk in 1993, waiting to take her first class in 46 years. As the other students filed in, they approached Willie Dell with a slip of paper they were instructed to give the teacher before that first class. “They would come in handing them to me and I told them, ‘I’m a student too’,” Willie Dell recalls. “I was old enough to be some of their mothers – and some of their grandmothers.” (The State)

Washington D.C.
There’s a demand for teachers, and new online graduate programs in D.C. might help fill it
Corey Carroll II wants to help shape education policy. But to effectively do that, he knows he has to educate himself first. He started by becoming a teacher. “I had to see what education looked like firsthand,” says Carroll, 22, who teaches history at Central High School in Capitol Heights, Md. “And it’s been a real eye-opener.” This August, he launched phase two of his plan, starting American University’s new online master of education in education policy and leadership program. (The Washington Post)

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


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