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More movement in Ackerman's cabinet

By Anonymous on Jun 25, 2010 01:28 PM

The District just published a press release detailing more movement in top District administration. The changes are effective as of July 1.

According to the press release:

  • Diane Castelbuono will return to the District as Associate Superintendent of Strategic Programs, including charter, multiple pathways, turnaround, and Renaissance Schools.
  • Tomás Hanna, who is now Chief of Staff, will be Associate Superintendent of Academics, including oversight of Academic and Accountability Office, Parent and Community Engagement, Student Support Service, and Truancy.
  • David Weiner, who is currently Chief Accountability Officer, will be Chief Academic & Accountability Officer.
  • Lucy Feria, who is currently Superintendent of the North Region, will be Deputy Chief of Multilingual Curriculum and Programs.
  • Karen Kolsky, who is currently Assistant Superintendent of the Northeast Region, will be Deputy Chief of Professional Development.

After troubled beginnings, Camelot Schools graduates look forward to bright futures

By the Notebook on Jun 25, 2010 12:58 PM

By Brad Gibson and Monika Zaleska

“You decided to become part of the solution. You decided not to become a dropout statistic,” Superintendent Arlene Ackerman told the graduating class of four alternative schools run by Camelot Wednesday morning during their commencement at Irvine Auditorium at the University of Pennsylvania.

Notes from the news, June 25

By Anonymous on Jun 25, 2010 08:35 AM

After 4 years, Philly's small high schools earn passing grades Daily News
Constitution, Palumbo, Science Leadership Academy, and School of the Future graduated their first classes this month. RFA studied the schools and found small schools help improve climate, but that size itself is "not a panacea."

See also: Philly schools boss Ackerman eyes changes for School of the Future Daily News

Rendell Challenged On Education Spending The Bulletin
House Minority Leader Samuel Smith says "money is not the answer" to education. Rendell's proposed $355 million increase in education funding is expected to be a sticking point in negotiations on the budget again this year.

Hamels donó más de $90 mil a Distrito Escolar Al Día
Cole and Heidi Hamels donated to Wilson and Taylor schools.

Judge rules Lower Merion redistricting broke no law The Inquirer
The redistricting case in Lower Merion was found to be similar to a case from Seattle that went to the Supreme Court. The Court found that the Seattle school district had violated the rights of students when it used race as a factor in reassigning students.

UCD adds new jobs initiative Philadelphia Business Journal

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Notes from the news, June 24

By Anonymous on Jun 24, 2010 07:48 AM

Across the city, Renaissance process moves forward for providers, councils The Notebook blog
Providers are working hard to meet with and support School Advisory Councils as Renaissance Schools prepare for new management in the fall.

Teenage foolishness shouldn't be a crime The Inquirer (opinion)
Daniel Denvir, who also freelances for the Notebook, says that "sexting" should be dealt with through education, not criminalizing the behavior.

Frisby-Greenwood to run Knight Foundation Philadelphia Business Journal
Donna Frisby-Greenwood, formerly of the District's Office of College and Career Awareness, will lead the Knight Foundation's Philly office. (The Knight Foundation is a Notebook funder.)

What To Do About Rock Stars Philly Teacher blog
Diane Ravitch participated in this week's edchat, which raised questions about what happens when big names drop by.

In case you missed it: Teacher eval, friends, charters The Notebook blog
Notebook summer intern Jamie Raver brings back the weekly national roundup, in case you missed it.

What's holding up Pa.'s sex-education bill? Say What? blog

Groundbreaking for Housing for Post-Foster Care Teens KYW

Kimberly Garrison: Fight childhood obesity with simple food tips Daily News

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Across the city, Renaissance process moves forward for providers, councils

By Benjamin Herold on Jun 23, 2010 12:50 PM

The “turnaround teams” from ASPIRA, Mastery Charter, Universal Companies, and Young Scholars Charter School are all busy reaching out to parents and trying to formalize their working relationships with the School Advisory Councils (SACs) that recommended them and will monitor their progress.  

In case you missed it: Teacher eval, friends, charters

By Jamie Raver on Jun 23, 2010 11:59 AM

Teacher evaluation program shows promising results Catalyst Chicago
As interests in teacher quality, passing students, and tampering with test scores rise, districts search for more effective ways to measure the efficiency of educators. 

See also: Chart: Comparing existing and new grading teacher systems Chicago Tribune

As budgets are cut, advocates push for continued free lunch Gotham Schools
In New York, officials seek to raise university tuitions and severely cut public school spending - but others insist that childrens' nutrition should stay out of it.

The End of the Best Friend The New York Times
Is having a "best friend" helping or hurting children in schools? Psychiatrists and educators explore the pros and cons of students who prefer one friend to a whole crowd.

The hits just keep on coming edspresso
Charter schools flounder in Virginia, where they are met with a seemingly endless stream of adversity on funding, spatial, and administrative issues.

Notes from the news, June 23

By Anonymous on Jun 23, 2010 08:52 AM

Elmer Smith: First they won the lottery, now they get to win at life Daily News
Arise Academy graduated 10 students, who are foster children, in its first year, and now some of those students are heading to college.

New study says students at most KIPP schools make "substantial" gains The Notebook blog
A new study by Mathematica found students at KIPP made statistically significant gains.

Op-Ed: Education bill needed York Daily Record via ReformSpecialEdFunding.org
PA House Bill 704 would enact needed reforms for special education.

Pa.'s record campaign donors: Trio give $5 million plus to Sen. Williams The Inquirer
School choice brought in the bucks for Williams gubernatorial campaign.

Empowerment Schools are not all the same The Notebook blog
Empowerment Schools get the same interventions, but their students' scores and demographics vary widely.

School District of Philadelphia Offers Summer Events and Learning for Parents! Frankford Gazette

Beyond the Usual Suspects Philly School Search blog

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Empowerment Schools are not all the same

By Frank Murphy on Jun 22, 2010 07:57 PM

Over the last two years, the Empowerment Schools have been consistently characterized by the local media as being the lowest-performing District schools.

Since the inauguration of the Ackerman administration in 2008, 85 schools designated as Empowerment Schools have been treated to intensive interventions. When the 2009-2010 school year began, 11 more schools were added to this group. This was also the same year in which the McGraw Hill/SRA Corrective Reading and Math programs were put into place at the Empowerment Schools.

And what measures were used to determine this label of “low-performing”?

New study says students at most KIPP schools make "substantial" gains

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jun 22, 2010 04:34 PM

Students at 22 KIPP middle schools around the country made "statistically significant and educationally substantial" gains in math and reading when compared with other students in their neighborhoods, according to a new study by Mathematica Policy Research, Inc.

Notes from the news, June 22

By Anonymous on Jun 22, 2010 08:45 AM

Crucial Competition For West Philly Hybrid Auto Team KYW
The team is in Michigan for more than a week of make or break tests in advance of the next stage of the competition.

See also: Cover Story: Back to the Future Grid

Philadelphia high school student wins scholarship after parents' death The Inquirer
Heirl He, a rising senior at Central, won a full scholarship from the Leonore Annenberg College Scholarship Fund.

Children in Philly rely on summer meal programs The Inquirer
When schools close the free breakfast and lunch program ends, but summer programs across the city offer free meals.

An Introduction To Philly's Promise Academy Fox 29
Interview with assistant superintendent of the Promise Academies, Francisco Duran.

Why Students Should be Involved in Training their School Security Officers Philly Education Justice blog
PSU student Zakia Royster writes about how students at Sayre organized to train their security guards.

Happy summer, teachers! The Notebook blog

Study claims computer access hurts school performance WHYY

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Happy summer, teachers!

By Anonymous on Jun 21, 2010 01:40 PM

Today concludes the 2009-10 school year for Philadelphia teachers. What are you doing this summer? Do you have summer school duty? Curriculum prep? What do you hope to get a head start on for the fall?

Don't worry about us--we'll be here all summer.

Notes from the news, June 21

By Anonymous on Jun 21, 2010 09:17 AM

Suffering from search engine overload The Notebook blog
Tracing the big money leadership and backers of charter schools.

Shake-up of Ackerman team continues The Inquirer
More high level movement in the District administration, with school principals moving to administrative roles. Also, Leroy Nunery's new position earned him a $50,000 raise.

Philadelphia school uses art for fulfillment, profit The Inquirer
Art teachers at Woodrow Wilson Middle School brighten up the school with student art, and earn money for the program by auctioning off the works.

Editorial: Applaud, but lightly The Inquirer
Philly students showed gains on the PSSA, but Superintendent Ackerman acknowledged there is a long way to go.

School-reform lessons from Phila.: Choosing Excellence in Public Schools The Inquirer
Review of new book by former Philly superintendent David W. Hornbeck and longtime educator Katherine Conner.

Phila. School Dist. Uses Protest Music in Civil Rights Classes KYW

Finding my Element Philly Teacher blog

Video of Graduation: My Speech and the Diplomas Practical Theory blog

Pa. Lawmakers Launch Web Site to Help Solve Budget Woes KYW

Fattah Announces $622,963 Grant to Drexel U. To Train School Librarians BigNews.biz

Parkside: The School of the Future Relies on Forward Thinking, Not Technology Philadelphia Neighborhoods

Father's Day is still busy for a full-time dad The Inquirer

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Suffering from search engine overload

By Frank Murphy on Jun 18, 2010 01:47 PM

Recently I have been suffering from search engine overload. This is an ailment that can cause trance-like behavior on the part of the sufferer. Another common symptom associated with this syndrome is the spouting off of seemingly endless facts about the particular subject the victim has been investigating through online search engines.

It is an exhausting ailment. In my case I contracted this condition as a result of my efforts to become better acquainted with the providers who have been identified as being eligible to manage Renaissance Schools in the School District of Philadelphia.

Notes from the news, June 18

By Anonymous on Jun 18, 2010 08:40 AM

Effort starting to raise $100 million for public, charter, parochial schools The Notebook blog
The Philadelphia School Project plans to raise the money to support high-quality education, wherever it may happen.

Notebook friends come out in full force for Turning the Page for Change fundraiser The Notebook blog
A big crowd came out to support the Notebook and mingle with friends and colleagues. The Notebook honored high school journalists.

See also: Thank you, Notebook community The Notebook blog

A-plus work Daily News (opinion)
This didn't come through in my feeds yesterday, and was a late addition to the Notes, but is a must read. Thanks to the Daily News for a nice shout out to Editor Paul Socolar and the Notebook!

Presidente de Congreso renuncia Al Dia
Nicholas Torres is leaving Congreso to head the new Philadelphia School Project.

Phila. schools close, pools open Philly.com
Have a great summer vacation!

LGBT community leaders question future for city's queer youth Voice of Philadelphia

Nicetown-Tioga: Leap After-School Program Praised Throughout Community Philadelphia Neighborhoods

North Central: The Stigma of Truant Youth Philadelphia Neighborhoods

Parkside: Students Salute Their Futures Philadelphia Neighborhoods

Phila. Test Scores Rise Again Metropolis

Philadelphia public school students improve PSSA scores WHYY

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Effort starting to raise $100 million for public, charter, parochial schools

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jun 17, 2010 11:01 PM

A big, new player has emerged in the city's education world. It's called The Philadelphia School Project and it plans to raise $100 million in philanthropic money with the goal of supporting high-quality schools whether they be district-run, charter, or parochial.

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