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'Weighted student funding' - any takers?

By Dale Mezzacappa on Feb 19, 2010 04:04 PM

When Arlene Ackerman came to Philadelphia, she said right off the bat that she planned to implement something called "weighted student funding." The idea is twofold: allocate resources based on students' academic and other needs, and give all schools more autonomy to make budgeting decisions.

Now she is following through.

Esos vatos locos forever! And school racial violence, Somali pirates

By Gustavo Martínez on Feb 19, 2010 01:26 PM

I'm supposing none of y'all know what the title to this post means. I'll put it this way: that's proper Chicano English, a southwestern US of A dialect of Spanglish, for "aw yeah, crazy dudes!"

Down there, by our own Berlin Wall, we live in español, but go to school in Spanglish, which goes to show how unsuccessful Operation Wetback was.

What worries me is that still, today, there are people who think that English is the only language that should be spoken in this land. But I take relief when amigos gabachos stand in defense of the many tongues spelling out life in the today's United States. So, gracias to attorney and blogger Len Rieser for his post in response to a Christopher Paslay's op-ed piece that appeared in The Inquirer earlier this week.

Notes from the news, Feb. 19

By Anonymous on Feb 19, 2010 10:27 AM

Fairhill pupils await Michelle Obama The Inquirer
Mrs. Obama is visiting the elementary school Friday to talk about her campaign against childhood obesity.

See also: First Lady Speaks Out Against Childhood Obesity in Phila. KYW

Ackerman: Youth violence a public health issue The Inquirer
Superintendent Ackerman explained that the 15,000 violent and nonviolent incidents are far too many.

See also: Jackson: prevent flash mobs with better schools
Jesse Jackson addresses student violence in Phila. The Inquirer

Why can't they just teach their kids English? The Notebook blog
Len Rieser wrote in response to a recent Inquirer op-ed that questioned spending District dollars to teach immigrant kids English.

Gubernatorial candidates debate in Center City
PSU and YUC students spoke at the forum. The discussion of education referenced the costing-out study and importance of early childhood ed.

Please email us if we missed anything today or if you have any suggestions of publications, email lists, or other places for us to check for news.

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Why can't they just teach their kids English?

By Len Rieser on Feb 18, 2010 08:02 PM

Of all the grumpy things that people say about immigrants, one of the more unusual is that they don’t sit their kids down on arrival and teach them English.  But that’s one of several points made by Christopher Paslay in an op-ed earlier this week.

Notes from the news, Feb. 18

By Anonymous on Feb 18, 2010 09:02 AM

Violence is key topic at school-reform-panel meeting Daily News
Superintendent Ackerman said violence is like a "public health threat" and that she is interested in talking more with students who organized an anti-violence campaign.

See also: Student Union, Ackerman discuss violence The Notebook blog
New Campaign Launch to SRC PSU blog
"I am talking about student-created solutions to violence in our schools" Philly Education Justice blog

First lady brings antiobesity campaign to Phila. The Inquirer
Mrs. Obama and the Treasury and Agriculture secretaries will visit Fairhill School tomorrow to discuss her campaign.

Renaissance community meetings rescheduled The Notebook blog
Meetings at West Philly High and Harrity tonight.

Jackson to Give City Schools Talk The Inquirer
Rev. Jesse Jackson will have a public conversation with Ackerman.

Man shot outside Washington High School The Inquirer
The teen was shot while a fashion show was going on at the school. He was in stable condition.

See also: Teen Shot Outside Philadelphia High School NBC Philadelphia
Teen Shot Outside Philly High School Fox 29

Tony Danza argues the merits of debate team

Philly Schools To Ask For Waiver Over Snow Days AP via KDKA

"P" is for Parents and Powerful A Good Day Teaching blog

Turning Words Into Action: How are you applying #edchat ideas? Philly Teacher blog

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Student Union, Ackerman discuss violence

By Paul Socolar on Feb 17, 2010 10:55 PM

Members of Philadelphia Student Union came to the School Reform Commission on Wednesday to announce a new student-led campaign against youth violence and encountered a receptive group of commissioners and a superintendent who had already been talking about the "urgency" of the issue.

Renaissance community meetings rescheduled

By the Notebook on Feb 17, 2010 04:17 PM

Meetings will be held Wednesday night at Mann and Stetson Schools at 6 p.m. and Thursday night at Harrity and West Philadelphia High School at 6 p.m., according to Benjamin Rayer, who is overseeing the Renaissance effort.

The meetings were postponed from last week due to the snow.

Dropout reduction work discussed on Fox 29

By Anonymous on Feb 17, 2010 03:36 PM

Mayor Nutter set the goal of halving the dropout rate within five to seven years. According to Fox 29, the mayor sees small progress on that goal, but thinks there is room for improvement.

Notes from the news, Feb. 17

By Anonymous on Feb 17, 2010 10:32 AM

Poll: Early-childhood education has wide support in Pa. Daily News
81 percent of Pennsylvanian's support early childhood education and 71 percent would pay for it with state funds.

City's High Dropout Rate Costs Everyone Fox 29
Mayor Nutter reported progress on cutting the dropout rate.

A Quick Fix for America's Worst Schools TIME
A look at Mastery Schools turnaround efforts in Philly.

News flash: Students have brains The Notebook blog
A guest blog from Shania Morris, an 8th grader and PSU member.

Not another snow day The Notebook blog
Tacking missed days onto the end of the school year doesn't help with PSSA preparation now.

See also: Students and parents make snowy trek back to school The Inquirer

A Case for Teaching Science Philly Teacher blog

Tackling Childhood Obesity Radio Times

Danieal Kelly's death no surprise, jury is told The Inquirer

Editorial: Borrowed time The Inquirer

C.U. superintendent one step closer to Milwaukee Delco Times

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Notes from the news

News flash: Students have brains

By Guest blogger on Feb 16, 2010 03:47 PM

This week's guest blog post comes from Shania Morris, who is an 8th grader at Huey Elementary and member of Philadelphia Student Union.

Last year I was a 7th grader. I felt annoyed, disappointed, cheated, and confused about what my education was really supposed to be. Then my brother came home and told me about the Philadelphia Student Union. What he said was "We believe in equality and want qualified teachers and enough resources in our schools" and that related so much to how I felt, so I decided to come into the organization and start working with a lot of students who felt the same way I did.  

Not another snow day

By Samuel Reed III on Feb 16, 2010 11:39 AM

I don’t want another snow day!

For the past week or so, coverage of the record-breaking winter has served as major headlines in electronic and print press. Clifford J. Levy's article in The New York Times, “Washington Shivers, Moscow Laughs” intimated that Russians scoffed at Americans' reaction to the East Coast blizzard. The Weather Channel has provided around-the-clock forecasting for the obsessed weather watchers.

Notes from the news, Feb. 16

By Anonymous on Feb 16, 2010 11:07 AM

Phila. schools ready for first full day in a week The Inquirer
Schools are "at 100%" according to District Chief of Operations John Frangipani.

School reform's alphabet The Inquirer (opinion)
Chalk and Talk blogger and teacher Chris Paslay wrote that A is for accountability and accomodations.

University of Pennsylvania President Supports the DREAM Act and Immigrant Youth Young Philly Politics
The DREAM Act is a "pathway to citizenship" for kids who were not born in the U.S., but were brought up here and then have difficulty paying for college due to their undocumented status.

Art Sanctuary Hosts Haiku Writing Contest For Teens KYW
The contest relates to African American history and is for high school students.

North Philadelphia: The Village Teaches Digital Media Philadelphia Neighborhoods

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Notes from the news, Feb. 15

By Anonymous on Feb 15, 2010 10:59 AM

Closing the learning gap The Inquirer (opinion)
A reflection on how to close the economic learning gap.

See also: In hard times, Americans blame the poor The Inquirer

Changes in store for high school choice? The Notebook blog
The release of an RFA report shed light on the lack of real choice in the current system, but how to change that?

See also: Confessions of a Conflicted Public School Advocate Philly School Search blog

What Does Communication Mean in 2010? Philly Teacher blog
EduTweeters, EduCon, Classroom 2.0 communication is changing. Are we at the "tipping point"?

Nonprofit helps dropouts get back on track AP via

Ask Dr. H: Young athletes and sudden cardiac death Inquirer magazine

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Changes in store for high school choice?

By Dale Mezzacappa on Feb 12, 2010 06:12 PM

Over the snowy weekend, I was visiting with neighbors, two people who put a passion for social justice high on their personal and professional agendas.

But when the conversation turned to recent news articles that raised questions about the equity of the high school admissions policies in Philadelphia,  their first reaction was concern.

Mapping the Renaissance Schools

By Anonymous on Feb 12, 2010 11:23 AM

All Renaissance Eligible and Alert Schools are mapped out below. Red markers are Eligible and blue ones are Alert.

Each school name links to the profile for that school with a fact sheet of school data, some of it relevant to the School Performance Index that was used to determine which schools are on these lists.

The schools are geographically concentrated in a swath running across West Philadelphia, through North Philly and into Kensington. Large portions of the Northeast, Northwest Philly, and South Philadelphia have no targeted schools

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