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Undocumented and unafraid: Pushing for the DREAM Act

By Gustavo Martínez on Jul 23, 2010 02:15 PM

Risking deportation, immigrant student activists are escalating their pressure on legislators to approve the DREAM Act.

Last Tuesday, 21 of them were arrested in Washington D.C. after staging a couple of sit-ins during the weeklong series of actions around their “The DREAM Is Coming” campaign.

“We did this because we have lobbied, sent letters and emails, made phone calls, and met with people in Congress. But we feel the Congress is not listening to us,” said María Marroquín, a student organizer with the campaign.

In case you missed it: You gotta have some standards

By Jamie Raver on Jul 23, 2010 12:35 PM

Critical Mass. for Common Core ASCD
Massachusetts has adopted the Common Core in a unanimous 8-0 vote.  Although Massachusetts already has the most rigorous academic standards in the country, the state hopes that the Common Core standards will further assist students in college and career preparation.

See also: We've got standards. Now what? The Educated Reporter
"Clearly Inferior" Yardsticks The Core Knowledge Blog
PA standards get low marks in study The Notebook blog

Notes from the news, July 23

By Anonymous on Jul 23, 2010 09:03 AM

Q & A: Arlene C. Ackerman | Philadelphia Superintendent of Schools Philadelphia Business Journal
Superintendent Ackerman spoke of vocational and job readiness programs and how businesses can help students become work- and college-ready.

See also: Deloitte aims to improve Philadelphia's graduation rate Philadelphia Business Journal

Michael O'Neill launches nonprofit to raise money for successful Phila. schools The Inquirer
The Philadelphia Schools Project plans to bring in $100 million for successful schools of any stripe--District, charter, parochial, or private. The Notebook gets credited for reporting on this project.

See also: Effort starting to raise $100 million for public, charter, parochial schools The Notebook blog

PA standards get low marks in study The Notebook blog
The Fordham Institute rated states against the new national Core Curriculum standards, and PA was near the bottom of the pack.

Education inventors get boost under new programs AP
The federal Department of Education is making it easier for entrepreneurs to get involved with education. A vice dean at UPenn's Graduate School of Education wants to create "a Silicon Valley around education."

Burris Ewell A Year in the Life of a Teacher blog

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PA standards get low marks in study

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jul 22, 2010 09:15 AM

The Fordham Institute, a big promoter of national education standards, released a report Wednesday comparing existing state standards with the new Common Core standards that a majority of states, including Pennsylvania, have vowed to adopt. And Pennsylvania's standards received some of the lowest scores - a D in English-Language Arts and an F in Math.

Notes from the news, July 22

By Anonymous on Jul 22, 2010 08:51 AM

District’s top charter school administrator resigns The Inquirer
Brief overview of Benjamin Rayer's 18-month tenure as chief charter, partnership and new schools officer.

Bill Gates: Money to learn, or burn? The Notebook blog
Bill Gates recently spoke to the AFT convention, and his comments and foundation's spending are generating front-page coverage and blogger commentary.

Grassroots Efforts in Philadelphia Creating an “Edutopia”? Philly School Search blog
Grassroots work to improve Philly schools helps encourage this blogger to send his child to public school.

An Unlevel Playing Field; An Epidemic Ignored Philly Teacher Talks blog
Attendance seems to be handled differently at charter and District schools.

Turning Up the Heat on Learning (Part II) PFT blog

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Bill Gates: Money to learn, or burn?

By Jamie Raver on Jul 21, 2010 04:27 PM

Bill Gates’ comments to the AFT convention and his foundation’s millions of dollars of donations are generating front-page coverage, and the critical chatter that comes with it.

Notes from the news, July 21

By Anonymous on Jul 21, 2010 08:35 AM

More shakeup atop Philly School District The Notebook blog
Changes in communications, budget, and the charter/Renaissance Schools office.

Charters Chief Steps Down Wall Street Journal
The head of New York City school's charter schools office will now lead Victory Schools Inc., which runs charter and privately-managed public schools in New York, Philadelphia, and Chicago. Victory is considering switching from being a for profit to a nonprofit.

Gov. Christie's report finds private, parochial schools save N.J. $2.7B annually The Star-Ledger
School choice is already big political issue in New Jersey.

Drexel panels explores ways to stop the violence Voice of Philadelphia

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More shakeup atop Philly School District

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jul 20, 2010 11:52 AM

Arlene Ackerman is shuffling her top leadership team yet again, the Notebook has learned.

Notes from the news, July 20

By Anonymous on Jul 20, 2010 08:48 AM

Least Restrictive Environment Practical Theory blog
The special education term got SLA principal Chris Lehmann thinking about other concepts that would work well for all students.

My high school experience, the second time around The Notebook blog
Guest blog from Microsoft employee Tony Franklin who looks back at his time at School of the Future.

New West Philly Parents Movement Launched Philly School Search blog
Looks like a group in West Philly is trying to take a cue from the parents organizing around Andrew Jackson Elementary.

What's Really New in Education? Philly Teacher blog
A lot of our theories of education still popular now are from decades or centuries ago, do they still hold true or is technology changing things?

A Tree and Its Roots: Notes from Friday and on the Spirit of Carter G. Woodson Office of Teaching and Unlearning

It only took 11 years… A Year in the Life of a Teacher

Plugging the ‘brain drain’ — Philly Fellows and community service Voice of Philadelphia

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My high school experience, the second time around

By Guest blogger on Jul 19, 2010 01:07 PM

This week's guest blog post is from Tony Franklin, a Microsoft employee who wrote about his experience with School of the Future.


I graduated from a Harrisburg high school in 1991. Like many graduates before me, I walked out the doors for the final time, thankful to be out of there. So, imagine my surprise when, 15 years later, I’m asked by my employer, Microsoft to go back to high school.

Notes from the news, July 19

By Anonymous on Jul 19, 2010 09:13 AM

District has lots to prove this summer Metro Philly
SLAM is front page news on today's Metro.

Plaudits and fears at Phila. school The Inquirer
Pollock Elementary got a Blue Ribbon education award, but parents and teachers say fights are common at the school.

Overhaul or cosmetic makeover? The Notebook blog
Many details are still being worked out in regard to facilities at Renaissance Schools. Mastery Charter has $1 million for capital improvements at each of its three schools, but the District hasn't fixed lingering issues first.

Our state budget is out of balance and unconstitutional Patriot-News (opinion)
And "throwing money" at Philadelphia's system has "failed to help," a state rep says.

Daniel Rubin: Keeping Pennsylvanians safe, or unwarranted domestic spying? The Inquirer
Education advocacy organizations have been noted in the "Pennsylvania Actionable Intelligence Bulletin."

Philadelphia fifth-grader gets support from Obama in quest to end bullying Daily News
President Obama personally replied to a letter from Ziainey Stokes about bullying at her Catholic school.

The Charter School Dilemma Philly Teacher blog
People have a lot to say about charters, but many people won't sign their name to their comments.

In case you missed it: Dissension within groups and...Megan Fox? The Notebook blog
Roundup of national education news, and an Internet curiosity: Megan Fox talking about school budget cuts in California.

Estudiantes de Philly a DC a pedir un DREAM-Act Al Día

Pa. may be forced to make budget cuts Philadelphia Business Journal

Mobile Learning Practical Theory blog

Congressman Sestak’s Legislation to Improve School Lunch Access and Safety Passes Committee BigNews.biz

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Overhaul or cosmetic makeover?

By Benjamin Herold on Jul 16, 2010 03:36 PM

With $3 million in privately donated funds at its disposal, Mastery Charter hoped to dramatically upgrade the facilities in each of its three Renaissance Schools before the start of the new school year.

In case you missed it: Dissension within groups and...Megan Fox?

By Jamie Raver on Jul 16, 2010 01:10 PM

The Democrats' education debacle Politico
Dissension continues to mount between Democrats over the proposed budget cuts to Obama's Race to the Top fund.  

See also: Campaign 2010: Reformy Types Just Don't Get It This Week In Education

New Evaluation Laws Split Teachers Even More NPR
Many states are implementing new policies that determine teacher pay based on student performance. Will the policies establish healthy competition and higher test scores, or is it another step in the downward spiral of education?

See also: Gates Foundation playing pivotal role in changes for education system Washington Post

Notes from the news, July 16

By Anonymous on Jul 16, 2010 08:46 AM

Editorial: New chapter, same book The Inquirer
The Inquirer affirms Superintendent Ackerman's assertion that the District's "efforts to boost student achievement are paying off." The District has decided to reveal the criteria used to evaluate Ackerman for her $65,000 bonus, and that transparency should improve public perception.

Corbett calls for taxpayer-funded vouchers The Notebook blog
Republican nominee for governor Tom Corbett brings vouchers back into the political conversation.

Teachers, not robots, create safe schools The Notebook blog
Former principal Frank Murphy describes how teachers with autonomy and the right supports can create safe, successful schools.

Constructing Modern Knowledge Reflections Practical Theory blog
SLA principal Chris Lehmann has been spending time with some of his educational heroes like Deborah Meier.

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