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Notes from the news, June 30

By Anonymous on Jun 30, 2010 09:58 AM

Talking About Schools Metropolis
Tom Ferrick, Jr. reflects on the Pew study on school choice, which he helped write.

See also: Pew Report: Options are growing, but parents want still more The Notebook blog
Pew: padres necesitan más opciones escolares para sus hijos Al Día
Phila. schools get poor marks in new survey 6ABC
Philly Schools From A Parents' Point Of View Fox 29

Phila. summer school kicks off with almost 58,000 enrolled The Inquirer
The $47 million SLAM program started yesterday, with more students enrolled than the original goal of 50,000.

See also: The True Cost Of Summer School Fox 29

Small Philly schools with big hopes The Inquirer
First part of a two part series looking at Philly's small high schools, four of which graduated their first classes this year. This piece compares SLA and School of the Future.

Here's what's in the state budget deal It's Our Money
Tentative budget deal still has some big unknowns, but it still includes an increase for education funding, which is $100 million less than Gov. Rendell wanted.

Retiring Franklin Institute science educator leaves behind 'legacy' Daily News
Educator Wayne E. Ransom taught museum staffers and teachers how to teach science to students.

Philadelphia youth groups come together for 2nd nonviolent flash mob The Notebook blog
Members of the Campaign for Nonviolent Schools gathered at Love Park to share their message against violence and reiterate that "We are not a flash mob."

School District, You Got It Twisted Philebrity

Fighting fat in Philadelphia schools WHYY

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Pew Report: Options are growing, but parents want still more

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jun 29, 2010 05:14 PM

Those of us who have been following the education world in Philadelphia for any length of time know that it has changed drastically just in the past decade. Catholic schools are on the wane. Charter schools are on the rise. And the public school system itself has undergone huge upheavals -- a state takeover, the advent of private management in some low-performing schools, the creation of dozens of additional high schools under Paul Vallas.

Philadelphia youth groups come together for 2nd nonviolent flash mob

By Brad Gibson on Jun 29, 2010 03:09 PM

Speaking only through their T-shirts, which read “We Are Not A Flash Mob,” a group of over 30 students descended quietly and purposefully around the fountain at Love Park on Monday at 4:30 p.m. 

Notes from the news, June 29

By Anonymous on Jun 29, 2010 09:13 AM

Study: Phila. parents want more school-choice options The Inquirer
Pew Philadelphia Research Initiative polled more than 800 parents of District public, charter, and Catholic school students and found that school safety was a top concern.

See also: Pew study; Charters' boom sitting well with parents Daily News
District, nonpublic, and charter enrollment in Philadelphia The Notebook

West Philadelphia High auto-design team falls a bit short in competition The Inquirer
The team failed a qualifying test for the next round of the $10 million competition. Congrats on making it this far!

See also: Ronnie Polaneczky: Despite loss, road ahead bright for W. Philly High car team Daily News

Sen. Anthony Williams steps in at West, but still no clear resolution The Notebook blog
Williams tried to mediate tensions after the upheaval at West Philly.

Charter teachers unionize The Inquirer
Teachers at Khepera Charter School voted to unionize on Friday.

The gender gap trickles into public schools The Notebook blog
More girls are going to college, and they are graduating high school in greater numbers than boys, too.

Growing the Movement Practical Theory blog
Maybe EduCon can help; let's replicate it in cities across the country.

See also: Dissecting the 21st Century Teacher Philly Teacher blog

Crowd Sourcing and Problem Solving at ISTE 2010 Philly Teacher blog

Summer Plans A Year in the Life of a Teacher

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Sen. Anthony Williams steps in at West, but still no clear resolution

By Benjamin Herold on Jun 28, 2010 05:38 PM

With no end in sight for the District's ongoing investigation into an alleged conflict of interest among parents on the School Advisory Council (SAC) at West Philadelphia High, State Senator Anthony H. Williams stepped into the breach last week to help mediate the lingering tensions between factions of the West community and Superintendent Arlene Ackerman.

The gender gap trickles into public schools

By Jamie Raver on Jun 28, 2010 04:57 PM

As the school year comes to a close and anxiety mounts for the fall, administrators, educators, and politicians focus their attention on how to increase their percentages of students who make it to the next grade. What will those classrooms look like?

Notes from the news, June 28

By Anonymous on Jun 28, 2010 09:15 AM

Giving Ackerman her due The Inquirer (opinion)
Superintendent Ackerman's friends in high places--Gov. Rendell, Mayor Nutter, State Rep. Evans--share their support for her "outstanding progress" in her two years in Philly.

Continued shake-up for Ackerman team in Philadelphia schools The Inquirer
Several current District officials will have new positions, and a state education official returns to the District.

See also: More movement in Ackerman's cabinet The Notebook blog

South Philadelphia High aide who protected students from attack is laid off The Inquirer
The lay off is a cost saving measure. Eleven community engagement workers were laid off, and a worker with longer tenure was able to displace Violet Sutton-Lawson.

Study finds childhood obesity may be declining The Inquirer
The study, out of Temple University, finds a decline in obesity amongst kids who participated in a school-based program that encouraged physical activity and eating lower calorie foods.

See also: School-Based Efforts May Help Curb Obesity in High-Risk Kids BusinessWeek

After troubled beginnings, Camelot Schools graduates look forward to bright futures The Notebook blog
Ackerman spoke at the graduation of 272 students from Camelot's accelerated and discipline schools.

Subsidizing The Digital Divide Philly Teacher blog
Ideas about how to deal with the digital divide from the EdubloggerCon.

First ever Parent University graduates celebrate a year of hard work The Notebook blog
Parent University is a District initiative that offers free enrichment and academic classes to parents.

Philly Teenshop program encourages abstinence, education, and goals The Inquirer

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Notes from the news

First-ever Parent University graduates celebrate a year of hard work

By Brad Gibson on Jun 27, 2010 10:45 PM

“When you have an opportunity to better yourself and your children, take it,” said Nicola Byfield, as she spoke to her fellow graduates of Parent University.

More movement in Ackerman's cabinet

By Anonymous on Jun 25, 2010 02:28 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 01:58 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 09:35 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 08:48 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 01:50 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 12:59 PM

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 09:52 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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