- President & CEO of UNCF and EEP Co-Chair Michael Lomax responds to the National Journal’seducation blog’s question – Can communities and parents help turn around schools? – noting that “the only way to ensure continuity and progress in education reform is to build local, state and national constituencies that demand good education for their children…especially local.”
- Entertainer and brand-new EEP Board member John Legend joins Harlem Village Academies CEO Debra Kenny to discuss the changing landscape of education reform on Morning Joe this morning (video).
- The movement for Common Core Standards is in full swing. The Washington Post reports that Washington, D.C. and Massachusetts are set to vote on adoption of national standards. The New York Times offers an overview of the history and challenges of the adoption process and also asks six experts if national standards will improve education.
- The Boston Globe highlights an analysis by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute (full report –pdf), which finds that the common academic standards many states will be adopting are clearer and more rigorous than those currently used in most states. Executive Director of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute (and EEP signatory) Chester Finn says “Bad standards are not fatal, and good standards are not a cure-all… But it’s far better to have a good destination in mind for your kids than to have none or a bad one.”
- The Wallace Foundation released a report entitled “Learning From Leadership: Investigating the Links to Improved Student Learning,” which gathers and analyzes quantitative data confirming that education leadership has a strong impact on student achievement, as measured by student test scores.
- EdWeek reports that two Democrats from the U.S. House of Representatives said at a policy briefing yesterday on Capitol Hill that they plan to introduce a bill that would authorize $400 million in funding for fiscal 2011 for the teaching of foreign languages to K-12 students. They hope the bill would be added to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act reauthorization.
- The American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research recently released a new report that highlights the systemic reform measures that five successful school districts employed to transform student achievement “from unacceptable to noteworthy performance.”
- Dropout Nation urges Beltway education reform organizations to “get their hands dirty” and work with local organizations to further the reach of school reform among urban communities.
- The Wall Street Journal reports that advocates of charter schools gave more than $600,000 to Albany political candidates and party committees since the beginning of the year, evidence of the rapid growth of the movement. Eduwonk’s sharp take can be found here.
- EdWeek reports that U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced an initiative Wednesday to create a National Learning Registry to help organize digital educational resources for teachers and students.
- Eduflack explores how to better use education data to tell a powerful story.
From the States
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that the State Charter School Commission will revisit funding discussions for two cyber schools that wish to open this fall.
The Washington Post reports that statewide averages on the Maryland School Assessment exams improved modestly in every category except elementary school reading, which dropped slightly. Also, the report finds that the lowest-performing students posted smaller gains than in previous years.
- EdWeek reports Massachusetts Republicans united Tuesday in an all-out assault on the Patrick administration’s proposal to swap the state’s public schools math and English curriculum standards for national ones, calling for a delay in the Common Core Standards vote.
- The Boston Globe reports that the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education is considering two different caps to limit virtual charter enrollment in response to a recently passed state law giving local school committees the sole power to open these schools.
Detroit Public Schools will offer more math and reading instruction to address dismal proficiency in these areas, the Free Press reports.
EdWeek reports about 1,000 protesters marched Tuesday through Raleigh and prepared for an afternoon showdown with a school board they say will resegregate schools by eliminating a busing policy focused on diversity.