So, chances are you've probably heard about the new push to put K-12 education front-and-center on the national agenda, through the documentary "Waiting for Superman" (which got airtime on "Oprah", a major public platform if there ever was one) and through NBC's "Education Nation", which features a whole lot of edu-hoopla, including Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on "Meet the Press", a 30-minute interview with President Barack Obama on education, and a teacher town hall meeting. The NBC effort is funded in part by some of the same foundations that tried to steer the conversation to education in the 2008 ...


President Barack Obama showcased his education agenda on the "Today Show" this morning, touching on charter schools, union, competitive grants and a new initiative to recruit and prepare new teachers in the STEM fields.


The 62 TIF grant winners will get a combined total of $442 million to support performance-pay plans for teachers and principals in high-need schools.


Republicans say they'll crack down on spending, possibly even taking back unspent stimulus funds, if they're able to take over the U.S House of Representatives after the October midterm elections. That's according to a widely circulated draft of the GOP's Pledge to America, a sort of to-do list for Republican leaders being officially released today. Here are some important graphs: Act Immediately to Reduce Spending:There is no reason to wait to reduce wasteful and unnecessary spending. Congress should move immediately to cancel unspent "stimulus" funds, and block any attempts to extend the timeline for spending "stimulus" funds. Throwing ...


President Barack Obama is going to sit down for a half-an-hour interview Monday, just on education issues, with NBC's Matt Lauer. Although I'd be surprised if he unveils any brand new policies, the interview itself is a big deal. "It's a real opportunity" for the White House to send a message on the importance of education, Roberto Rodriguez, a White House adviser on education issues, told executives assembled today at the school division of the Association of American Publishers' fall meeting on Capitol Hill. "The president rarely grants half-hour interviews on one issue." The interview, probably not coincidentally, coincides with ...


U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan told a room full of Washington reporters today that he's still hoping to move on a bipartisan reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act early next year. But, when asked if he'd like to change anything in the Obama administration's blueprint for renewal, released last March, he said only that he'd like to beef-up parent involvement, while offering few other specifics. Duncan was also asked about the four school Improvement models outlined as a condition for federal turnaround aid, which folks (including members of Congress) have said are too prescriptive. The models ...


Twenty-one non-profits and higher education institutions will snag a grant from the U.S. Department of Education to help plan for a Promise Neighborhood, the administration announced today. The grants, of up to $500,000, will help the winners create programs that offer a comprehensive range of services to help improve student outcomes, such as health care, pre-kindergarten, and college counseling. The idea grew out of the Harlem Children's Zone, a rock star program of the moment, which is even featured in American Express commercials. The announcement of the winners will be made at a press conference today featuring an ...


Is smaller better when it comes to Race to the Top? Two of the winners - DC and Hawaii - include just one major school district.


Remember the U.S. Department of Education's blueprint for reauthorizing the Elementary and Secondary Education Act? It included a line about seeking greater "fiscal equity" in schools, but few specifics on exactly how to work through that tricky issue. Reauthorization doesn't look like it's moving this year, but the Education Department, at the behest of two congressmen, is establishing a 15-member commission to explore the fiscal-equity question. Nominations for panelists were due last week. The commission, which will be run by the department's Office of Civil Rights, is slated to work for about 15 months. It's unclear whether the panel ...


Officials from the lucky dozen winners of the $4 billion Race to the Top competition met in Washington to hammer out their budgets and talk about implementations issues.


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