December 2010 Archives

Reading Roundup: Flipping the Order of Science Courses

Interesting reading on a variety of curriculum issues, from flipping the order of high school science courses to aligning individual education plans with the common standards.

Top Curriculum Themes of 2010

STEM, reading, and assessment top the list of most-read subjects on Curriculum Matters in 2010.

Common Assessments: Comparing the Proposals

Two new summaries of the Race to the Top assessment proposals offer concise, comparative looks at the design ideas for the new tests.

'Addicted to Progress' on Tests: A Turnaround Strategy

Two Boston schools use frequent testing and close monitoring of the results as keys to their turnaround strategies.

States Moving Toward Uniform Graduation-Rate Calculation

A new report finds 48 states will report graduation rates by a common formula for the class of 2011.

Military: One in Five High School Grads Lack Academic Skills

A new study shows that one in five recent high school graduates lack the academic skills to enlist in the military.

House Backs STEM Education Bill: Next Stop, White House

The legislation to reauthorize the America COMPETES Act was approved in the House today by a vote of 228-130, after winning Senate passage just days ago.

Civil Rights Groups File Complaint Over Texas Standards

The groups claim that the new social studies standards are both historically inaccurate and discriminatory.

'Relevant' Courses Pique Interest of Students, Industry

By guest blogger Sarah D. Sparks Research shows the value of a high school diploma to the job market faltering at the same time policymakers and educators are looking for ways to increase the number of students who graduate high school. "Attainment of a diploma is a weak signal" of a student's ability to complete college or progress in a career said Henry I. Braun, an education and public policy professor at Boston College's Lynch School of Education, at a recent research symposium on student success after high school. "We have a substantial and differential leakage at each segment of ...

Study Notes Trend Toward More Testing in High School

A new report finds more states requiring some form of high school test, and its authors predict that forthcoming common assessments could fuel that trend.

Common-Standards Road Show: Could T-Shirts Be Far Behind?

One provider of workshops about the common standards promotes it like a rock and roll band's tour.

Higher Ed and the Common Standards: A Partnership

A new partnership seeks to support the movement toward common standards and assessments by enlisting the participation of higher education.

Senate OKs America COMPETES Bill as Session Nears End

The bill includes a variety of provisions aimed at improving STEM education.

New Industry Standard Promises Accessibility for Assessments

A new development in assessment has the potential to make tests more accessible to students with disabilities, and more portable.

Oregon Will Permit Use of 'Spell Check' on Writing Exams

Some state legislators are questioning the wisdom of the decision.

Shaping Curriculum From Common Core Standards

The American Federation of Teachers explores how to shape curriculum from the common standards.

Karl Marx, Founding Father? Survey Shows Knowledge Gaps

Forty-two percent of adults identified a phrase popularized by the author of "The Communist Manifesto" as coming from one of America's founding documents.

NSF-Financed Research to Examine Informal Science Learning

The $440,000 research project is intended to lay the groundwork for a longitudinal examination of informal science learning programs.

What Are Appropriate Boundaries for Teachers and Principals?

A college student reflects on her lackluster freshman English experience, and education activists debate how far teachers and principals should go in tracking down truants.

Report: More of the Same Won't Close Achievement Gaps

A new report estimates how long it will take to close achievement gaps.

Math, Science Teachers Convene in Washington for Presidential Awards

The winners will participate in professional development activities and recognition events, including a White House ceremony.

Assessment Consortia: Membership Begins to Shift

Membership begins to shift in the two consortia designing common assessments.

CIA Director Urges Stronger Focus on Foreign Languages

Secretary Duncan, also speaking at the event, defended plans to merge aid for a federal foreign language assistance program into a broader, competitive funding pot.

Many Questions Dog Development of New Assessments

A new paper explores unresolved questions that hang over the design of assessments for the new common standards.

La. Science Textbooks Win Panel's Backing, Despite Evolution Complaints

A panel of the state school board voted to recommend the biology and environmental science textbooks by a vote of 6-1.

Video Series Spotlights Strong Performers on PISA

The series highlights the policies and practices of education systems that have shown strong performance or gains on the international assessment.

What People Are Saying About the PISA Results

Plenty of people are weighing in on the latest international data, from U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan to teachers' union leaders and a former governor.

PISA: How Top-Scoring Nations Get There

Another report from the OECD, which released PISA results today, describes what top-scoring nations did to produce high levels of achievement among 15-year-olds.

International Study Examines Parent Actions, Attitudes on Math Learning

Parents in Singapore are far more likely to engage a math tutor for their child.

PISA Results: U.S. Reaches International Average in Science, Still Below in Math

In reading, U.S. scores were relatively unchanged, keeping American students in the middle of the pack.

College Board Revamps AP Latin and Spanish Lit

The College Board has overhauled its AP Latin and Spanish literature courses.

Study: Most U.S. Students Couldn't Master Common Standards

A new study finds that most U.S. students have far to go before they can master the common standards.

After Backlash, N.C. Expands High School U.S. History Requirements

In face of earlier criticism, the final social studies standards require students to take two U.S. history courses covering all major periods.

Get Ready: PISA Is Coming!

Expect lots of analysis, and probably plenty of handwringing, after the international test results are issued next week.

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