December 2011 Archives

Biggest State Stories of 2011: Perry, Political Battles, Pensions

Readers were keenly interested whether Texas Gov. Rick Perry, an critic of President Obama's education policies, would jump into the White House race, which he eventually did.

Report Finds Child Poverty Rising in the States

Child poverty has risen steadily over the past four years, and 6.5 million children under the age of 18 are living in families with an unemployed parent, according to the Brookings Institution.

Barbour Vents, Briefly, over Race to Top

Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour issues a terse statement noting that only one of the nine states that won the early-learning Race to the Top competition has a Republican governor.

New York AG Probes Link Between State, Education Publisher

New York's state attorney general is looking at whether a major education publisher improperly supported a trip by former state education commissioner David Steiner.

Conn. Governor Prods Lawmakers After Race to Top Loss

Gov. Dannel Malloy says the state's weak showing in the recent Race to the Top competition should motivate lawmakers to change education policy.

Federal Officials Warn Hawaii on Lack of Race to Top Progress

Hawaii receives a stern warning from the U.S. Department of Education that the state is not living up to its $75 million Race to the Top award.

About 15 Percent of Charter Schools Shut Down, Group Says

The greatest proportion of charter schools, about 42 percent, close for financial reasons, followed by mismanagement, and academic problems, the Center for Education Reform says.

Fla. AG Submits New Ballot Wording for Constitutional Amendment

A proposed constitutional amendment in Florida could clear the way for more private school vouchers, critics say.

Charter School Expansion Underway in Michigan

Republican Gov. Rick Synder has signed into law a proposal, backed by the state's GOP-led legislature, that will remove caps on charter school growth.

Fla. Ballot Item Set Back in Court, but AG Can Revive It

A Florida circuit court judge rejects the language of a proposed constitutional amendment that would end a ban on public money going to religious institutions. But Florida's Attorney General says she will make a wording change.

Florida Among the Disappointed in Early Learning RTT Contest

The federal government's rejection of Florida's early-learning Race to the Top grant drew a sharply worded response from Gov. Rick Scott.

Shock Treatment: Scores Jumped, Then Stalled, After NCLB

The No Child Left Behind Act contributed to a major increase in student performance initially, but those those gains have leveled off, a new report argues.

Medicaid Eats Up More of State Budgets, While Education Slips

Medicaid is consumer a larger share of state spending, while the portion going to K-12 education has fallen, according to the National Association of State Budget Officers.

Stories Scrutinize Florida Charter Schools' Finances, Enrollment

A Miami Herald series investigates potential conflicts of interest and alleged insider business dealings at the state's charter schools.

Districts Sue Over School Texas School Funding System

A school-funding lawsuit filed by MALDEF, an advocacy system for Latino communities, comes the same year that Texas lawmakers imposed major budget cuts on K-12.

N.J. State School Chief Waits to Have His Job Made Official

Christopher Cerf, who was New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's choice to serve as state schools chief, awaits confirmation by the state Senate.

Colorado Judge Rules Against State's School Funding Model

A Colorado state judge declares the system's of state funding unconstitutional. Her ruling seems likely to be appealed.

Some States Move Away from Exit Exams; More Change Coming

A few states have dropped exit exams recently, and more states will move away from them to "common-core" assessments, a new report finds.

Shifting Prospects, Shifting Politics on School Funding?

Officials in Montana and South Dakota say the budget picture has improved, which could help schools. In Florida, Gov. Rick Scott is now pledging to support school, funding, after making major cuts to K-12.

Study Finds Only 13 State Laws Address Off-Campus Bullying

A new review of state bullying laws by the federal Department of Education finds wide variation in protection and punishment for students who are bullied and harassed.

Setting a Higher Standard for Teacher Entry in Iowa

As part of a package of education proposals, Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad wants to set a minimum 3.0 grade-point average for admission to state teacher colleges.

Washington, California Eye Tax Proposals to Support Schools

Washington Gov. Chris Gregoire has proposed a temporary sales tax hike to stave off cuts to schools. A California coalition is pushing for a tax increase of its own, designed to raise $10 billion.

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