Although both Education Week and StudentsFirst released state K-12 rankings in the second week of January, there were several differences in how the rankings worked.

For the fifth year in a row, Maryland received top marks in Education Week's annual Quality Counts report, followed by Massachusetts, New York, Virginia, and Arkansas.

California Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson has recommended suspending some tests in 2013-14 to help the state prepare for the Common Core State Standards.

A "report card" of states by the Sacramento-based StudentsFirst school advocacy groups gave most states poor marks for their policies on teachers and school choice.

A New York state commission on education reform recommended extended learning time and higher bars to enter the teaching profession in a Jan. 2 report.

An Indiana state senator said he plans to introduce legislation that would require the state to withdraw from the Common Core State Standards.

Key federal K-12 programs are likely to be cut by 8.2 percent at the beginning of the new year, although most school districts won't feel the pain until next September.

The Utah Board of Education may have violated the state's Open Meetings Act when it selected new leadership on Dec. 7.

California Gov. Jerry Brown may make another prominent push to provide more money for districts with more poor students.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich, a Republican, approved a new law that institutes an A-F grading system for schools, beginning in the 2012-13 school year.


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