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March 29, 2007

Teen Tanning Is The Latest Thing States Are Banning

"No smoking. No drinking. No talking on cell phones while driving. Now, the latest no-no in state laws aimed at underage teens is indoor tanning,"begins this story (States say no to teen tanning). "Spurred by worries about skin cancer, Utah and Virginia this year joined 25 other state...

March 29, 2007

Accountability Isn't Just For Schools, And Students

In telling the horrifying story of a student who'd pushed through all sorts of obstacles but was killed just before graduation, yesterday's Sam Freedman column in the NYT (here) is essentially a reflection on the meaning of accountability both inside schools and outside. "Jeffrey had proved accounta...

March 28, 2007

The Choking Game

The NYT gives a big writeup (Teenager Casts Light on a Shadowy Game) to "the choking game" (also known as The Fainting Game, Airplaning, Dying game, Sleeper Hold, Space Cowboy, Space Monkey, Suffocation Game, Suffocation Roulette according to Wikipedia). It's nothing new, but may be spreading (isn...

March 27, 2007

Seven Years For Shoving A Hall Monitor

Apparently news in the Chicago Tribune of a high school student in Texas being given up to seven years in jail for pushing a hall monitor has generated quite a reaction (see here). "A 14-year-old black girl from the small Texas town of Paris, was sent to a youth prison for up to 7 years for shoving...

March 26, 2007

"The Craze That Overtook The 5th and 6th Grade"

Once in a while, strange little crazes start in schools, often making adults crazy in the process. Showing his roots as an education reporter, This American Life's Ira Glass included a segment about a video-making craze that overtook one set of kids in the show's video premier, which aired last wee...

March 23, 2007

Who's On Your Hitlist?

"On MySpace three weeks ago, one student told anyone who cared to read, β€œI made a hit list.” The student added, β€œIt was so fun to write their names down saying I want them dead.” Readers took turns guessing the names on the list." From Hitlists, a disturbing but generally hype-free NYT arti...

March 22, 2007

Peppermint & Stinky Shoes: These Smells Don't Go Together

You know it's a slow week when nobody can resist peppermint and stinky feet stories: "A middle school in Maryland is using a unique method to help kids do better on their tests" (School Backs Peppermint for Student Alertness NPR). I think they got it from here: "Along with smart teaching, careful ...

March 21, 2007

The Return Of The Hype Warning System

In response to recent reports surrounding the further spread of KIPP, the Threat Awareness Office at the Department of Homeland Security has just posted the following adjustments to the National Hype Warning System. Hold onto your bags: KIPP Is Our Savior NCLB Has Destroyed / Saved Our Schools Nat...

March 20, 2007

The Wisdom Of Children (In Three Parts)

There's not that much of interest going on in education this week, but I'm going to keep you interested anyway. For example, here's the New Yorker's Simon Rich humorously describing the adult world from the younger generation's point of view (Shouts & Murmurs: The Wisdom of Children). I espec...

March 20, 2007

The Defense Secretary Vs. The Education Philanthropist

robert gates.jpg
Trained to think of Bill, not Bob, when seeing the name "Gates" in a headline, I must admit to being at least momentarily started when I come across headlines like "Gates declines comment on Pace's gay remarks," or "Gates: So far, so good." bill gates.jpg But maybe it's just me. For the record, that's Defense Secretary Bob Gates on the left, Miscrosoft zillionaire philanthropist Bill Gates on the right.

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