September 2008 Archives

California Schools Hit the NCLB Wall

A fresh report in the journal Science confirms what many of us have been saying for years. California schools are on a collision course with NCLB targets. The Science Daily tells us The researchers report in the Sept. 26 issue of Science that mathematical models they used in their analysis predict that nearly all elementary schools in California will fail to meet the Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) requirements for proficiency by 2014, the year when all students in the nation need to be proficient in ELA and mathematics, per the "No Child Left Behind Act of 2001" (NCLB). In January ...

Mirror, Mirror....

Marco Iaboconi’s recent book, “Mirroring People: the new science of how we connect with others”, suggests we are wired to connect with people we find to be similar to ourselves. When we meet people, we look for commonalities, and try to see if they are “like” us. When we want to make a good impression, we unconsciously (or consciously) mimic those we want to impress. This explains a lot of the social conformity we see. We do not NEED someone telling us we must dress the same way. We do it because the drive to be accepted is so ...

Confusion in California

I get the feeling sometimes that the rest of the country sees California from afar as some sort of Bohemian enclave, with grapes on the vine and iPods in the vending machines. So as we head into the fall, I am here to give you a bit of an update from the land of milk and sunshine. California schools improved their scores on the state’s reading, writing and math tests, but the achievement gap persists for African American and Latino students. Furthermore, even though more schools raised their scores on the state’s Academic Performance Index, more of them ...

The Education Agenda: Candidate Obama

Last week I summarized the education policies of Republican candidate John McCain. This week, let’s take a look at Barack Obama. Please share your response below. After reading both posts, who will win your support this November? Obama’s official site lays out his policies in detail. It states: Obama believes teachers should not be forced to spend the academic year preparing students to fill in bubbles on standardized tests. He will improve the assessments used to track student progress to measure readiness for college and the workplace and improve student learning in a timely, individualized manner. Obama will ...

The Education Agenda: Candidate McCain

We have seen the tremendous effect our president can have on education policy over the past seven years. Education may not be the number one issue on most voter's minds, but there are approximately four million teachers in this nation, and that is a lot of votes, so let’s take a look at the stance each of the two leading candidates are taking on education issues. This week I am going to focus on the views and record of John McCain. Next week I will review Barack Obama’s positions. Please read, and share your own views below. John ...


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