An 11-year-old student in Alabama came up with an elaborate kidnapping hoax last week in an effort to hide his bad report card from his parents, according to CNN. The boy claimed that on Friday, a man in a beat-up red car kidnapped him at gunpoint and said, according to the local police department, “I’m going to take you somewhere and kill you.” The boy told police that he jumped from the car at that point, leaving his backpack behind in the car. The truth was slightly less dramatic. “He got a bad report card,” Sgt. Mark Roberts of ...


The U.S. Department of Education’s push to get states to link teacher evaluations to student test-score performance is ill-advised and unfair to educators, former Los Angeles teacher Walt Gardner writes in an opinion piece published in the Los Angeles Times. Under proposed guidelines, the Education Department’s $4 billion “Race to the Top” competitive-grant program would require participating states to use student-performance data in evaluating teachers’ effectiveness. Lawmakers in California are considering changing the current state law on teacher evaluations so it can qualify for the program. While the idea of linking teacher evaluations with student scoring gains ...


Recent gains by U.S. students on an international-comparison test show that the much-maligned “reform math” is in fact working, a middle school math teacher writes in an opinion piece published in The Seattle Times. Seattle educator Michael Sparks notes that so-called “discovery-based” math programs, oriented around guided investigation and interaction, emerged in the mid-1990s in response to the “Third World-level” performance of U.S. students on international tests. Despite an “endless stream” of commentary criticizing the “fuzziness” of such programs, Sparks writes, recent data suggests they are dramatically improving students’ traditional math skills. On the 2007 Trends in International ...


A group of 50 new teachers in Massachussetts are getting some extra support in their first year in the classroom, according to the the Boston Globe. Before ever setting foot in their new classrooms this fall, the teachers attended a two-day “New Teacher Academy” in which veteran educators gave them advice on what to expect during their first year. The academy is part of a three-part program run by Bridgewater State College and Boston College that is funded by a multimillion dollar grant from the Carnegie Foundation. The program, named the Teachers for a New Era Partnership, also includes seven ...


Parents in Durham, N.C., are voicing concern that a new reading curriculum being implemented in the district’s elementary schools this year is overly test-driven and may dampen kids’ enthusiasm for reading, according to The News & Observer. The curriculum, called “Reading Street,” was created by the publisher Scott Foresman in 2005 to help schools reach NLCB goals. According the News & Observer, it uses stories from workbooks and sets time limits for completion of tasks. Some parents, particularly those at magnet school in the district, say the program is overly prescriptive and smacks of teaching to the test. “I don’t...


A high school teacher in San Mateo, Calif., is being credited with preventing a Columbine-style massacre yesterday. Kenneth Santana, an English-language development teacher at Hillsdale High School, subdued a student who came to school with 10 armed pipe bombs, a sword, and a chainsaw, as reported by local news station KTVU. After leaving his classroom to make copies yesterday morning, Santana heard two loud crashes while in the school office and, as teachers and students fled from the scene, he headed to investigate the source. He then saw a student wearing a military-style vest emerge from some nearby glass doors. ...


Ever since the inception of homework, teachers have heard just about every excuse in the book from ill-prepared students. While many students have used variations on the tried-and-true “my dog ate my homework,” a high school senior in Michigan is putting a new twist on the old classic, according to the Wall Street Journal’s Digits blog. Justin D. Gawronski purchased a Kindle earlier this summer for his upcoming AP English class and downloaded George Orwell’s 1984 as part of his summer homework. However, on July 20, the WSJ reported that Gawronski “watched his copy of ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four’ disappear ...


Tony Danza, best known as the star of the 1980s T.V. show ”Who’s The Boss?”, will be embracing a new role this fall as a teacher at Northeast High School in Philadelphia, as part of a new A&E reality show called “Teach,” according to the Philadelphia Inquirer. In the show, Danza will co-teach a sophomore class alongside a certified teacher. The cameras will be invisible to the students. "[I am] humbled, honored and so grateful that the City of Philadelphia has decided to let us try this,” said Danza. “I have always wanted to teach, so this ...


This spring, the New York City school district imposed a hiring freeze of sorts. Faced with a pool of 1,700 teachers who collect a salary but aren't in the classroom because of declining school enrollment, school closings, or poor student performance, Chancellor Joel I. Klein announced that only teachers already on the payroll could be considered for teaching jobs, according to the New York Times. Translation: New graduates of the city's Teaching Fellows program—which recruits career changers for high-need subject areas—need not apply. One of those teachers, Arah Lewis, 28, reports the Times’ City Room blog, did apply ...


In his column this week, Washington Post education writer Jay Mathews admits that he tends to avoid writing about school-parent conflicts over special education services. The issues involved, he says, are usually “so complicated” and the stories all seem to end in the same dead end of “frustrated parents and ill-equipped educators trying but failing to find common ground, calling in lawyers while the children sit in class, bored and confused.” A persistent local mother, however, has managed to prod him into telling the story of her struggles to get special services for her son. By Mathews’ account, 12-year-old Miguel ...


Advertisement

Recent Comments

  • Nancy Flanagan: A team of NEA-affiliate consultants: Ellen Holmes (ME), Jim Meadows read more
  • Tisha Rinker: Who was the presenter? read more
  • Susan Morrison: PD several times per week? Gasp! Are teachers to read more
  • Nancy: What a fantastic story! I hope the students are enjoying read more
  • Sclgoya: Education change, like fossil formation (http://www.k5geosource.org/content/dd/fossil/pg1.html (first page only)), can read more

Archives

Categories

Technorati

Technorati search

» Blogs that link here