Virtual School Meanderings

February 19, 2017

Worth A Read

A regular Sunday feature…

Worth A Read

We Have to Say More About Teacher Evaluation Reforms Than Just ‘They Didn’t Work’

Posted: 15 Feb 2017 09:00 PM PST

Chad Aldeman discusses the failure of contemporary teacher evaluation systems. He focuses on what states could learn from the last eight years. He concludes, “Rather than discarding this era and moving on, as states and advocates seem won’t to do, we should learn from this massive effort: what worked and what didn’t work and why.”

Investigation: Charter school leaders, founders linked to controversial Turkish cleric

Posted: 15 Feb 2017 09:00 PM PST

Jean Rimbach, Jeff Pillets, and Hannan Adely investigate the impact of a Turkish cleric on New Jersey charter schools. “[A]n investigation by The Record and shows that some founders and leaders of the schools  have close ties to the movement of Fethullah Gulen, the controversial Islamic cleric accused of working to overthrow the government in his native Turkey last summer.”

New CEP Common Core Reports

Posted: 14 Feb 2017 09:00 PM PST

The Center on Education Policy (CEP) released two new reports this week on state standards and assessments. The first, ‘District Leadership in the New Era of Assessment,’ looked at school district leaders in 42 Common Core-adopting states. The other, ‘What Do Teachers and District Leaders Feel about State Standards and Assessments?,’ is part of a three report summary on leaders’ and teachers’ views on the standards.

Imagine a World With an ESSA Statute – But No Accountability Regulations

Posted: 13 Feb 2017 09:00 PM PST

Andrew Ujifusa writes about the possible end of federal accountability rules under ESSA. “Without regulations, state and local officials will just have to show they’re meeting the statute, a much lower legal burden than if they had to meet the more specific elements of regulations from the Education Department.”

Report from Indiana University center examines state education funding

Posted: 12 Feb 2017 09:00 PM PST

The Center for Evaluation & Education Policy (CEEP) at Indiana University released a new report this week to help guide Indiana legislators during their budget development process. The report was commissioned by the Indiana State Board of Education. There were four key findings: “(1) enrollment is projected to decline modestly in the state’s public schools in 2017, compared to 2009, with larger declines in traditional public schools than in charter schools; (2) the state’s public school corporations experienced substantial changes in state funding between 2009 and 2017; (3) state funding for school operations is projected to increase through July 2017; however, the increases, when adjusted for inflation, are not sufficient to fully restore funding to pre-2009 levels; and (4) the current funding-formula policy improved equity throughout the study period. Projections indicate that high levels of equity will be achieved in 2017. Equity in funding looks at whether school corporations serving similar types of students (in terms of student income) receive similar funding.”

Not Getting Enough Sleep? Tired Teachers Aren’t Usually the Best Teachers

Posted: 12 Feb 2017 09:00 PM PST

Dave Stuart, Jr. discusses the impact of sleep on teachers. “Unfortunately, individual educators can’t do much to make sure their students sleep enough at night, although districts across the country have been devising new policies – including later start times, even nap clubs – to bring schools more in sync with teen sleep patterns. What we can do is pay attention to our own sleep lives. This, it turns out, is something teachers tend to be bad at  – especially early career educators. Too often, in an effort to “get it all done,” teachers stay up late and wake up early, operating on increasingly worsening sleep deficits and calling it a strong work ethic.”

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