Columnists

Does gifted education curriculum help talented students go ahead faster? – Education Article

One of the big justifications for gifted-and-talented education is that high achieving kids need more advanced material so that they’re not bored and actually learn something during the school day. Their academic needs cannot be met in a general education class, advocates say. But a large survey of 2,000 elementary schools in three states found that not much advanced content is actually being taught to gifted students. In other words, smart third graders, those who tend to be a couple…

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Study examines Wallace Foundation’s Wallace principal pipeline project – Education Article

One theory for how to improve schools begins not with teachers in the classroom but with the principals who hire and oversee them. To that end, the Wallace Foundation spent $85 million on a five-year project to improve school principals in six cities and large urban counties, from New York to Denver, beginning in 2011. (The Wallace Foundation is also among the funders of the The Hechinger Report.)  Now, an analysis the foundation commissioned has found that these wide-ranging reforms…

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Students are supposed to read The Scarlet Letter, not wear it – Education Article

At the start of the 2018-19 school year, every student at Mingus Union High School in Cottonwood, Ariz. was issued a color-coded ID badge.* In the past, red badges denoted a student’s rank as an underclassman. Juniors and seniors wore gray badges. Beyond distinguishing between older and younger students, color coding provided a sense of progression, rank and seniority. However, last year the school decided to take a different direction in categorizing students. Mingus Union forced academically underperforming students to…

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Five years after Common Core, a mysterious spike in failure rate among NY high school students – Education Article

Five years after teaching to Common Core standards in New York State, 60 percent of English Language Learners failed the algebra Regents exam. They were part of a mysterious 13,000-student spike in the number of students failing the exam in 2017-18. Jackie Mader/The Hechinger Report Back in 2013, when New York was one of the first states in the nation to adopt Common Core standards and administer tougher tests, children’s test scores initially plummeted. Then, as teachers had time to…

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The problem with high-stakes testing and women in STEM – Education Article

In New York City, there’s a big debate over who should gain admittance to eight elite public high schools, including the well-known Stuyvesant High School and the Bronx High School of Science. Currently, Asian-American students score high enough on an entry exam to win a considerable majority of the seats. Mayor Bill de Blasio and a new school chancellor want to bring in more black and Latino students, who make up most of the city’s school population. This tension between demographics…

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Bold, progressive ideas, like quality Pre-K, aren’t unrealistic – Education Article

Universal pre-K, which was once considered a pipedream for liberal Democrats, is coming closer to reality — because predominantly white conservatives in the deep red state of Alabama have decided to dream along with liberals. After decades of lobbying by early childhood advocates, local businessmen agreed to fund individual programs and initiatives, and used their influence with the staunchly Republican legislature to increase state spending on pre-K in 2012 by $9 million, up 47 percent from the year before. In…

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