Education Week - January 14, 2015 - (Page 1)

Education WEEk AMERICAN EDUCATION'S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD * © 2015 Editorial Projects in Education * $4 By Alyson Klein & Lauren Camera For more than a decade, even amid big revisions to the original No Child Left Behind Act, one thing has remained constant: States have required students to take annual tests in reading and math in grades 3 through 8 and once in high school. Now, as a long-stalled reauthorization Students and faculty say the Pledge of Allegiance during an assembly at the Crystal Boarding School, in Navajo Nation in Crystal, N.M., which is run by the federal Bureau of Indian Education. The Obama administration is pushing ahead with plans to improve BIE schools by giving tribes greater autonomy. Feds Confront Doubts in Plan to Fix Tribal Schools History of Failed Policies Hard To Overcome for Some Tribes By Corey Mitchell An Obama administration proposal to turn more control of Bureau of Indian Education schools over to tribes is facing resistance in some corners of Indian Country, even among those who could benefit from the plans. Even as the White House has released reports that offer a stark appraisal of past failures in federal education policy for Native Americans, some tribal leaders are rebuffing offers of aid and pledges of new supports for Indian education from the federal government. The Oglala Sioux tribe of Pine Ridge, S.D., is turning down $200,000, its share of $2.5 million in grants to be awarded to entice tribes to take more control over educating their children. It was among six tribes that the U.S. Department of the Interior-the federal agency that oversees the Bureau of Indian Education-announced in November had been selected to receive "Sovereignty in Indian Education" enhancement funds. Part of the administration's push to improve the quality of education provided by the bie, that money is dedicated to helping transform the bureau into a "school improvement organization" that assists tribally controlled schools rather than operating them. Bie schools are some of the lowest-performing in the country, and the reorganization of the bureau comes after years of scathing reports from watchdog agencies, including the U.S. Government Accountability Office, and complaints from tribal educators about financial and academic mismanagement. U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell-whose department is responsible for the PAGE 12> TFA-Like Corps Places Advisers In High Schools By Caralee J. Adams DIGITAL DIRECTIONS Pittsburgh Collaboration Seen as Model By Benjamin Herold Pittsburgh From hands-on circuitry projects for kindergartners to "maker spaces" inside local museums, this former steel town has quietly emerged as a national model for supporting fresh approaches to technology-infused education, especially for young children. The energy and innovation flow from a Early-childhood advocate Cynthia Battle and Greg Powe, who works at a local barbershop, are among the unlikely partners who have come together to support digital learning efforts in Pittsburgh. close-knit network of philanthropists, educators, technologists, and advocates who prize collaboration over competition. National experts are smitten with the approach. "Pittsburgh is absolutely a leader when it comes to building a learning ecosystem for the 21st century, " said Constance M. Yowell, the director of education at the Chicago-based John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, which is supporting the city's efforts. Ms. Yowell described the city's active funders and universities, as well as the willingness of unlikely partners to work together, as "core ingredients for really dynamic learning opportunities." Take, for example, "Message From Me," a new app for preschoolers developed by Carnegie Mellon University and the PittsPAGE 10> The message is simple, yet powerful: "If I can do it, you can do it, too." That's what graduates fresh out of college working in the College Advising Corps often tell high school students. Similar to Teach For America, the national program that recruits newly minted college graduates to teach in classrooms, the corps advisers commit to working full time for two years. They work alongside high school counselors with the goal of improving the number of first-generation college-going, low-income, underrepresented students who apply to, enter, and complete college. Because most of the advisers were the first in their families to go to college, or are members of minority groups (one-third are African-American and another third Latino), they can relate to the students they serve. "The advisers feel an absolute obligation. ... Before they advance, they feel they need to turn back and pull somebody through that door as well," said Nicole F. Hurd, the founder and chief executive officer of the Chapel Hill, N.C.-based nonprofit organization. "They have credibility because PAGE 8> of the law gets underway in a newly Republican-controlled Congress, that could be changing. There's been a reshuffling of the political landscape that's aligned gop interests in scaling back the federal role in K-12 education with support from some education organizations for reducing the number of tests. At the same time, the civil rights, disabilities, and business groups that came together to help pass the nclb law 13 years ago, and which remain deeply invested in testing as a crucial element in accountability for vulnerable groups of students, are in search PAGE 16> VOL. 34, NO. 17 * JANUARY 14, 2015 BREAKING NEWS DAILY Mandatory State Testing On Thin Ice Changes in NCLB Law Eyed Jeff Swensen for Education Week John Locher/AP

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - January 14, 2015

Education Week - January 14, 2015
Mandatory State Testing on Thin Ice
Feds Confront Doubts in Plan To Fix Tribal Schools
TFA-Like Corps Places Advisers In High Schools
DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Pittsburgh Collaboration Seen as Model
News in Brief
Report Roundup
With Common Core, More States Sharing Test Questions
New Study Plan Set on Down Syndrome
Blogs of the Week
Growth of Md. Advising Program Runs Into Familiar Controversy
N.Y. Governor Aims to Flex Muscles On Education Policy
Head Start Partnerships to Provide New Resources, Standards for Day Care
State of the States
Blogs of the Week
FREDERICK M. HESS: The 2015 Edu-Scholar Rankings
How Does an Edu-Scholar Influence K-12 Policy?
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
WILLIAMSON M. EVERS: Exit, Voice, Loyalty—and the Common Core

Education Week - January 14, 2015