Education Week - March 27, 2013 - (Page 4)

4 EDUCATION WEEK n MARCH 27, 2013 n NEWS IN BRIEF CHICAGO CLOSINGS Two Steubenville, Ohio, high school football players were found guilty last week of raping a 16-year-old girl, charges stemming from a series of parties last year. Judge Thomas Lipps sentenced Ma’lik Richmond, 16, and Trent Mays, 17, each to a minimum of one year in a youth correctional facility, where both could remain until they turn 21. The judge sentenced Mr. Mays to an extra year at the juvenile facility for possession and transmission of nude photos of the victim. He’ll serve that year immediately after his rape sentence concludes. Both defendants will also be forced to register as sex offenders. Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine says the high-profile case isn’t fully closed. In a statement delivered after the judge announced his decision, Mr. DeWine said he asked a local court to convene a grand jury next month to determine whether any other individuals had committed any offense related to the rape, such as officials who are required by law to report suspected abuse and other crimes. —BRYAN TOPOREK Parents protest outside the home of Chicago board of education President David Vitale last week. The school district began notifying teachers, principals, and local officials that 54 schools will be closed under a contentious plan made to address a $1 billion deficit. Opponents say the plan will disproportionately affect minority students in the nation’s third-largest school district. Ala. Senate Halts Bill Against Common Core The Senate education committee in Alabama tabled a bill last week to require the state to drop the Common Core State Standards in English/language arts and math, effectively killing the anti-common-core proposal for this session, according to the news site. The bill would have prevented the state board of education, which adopted the standards in 2010, from implementing or otherwise using the common core, which has been adopted by 46 states and the District of Columbia. The bill had political momentum behind it. The Alabama Republican Party recently passed a resolution demanding that the state drop the common core, and there’s a companion bill in the state House of Representatives that would do the same thing. State schools Superintendent Tommy Bice and business leaders have urged lawmakers not to abandon the standards. —ANDREW UJIFUSA Pediatric Group Warns About ‘Smart Drugs’ The American Academy of Neurology has officially weighed in against prescribing “smart drugs” to improve attention and cognition in healthy children. Pediatric neurologists at the Yale School of Medicine wrote in a position statement in the journal Neurology this month that off- Charles Rex Arbogast/AP Steubenville Athletes Guilty in Rape Case label prescriptions, particularly of stimulants such as Adderall and Ritalin, have risen in parallel with increasing diagnoses of attention deficit disorders. The researchers found a nearly 22 percent increase in adhd diagnoses in the past 20 years, including a 53 percent increase among Hispanic children. Those increases raise troubling ethical and scientific problems, the researchers argue. The long-term health and safety of the drugs, known technically as nootropics, have not been thoroughly studied in children and adolescents, and the drugs may have very different effects on children, whose cognitive abilities are still in flux. Moreover, children and teenagers may be more susceptible to pressure from parents or peers to take the drugs in order to achieve academically, the researchers warned. –SARAH D. SPARKS New N.C. Laws Expand Teacher Tech Training North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory has signed into law a pair of bills designed to expand the use of educational technology—and boost teachers’ ability to use digital tools wisely. One piece of legislation sets an overall goal to have the state shift to funding digital textbooks, and away from the paperbound variety, by 2017. The other directs the state board of education to craft and oversee new “digital teaching and learning standards” for educators and administrators. The legislation calls on the state board, in cooperation with local school boards, to make familiarity with technology in teaching and Educational Quality Pushed for Developing World Aid agencies and experts pledge to expand access to primary schools Ensuring universal access to a sound education throughout the world—and identifying ways to measure progress toward that goal—will be a key priority of international aid organizations, funders, and experts working to continue efforts under the Millennium Development Goals after they expire in 2015, according to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. Unesco, with the government of Senegal and other aid organizations, convened partners in the effort in Dakar this month as part of a series of global consultations to discuss how to further advance the “education for all” agenda adopted by world leaders in 2000. While the international effort to ensure educational access in the developing world—one of eight goals to eradicate poverty and improve health worldwide—has opened the school doors to more than 50 million more pupils in that time, another 61 million primary-school-aged children still lack educational opportunities, according to unesco. “Education is not only a human right, it’s an enabler for realizing other rights,” unesco’s Assistant Director-General for Education, Qian Tan, said in a statement. learning a condition of teacher-license renewal. All aspiring teachers would be required to “demonstrate competencies in using digital and other instructional technologies to provide highquality, integrated digital teaching and learning to all students.” Two additional measures, one aimed at increasing Internet connectivity in schools and communities, and the other at allowing local communities to use lottery funds to support digital programs, are moving through the Statehouse. –SEAN CAVANAGH Education is understood by many experts to be essential to reversing inequalities and reducing poverty, but for some children, particularly girls and those living in conflict zones, there are significant barriers to getting a quality education. When the Millennial Development Goals were first adopted in 2000, the emphasis was on providing universal access to primary education. But the success of the program was based solely on the numbers of children attending school, not the quality of the education they received or completion rates, according to coverage of the event by Integrated Regional Information Networks, the U.N. news service, based in Nairobi, that covers humanitarian and development issues. As a result, more than a third of the 650 million children who received a primary education lacked basic numeracy and literacy skills, a 2012 Education for All Global Monitoring Report found. Experts at the gathering suggested the agenda extend basic education beyond the primary level to include at least three years of secondary school, and perhaps even a year of early-childhood education. “Quality needs to go beyond literacy and numeracy,” Caroline Pearce, the head of policy at the Global Campaign for Education, told the news service, including a focus on safer learning environments. Fewer Girls Receive HPV Vaccination A growing segment of parents are choosing not to have their daughters vaccinated against hpv—the human papillomavirus, which is associated with some forms of cervical and other cancers—in part because they are worried about whether the vaccine is safe. A study published online this week in the journal Pediatrics finds that from 2008 to 2010 the percent- –GINA CAIRNEY age of parents who were not planning to have their daughters vaccinated against hpv grew from about 40 percent to 44 percent—although doctors were increasingly recommending the vaccine along with other shots. The authors analyzed data from 2008 through 2010 from the National Immunization Survey of Teens. Some of the reasons for declining the vaccine: Parents said their children weren’t sexually active or they expressed concerns about the vaccine’s safety. In several states, bills requiring

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - March 27, 2013

Education Week - March 27, 2013
N.Y.C. System School-Match Gaps Tracked
INDUSTRY & INNOVATION: Educators Questioning Timing of
Resident Teachers Are Getting More ‘Practice’
DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Race to Top Districts ‘Personalize’ Plans
News in Brief
Report Roundup
Study Finds Gaps in ‘College Ready’ Math Offerings
Early-Algebra Push Found to Yield No NAEP Boost
Math Teachers Break Down Standards For At-Risk Students
More Teachers Group Students by Ability
San Diego Superintendent Pick Has Deep Parental Ties
Partnership Combines Science Instruction and English Learning
States’ Score Cards Pinpoint Problems Of School Climate
Experts: Later School Start Helps Sleep-Deprived Teens
Blogs of the Week
Project Aims to Expand Web Access
New NAEP Demands Application of Knowledge
Elementary Students Tackling Windmills
Policy Brief
'Parent Trigger’ Laws Catching Fresh Wave
School Angles Seen in Same-Sex-Marriage Cases
‘Sequester’ Cuts Still in Place Amid Budget Wrangling
Political Storm Rages as Acting N.M. Chief Presses on With Job
Congress Eyes Pre-K
REGIS ANNE SHIELDS & KAREN HAWLEY MILES: Want Effective Teachers? Think About Your Value Proposition
ALISON CROWLEY: Getting Rid of the GPS: Teaching the Common Standards in Math
STEPHEN R. HERR: Celebrating Without Accomplishing
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment
AMANDA GARDNER: The Many Keys To Radical Classroom Change

Education Week - March 27, 2013