Education Week - May 9, 2018 - 1
VOL. 37, NO. 30 * MAY 9, 2018
AMERICAN EDUCATION'S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD * © 2018 Editorial Projects in Education * $ 5
BRE AKING NEWS DAILY
Schools to Play Catch Up
To Rise in Student Vaping
'He had his foot in the education policy world,
but he was also a journalist.'
- Virginia B. Edwards, former editor and publisher of Education Week
Use of Juul device makes
vaping hard to detect
By Evie Blad
After years of aggressive anti-tobacco
campaigns aimed at teenagers, students
have largely rejected smoking, but many
have tried vaping, sending school leaders
scrambling to revise discipline policies
and drug prevention classes to confront
the new trend of inhaling flavor-infused
Adding urgency to those efforts: A
small, sleek device that could be easily
mistaken for a USB drive has joined
the market of vaping and e-cigarette
products. The device, called a Juul, has
surged in popularity in the last year, in
part because its low-profile design allows
students to easily conceal their habit
and inhale the flavored nicotine vapor
in school restrooms, hallways, and even
Like many trends among teenagers,
vaping and "juuling" gained a foothold
among young people long before adults
and school administrators realized the
scale of the problem, principals said, and
now they are rushing to catch up.
"I think it's everywhere, and my school
is no different," said Francis Thompson,
the principal of Jonathan Law High
School in Milford, Conn. "I think it's the
next health epidemic for kids."
Some students are open about their
vaping habits, sharing Youtube videos
about how to do tricks, like blowing rings
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Teacher Strikes Show Power in Numbers
Ronald A. Wolk, Dies at 86;
Launched Education Week
By Mark Walsh
Ronald A. Wolk, a pioneer in education
journalism whose publications and passions
helped inform and elevate the conversation
about K-12 schooling in the United States,
died on April 28 at age 86.
Wolk, who lived in Warwick, R.I., died of
congestive heart failure and kidney failure in
East Sandwich, Mass.
Wolk was the founding editor-in-chief and
publisher of Education Week, which launched
with a splash in 1981 by running a scoop
about efforts by President Ronald Reagan's
administration to downgrade the U.S. Department of Education, which was then still in its
infancy. The administration's efforts fizzled.
Wolk had been an editor of the alumni bul-
letin at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore when he became instrumental in an
effort among college magazine editors and
publicists to establish a national newspaper.
That was the Chronicle of Higher Education,
founded in 1966.
In 1978, when the Chronicle was sold to its
editors and became a for-profit publication,
Wolk took over as president of its nonprofit
organization Editorial Projects in Education
Inc. He soon began efforts to study the possibility of a similar national publication to cover
That led to Education Week, as well as later
EPE endeavors such as Teacher Magazine
and the annual Quality Counts report, which
grades the states on a number of metrics of
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The extraordinary wave of teacher
strikes highlights these crucial but often
forgotten facts: In number, teachers are
the largest profession in the United
States. And collectively, they have the
power to demand and win changes to
funding and salaries.
It's a stark reminder in an era characterized by diminishing labor influence.
And yet political scientists, researchers,
and labor-watchers say it's tough to predict how teachers' reawakened activism
will continue to evolve.
"Teachers are very humble. They just
go about their business-we do the best
with what we have and we don't complain," said Alberto Morejon, a teacher
and the grassroots organizer of the
Oklahoma walkout last month. But now,
"People are finally realizing what we're
dealing with. ... They didn't know the
truth, and now they know the truth. It's
slowly going to spread around the country."
Perhaps, but there are other possibilities, too. The activism could fade slowly
away, as Occupy Wall Street and other
protest movements of the past decade
did. Or it could find a more permanent
channel for its energy, perhaps through
the regeneration of teachers' unions-
which are facing the probable loss of
dollars and members as the result of
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CONFLICTING VIEWS: Teacher protests raise
legal and political questions. PAGE 10
Of 'Fortnite' Game
By Sarah Schwartz
When kids open the wildly popular
video game Fortnite, they might see a
message that says "Mr. Hillman says stop
playing in class."
The message was integrated by the
maker of the game in late March after a
teacher, a.k.a. Mr. Hillman, complained on
the internet discussion forum Reddit that
his students would not stop playing it in
But the reminder from Epic Games, the
maker of "Fortnite: Battle Royale," hasn't
seemed to stick. Teachers across the country are still frustrated by students playing
Epic Games via YouTube
Benjamin Tice Smith/Education Week/ File-1997
By Stephen Sawchuk
Teachers are frustrated by students playing
the wildly popular video game "Fortnite:
Battle Royale" on their phones during class.
the game under their desks or coming into
school half-asleep after playing all night.
And the game's popularity is resurfacing
debates around video games' addictive nature and violent content.
Many educators want to ban the game
from their classrooms, but some are taking
the opposite approach, attempting to weave
students' interest in Fortnite into class discussions and assignments.
When Karson Shipp, a world history
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