Education Week - May 17, 2017 - 4
NEWS IN BRIEF
Congressional Bill Aims
To End 'Lunch-Shaming'
A group of federal lawmakers has proposed a bill
that would ban "lunch shaming" in school cafeterias.
Lunch-shaming describes practices that single
out children with unpaid school meal debts. The
bill would require schools to communicate directly
with parents about low school meal balances, prohibit schools from requiring students who can't pay
to, say, complete chores or wear wristbands to let
their parents know they need lunch money, and bar
schools from throwing out a child's meal if he or she
couldn't pay after the food had been put on a tray.
But school food blogger Bettina Elias Siegel
writes that the measure would not outlaw "the
most common form of lunch shaming-giving a
child an alternate meal, usually a cold cheese sandwich. ... Nor would the law ban the outright denial
of a meal to a debt-ridden child."
Minor Errors Lead to Rejection
Of Upward Bound Applications
Dozens of universities and organizations that applied for federal grants to help young people from
poor families prepare for college have been turned
down by the U.S. Department of Education because
of mistakes that consisted mostly of incorrect margins, the wrong font, or lack of double-spacing.
The rejections have triggered an outcry from
members of both parties on Capitol Hill.
Amid the uproar, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy
DeVos issued a memo late last month saying grant
requests from the federally funded Upward Bound
program will no longer be rejected over "formatting"
errors. But congressional aides said that DeVos' staff
subsequently informed them that the applications
turned down in March will not be revisited.
The next round of applications won't be held for
another five years, and some of the affected schools
and groups say their programs may have to shut
down. More than 62,000 high school students receive services from Upward Bound, which seeks
to inspire low-income, first-generation, and rural
students to attend college.
Students turn their backs
during a commencement
speech by U.S. Secretary
of Education Betsy
DeVos at BethuneCookman University in
Daytona Beach, Fla.
DeVos offended many
February when she said
historically black colleges
are the "real pioneers
when it comes to school
choice." Students had
demanding she not be
allowed to speak at last
Cybersecurity Ed. Included in Review
Ordered by Trump
An executive order signed by President Donald
Trump last week aims to bolster the nation's cybersecurity, including through a multiagency review of
related education and workforce-development efforts.
The U.S. Department of Education will be part
of the multiagency review, which will be led by the
federal secretaries of Commerce and Homeland
Security. The order calls for a report to be completed
within 120 days. The main thrust is on strengthening
federal information-technology networks and protecting critical infrastructure from cyberattacks.
In March, Education Week published a review of
the country's K-12 cybersecurity education efforts.
Eight federal agencies, as well as the National Governors Association, currently support a wide assortment of cybersecurity-related education and workforce-development initiatives.
Online School Owes Millions
To Ohio, Hearing Officer Says
A state hearing officer has ruled against Ohio's
largest online charter school in its appeal of the state
education department's determination that the school
owes $60 million for enrollment that can't be justified.
The officer's recommendation to the Ohio board of
education says the Electronic Classroom of Tomorrow
didn't document its full enrollment and was overpaid
by $64 million last school year. The officer recommends the board use its power to collect $60 million
Mystery Measure Would Protect
Sponsors of Failing Charters
A mysterious provision added to the state budget
bill as passed by the Ohio House stands to protect the
sponsors of some online charter schools.
The amendment's origin is a mystery to the amendment's supposed author, to a leading charter schoolsponsoring think tank, and to the state's largest eschool, they say. The bill is now in the hands of the
It would allow online charter schools to change
sponsors without their poor academic performance
driving down the performance ratings of their new
sponsors. Under the amendment, past academic
scores wouldn't negatively affect the new sponsor's
ability to continue overseeing other charters. Under
current law, sponsors rated "ineffective" for three con-
Percentage of public school teachers participating in selected
professional-development activities in the past 12 months: 2011-12
Use of computers
Student discipline and
of overpayment or deduct it from the school's future
ECOT argues that the education department illegally created a new rule asking for data not required
A YEAR OF
Content and Technology Draw
Biggest Teacher Crowds for
Note: ELL refers to English-language learner; LEP refers to limited English proficient.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Education
4 | EDUCATION WEEK | May 17, 2017 | www.edweek.org
"Landscapes in Teacher Prep: Undergraduate
Too many teacher-preparation programs
are doing a poor job of covering content that
future science and social studies teachers
need to master, according to a new report.
Only 57 percent of education programs provide teacher-candidates with the science and
social studies courses they need to do their
job well, says the report released last week
by the National Council on Teacher Quality,
a Washington group that tracks teacher policies. The report evaluates 717 undergraduate programs that train high school teachers
in all 50 states and the District of Columbia
based on their coverage of subject-specific
content and admissions requirements, among
Most states allow programs to prepare
teachers of subjects like chemistry and biol-
ogy to earn certification in general science.
Top-ranked programs, including the University of Minnesota-Duluth, had more comprehensive science training.
"Market Signals: Evidence on the
Determinants and Consequences of School
Choice From a Citywide Lottery"
Low- and high-income parents both select
schools in a choice district based on school
quality-but they use different measures,
finds a new study in the journal Educational
Evaluation and Policy Analysis.
Researchers analyzed the rank-ordered
school preference lists of more than 22,000
applicants to the District of Columbia's citywide lottery for more than 200 traditional
and charter public schools. They found in
middle schools, for example, low-income parents ranked schools higher if they had higher