Education Week - August 5, 2015 - (Page 1)

1 EDUCATION WEEK VOL. 34, NO. 37 * AUGUST 5, 2015 AMERICAN EDUCATION'S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD * © 2015 EDITORIAL PROJECTS IN EDUCATION * $ 4 BRE AKING NEWS DAILY Crowded Field of Online News Sites Focuses on Education By Mark Walsh Joshua P. Starr considers himself a big consumer of news about education. The veteran educator and former superintendent has had a lot more content available to peruse lately. The past two years or so have seen a boom in online news outlets covering education. New local and national sites are focusing exclusively on the subject; general-interest sites have education beat reporters or otherwise include K-12 issues in their mix. "I happen to be a pretty avid reader of a lot of those things," said Mr. Starr, who was in the news himself in February after he and the Montgomery County, Md., school board failed to come to terms on renewing his contract as district chief. He rattled off a few news sources he checks regularly, including some that fit the definition of new, some that are decidedly old-school, and others that fall somewhere in the middle: Education Post, The Hechinger Report, Politico Morning Education, The Washington Post's Answer Sheet blog, and Education Week. He also checks a number of other blogs, print publications, and news "aggregators," By Andrew Ujifusa Lopsided Votes on Dueling Bills May Obscure Stark Policy Splits When state school superintendents decide to leave their posts in favor of running districts, an outsider might see it as a step down the traditional K-12 career ladder. But at a time of unusual stress and relatively high turnover among state chiefs, a few who have made the switch say there's no state-level substitute for being more directly engaged with their own set of schools, students, and teachers. Perhaps the most prominent recent example of such a switch is former Rhode Island chief Deborah A. Gist. She stepped down earlier this year to take over as the Tulsa, Okla., superintendent, following a period of uncertainty about her contract and her relationship with the Ocean State's board. The last two state chiefs in Iowa, meanwhile, have left to become local superintendents. Jason Glass left the state in 2013 to take over the Eagle County district in Colorado, while Brad Buck left earlier this year to take over the district in Cedar Rapids. And after leaving New Jersey's top K-12 job in early 2014, Christopher Cerf last month agreed to Justin T. Gellerson for Education Week By Lauren Camera PAGE 19 > PARCC Under Gun As States Drop Out If you're a fan of federally financed tests aligned to the Common Core State Standards, you've reached for the sad trombone several times this year. (Womp, womp ... ) That's particularly true if you're a fan of the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers exam. At its height, the testing consortium boasted 24 states, plus the District of Columbia, as members. After a couple of years of damaging political battles, PARCC now officially lists 12 member states and the District of Columbia. But three of those states no longer plan to give the test, and others could join them. Laura Slover, the CEO of PARCC Inc., has publicly acknowledged the consortium's challenges, including those connected to costs, as the numbers dwindle. Part of the promise of tests like PAGE 18 > PAGE 14 > Collision Alert: House, Senate ESEA Rewrites Road Less Traveled When State Chiefs Take District Reins By Andrew Ujifusa which are sites such as Real Clear Education that link to articles from a variety of sources. "I do think that superintendents need to stay abreast of what's being said about public education, and what the discourse is," said Mr. Starr, who in June became the chief executive officer of Phi Delta Kappa International, the professional as- Malik Slye, a new graduate of District of Columbia schools, attended a workshop in Washington last month on the transition to college. A nonprofit group is helping him get his paperwork in order so that he can attend Rosemont College, in Pennsylvania, in the fall. 'Melting' Off the Path to College By Caralee J. Adams Switching his college choice in late June has made the summer hectic for Christopher M. Triplett, a recent graduate of Lindblom Math and Science Academy on the South Side of Chicago. On his own financially and the first in his family to go to college, Christopher has relied on his school counselor, Karen M. Fitzpatrick, to make sure everything gets done so he can attend Virginia State University in the fall. He had to submit his financial-aid documents three times and had trouble logging into the online housing system for the Petersburg, Va., college. But, with his counselor's help, Christopher said he is "99 percent" sure he will report to VSU in August. "I'm ready to go. I'm focused. I know what I need to do," he said. Low-income and first-generation college students, in particular, can lose momentum when they leave the support system of high school. They are at risk of a phenomenon that educators call the "summer melt"- when students who leave high school with PAGE 13 > "The pundits told us it would never happen-that Republicans and Democrats will never agree on a way to replace No Child Left Behind." So said Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., just hours before the U.S. Senate did just that-passing its own version of an Elementary and Secondary Education Act rewrite with overwhelming bipartisan support July 16. But sending a final bill to President Barack Obama's desk-at least one that he's willing to sign-will be an entirely different challenge. Across the Capitol, the House of Representatives narrowly passed its own, Republicanbacked version of an ESEA reauthorization a week earlier, without the support of a single Democrat. The dueling bills, which contain some stark policy differences, now move to a conference process, in which the authors of both measures and other lawmakers from both chambers and parties will try to cobble together a proposal that appeals to everyone. To do so, they'll have to overcome some serious divergences in revising the law, whose current version is the No Child Left Behind Act. Chief among them: how to beef up accountability in a way that assures Democrats and civil rights groups that the result will include stronger federal guardrails for the most disadvantaged students, while at the same time ensuring the small federal PAGE 21 > CHEAT SHEET: Side-by-side highlights of the two ESEA proposals, current law, and NCLB waivers. PAGE 20-21 Getty National and Local Outlets Providing a Wealth of Specialized Content

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - August 5, 2015

Education Week - August 5, 2015
Crowded Field of Online News Sites Focuses on Education
Collision Alert: House, Senate ESEA Rewrites
Road Less Traveled When State Chiefs Take District Reins
PARCC Under Gun as States Drop Out
‘Melting’ Off the Path to College
News in Brief
Report Roundup
Districts Face Uneven Supply of Teachers
Computer Classes Get Boost In Calif. District
Career-Preparation Programs Take Root In Middle Schools
N.Y.C. School Aims for ‘Authentic,’ Not Standardized, Tests
McGraw-Hill Education Shifting Away From High-Stakes Testing
DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Innovation Networks Need Both Autonomy, Support
Blogs of the Week
New Federal Tool Maps Attendance Boundaries by School
States in Holding Pattern on English- Learner Waiver Requests
New Names Added to List of White House Hopefuls
Blogs of the Week
ESEA Rewrite: A Preconference Cheat Sheet
PETER T. KEO: Why Reporting Data on Asian and Pacific Islander Students Matters
DOUG TUTHILL: School Choice, an Opportunity for Students, Teachers, and Parents
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
PETER GIBBON: A Small Revolutionary Book: How a 17th-Century Philosopher Speaks To Today’s School Reformers

Education Week - August 5, 2015