Education Week - September 11, 2013 - (Page 1)

▲ Jared Soares for Education Week Joshua A. Bickell for Education Week EDUCATIONWEEK VOL. 33, NO. 3 • SEPTEMBER 11, 2013 AMERICAN EDUCATION’S NEWSPAPER OF RECORD • © 2013 Editorial Projects in Education • $4 By Michele McNeil Dowan McNair-Lee shares a farewell hug with student Mikel Robinson after the 8th grade promotion ceremony at Stuart-Hobson Middle School in June. Last month, she and other teachers learned the results of student tests. D.C. Teachers Tally Results of Year’s Work By Catherine Gewertz Washington Staring at multicolored rows of names and numbers on a laptop screen, Dowan McNair-Lee is searching for clues to how well she taught her students. The 2012-13 school year was a difficult jour- ney, as the English/language arts teacher tried to move her challenging and varied group of 8th graders to mastery of the Common Core State Standards. Now, two weeks before the 2013-14 year begins, she scrolls through year-end test scores that deliver part of the verdict on her success. Scanning the rows of data, color-coded by achievement level, brings a roller coaster of reactions. Ms. McNair-Lee claps and beams when she notices a student who moved from the “basic” level of performance to “proficient.” “High COMMON CORE: A STEEP CLIMB LAST OF FOUR PARTS fives!” she exclaims, raising one palm in the air. She applauds and smiles again when she scrolls a few rows down and sees another success story: a girl who had been high on the teacher’s radar because of her behavior and academic problems moved from proficient to “advanced.” Only a moment later, Ms. McNair-Lee frowns and shakes her head. On her computer screen, she sees that two students who scored basic in 2012 slipped to “below basic” in 2013. One of them is Mikel Robinson, who seesawed academically all year long. In the end, he eluded her reach, leaving her wistful as he left her tutelage for the uncertainties of high school. “I hate it, but there’s nothing I can do about it now. It’s over,” she says, softly. “Some of them, I sent them out well. And some of them, like Mikel, I keep wondering what more PAGE 18 > Two years after offering states waivers under the No Child Left Behind Act, the U.S. Department of Education is expecting them to up the ante on teacher quality if they want another two years of flexibility. Barring a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, the official name for the federal school accountability law that is languishing in Congress, this waiver-renewal process may mark the last opportunity for the Obama administration to put its stamp on the ESEA and shape a future law. All but a handful of states are operating with sweeping flexibility to chart their own school accountability course. Response to the new federal guidance, issued Aug. 28, has been all over the map. Civil rights groups are pleased that the department is trying to beef up subgroup accountability in a second round of federal review but argue that those steps didn’t go far enough. Some members of Congress opposed to even more requirements being attached to the waivers are reaffirming their commitment to rewriting the NCLB law. And many education policy experts wonder just PAGE 29 > BREAKING NEWS DAILY States Face New Hoops On Leeway Fresh Federal Strings Attached To Renewal of NCLB Waivers ‘Growth Mindset’ Gaining Traction As Ed. Strategy By Sarah D. Sparks New Orleans It’s one thing to say all students can INDUSTRY & INNOVATION Public Libraries Ramping Up Multimedia Learning Mission By Nora Fleming Gone are the days of just dusty book spines and the sounds of silence. Throughout the country, public libraries are extending their mission beyond loaner books and resources: They’re providing opportunities for students to engage in digital learning opportunities aimed at making them college- and career-ready, often in part- learn, but making them believe it—and do it—can require a 180-degree shift in students’ and teachers’ sense of themselves and of one another. While expressions like the “soft bigotry nership with schools. During the past two de- cades, libraries have steadily added technology services, but those tended to be along the lines of providing free Internet use. Now, though, limited budgets and the growing need to prepare students for the 21st century have pushed these venerable institutions into new roles. They are teaching technolPAGE 22 > of low expectations” underscore the effects of teachers’ and students’ mindsets on academic success, it has proved difficult to pin down whether and how it’s possible to change those attitudes once established. Nonetheless, attempts to change that dynamic, from targeted interventions to restructured schools, are gaining traction as many states overhaul their curricula to match the Common Core State Standards and incorporate student-growth measures into accountability systems. Three decades have passed since the Stan- Taylor Daye, 15, left, and Grace Auls, 16, generate projects on digital photography and animation at the Columbus Metropolitan Library. ford University psychologist Carol S. Dweck and others first linked students’ motivation to the way they perceived intelligence. Students who believe intelligence or skill can be improved by effort and experimentation—what PAGE 21 >

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - September 11, 2013

Education Week - September 11, 2013
D.C. Teachers Tally Results of Year’s Work
INDUSTRY & INNOVATION: Public Libraries Ramping Up Multimedia Learning Mission
States Face New Hoops on Leeway
News in Brief
Report Roundup
Budget, Security Concerns As Chicago Schools Open
Teacher-Prep Accreditor Adopts Outcomes Standards
California Lifts One-Year Cap On Teacher Preparation
New Guide Advises States On Common ELL Definitions
DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Virtual Educators Work to Protect Academic Integrity
N.C. Rolls Out Recognition Program For STEM Schools
‘Street School’ Offers Life Lessons, Support for At-Risk Students
Blogs of the Week
Leeway Offered on Clock-Related Red Tape
Battle Brews in Va. Over State-Run- District Law
Policy Brief
Child-Care Rating Systems Earn Few Stars in Study
OMB Gets Pushback on Time-Tracking Proposal
Congress Angles to Revamp Child-Care Grant Program
Brains and Schools: A Mismatch
Taking a Relationship-Centered Approach to Education
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
The Ecology of Learning

Education Week - September 11, 2013