Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 5
June Atkinson, North Carolina's
Democratic state schools chief
and the nation's longestserving superintendent, will
leave of f ic e
nex t mont h
Atkinson was first elected in
2005. During her tenure, she
fought to raise teacher pay
and helped the state gain a
waiver from the No Child Left
She was beaten at the polls
by Republican Mark Johnson, a
member of the Winston-Salem/
Forsyth County Schools Board
of Education, and a critic of standardized testing and the Common Core State Standards.
improving the achievement of different subgroups of students, subjects, and other categories, and
make that mid-stream targets are
easily understood by the public,
said Michael Magee, the CEO of
Chiefs for Change. -SEAN CAVANAGH
"Landscape in Teacher Preparation"
Education schools still have work to do, but
they are making needed improvements in the
way they train teachers, a review of 875 undergraduate elementary education programs
The review by the National Council for
Teacher Quality ranked programs using percentiles based on the letter grades (A-plus through
F) they earned in these areas: admissions criteria; the teacher's knowledge of early reading,
math, and other elementary content; student
teaching; and classroom management. In reading instruction, for example, 39 percent of programs, or 320, earned an A or A-plus, up from
29 percent earning the same grades in 2014, the
last time the programs were reviewed.
Among other findings:
*Of the programs reviewed, 26 percent
admit most of their teacher-candidates from
the top half of the college population.
*The number of "less selective" programs
requiring at least a 3.0 GPA for admission
has increased from 44 in 2014 to 71.
*Only 112 programs earned an A for requiring at least one methods course and at least
three courses covering topics that mathematicians deem critical.
The council's teacher-preparation program reviews have been controversial for their methodology, which relies on reviews of course syllabi,
course catalogues, and textbooks. -BRENDA IASEVOLI
Mich. Senate Seeks to Stop
Pensions for New Teachers
"How Can High School Shape Students'
A Michigan Senate committee
narrowly voted last week to close
the pension system to new teachers
and other school employees and to
instead offer them only a 401(k)style retirement plan, despite objections from Gov. Rick Snyder.
T he switch in plans, which
would be similar to one made
for newly hired state employees
nearly 20 years ago, is favored by
many Republican lawmakers as a
way to address the $26.7 billion
in unfunded pension liabilities
facing the Public School Retirees
Retirement System. That does
not include another $9.3 billion
in unfunded retiree health-care
Democrats fiercely oppose the
legislation and are hoping it does
not gain traction in the GOP-led
House or with the Republican governor, who said last week that the
current hybrid system is "working."
The full Senate shelved the
measure this month until its
The move would affect all school
employees hired on or after July 1,
2017. Michigan would join Alaska
as the only state to have closed the
pension system to both newly hired
school and state workers.
Meeting one-on-one with a school counselor
to discuss college admission or financial aid
makes a big difference in students' futures,
tripling the chance they will attend college,
doubling the chance that they will attend a
four-year college, and increasing by nearly
seven times the likelihood that they will apply
for financial aid, according to a study published
late last month.
Using a federal database that follows
23,000 students who were in 9th grade in
2009, the National Association for College
Admission Counseling calculated how likely
students were to attend college four years
later, and to submit the Free Application for
Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA, after meeting
with a counselor to discuss those issues.
Students who met with counselors to talk
about financial aid were 6.8 times more likely to
submit the FAFSA than those who didn't have
those meetings. Students who met individually
with a counselor to talk about financial aid or
college were twice as likely to attend a bachelor's-degree program after finishing high school.
Their odds of attending any college were tripled.
The analysis did not examine the role students'
motivation might play in seeking out counselors
or being likely to apply for financial aid or attend college.
A Q&A in the Nov. 16, 2016,
issue of Education Week with Sharon Contreras, the superintendent
of the Guilford County, N.C., school
district, about women in educational leadership posts, incorrectly
stated her relationship to the child
she is raising. He is her 8-year-old
"Show Me the Data"
Filled with jargon, "meaningless" tables and
missing data, state report cards can be difficult
for parents to use, an analysis by the Data Quality Campaign says.
Under both the No Child Left Behind Act and its
successor, the Every Student Succeeds Act, states
are required to provide annual report cards on
student performance in schools and districts. The
federal government has provided related grants
to all states to develop longitudinal student-data
systems, in part to give parents and policymakers
richer information about student achievement.
TRACKING THE SUPPLY OF HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES
Year-after-year increases in the number of students graduating from high school are
expected to end in 2017. Researchers say the number won't rise again until 2024.
Total U.S. public and private high school graduates
SOURCE: Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education
Projected to Flatline
"Knocking at the College Door"
The overall number of high school graduates has been increasing steadily over the
last decade or so, but according to a new report, that growth is coming to a halt.
The supply of U.S. high school graduates is
expected to show virtually no growth for the
next seven years and will likely decline this
school year, says the report by the Western
Interstate Commission for Higher Education, a regional nonprofit that aims to expand access to high-quality higher education. The report was funded with support
from ACT Inc. and the College Board.
There have been steady increases in the overall number of high school graduates over the
last 15 years, and, at last count, the high school
graduation rate increased by 1 percentage point
For the study, analysts reviewed those reports
from all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
They found that some states had data two or
three school years out of date. Others did not
provide school achievement data broken out by
gender, race, poverty, or disability status. A handful provided information on school finances. And
45 states provided information only in English.
The reviewers found that only four states-
Iowa, Nebraska, Virginia, and Washington-
issue school report cards with all the information required under NCLB.
-SARAH D. SPARKS
"High School Graduation Rates Across English
Learner Subgroups in Arizona"
The earlier that English-language-learners
are reclassified as English-proficient, the more
likely they are to graduate from high school, a
study from the Regional Educational Laboratory
at WestEd found.
The study, which examined high school graduation rates in Arizona for five English-learnerstudent subgroups, also found that students
who entered high school as English-learners
were less likely to graduate in four years. The
students in each subgroup entered high school
during the 2010-11 school year and would have
been expected to graduate in spring 2014. Only
49 percent of long-term ELLs-students who
have attended school in the United States for
four years or more without being reclassified
to 83.2 percent from the 2013-14 school year to
2014-15. That marked the fourth year in a row
of high school graduation-rate increases.
But the report projects that the country actually will produce 81,000 fewer graduates-2.3
percent less-in 2017 and the decline is largely
due to changing demographics. The number of
students graduating from private high schools
will decline even more sharply-by 26 percent,
or 80,000 fewer graduates, from 2011 to the
early 2030s. This is due to declining enrollments in private schools, particularly in Roman
Catholic schools, the report notes.
The report also projects significant increases
in nonwhite high school graduates, coupled
with steady declines in the numbers of white
graduates. By 2030, the number of white public
school graduates is projected to decrease by 14
percent when compared to 2013. But the rising
number of nonwhite public school graduates
is expected to counterbalance some of that decline, particularly so for Hispanic and Asian or
Pacific Islander graduates.
as proficient in English-finished in four years.
A group identified as new English-learner students-those who were classified as ELLs after
6th grade and who entered high school with the
designation-fared only slightly better, with
52 percent graduating on time.
Among former ELLs who were reclassified
as English-proficient between grades 2 and 5,
81 percent graduated on time.
"Why Early FAFSA Means Early Effort for Both
Students and Schools"
Many students appear to be accepting the federal government's invitation to file their financial-aid applications three months earlier than
usual, a survey released this month suggets.
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid
was available on Oct. 1 this year, and college officials report that, on average, after the first month,
they already had received 32 percent of the total
FAFSA filings they received for the whole of last
year's incoming class. The information stems from
a national survey of 171 enrollment managers at
public and private four-year colleges and universities by Royall and Co., a division of the EAB, a
research and technology company.
The U.S. Department of Education rule changes
that permitted the earlier application and let
families submit "prior-prior year" tax information
(from 2015) were aimed at streamlining the process of awarding grants and loans. -CARALEE ADAMS
EDUCATION WEEK | December 14, 2016 | www.edweek.org | 5
| TRANSITIONS |
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - December 14, 2016
Education Week - December 14, 2016
State-Level Showdowns Over ESSA
School Choice Is A Primary Focus For Ed. Sec. Pick
DIGITAL DIRECTIONS: Media Literacy Vs. Bogus News
States Aim to Bolster School Counselors’ Thinning Ranks
News in Brief
Debate Renews Over Seat Belts In Buses After Deadly Crash
17 Teacher-Prep Programs Meet New Accreditation Bar
SNAPSHOT: TIMSS/PISA Results Highlight Global Math And Science GapsSNAPSHOT: TIMSS/PISA Results Highlight Global Math And Science Gaps
College Board Eases Access To Supports
Students Interact With Scientists At ‘Teen Science Cafes’
New Help for States Focused On Bolstering Schools
Congress Faces Range of Education Issues in Upcoming Session
SNAPSHOT: Final ESSA Rules Flesh Out Details on School Accountability, Testing
TERRY B. GRIER: A Superintendent Tackles Student Stress
TIFFANY ANDERSON: What Trauma-Informed Leadership Looks Like
BRUCE D. PERRY: The Brain Science Behind Trauma
ALI SMITH: After-School Student Wellness
School Leadership in the Wake of a Natural Disaster HEIDI DURHAM: Healing Through Creative Expression TRACY FRANKE: A School Shaped by Trauma
TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - States Aim to Bolster School Counselors’ Thinning Ranks
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 2
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 3
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - News in Brief
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - Report Roundup
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - Debate Renews Over Seat Belts In Buses After Deadly Crash
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 17 Teacher-Prep Programs Meet New Accreditation Bar
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - SNAPSHOT: TIMSS/PISA Results Highlight Global Math And Science GapsSNAPSHOT: TIMSS/PISA Results Highlight Global Math And Science Gaps
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - College Board Eases Access To Supports
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - Students Interact With Scientists At ‘Teen Science Cafes’
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 11
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 12
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 13
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - Congress Faces Range of Education Issues in Upcoming Session
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - SNAPSHOT: Final ESSA Rules Flesh Out Details on School Accountability, Testing
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 16
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 17
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 18
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - TERRY B. GRIER: A Superintendent Tackles Student Stress
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - BRUCE D. PERRY: The Brain Science Behind Trauma
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - ALI SMITH: After-School Student Wellness
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - School Leadership in the Wake of a Natural Disaster HEIDI DURHAM: Healing Through Creative Expression TRACY FRANKE: A School Shaped by Trauma
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - Letters
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 24
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 25
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - TopSchoolJobs Recruitment Marketplace
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 27
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - 28
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - CT1
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Education Week - December 14, 2016 - SCover1
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Education Week - December 14, 2016 - SCover3
Education Week - December 14, 2016 - SCover4