Daily Dish: Paul Ryan Elected as House Speaker, Passing of a Budget Deal, and an ESEA Update

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October 30, 2015 03:17 pm

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It was a busy week in the world of education and politics, with a new speaker of the House, a budget deal and the release of the Nation’s report card. These developments have implications for federal education funding and the possible reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), as highlighted in this week’s Federal Flash episode.

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Daily Dish: Education’s Brief Appearances in the #GOP Debates

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Posted:
October 29, 2015 02:06 pm

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Last night, the topic of education made a few brief appearances in the main ten-candidate GOP debate on CNBC and during the undercard debate. The conversation primarily focused around issues including vocational education, student loan debt, and making college more affordable. Here are some highlights to get you up to speed.

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Daily Dish: Release of the Nation’s Report Card Shows Decline in Math and Reading Performance

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Posted:
October 28, 2015 02:55 pm

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Results released today from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP), commonly known as the Nation’s Report Card, showed a decline in mathematics performance of fourth grade and eighth grade students across the United States. As the New York Times reports, this dip in scores is the first since 1990, and comes as the country’s employers demand workers with ever-stronger mathematics skills to compete in a global economy. Reading scores did not see any positive change either, with eighth grade scores dropping and fourth grade performance remaining the same.

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Daily Dish: Last Night’s #FutureReady Schools Twitter Chat with Education Secretary Arne Duncan

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October 27, 2015 04:45 pm

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Last night, the twitter-sphere was buzzing with excitement about Future Ready Schools. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan made a special guest appearance and moderated the weekly #edtechchat on Twitter as part of Connected Educator Month (#ce15). The topic? Future Ready Schools, a free, bold effort to maximize digital learning opportunities and help school districts move quickly toward preparing students for success in college, a career, and citizenship.

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Daily Dish: U.S. Department of Education Releases Testing Action Plan, Calls for a Limit on Assessments

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Posted:
October 26, 2015 04:28 pm

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A new report released on Saturday by the Council of Great City Schools shows that students in the U.S. are taking tests that are redundant, misaligned with college and career readiness standards, and often don’t address students’ mastery of specific content, as Education Week reports. The study is the first in-depth look at testing in the largest urban school districts, and examined the types, frequency and use of tests administered in 66 of the Council’s 68 member school districts. As Education Week notes, the findings provide data and evidence to the national debate about whether or not students are being over tested.

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Daily Dish: What Does Paul Ryan’s Bid for House Speaker Mean for Reauthorization of ESEA?

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Posted:
October 23, 2015 01:25 pm

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Yesterday, Republican Representative Paul Ryan officially jumped into the race for speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives. In gaining the support of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, Ryan overcame the main roadblock to becoming Speaker, and with support from the Republican Study Committee and the Tuesday Group, Ryan should have enough backing to secure the Speakership. The final vote for the next Speaker is scheduled for October 29.

Since the race for House Speaker began a few weeks ago with the resignation of current Speaker John Boehner, the persistent question in the education world has been: what does this mean for reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA)? A Federal Flash episode from the Alliance explores the possibilities now that Ryan has emerged as the likely pick.

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Daily Dish: Computer Science in STEM Learning to Better Prepare Students for the Future

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October 22, 2015 04:21 pm

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Computer science programs are officially part of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) with the passage of the STEM Education Act of 2015. The law expands STEM programs funded by federal government agencies to include computer science, supports grants for informal STEM education in afterschool programs, museums, and science centers, and allows teachers pursuing a master’s degree, including computer science teachers, to be considered for the National Science Foundation’s Noyce Master Teaching Fellowship program.

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Daily Dish: Common Core News in New Jersey, Massachusetts, Tennessee, and West Virginia

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Posted:
October 21, 2015 10:18 am

Tests & Assessments

With recent Common Core news emerging from many different states, here’s a quick overview of what’s happening to keep you in the loop.

In New Jersey, scores on the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) assessment were released yesterday. In a press release about the results, Education Commissioner David C. Hespe noted how the data can be used to improve and guide classroom instruction toward critical-thinking and problem-solving skills that students need. Dr. Lawrence S. Feinsod, executive director of the New Jersey School Boards Association pointed to the PARCC assessment as a way to support educators. “For local boards of education, the 2015 PARCC data can serve as an important starting point for an ongoing discussion about improving instruction,” said “We urge our members to work with their administrative teams and teaching staffs to use this information to identify the strengths and weaknesses of curriculum and to ensure that professional development is aligned with the learning needs of their students.”

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Daily Dish: High School Graduation Rates on the Rise in Most States

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October 20, 2015 06:01 pm

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High school graduation rates increased in the 2013-2014 school year in a majority of states, according to preliminary state data released by the U.S. Department of Education. According to The Washington Post, U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said that it looks like the nation is taking another step in the right direction, with these preliminary numbers suggesting the country is on track for a rise in graduation rates for the third year in a row. The rates rose in 36 states, says the Post, with the largest increases in Delaware, Alabama, Oregon. Only a handful of states saw a decline.

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