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Afternoon Announcements: May 30, 2012

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May 30, 2012 07:49 pm

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Welcome to your Wednesday addition of Afternoon Announcements! We hope you’ve recovered by now from this weekend’s festivities because there’s a lot to share today.

The big news in national education is that eight more states have received No Child Left Behind waivers. According to the Associated Press and New York Times, Connecticut, Delaware, Louisiana, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, and Rhode Island have had their waiver requests granted. 19 states have now been granted waivers, and 26 other states and the District of Columbia still have waiver requests pending.

United States Secretary of Education Arne Duncan stopped into the Brennan/Rogers School in West Rock (New Haven), Connecticut to solicit some advice from the school’s teachers. The New Haven Independent covers (with pictures!) Duncan’s visit, where the topic of the conversation was how to motivate teachers to teach in low-performing schools.

A report by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute estimates that states could save $927 million or spend $8.3 billion implementing the Common Core State Standards, depending on how they choose to do it. Education Week has the details. The Common Core State Standards have been adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia.

Onto a topic that the Alliance has been talking about since 2006 release of Double the Work. The Associated Press reports on a new report by Complete College America that says that remedial courses for U.S. college students cost about $3 billion annually.

The Washington Post has a troubling report today about college dropouts from Education Sector. High school dropouts, as you all know, are extremely troubling for our nation’s education system. College dropouts are just as problematic. The article notes, “Nearly 30 percent of college students who took out loans dropped out of school, up from fewer than a quarter of students a decade ago… College dropouts are also among the most likely to default on their loans, falling behind at a rate four times that of graduates.”

CNet has an interesting report about how education apps have become a priority for AT&T. “It’s part of a broader push by AT&T to improve the quality of education, and is a big personal cause for CEO Randall Stephenson. The company said today it plans to invest $250 million over the next five years to improving education. Part of that money will go to its AT&T Foundry, which will look into tapping new ways to teach students,” the article notes.

Finally, The Houston Chronicle highlights the increasing problem of Hispanic dropouts in the Houston area. Although the Houston metropolitan area is around 40% Hispanic, only a small number of Hispanic students matriculate to college. The article cites the Alliance’s economic benefit work and notes, “If the area could cut its 2010 dropout rate in half, the economy would create up to 1,550 new jobs, generating $20 million more in state and local taxes and $297 million more in economic growth by the time those people reach mid-career.”

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