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Everyone’s Getting Straight A’s: Obama Plan Would Provide High Speed Internet for Schools

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June 19, 2013 03:53 pm

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The Alliance for Excellent Education’s newest e-newsletter, “Straight A’s”is now online. You can read the full articles from this issue here, or short synopses below. As always, if you would like to receive Straight A’s in your inbox, please email jamos@all4ed.org.

On June 12, the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) passed a bill to rewrite the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), which is currently known as No Child Left Behind (NCLB). The bill, named the Strengthening America’s Schools Act of 2013 (SASA), passed on party lines with all twelve Democrats on the committee voting in favor of the bill and all ten Republicans voting against. Senate HELP Committee Passes Bill to Rewrite NCLB

In a June 6 speech at Mooresville Middle School in Mooresville, North Carolina, President Obama announced “ConnectED,” a plan to provide 99 percent of the nation’s students with next-generation broadband and high-speed wireless in schools and libraries within five years. The plan would also ensure that every educator in America receives support and training to use technology to help improve student outcomes. To meet his goal, the president is calling on the Federal Communications Commission to modernize and leverage its existing e-Rate program for school connectivity in order to make a major capital investment in high-speed internet connections and employ them for connected classrooms. Obama Proposes ConnectED Plan

The federal government has a unique opportunity to study what state measures translate into student achievement gains through the issuance and implementation of waivers from No Child Left Behind (NCLB), finds a recent Education Sector report. The report, The New State Achievement Gap: How Federal Waivers Could Make It Worse—Or Better, looks at the achievement gap among the states—what it calls the “new state achievement gap”—and finds that, in just eight years, the 60 percentstates have created an achievement gap that is about of the magnitude of the racial achievement gap, which took two centuries to establish. The New State Achievement Gap 

The national high school graduation rate reached 74.7 percent for the Class of 2010, an increase of 7.9 percentage points since 2000 and the highest percentage since 1973, according to the annual Diplomas Count report from Education Weekand the Editorial Projects in Education Research Center. This year’s report, Second Chances: Turning Dropouts Into Graduates, projects that although more than 1 million students will fail to graduate from high school this year, there are 96,000 fewer dropouts compared to last year. Diplomas Count

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