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Morning Announcements: August 16, 2011

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August 16, 2011 04:11 pm

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The Associated Press reported on the large number of students requiring remediation courses once they enter college. Many high school graduates feel or are unprepared for college once they graduate from high school — one in three students entering a public institution will take at least one remediation class. This can cause a large financial loss to families and taxpayers, Bob Wise, former governor of West Virginia and president of the Alliance, told the AP.  “We have a real preparation problem in middle and high school for kids on the bubble,” Wise said. “It’s a duplication of resources. Everybody loses.” Read the full article here.

Montana became the first state to receive a waiver from No Child Left Behind, meaning it will receive federal education funding despite many of its schools failing to meet federal standards, reports U.S. News & World Report. All of the recent developments regarding NCLB waivers is making it hard to remember which state is doing what. Check out the Center on Education Policy’s helpful map to track developments daily.

Los Angeles is launching a pilot evaluation program that teachers will use this year that focuses on more detailed observations, student and parent feedback, and students’ standardized test scores, according to the Los Angeles Times. Currently, just over 100 schools are participating in the pilot program and officials want a permanent system in place by next school year. In other California news, the state Department of Education released data on Monday showing students are making gains in English and math scores but still have a long way to go to reach benchmarks, the Times also reported.

Kentucky education officials say this year is a one of change for the state’s public schools, calling it the most significant reform in 20 years, according to the Associated Press. Officials made changes to nearly every subject after an education reform bill passed through the Legislature in 2009, which mandated that every student leave Kentucky’s schools ready for college or the workplace.

Oklahoma is reportedly seeing an “explosive growth” in online education programs. The Tulsa World analyzed state records that show the number of public school students doing school work through Internet programs increased by nearly 400 percent over the past three years. Entirely online schools have been popping up across the country, and one in Louisiana started today. Nearly 600 students have signed up for classes in the state’s first-ever online charter school, open to students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

The Council of the Great City Schools is supporting a review being conducted by the National Council on Teacher Quality and U.S. News & World Report on colleges of education throughout the country. The Council represents more than 60 urban districts and said in a letter that it stupports the study “because it’s concerned that too many programs graduate teachers who are not academically prepared to provide instruction in urban school systems,” according to Education Week. The study has also received an endorsement from eight of nine state education “chiefs for change.” The project will rate each college on up to 18 standards. The Council praised the study in particular for those standards including reading instruction, preparation teaching English language-learners, and core content knowledge.

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