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Straight A’s Examines Election’s Impact on Education Reform, Focuses on New Reports on International Math Comparisons and the Performance of Black Males

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November 16, 2010 09:36 pm

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straight aHere’s a quick summary of the articles in the Nov. 15 issue of Straight A’s, the Alliance’s biweekly newsletter.

Click on a title below to access the complete article or download a printer-friendly version of the entire newsletter here.

DIVIDED WE STALL?: Prospects for Education Reform Unclear After Republicans Take Control in the House of Representatives, Gain Ground in Senate

As the smoke clears from an election day battle that left Democrats bruised and beaten, it is evident that Republicans will pick up at least sixty seats-and possibly as many as sixty-five-to claim control of the U.S. House of Representatives. In the U.S. Senate, Republicans gained six seats, but fell short of capturing the majority. What remains unclear is whether a divided Congress-a Republican-controlled House and a Democrat-controlled Senate-can work with President Obama to reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA), currently known as No Child Left Behind.

A CALL FOR CHANGE: New Report Finds that, from Cradle to Career, Black Males Fall Behind

Only 9 percent of black male eighth graders are proficient in reading, compared to 33 percent of white male eighth graders nationwide, according to a new report from the Council of the Great City Schools (Council). A Call for Change: The Social and Educational Factors Contributing to the Outcomes of Black Males in Urban Schools documents the challenges that black children face from an early age through adulthood in obtaining an adequate education and calls the achievement gap between black males and their white peers “a national catastrophe.”

U.S. MATH PERFORMANCE IN GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE: U.S. Students with Advanced Math Skills Lag Behind International High-Achieving Peers

A new report finds that 6 percent of U.S. public and private school students tested at the advanced level in eighth-grade mathematics, compared to 28 percent of students in Taiwan and at least 20 percent of students in Finland, Hong Kong, and Korea. The report, U.S. Math Performance in Global Perspective: How Well Does Each State Do at Producing High-Achieving Students?, compares the percentage of U.S. students who have advanced math skills in each of the fifty states and in ten urban districts to the percentages of similarly high achievers in fifty-six other countries.

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