This week in education news, LeBron James opens public school in Ohio; Craigslist founder donates $1 million to fund STEM projects on Donors Choose; California close to adoption on new curriculum for NGSS; STEM education has a math anxiety problem; the 2016 National Teacher of the Year won the Democratic primary for an open U.S. House of Representative seat in Connecticut; video-based training program may provide more meaningful virtual professional development for science teachers; and successful professional development program enables educators to create an inclusive environment for all learners.
Finland has been set as the model for U.S. schools, again because of their comparative scores on international tests, and their unusually happy teachers. And now, China. It’s always tempting to see greener grass on the other side of the ocean, without getting close enough to notice how much manure lies at ground level or how different the weather might be to green up what’s visible. I think that looking longingly at other nations can be deceiving, and for a variety of reasons. Read the article featured in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
National headlines offering hope about the state of American education this year have been few and far between. Until last week when LeBron James announced he was opening a school. Ohio has been trying to stomach the four-time NBA MVP’s decision to leave his home state to join the Los Angeles Lakers. But even with his much-mourned departure, James will keep one foot back in Ohio in a big way: supporting a new school model, called the I Promise School, as a joint effort between his family foundation and Akron Public Schools. Read the article featured in EdSurge.
As STEM teachers across the country prepare to head back to school, a few will get some help this year stocking their classrooms with equipment and materials. Craig Newmark, the founder of the classifieds website Craigslist, has donated $1 million through his philanthropic organization to support STEM projects seeking funding on DonorsChoose.org, a crowdfunding site for schools and educators. Read the article featured in Education Week.
After 20 years of leading the New Teacher Center, the nonprofit that’s nationally recognized for its work mentoring incoming educators, Ellen Moir has learned a lot about what it takes to make a teacher successful. Moir shared with Education Week some lessons learned about new teacher development and building effective school systems for all teachers. Read the article featured in Education Week.
For the first time in 12 years, the state of California is reviewing its K–8 science course materials for adoption of new resources in time for the spring 2019 semester. Many include a digital component, and not every publisher is going to make the cut. The state’s Department of Education adopted the Next Generation Science Standards for grades K–12 in 2013. Now they’re considering course materials that align with the standards. Read the article featured in T.H.E. Journal.
How is STEM education still missing the mark, especially at the elementary level? Project-based learning and other practices that support educators in integrating across content areas have benefits, but those benefits will mean nothing if our young people do not enter in STEM fields or majors. These skills and experiences are rich and useful when done well, but secondary to the real roadblock that many American students face. We must look deeper than any new program or initiative aimed at simply increasing interest in STEM careers. We must look at a known problem that we often avoid talking about: the math problem. Read the article featured in Education Week.
Jahana Hayes, the 2016 National Teacher of the Year, has won the Democratic primary for an open U.S. House of Representative seat in Connecticut’s 5th District. Hayes, a first-time candidate, handily defeated Mary Glassman, a longtime politician who was backed by Connecticut’s Democratic party, on Tuesday night. Read the article featured in Education Week.
It’s hard to collaborate and get perspective on science lessons when you are the only teacher in your subject on campus. But a new project is working to use classroom videos to develop more in-depth virtual professional development groups, particularly for rural teachers. Read the article featured in Education Week.
North Clackamas School District Superintendent Matthew Utterback minds the gap. That is, the gap between white students and everyone else. That’s why the 2017 National School Superintendent of the Year takes special pride in the details of his Oregon district’s 18 percent graduation rate increase. Read the article featured in District Administration.
By now we’ve all heard how important STEM education is for the jobs of the future. But there are certain jobs that are more people than technology focused, right? Well, maybe not. While traditional selling tactics relied heavily on personal relationships, sales people are now interacting with buyers who have more information at their disposal than ever before. As a result, today’s deals are more often closed over spreadsheets and analytical forecasts than longstanding relationships and rounds of golf. Read the article focused in Fast Company.
Stay tuned for next week’s top education news stories.
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