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Morning Video: NYC Charter School Teacher Loses Cool ("Rip & Redo")

Want to see something uncomfortable and upsetting this cold February morning? "In 2014, an assistant teacher at Success Academy Cobble Hill secretly filmed her colleague, Charlotte Dial, scolding one of her students after the young girl failed to answer a question correctly." From a NYT story by Kate Taylor.

AM News: Obama To Nominate King For Education Secretary After All

Obama to Officially Nominate John B. King Jr. as Education Secretary PK12: Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., the chairman of the Senate education committee, has been urging the White House to officially nominate someone to succeed former Secretary Arne Duncan, since back in December. See also AP, Washington Post.

D.C. accidentally uploads private data of 12,000 students Washington Post: According to the memo, someone in the office uploaded the data to a public D.C. Council Dropbox account ahead of a council hearing on the Individual Education Program, which provides tailored education plans for students with special needs. All 12,000 students, who attend public and charter schools in kindergarten through 12th grades, have such individual education plans.

Science Teachers’ Grasp of Climate Change Is Found Lacking NYT: A survey of 1,500 teachers in the United States found that on average they spend just one to two hours on average over the course of an academic year.

As The Water Crisis Continues, Flint's Superintendent Looks Forward NPR: While the damage from lead in Flint's water is not yet known, even low levels can be harmful to children. The Michigan city's superintendent of schools says he's bracing for an uncertain future.

ACT essay scores are inexplicably low, causing uproar among college-bound students Washington Post: Some students earn great marks overall -- at or near the top score of 36 -- but are graded in the low 20s for writing.

On Video, a First Grader, a Stumble in Math and a Teacher’s Anger NYT: At Success Academy, the charter school network in New York City, current and former educators say the quest for high scores drives some of them over the line.

Two years in, Carmen Fariña measures her progress by grad rates & grateful emails Chalkbeat: Many educators and parents praise Fariña’s school-by-school approach, saying they feel respected and reassured by her intimate knowledge of the system. But her critics often scoff at it. Those who identify as education reformers (a label Fariña also applies to herself) say her theory of change is too incremental and founded on experience over research, while some principals complain about micromanaging.

 
 

Charts: Grade School Teachers Destined To Marry Other Grade School Teachers

Screen Shot 2016-02-11 at 4.27.09 PMAccording to this Bloomberg blog post (Who Marries CEOs, Doctors, Chefs and Janitors), elementary school teachers tend to marry retail supervisors and ... truck drivers? That is, when they don't marry each other: the most common marriage is between grade-school teachers. Click the link to check out the pattern for high school teachers, primary school teachers, and college teachers. 

#TBT: What TFA Looked Like Five Years Ago

Here are some pictures I took from some of the #TFA20 receptions 5 years ago. Or take a look at the official TFA20 photo album (remember Flickr?).

Morning Video: The Challenges Intentionally Diverse Learning Communities

Here's a #TFA25 panel moderated by the NYT's Nikole Hannah-Jones, who starts out expressing a view that the term "diversity" is cute but "integration" is an imperative. (Intentionally Diverse Learning Communities). Panelists include  Kriste Dragon, Bill Kurtz, Jeremy Chiappetta, Julie Goldstein. 90 minutes. 

AM News: Dues Increases, Charter Approvals, Immigration Raids (LAUSD)

L.A. teachers union wins dues increase, vows to battle foes of traditional public education LA Times: Members have responded by agreeing to raise their annual dues by about a third, to $1,000 a year. The increase was approved by 82% of those who cast ballots, according to United Teachers Los Angeles, which tallied the votes Wednesday.

As the the LAUSD charter schools conflict escalates, here’s what you need to know KPCC:  Tuesday’s L.A. Unified school board meeting was unusual. What made it out of the ordinary, charter school supporters said, is that school district staff is recommending the denial of charter school petitions much more often than now.

The Los Angeles Unified School District Has Banned Immigration Raids on Its Campuses VICE: The school board of the Los Angeles Unified School District unanimously adopted a resolution on Tuesday that bans US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents from coming onto school property without permission — a move meant to signal to immigrant students and their families that they are secure while on campus.

D.C. Public Schools, closely watched for its reform efforts, is overhauling teacher evaluation and training Washington Post: Because few details of the plan have been released, it is unclear what kind of direct impact the changes will have for classroom teachers in the immediate future. The head of the city’s teacher union, Elizabeth Davis, said that teachers are unsettled and exhausted after adjusting to a series of changes and new initiatives in recent years.

Principals React to Middle of the School Year Budget Cuts WBEZ: Nearly every one of Chicago’s 654 public schools will have to cut its spending plan for the next four months. The average amount lost per school is about $60,000, which amounts to about one or two teachers for the remainder of the school year.

Maps: Where The Districts Trying SES-Based Integration Are

Here's a cool map from The Century Foundation's new report, A New Wave of School Integration, showing the districts, schools, and charter networks that are involved.

The think tank calls this its "most comprehensive and ambitious audit of districts and charters pursuing socioeconomic integration to date," revealing that the number of school districts and charter networks pursuing socioeconomic integration has "more than doubled since 2007, and more than 4 million students are now enrolled in schools that use socioeconomic status as a factor in student assignment."

Morning Video: Detroit Faces Further Teacher Sick-Outs (Plus: Chicago Noble)

 

"Despite cautioning that school system is set to run out of money in April, state-appointed emergency manager Darnell Earley has announced his resignation effective at the end of February. He exits amid chaos, and another potential teacher sick-out." (From PBS NewsHour Why Detroit's teachers are 'sick' of their inadequate schools).

Or click here to listen to an overview of Chicago Catalyst's deep dive into the city's biggest charter network, Noble Charter Schools

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AM News: School Takeover Threat Unifies Chicago Mayor, Teachers Union

Power Struggle Over Future Of Public Schools Heats Up In Chicago NPR: The politics surrounding the future of Chicago's public school system are intensifying. Three different players are in a power struggle for control of the system, which is suffering financially.

Education Magazine Takes Readers Inside Chicago’s Biggest Charter Network WBEZ Chicago: Catalyst associate editors Melissa Sanchez and Kalyn Belsha take us inside the Noble charter network, where one out of every 10 kids in the CPS system get their education.

PARCC Considers Reorganization, Seeks Input to Shape its Future EdWeek: The consortium, which has battled declining membership and a backlash against standardized testing, is trying to sort out the best way to provide its services to states. Among the questions it's asking: What's the best way to set ourselves up to get good test content to states, and let them customize what they get? What's the best way to let states collaborate to build test content, and still safeguard test quality and comparability?

Los Angeles teachers union seeks to re-negotiate evaluation system KPCC: The proposal could spell more change for the district's teacher evaluation system, which the union says has been in "transition" in recent years. See also LA Times: L.A. teachers union seeks to raise dues as it fights a charter school push.

Obama Budget Would Prioritize Integration, Flat Fund Key Programs PK12: The budget puts a premium on integration but provides essentially level funding for Title I grants for disadvantaged kids and special education state grants. See also Washington Post.

This teenager is one of 12 students in the world who aced the AP Calculus exam Washington Post: Landon Labuskes, of Virginia, was one of 12 to ace AP Calculus AB -- out of 302,532 who took the test last year. He was 14.

Facing Teacher Shortages, States Turn to Emergency Certificates TeacherBeat: A handful of states are now relying on emergency permits or other nonstandard certificates to meet immediate hiring needs.

 

 

Afternoon Video: Syrian Students Play In Recreation Of Bombed-Out School

It's a recreation -- not the real school in Aleppo -- but it's still pretty vivid, and connects us to schools and kids which is what this site is all about. 

Charts: Mass Deportation (Is The Threat Real?)

The advocacy group known as FWD (forward) is pushing this message out on social media today: "Mass deportation would tear families apart + separate 4.5 million U.S. citizens from their parents."

I'm not sure if the threat is considered to be real, or whether this is just a news hook to rally the base. No candidates are mentioned. Follow along on Twitter here.

I've written about FWD a bit in the past -- see below.

Related posts: 5 Ways The SF Protests Can Help You Understand Education (2014).

Morning Listen: Fixing A Broken High Schooler (Plus, The Ideal Kindergarten)

Freakonomics: "Okay, maybe the steps aren't so easy. But a program run out of a Toronto housing project has had great success in turning around kids who were headed for trouble." (Rebroadcast)

 

Or, if you want to see some cool video, check out this Sam Chaltain post This is what Kindergarten looks like in its ideal form.

AM News: Districts & Charters Experimenting With Diversity Growing, Says Report

More schools nationwide are experimenting with diversity programs, report says ChalkbeatNY: Ninety-one districts and charter networks now have at least one school that factors socioeconomic status into its assignments, according to a report released Tuesday by the Century Foundation. The number identified by the foundation has more than doubled since 2007 and represents about 4 million students nationwide, the report says. See also Washington Post.

The Common Core Has Its SupportersWSJ: Many in New York state have embraced the standards, believing they spur more analytical thinking by children and more teamwork among educators

Obama Budget to Seek New Money to Help Schools Integrate, Sources Say PK12: The Obama administration is expected to seek $120 million in new money to help schools become more integrated, among other proposals in the fiscal 2017 budget.

In an age of resegregation, these schools are trying to balance poor and wealthy kids Washington Post: An increasing number of school districts and charter networks are trying to break up concentrated poverty and balance their student populations by race and income.

Department Of Education Creates Student Aid Enforcement Office NPR: The Department of Education announced Monday it will create a Student Aid Enforcement Unit to crack down on higher education institutions that are taking advantage of vulnerable students. See also Washington Post.

New, Reading-Heavy SAT Has Students Worried NYT: Some educators fear that the revised test — one of the biggest redesigns ever — will penalize certain students, like immigrants and the poor.

'An Average Guy' Excels At Teaching Students AP Calculus NPR: David Greene talks to advanced placement calculus teacher Anthony Yom about his classroom magic, and how he's gotten every one of his students for the past five years to pass the exam.

Why is Milwaukee so bad for black people? WNYC: Suspensions are just the beginning. The state also has the largest achievement gap between black and white students in the country, and ranks last in reading comprehension tests among black fourth-graders. Milwaukee has the most black students in the state and is the biggest contributor to Wisconsin’s achievement gap. Its public school system has been plagued by federal and state funding cuts and a 20-year-old school choice program that diverts public tax dollars to private schools through vouchers. With 4-out-of-5 black children in Wisconsin living in poverty, an inadequate education can set up the most vulnerable students for failure.

D.C. teachers say new school system policy could cause grade inflation Washington Post: D.C. teachers no longer give students their final grades. Instead, teachers input letter grades for each marking term and for the final exam, and a software program averages the final grade, according to the union.

Charter schools say L.A. Unified is unfairly scrutinizing their campuses LA Times: Caprice Young thought the worst was behind her, that her group's charter schools would be free to grow after straightening out the poor financial record-keeping that prompted a recent state audit. She was wrong.

Repair Bill for Decaying Detroit Schools Could Top $50 Million District Dossier: The financially strapped school district has begun using money budgeted for other departments to fix the most urgent building problems.

Events: Here Comes Yale SOM 2016 (Crossed Fingers)

There were at least two former organizers of the Yale SOM education summit at the TFA conference last week - Edna Novak and Graham Brown (pictured with me above) -- and Yale SOM 2016 is fast approaching.

Keynote speakers include Shavar Jeffries, Sandra Abrevaya, and Sondra Samuels. As in the past, it's being held at the Omni in New Haven.

There are scheduled to be panels on Common Core testing, blended learning, college attainment, parent advocacy, teachers of color, segregation of schools, community colleges, school readiness, federal policy after NCLB, revisiting "no excuses" approaches, effective philanthropy, and many others. 

If you want to follow last year's social media, check out #backtowhy, or check out my livetweets from that day. There was some controversy about the lack of racial diversity on one or two of the panels -- even though the event was much more diverse than some of its predecessors.

I wrote a blog post about it shortly after: 6 Ways To Diversify That Conference Or Panel (ie, "Pass The Mic")*. PIE's Suzanne Tacheny wrote more about the topic here: Notes to Self.

What I don't see on the program so far is anything that focuses on the state and local education agencies who govern most public schools, or the unions whose locals represent many educators who work with them. But the panel list doesn't look final and there are no panelists listed so far. 

It's on April 7th and 8th. The twitter is @YaleELC. The hashtag is#DefiningSuccess2016.

 Related posts: New Faces At This Week's Yale Education Conference (2105); Deray Does Colbert Show (Then Lets Him Off The Hook).

Afternoon Video: Moving A School From Crisis To Calm

"If you wonder how such a change could be brought about, take a look at this video (26 min long), and see what you think about the ways in which its educators transformed the teaching and learning climate at their school." (This is how you move a school from crisis to calm via Sam Chaltain).
 

Quotes: Education (Reform) Is Part Of The Problem

Quotes2Here is the inconvenient truth: Education, including education reform, is part of the problem.We have not made a dent in the problem, and in some cases we’ve made it worse.

- Former Newark superintendent Cami Anderson via The Answer Sheet (The Washington Post)

Morning Listen: NPR Interviews TFA Head On 25th Anniversary

Or, listen to this WNYC story about "pushy moms" helping community college kids transfer to four-year programs. Has anyone tried this approach at the K-12 level?

AM News: In 3 Months, Nearly 100K Immigrant Minors Enter US Schools

As immigration resurges, U.S. public schools help children find their footing Washington Post: Between Oct. 1, 2013 and Dec. 31, 2015, federal officials released more than 95,000 unaccompanied minors into U.S. communities, virtually all of them entitled to enroll in public school.

Acting Ed. Secretary: Educators 'unfairly blamed' for schools' challenges USA Today: In his first major speech, the acting U.S. Secretary of Education John King apologized to the nation’s teachers.

States Without Waivers No Longer Must Withhold Money for Tutoring, Choice PK12: States without waivers from the No Child Left Behind Act can come up with an alternative plan to support students in schools that have missed achievement targets.

L.A. Parents Launch Second Parent-Trigger Initiative at Struggling School EdWeek: Parents at 20th Street Elementary dropped a parent-trigger initiative in June after reaching an agreement with the Los Angeles Unified School District, but now say LAUSD hasn't delivered.

Differences In Suspension May Cause 20 Percent Of Achievement Gap Boston Learning Lab: Now a study of more than 15,000 students in Kentucky says that as much as 20 percent of the difference may be due to a single cause: getting suspended from school. Even after controlling for other factors, such as socioeconomic status and disabilities, they found a strong correlation between suspension and lower scores on end-of-year tests.

Chicago Principal and Her School Collect Bottled Water for Flint District Dossier: Lisa Epstein, a principal at Chicago's Richard Henry Lee school, grew up in Flint, Mich., and launched an effort in her school community to collect bottled water for children and families in her hometown.

Live Event: Teach For America 25th Anniversary Conference In DC

Here's the fast-and-furious live Twitter stream from #TFA25. Check it out while watching some of the event livestreamed here:

Quotes: White America's "Broken Heart"

Quotes2The current urgency about inequality as an issue is really about how some white Americans are coming to live an experience that many minorities in this country have long lived — structural inequity has leapt the racial barrier — and that the legacy to which they fully assumed they were heirs is increasingly beyond their grasp.

- NYT columnist Charles Blow (White America’s ‘Broken Heart’)

 

Morning Videos: Chicago Teachers Rally, Duncan Reflects, & OK UPK

 

Fresh off the heels of news that the public supports them more than City Hall, Chicago teachers rallied downtown. From WTTW Chicago Public Television.

See also WGN TV interview of former EdSec Arne Duncan interviewed about Chicago, unfinished business, and what he might do next.

Or, watch this PBS NewsHour segment on the Oklahoma universal preschool program.

AM News: Computer Testing Discrepancies Raise Common Core Questions

PARCC Scores Lower for Students Who Took Exams on Computers EdWeek: Hard numbers from across the consortium are not yet available. But the advantage for paper-and-pencil test-takers appears in some cases to be substantial, based on independent analyses conducted by one prominent PARCC state and a high-profile school district that administered the exams. See also Washington Post: Report: Kids who took Common Core test online scored lower than those who used paper

Thousands rally downtown for Chicago Teachers Union Chicago Tribune: "I have no idea what goes (on) inside the CTU union and its internal politics, I really don't," Claypool said. "I do see a sincere effort by (CTU President) Karen Lewis, Jesse Sharkey and other members of CTU to get a deal, to get a deal." See also WTTW.

Teachers union has triple the public support of Emanuel Tribune: The survey also found that Emanuel's approval rating on education has fallen to a record low as the mayor and Chicago Public Schools CEO Forrest Claypool are slashing budgets and cutting jobs in the face of the latest massive budget shortfall. Voters' displeasure with the mayor's handling of education tracks with the similarly low marks they gave Emanuel on his overall job performance and handling of crime.

Jindal Lawsuit Against Common Core Scrapped by New Governor AP: Gov. John Bel Edwards is ending Louisiana's lawsuit against President Barack Obama's administration over the Common Core education standards.

After Speedy Test Reforms, State Education Commissioner Says It's Time to 'Unplug' WNYC: State education commissioner MaryEllen Elia said she hopes more parents will let their children take this year's tests, after 20 percent opted out last year.

New York’s opt-out movement aims to influence policy, not just parents. Here’s how ChalkbeatNY: The opt-out movement’s efforts to influence the Board of Regents have raised eyebrows. Some wonder whether a group founded expressly to encourage parents to skip legally mandated state tests should have a say in statewide policy.

U.N. Experts Seem Horrified By How American Schools Treat Black Children HuffPost: The U.N.'s Working Group of Experts on People of African Descent traveled around the U.S. last month to learn more about the various structural barriers and challenges African-American face. The group, which plans to release its full report in September, has given the media its preliminary findings, including several recommendations about reducing inequality in the U.S. education system.

In Oakland, Building Boys Into Men NYT: A California school district tries to reverse the underachievement and lack of opportunity for the country’s most vulnerable students, African-American boys.

Motorist Dead, 4 Students Hurt in School Bus Crash AP: One person is dead and four students injured in an accident involving a school bus and an SUV in southern New Jersey.

TBT: Camika Royal (2011) Deray McKesson (Today)

Teach For America’s 25th anniversary summit is this weekend. I won't be there, but this was me at the 20th. #TBT https://t.co/MPboYkTTd9

— Camika Royal (@DrCamikaRoyal) February 4, 2016

She says she's not going to be there for #TFA25, but here's Camika Royal's TFA20 speech, via Twitter. Royal was TFA 1999 but has since become a critic of the TFA model.

Here's a 2012 blog post she wrote on Diane Ravitch's site: Camika Royal Responds to Critics. Here's a Huffington Post entry about her speech: Swift to Hear; Slow to Speak: A Message to TFA Teachers, Critics, and Education Reformers.

Meanwhile, TFA critics led by the Badasss Teachers and Network for Public Education have set up a "Thunderclap" to bombard the TFA25 twitter stream. Think of it as social media countermeasures.

And perhaps the biggest news leading up to the conference is the announcement that blue-vested alumnus Deray McKesson is running for mayor of Baltimore:

 

It's unclear if he has any chance of winning in a field that already includes 28 candidates, or even if he's the first to run for big-city mayor, but the announcement might seem to represent a new generation of TFA alumni taking on post-classroom challenges.

Campaign 2016: Teachers Unions Flood New Hamphire

From Randi Weingarten: "Educators from around the North East for @HillaryClinton are ready to get out the vote here in NH. #ImWithHer"

Morning Video: School Yoga, Everywhere?

"Students at the Montesorri School pratice yoga to help clear their minds of the violence that surrounds their lives," reports Al Jazeera America (Yoga To Help Kids Cope With Violence in Chicago).

See also: Why Schools Are Embracing Yoga (featuring NYC, Detroit, Litchfield, Minn, and Encenitas, CA).

AM News: Common Core Testing Discrepancies, Intensifying Chicago Confrontation

PARCC Scores Lower for Students Who Took Exams on Computers EdWeek: Students who took the 2014-15 PARCC exams via computer tended to score lower than those who took the exams with paper and pencil—a revelation that prompts questions about the validity of the test results and poses potentially big problems for state and district leaders.

Classroom Cuts Move Ahead, Absent a New Chicago Teachers' Contract WBEZ: Claypool said the cuts -- which could mean one position per school, on average -- could still be avoided if the two parties reach an agreement soon.

Rauner: I'm no saboteur Chicago Sun-Times: On that issue, Claypool and CTU President Karen Lewis agreed, with Lewis blasting Rauner. “Please don't pay any attention to the ravings of a mad man,” Lewis said. “He knows absolutely nothing about real education. So that's a problem.”

School Network With Most Kindergarten Suspensions Says It Will Stop Them Boston Learning Lab: Kindergarten and pre-kindergarten students were suspended 78 times at schools operated by a single nonprofit school management company in the 2014-15 school year, according to state data.

Nation's charter schools aren't growing as fast as once thought Washington Post: The 7 and 9 percent increases over the last two years were lower than the average 11 percent annual enrollment growth over the last eight years, according to the National Alliance.

Parents gather 'parent trigger' signatures a second time after LAUSD doesn’t make changes KPCC: Parents at 20th St. Elementary School first organized in 2014, but decided not to formally submit their petition when LAUSD administrators proposed an improvement plan that included promises to improve the administration of the school, provide teachers with professional development, and use data to measure teaching and learning.

School kisses Valentine's Day and other holidays goodbye AP: A Minnesota elementary school has kissed Valentine's Day goodbye. Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas, too....

New York High School Wrestlers Break Stereotypes in Coed Division NYT: At a number of public high schools, wrestling teams with male and female athletes are breaking gender stereotypes.

Event Preview: My #TFA25 Playlist - What's Yours?

DgfsdfgdsfgfThe livestream begins Saturday morning at 9, but the conference officially starts Friday and there's sure to be a ton of Tweeting going on the next few days as #TFA25 ramps up. (Nearly 200 speakers/moderators, all in one Twitter List .)

There are 20 sessions Friday, and another 60 on Saturday -- not nearly enough for all the interest in presenting and speaking at the conference. The Frequently Asked Questions makes clear that TFA was expecting (or experiencing) more demand to present than it could handle using the format it decided.

There's no opening plenary session -- the conference version of a outmoded home page -- or even keynotes. Topics covered at the 2011 summit are being avoided. As a result, "Even very senior/VIP speakers will be sharing a session with other speakers and panelists."

Here's a bit more information about what I'm doing -- or hoping to do (depending on which sessions are full, etc.) -- along with some information about what's going to be livestreamed. Take a look and then let us know what you're going to do.

What's on your #TFA25 wishlist? Or, even better, what are you already signed up for?

Continue reading "Event Preview: My #TFA25 Playlist - What's Yours?" »

Morning Listen: That Time When Nearly 500K Kids Protested NYC School Segregation

"To force the issue, they staged a one-day school boycott on Feb. 3, when approximately 460,000 students refused to go to school -- the school boycott was the largest civil rights protest in U.S. history.... Yet, little came of the boycott, and the activists' demands resonate still." From WNYC (Demand for School Integration Leads to Massive 1964 Boycott — In New York City)

AM News: Teachers Unions Undaunted By Iowa (Plus: Detroit, Chicago Drama)

NEA, AFT Presidents: Hillary Clinton Can Make Things Happen PK12: Teachers' union leaders who put muscle and money behind Democratic presidential hopeful Hillary Clinton say they're not disheartened with her photo finish in the Iowa caucuses.

Detroit Public Schools Emergency Manager To Step Down NPR: The state-appointed emergency manager of the Detroit public schools system is calling it quits. Darnell Earley was a big target because of his job before this one — as emergency manager of Flint. See also NYT.

Chicago Teachers Union calls proposed cuts by district 'an act of war' Chicago Tribune: One day after the Chicago Teachers Union rejected a contract proposal from Chicago Public Schools, district officials said they would slash school budgets and stop paying the bulk of teachers' pension contributions — moves CTU's president quickly decried.

Chicago Schools Announce Cuts After Union Rejects Offer AP: Chicago school officials say they're ready to cut $100 million from school budgets and force teachers to pay more pension costs after the teachers' union rejected the latest offer in contentious contract negotiations that have lasted over a year.

Senior Education official collapses after heated four-hour hearing on Hill Washington Post: A senior executive at the Education Department who was the target of a four-hour interrogation by members of Congress on Tuesday collapsed after the hearing and was taken by ambulance to George Washington University Hospital.

This 17-year-old is a rising voice in Baltimore’s Black Lives Matter movement Washington Post: A high-ranking police officer was reassigned after the teen called attention to his tweets, which she said showed “entrenched racism.”

Demand for School Integration Leads to Massive 1964 Boycott — In New York City WNYC:  It didn't happen in the South; it happened in New York City, where the mostly white elected officials and Board of Education members said they believed in integrated education. 

Hoaxers increasingly going online to threaten schools AP: In December, Los Angeles, New York City and several other school systems received an email warning of a grisly attack. In late January, districts in Delaware, Virginia, Massachusetts, New Jersey and elsewhere received bomb threats phoned in using an electronic voice. In almost every instance, the threats disrupted the lives of thousands of students. Schools were closed or locked down. 

Afternoon Listen: The Premiere Episode Of "Have You Heard?"

It's finally here: New Progressive Education Podcast launches, hosted by Jennifer Berkshire and Aaron French. First up is a look at African-American parents in Philadelphia who oppose standardized testing. Or, check out the fundraising site. Agree or disagree with the perspective being explored, you've got to admire the sound quality.

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in This Week In Education are strictly those of the author and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Scholastic, Inc.