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AM News: Will Duncan Risk Angering Powerful Hawaii Senator?

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Is Hawaii One Step Closer to Losing Race to Top Grant? Politics K12: With the fate of Hawaii's $75 million Race to the Top grant hanging in the balance, this is not good news for the Aloha State.

New York Teacher Ratings Renew Evaluation Debate NPR: The Obama administration is making some federal funds contingent on schools using student test scores and classroom observations to evaluate teachers. New York City recently sparked a controversy when it rated thousands of teachers with test scores alone — and then released those ratings to the public.

The Posse Foundation Comes to Houston for the 2012-13 School Year NYT:  The Posse Foundation, which sends students from large urban school districts to elite colleges, is coming to Texas in the 2012-13 academic year.

As 'Bully' Opens, the Bullied, Bullies and Bystanders Weigh In PBS: A 12-year-old is harassed on the school bus, a 16-year-old lesbian is ostracized by her community and a young girl brings a gun to school to face her bullies. Two parents speak for their late son because he committed suicide after being tormented at school. These are the subjects of the much-anticipated film "Bully" from director Lee Hirsch, out in theaters across the country on Friday.

More teachers banned from classroom in APS cheating scandal CNN: Georgia’s Professional Standards Commission (PSC) has revoked the teaching permits of 67 more educators implicated in the Atlanta Public Schools cheating scandal.  Some of the teachers were barred from the classroom for two years; others had their certificates permanently revoked, according to WSB.

MORE NEWS ITEMS INSIDE

The flip: Classwork at home, homework in class Washington Post: For nearly 20 years, high school chemistry teacher Jonathan Bergmann would teach a lesson in class, help students after school and give them standard homework assignments. He was good enough to win a teacher award. But seven years ago, he and Aaron Sams, another teacher at Woodland Park High School in Colorado, decided to do something different.

More children passing the gifted exam, but not in poorer districts GothamSchools: More children than ever passed the city’s admissions test for gifted and talented programs this year, according to data released today by the Department of Education. But the number of children qualifying in the city’s poorest districts has actually fallen in recent years.

New York City’s Tutoring Industry Grows With Competition for Admissions NYT: New York City parents are paying hundreds and even thousands of dollars to give their children an edge on state standardized tests.

Cleveland mayor, determined to improve failing schools, takes on teacher union over reform AP: The mayor's proposals, the subject of lengthy negotiations that led to a compromise agreement last week, would limit the right of teachers to block reassignments based on seniority, a cherished prerogative of the longest-serving teachers. via GothamSchools.

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The competition for admissions to New York City's selective middle schools appears to be growing overheated, and should be stopped by the city's Department of Education banning selective admissions to public middle schools based on fourth- and fifth-graders' test scores. The backwash effects from this kind of child-rearing can be most unfortunate, as I witnessed among all those families in Korea who yearned to be free of the kind of hell NYC's leadership may be encouraging. By contrast, I am now reading Vivien Stewart's commendable "A World-Class Education", and the contrast between these practices and those in Finland, a world leader for primary school education, are striking. We ought to be developing creativity, personal responsibility, and problem-solving abilities during primary school; this swotting for tests can come later, if necessary.

There's a case just broke in Vermont where a bully was beating up a student on a school bus. The entire episode was video taped. The bus driver never spoke up, never called for help, didn't pull over and try to end the fight. Students stood around and cheered the bully on. I know there was a lot of attention focused on the rating of this movie "Bully," but now I'd like the focus to turn to getting people to speak up rather than stand idly by. It's more than teens who need to stand up to bullying, teachers and parents need to make sure they're speaking up to end it too.

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