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AM News: Whatever Happened To Central Falls High School?

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After Radical Change, R.I. School Shows Signs Of Improvement NPR: In 2010, Central Falls made headlines for firing every high school teacher. The firings were part of a federal program promising big changes at the nation's worst schools. Four years later, there are signs the program is helping, but there are also questions about whether the improvement will last.

Chicago reverses course, cancels school on Monday AP: Chicago Public School officials say they're cancelling classes ahead of Monday's bitter cold temperatures, after first saying they would be open....

L.A. Unified finally hiring teachers again LA Times: After an extended period of layoffs and hiring freezes, the Los Angeles Unified School District has resumed bringing on new teachers, while also being more selective about their quality than in the past.

Report gives local Teach for America educators high marks in math Baltimore Sun: Study finds that teachers in the alternative certification program are as effective at teaching math as their peers

GED Gets A Makeover To Keep Pace With Changing Workforce NPR: The GED test is getting an overhaul. The exam has historically served adults who have fallen through the cracks of the educational system. NPR's Rachel Martin talks with Anthony Carnevale, director of the Center on Education and the Workforce at Georgetown University, about the impact of the new GED exams.

NYC Schools Chancellor Pick Carmen Fariña Leaves More Questions Than Answers HuffPost: Farina only has two days between her appointment and the first day of her job. The quick turnaround means advocates and experts throughout the country are left to wonder whether -- and how soon -- the mayor and his new schools chief will be able to deliver on their progressive promises when tasked with the management of the city's largest agency. 

The Online Education Revolution Drifts Off Course WNYC: One year ago, many were pointing to the growth of massive open online courses, or MOOCs, as the most important trend in higher education. Many saw the rapid expansion of MOOCs as a higher education revolution that would help address two long-vexing problems: access for underserved students and cost.

School Experiment That Burned Boy Was Focus of Federal Warning NYT: A video produced by a safety agency warned of the dangers of a chemistry experiment that went awry at a Manhattan school this week.

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The GED and NYC stories betoken a shift, I think, from the kind of outgoing education reform emphasis on minimum-competency academic tests that the Bush, Bloomberg, and Obama administrations have focused on to matters actually relevant to helping those who have fallen behind to actually compete in a globalized economy in the 21st century. Of course that's what the new GED purports to support -- I haven't actually seen the test and so cannot verify any efficacy it will hope to claim -- but believe the direction is a good one, after watching a generation of young educators, many of them acolytes of Teach For America, banging their heads against walls of social and cultural inadequacy and making terribly slow, if any, progress in spite of years of strenuous efforts amid awful conditions.

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