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AM News: Duncan To Join "Repeal NCLB" Chorus -- But Favors Annual Testing

Arne Duncan to call for No Child Left Behind revamp Politico: In a speech Monday, Duncan will lay out his principles for rewriting the education law, sources familiar with the event confirmed. But he is not expected to back down from his insistence that a rewritten law retain the federal mandate that all students be tested in math and reading every year from third through eighth grade.

Governors Laud 'Higher Standards,' Plead for NCLB Renewal in NGA Speeches State EdWatch: Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, the chairman of the National Governors Association, said more rigorous expectations for students were important, but not the only consideration for stronger schools.

Obama In Tennessee To Promote Free Community College NPR: President Obama is on the road as part of his effort to jump-start his 2015 agenda. Today he's in Tennessee, talking about higher education. See also NYTWashington PostPK12.

A 'Sizable Decrease' In Those Passing The GED NPR: The new GED is more expensive, computer-based and tougher. As a result some states are embracing alternative tests, and the number of GEDs awarded last year fell.

Study Questions Stock Teacher-Turnover Stat Teacher Beat: In contrast to the conventional wisdom, an estimated 70 percent of teachers stay in the profession after five years, an analysis of federal data shows.

Could push to improve teacher training start by taking a cue from flight schools? PBS: Just like pilots aren’t allowed to fly solo until they are capable, Deborah Ball, dean of the University of Michigan’s School of Education, thinks teaching programs should follow the same principle. That’s the analogy Ball drew last summer when speaking about teacher preparation to a group of higher education leaders at a forum in Aspen, Colorado.

More news below (and throughout the day at @alexanderrusso).

Massachusetts Tightens Rules on Restraining, Secluding Students ProPublica: Massachusetts' reforms were shaped, in part, by a June story by ProPublica and NPR that showed physical holds and isolation remain common in public schools across the country. Our analysis of federal data revealed these techniques were used more than 267,000 times in the 2012 school year, with some schools employing them dozens – or even hundreds – of times.

Former LAUSD board president and charter advocate to head Magnolia schools LA Daily News: Magnolia Public Schools appointed former Los Angeles Unified School Board President and charter schools champion Caprice Young to head operations amid scrutiny that threatens to close two campuses. LAUSD moved to shut down Magnolia Science Academy 7 in Northridge and 6 in the Palms neighborhood of West Los Angeles in June, alleging

Superintendent calls for $70 million in teacher raises in new Fairfax budget Washington Post: Fairfax County Schools Superintendent Karen Garza will seek almost $70 million in pay raises for teachers next year as part of a budget proposal she announced Thursday night.“Our outstanding employees are key to our past and future success,” Garza said. “And we are losing great teachers to surrounding school systems."

Success Academy cancels its plans to open new schools in 2015 ChalkbeatNY: A Success spokeswoman said the network canceled those plans last month during negotiations with the city, which ended with Success being offered public space for 10 schools opening or expanding in 2016. The decision to scrap the more immediate plans was not disclosed until Thursday.

Emanuel makes big promises for schools in second term Catalyst: If elected to a second term, Mayor Rahm Emanuel promises that within three years the graduation rate will go up by 15 points to 85 percent, the number of preschool classrooms will triple to 300 and the senior year of high school will be redesigned to include internships and 6,000 students taking City College classes to earn college credit. 


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What President Obama and Secretary Duncan are avoiding in their new policy proposals is addressing the stark mess that is the traditional American high school, which accounts for precisely the four-year period during which American pupils most rapidly fall behind their peers overseas. This should be addressed by replacing No Child Left Behind with a new Upper Secondary Education Act to complement a renewed Elementary and Lower Secondary Education Act. Under this proposal much of what President Obama wants to do with the community colleges would be prepared for by high school years that would start our youth on paths that lead towards college or careers but that would also assess them along the way, with public investment towards their further education dependent on their qualifying either for collegiate or career and technical education depending on the outcomes of assessments our young people would now have some incentive to study for, in contrast with a ridiculous present, when the wrong people are held to account for test results they have only limited power to affect.

All the goals Emanuel cockily pronounces that he'll magically meet are laudable, of course. Watch for -- I guarantee it -- a big increase in high-school pushouts, which is always the trick for juking the stats to pump up graduation rates when the pressure is on. (For the uninitiated, the less successful get pushed elsewhere, or into dropping out, before they get counted in the non-graduating rate.)

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