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AM News: Elections Change Landscape In JeffCo, St. Paul, & Seattle

Jeffco school board members who pushed controversial changes ousted in recall ChalkbeatCO: After two years of political acrimony in the Colorado’s second largest school district, three conservative school board members were easily swept out of office Tuesday in a recall election that cost more than a million dollars and attracted national attention. Replacing them are three candidates backed by a constituency of well-connected parents, high-profile county Democrats and the teachers union. They will serve the rest of the recall targets’ four-year terms. See also HuffPost, Washington Post.

St. Paul school board: 4 union-backed newcomers elected TwinCities.com: The union wanted more input on the district's major initiatives, such as the mainstreaming of special-education students and a shift away from out-of-school suspensions. Several candidates in April sought the Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party endorsement under the banner of Caucus for Change, a union-backed, anti-incumbent movement of mostly teachers and parents. The four who emerged ran as a unified team, promising to hold district leaders accountable for missed enrollment goals, sagging test scores and racial inequities.

Four newcomers to join Seattle School Board Seattle Times: With incumbent Marty McLaren losing to challenger Leslie Harris, four newcomers will make up the majority of the seven-member Seattle School Board.

In Texas, Elementary Schools Mete Out More Punishment to Black Students Washington Post: An analysis of discipline in elementary schools across Texas shows that black students, especially boys, are suspended and expelled at disproportionately high rates and are labeled as troublemakers as early as pre-kindergarten. The study by Texas Appleseed focuses on the second-most populous state, but it mirrors school discipline patterns nationwide. It also comes as concern grows about suspensions, which researchers have linked to greater risks of academic failure, dropping out of high school and involvement in the juvenile justice system.

Case Tests Whether New York Underfunds Schools WSJ: The governor’s lawyers have sought to dismiss the case, saying state dollars for education rose significantly in recent years. In state Supreme Court in Manhattan, JusticeManuel Mendez will hear arguments on the case Wednesday. A key question is whether the state has a constitutional obligation to abide by a 2007 funding formula, which was passed by the Legislature after years of litigation in a case brought by the Campaign for Fiscal Equity.

Two Chicago schools inch closer to integration after divided vote WBEZ: Ultimately, the council does not have jurisdiction to approve a merger, but Ogden principal Michael Beyer said he wouldn’t move forward with the idea without the council’s support. Although the vote was largely symbolic, six members of the 13-member council chose to abstain.

As Transgender Students Make Gains, Schools Hesitate at Bathrooms NYT:  Many schools have crafted policies that require transgender students to use private changing and showering facilities, drawing complaints of discrimination. See also NBC News.

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

Success Metrics Questioned in School Program Funded by Goldman NYT: Early-education experts are questioning the metrics used to measure the success of a public-private preschool program in Utah in which Goldman Sachs has invested.

Possible candidates emerge in LAUSD superintendent search KPCC: “They need to find a person who is tough, and compassionate, who is fiscally responsible,” said former Los Angeles County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky. That’s the reputation Yaroslavsky himself earned in nearly 40 years in elective office. So does he want to be the next LAUSD superintendent as some have suggested?

Tenn. Appoints New Leader for State-Run Turnaround District District Dossier: Tenn. Gov. Bill Haslam has appointed Malika Anderson to head Tennessee's special school district for its worst-performing schools. Anderson will replace Chris Barbic, who has led the Achievement School District (ASD) since its inception in 2012. He will leave the job at the end of the year and Anderson will take over in January.

Education Systems Around the World Failing to Prepare Students for the Workforce: Survey RealClear Education: The sentiments come from a new survey, “Connecting Education to the Real World,” being released today at the World Innovation Summit for Education in Doha, Qatar. The summit unites thousands of experts and innovators across global sectors to foster collaboration and innovation in education.

Better Pay, More Time to Plan and One Other Thing Teachers Want From You LA Times: The report, which was provided to The Times and is being released Tuesday, calls for a comprehensive overhaul of the pipeline for becoming a teacher and staying in the classroom. The report, written by former Obama administration official and current CAP Executive Vice President Carmel Martin, CAP's teacher policy director Lisette Partelow and CAP's vice president of education policy Catherine Brown, points out different ways to make teaching a more desirable profession.


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