- Broad Suspends $1M Prize for Urban School Districts, LA Times: Eli Broad has decided that urban school systems are failing to improve quickly enough, and said he’s no longer certain that he wants to reward traditional school districts at all.
- Nation’s High School Graduation Rate Ticks Up For Second Year in Row, Washington Post: New federal data released this month shows that 81 percent of the class of 2013 graduated within four years.
- Uncovering Security Flaws in Digital Education Products for Children, NY Times: The Times takes an in-depth look at how well edtech companies are protecting children. Some experts say that the lapse in privacy can be attributed to young start-ups focusing on market share, rather than on comprehensive privacy and security protection.
- Teachers Mixed on CCSS, Support Blended Learning, The Journal: Results from a poll of Assoc. of American Educators’ members shows that 9 out of 10 teachers in America use tech in the classroom, and 2/3 support the idea of a blended classroom. Slightly more than half, however, have an unfavorable view of the CCSS.
- Fewer Top Grads Want to Join TFA, NY Times: For the second year in a row, TFA applications are down, breaking a 15-year growth trend. This year applications are down by 10 percent.
- The President’s Budget Request, US Dept. of Ed: In the 2016 budget request from the White House, the President is pushing for an overhaul of ESEA (aka NCLB). It also includes an additional $1B for Title I grants, as well as a new $125M for a Next Generation High Schools program.
- Is Your First Grader College Ready, New York Times: An article causing a stir this month examines the growing push among parents, educators, and other leaders to create a college-going culture. Some say we’re robbing kids of their childhood by pushing the issue at such a young age.
- NY Launches Ambitious Plan to Spread Broadband, Education Week: Gov. Cuomo has launched a plan that would require providers to pony up at least 100mbps to schools. More than 2,000 of NY’s schools say they are using broadband with speeds lower than 100 mbps, and nearly 500 schools have no broadband at all.
- How Tech Will Change the World, The Verge: Bill Gates is guest editing a four-part series on The Verge this month. He is discussing how technology will change the world by 2030.
- Spreading Personalized Learning, edSurge: A group of organizations will be working together to be incubators of new school models and how they can share best practices in a way that allows for scale of personalized learning. LEAP and New Schools for NOLA are two examples of successful school incubators that these groups are following.
- G+L Traffic Hints at Increasingly Global Interest in Games: Games + Learning celebrated its one-year birthday this month. In a blog post, it looks at the increasing momentum of GBL, especially across the entire world.
- Differentiation Doesn’t Work, Ed Week Commentary: In one of the most commented on articles of the week, this piece claims that differentiated instruction is a farce. It claims that “differentiation in practice is harder to implement in a heterogeneous classroom than it is to juggle with one arm tied behind your back.”
- Dept. Of Ed Launches Summits Aimed at Improving Tech, Games + Learning: Over the next six months, federal leaders will visit a dozen cities to collaborate with superintendents and school leaders on how to better integrate technology into classrooms. They will aim to develop plans that fit the communities’ needs.
- How to Make Blended Learning Work, EdSurge: A director from Aspire Public Schools, a high-performing charter network, talks about the lessons the network has learned over the years of implementing blended learning programs throughout the schools. In the post is a link to a new book that acts as a handbook for schools to share in the promising practices.
- A-GAMES Project Releases Case Studies: A new report looks at the ways that features in learning games can support effective formative assessment.
- Schott Foundation Report on Black Boys and Public Education: “Black Lives Matter” a new report from the Schott Foundation takes a 50-state look at how well public education is serving African-American males.
- US Teaching Time Greatly Exaggerated: A new study says that while US teachers work very hard, and for relatively low pay under increasingly stressful circumstances, they aren’t spending that much more time than other OECD nations instructing children.