Thursday, January 28, 2016

Public Ed News Roundup

Not from The Onion -

Court rules Michigan has no responsibility to provide quality public education


From The Pittsburgh Courier (italics/bold mine):
In a blow to schoolchildren statewide, the Michigan Court of Appeals ruled on Nov. 7 the State of Michigan has no legal obligation to provide a quality public education to students in the struggling Highland Park School District. 
A 2-1 decision reversed an earlier circuit court ruling that there is a “broad compelling state interest in the provision of an education to all children.” The appellate court said the state has no constitutional requirement to ensure schoolchildren actually learn fundamental skills such as reading — but rather is obligated only to establish and finance a public education system, regardless of quality. Waving off decades of historic judicial impact on educational reform, the majority opinion also contends that “judges are not equipped to decide educational policy.”

Thinking of how we change thinking about supporting low-income families in Washington state - a great report from the Washington State Budget and Policy Center, Proposed Two-Generation Legislation is Important Step in Improving Family Economic Security.   
With nearly one of every three children in Washington state living in families at risk of not meeting basic needs, poverty poses a significant threat to future generations, as well as to the contributions they can make to our communities and economy. 

Lawmakers can help improve the well-being of children by passing House Bill 2518, which supports a two-generation approach to family economic security (see graphic) – so that both parents and their children have the opportunity to get ahead.
A hugely important case about Special Education has come before the U.S. Supreme Court, Fry v. Napoleon Community Schools.  
Issue: Whether the Handicapped Children’s Protection Act of 1986 commands exhaustion in a suit, brought under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act, that seeks damages – a remedy that is not available under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.
Article in the Atlantic about how terrible it is when wealthier parents donate to their kids' schools.  I don't support most of their contentions (especially not in Seattle.)  I support parents who support public education.

Senator Patty Murray wants to hear your student loan debt stories
The ranking Democrat on the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on Tuesday launched a comment form on her website, encouraging people to share their struggles to afford college and manage student loans. Murray said the collection of stories is meant to keep pressure on Republicans to work across the aisle to address college affordability.
Hey, looks like Common Core will cost states much more than was originally thought, via The Federalist.  What a surprise.  (Interestingly at the Work Session on the 2016-2017 budget, it was mentioned that software contracts are higher than staff thought.  Some of those contracts are for testing software.)

Good opinion piece in the NY Times - Teach Your Teachers Well.
In schools, the way adults learn always defines the way the students learn. Evaluations should have teeth, but that’s not the mechanism that will put a strong teacher in every classroom. Schools need to nurture our students and our teachers.

2 comments:

Watching said...


"Hey, looks like Common Core will cost states much more than was originally thought, via The Federalist. What a surprise. (Interestingly at the Work Session on the 2016-2017 budget, it was mentioned that software contracts are higher than staff thought. Some of those contracts are for testing software.)"

Melissa,

Have you been able to find the costs for software contracts as it relates to SBAC testing?

Melissa Westbrook said...

I can ask but there's $3M in BTA for assessment contracts.