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For students at Newport-Mesa Unified School District, flexibility is the way of the future. In a drive to give to its students what it calls "21st century skills," the district has made a flexible high school redesign one of the centerpieces of its new five-year strategic plan. Frederick Navarro, Newport-Mesa's director of secondary curriculum and instruction, says the district is following trends in higher education toward satellite campuses, online opportunities and alternative class schedules.

The best thing to happen to one-to-one computing this year was Cobb County. Sure, almost every single part of the program went wrong, but that's precisely my point.


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Writers are often thought of as solitary figures. Yet good writers know the importance of connections. Their work is to connect ideas, words and images that will, in turn, connect with readers. Research shows that helping students become good writers requires that schools also make the "write" connections:

Teachers and students Sheida White, on analyzing the 1998 NAEP reading assessment, observed a positive relationship between "teachers talking with students about what students were writing and students' writing scores," especially in grades 8 and 12.

Problem: Like other school districts, the Jersey City (N.J.) Public Schools collects comprehensive data about its students, including test scores, then stores it in electronic warehouses. Among other things, data is essential in addressing accountability requirements under No Child Left Behind. As a special needs district, Jersey City also needs data to meet state requirements.

Adults speak nostalgically about the glory days of youth, but a recent study funded by the National Institute of Mental Health strikes a different chord. "Half of all lifetime cases of mental illness begin by age 14," researchers report. "Three quarters have begun by age 24. Thus, mental disorders are really the chronic diseases of the young."

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Avoiding Large-Scale Contract Problems

Everything that could have gone wrong seemingly did in the Apple computer contract with Cobb County School District in Georgia last summer, according to investigating firm, Kessler International, which specializes in corporate investigations.

New Titles Teach Healthy Eating

The president says the economy is on sound footing. And, true enough, many states across the union are experiencing budget surpluses, and spent the summer debating increases to their education budgets. So why are consumers still so wary, and why are educators still struggling with recession-style budget allocations?

Life must march on. School districts across the country have opened their doors to many of the nearly 240,000 children in K-12 that have been displaced and uprooted from their homes and neighborhood schools after Hurricane Katrina obliterated or drowned everything they knew along the Gulf of Mexico coastline.