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The Ohio Board of Regents is spearheading a $15 million, five-year project to improve middle school reading and math scores. Called the Middle School Achievement through Technology-Rich Interventions, the project brings together partners in Ohio, California, Kansas and New Mexico to develop games, activities and learning resources for iPods, PDAs, video cameras and other mobile technologies.

When students in Livonia, Mich., were prompted by a local radio station to visit a unique Web site with the name of their school district in the address, they were assaulted by adult-oriented content touting "75 live cams, 12 girls and no rules."

Investigation Finds No Propaganda But Questions Linger

An investigation of the U.S. Department of Education's public relations contracts found both "covert propaganda" in one contract and "no covert propaganda" in other contracts.

An investigation by the Government Accountability Office found the Bush administration violated the law by buying favorable coverage of government education policies via payments to conservative commentator Armstrong Williams and by hiring a company to analyze media perceptions of the Republican Party.

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.

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