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From DA

When Microsoft introduced its Tablet PCs two years ago, and promised a revolution in education technology, expectations were high. But revolutions aren't spontaneous, and two years later K-12 adoption of tablets has been minimal, held back by high prices and low functionality.

Districts should teach their students digital smarts

You need a driver's license to drive. You need a pilot's license to fl y. Why don't you need a license to navigate digital technology? Consider the following scenarios:

1. A cell phone rings in class.

Controversy is swirling in education circles after results of national test scores show charter schools, considered an alternative to public schools in the No Child Left Behind act, may not be what they are cracked up to be.

Perhaps it's time to end political social promotion

"Almost overwhelming." That's how one school principal describes his job. Still, 66 percent of the principals responding to a Public Agenda survey say they would choose the same career if starting out today. Says one, "I know we make a difference."

Hackers pepper the landscape of American schools. It's a fact of life. Five years ago, a small group of high school students in Urbana, Ill., were charged with credit card fraud. They used home computers, school computers and sniffer software to procure credit card numbers and then purchase goods online.

Pearson NCS

Prosper Assessment System

www.pearsonncs.com/prosper, Software, $1,500 and up (introductory pricing)

DOE's $2 Billon Windfall: Use It Or Lose It

For the first time, the federal government has informed states there is about $2 billion in federal funds owed to them. Essentially, the feds are saying, "Use it or lose it" by late September.

New Teacher Certification Program Angers NEA

In spite of overwhelming agreement about the objective of the No Child Left Behind law to put a highly qualified teacher in every classroom, there is debate about whether the Bush administration's approach will work.

The Sound of America

The hills (and valleys and highways and byways) are alive with the sounds of music and more. But the National Geographic Society is betting that students can learn to listen for those distinctive noises that define a community, with or without an Austrian governess around.

Dropping the Dropout Rate

When college-age mentors from the New Directions program in Harlingen, Texas, came calling at Dora Oliveras' middle school, she was wary at first. "I was doing OK in school," she recalls, "and I thought maybe New Directions was some kind of special ed program in high school."

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