You are here

Feature

It is a commonly held belief that participation in school sports helps build character. Students can learn everything from teamwork to good sportsmanship from their time on the playing field, the theory goes. A new report from the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement shows that these assumptions might be correct.

In a recent Web seminar about Data-Driven Decision Making, three experts in the field - Douglas Reeves, CEO and founder of the Center for Performance Assessment; Stephen C. Jones, superintendent of Norfolk (Va.) Public Schools; and Howard Woodard, the chief information officer for the Georgia Department of Education - answered your questions on this topic. Here's a sample of what was covered. (To view the entire presentation, visit www.districtadministration.com/webinars.).

At Lewis Elementary School in Portland, Ore., blog posts and e-mails have replaced paper notes stuffed in teachers' mailboxes. Staff meetings, now devoid of the exchange of routine information, are done in half the time and focus solely on best practices and curriculum. Planning for the staff holiday party? Done online. So too are the principal's advisories to staff, including recommended magazine articles, notice of cancelled meetings and even notes and minutes from various staff meetings.

Educators still trying to come to grips with No Child Left Behind will soon face another challenge. Although this new program will start in four months, no one knows the rules yet, but everyone knows what's at stake $790 million in grants.

There's no question the raw numbers pouring out of President Bush's fiscal year 2007 budget look bleak for education. It cuts total education funding by 3.8 percent from FY 2006. It proposes to eliminate 42 education programs, including all funding for Perkins Loans, LEAP, education technology, gifted education, parent resource centers, elementary and secondary school counseling, school leadership, safe and drug-free schools state grants, arts in education, and the Close-Up Foundation.

Buying a laptop computer for every student: About $1,000

Hiring a consultant to teach teachers how to use laptops in lessons:

Roughly $1,500/day

Watching students use technology to draw conclusions something they wouldn't

normally be able to do:

Priceless

Another year, another budget, another fight. Educators are saying, and congressmen are agreeing, that the federal education budget proposal of $54.4 billion for 2007 is just not good enough.

Pages