DA Daily

Will Pioneer Institute knock out Common Core?

Four years ago, when 44 states had adopted the K12 curriculum standards, the whole thing seemed quiet and inevitable. Today, resistance is everywhere. Pioneer Institute has a national profile as the brains of the Common Core opposition. The institute might well succeed in its effort to knock out the Common Core. But if that happens, what comes next for education?

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School standards, curricula aren't the same

Fanning the firestorm over Common Core State Standards is the fear that by adopting common standards, states are signing onto a national curriculum and thus undermining the decisions of local school boards and educators. Standards remain constant, but curriculum can be altered locally year to year or classroom to classroom to ensure students are meeting the learning goals.

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Back-to-school shopping sprees are a thing of the past

Back-to-school shopping is no longer a frenzied one-day spending spree. Families are spending more, but they are doing so over a longer period of time as they search for the best deals. Families are expected to spend $670 on average on back-to-school shopping, up 5 percent from last year.

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Texas board approves paid trips to charter schools

The state Board of Education has given approval for its members to take all-expenses-paid trips touring out-of-state charter school networks seeking approval to operate in Texas. The fact-finding missions will be funded by private foundations or individual donors — not taxpayers or the charter schools themselves.

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New KIPP charter venture turns school into community hub

The KIPP charter school chain's newest campus in southwest Houston is launching a community-building model designed to break the cycle of poverty by working with other nonprofits to provide everything from good schools to health care and, ultimately, mixed-income housing.

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Iowa district's new school bus cameras questioned

Critics say newly installed stop-arm cameras on Iowa City school buses violate the city’s traffic camera ban that, when adopted in 2013, was considered rare and possibly unique nationally. At minimum, they said these cameras, which help identify motorists passing school buses illegally, violate the spirit of the law.

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The big sort: Chicago's choice system and achievement levels

An analysis shows an unintended consequence of Chicago's choice system: students of different achievement levels are being sorted into separate high schools. WBEZ found few schools in the city enroll the full span of students. Instead, low-scoring students and high-scoring students in particular are attending completely different high schools.

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Georgia considers exemptions to school food standards

Georgia's Board of Education has proposed up to 30 exemption days per school every year to give schools options to sell sweet treats during fundraisers. School officials can allow fundraisers to sell food no longer allowed in schools under the federal nutrition standards.

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Families expected to spend more on school items this year

Families expect to spend more on school items than they did last year, even though more than 80 percent say the tough economy still impacts their spending decisions, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual back-to-school survey.

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New Massachusetts school safety recommendations released

Critical safety changes were announced that impact all Massachusetts schools. The Massachusetts Task Force on School Safety and Security released a 30-page report that lists 29 safety recommendations for school leaders.

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