Alison DeNisco

Associate Editor

Articles by Alison DeNisco

District Administration, August 2015

Many school leaders say they are renovating or building to maximize space and update old facilities
Since January, 19 states introduced legislation to require students take basic history exams. (Click to enlarge)
5 other states have rejected the proposal
In Clear Lake Middle School, part of Clear Lake Community School District in northern Iowa, teachers have time every week to access student data and tailor instruction.
Iowa middle school students leave early one day each week so teachers can analyze test results
Rural Saco School District is located off Highway 2 in northeastern Montana. The highway and nearby train put the district’s 50-student school at greater risk for intruders, Superintendent Gordon Hahn says.
Organizations such as the National Association of Secondary School Principals recommend districts hire a school resource officer instead of arming staff members
Arizona district adds robotics and a STEM drama club
Kimberly Cervantes is an 18-year-old Compton student and plaintiff in the trauma case. The other four students involved in the case are under 18 and anonymous.
Compton USD sued over alleged treatment of students who'd witnessed violence
New National Association of School Nurses president Beth Mattey is the school nurse at Mt. Pleasant High School in Delaware.
Highland Park ISD in Kansas and Brevard County, Fla. name new superintendents

District Administration, July 2015

Fourteen states require a student be allowed to fulfill a math, science or foreign language credit for high school graduation by completing a computer science course. (Click to enlarge)
Recent reports reveal lack of female and minority students in AP computer science courses
Students from Richard J. Lee Elementary School, part of Coppell ISD in Dallas, have a lesson in the school garden.
A net-zero building produces more energy than it consumes within the course of a year
Last year, more than 900 middle school students gathered at the American Museum of Natural History in one of New York City’s largest science fairs (with more than 400 projects) on the 10th anniversary of the museum’s middle school science initiative, Urban Advantage.
American Museum of Natural History provides research and lab experiences for under-resourced high school students
Under a new plan for decentralization, Denver Public Schools will have flexibilities in curriculum and assessments that are traditionally associated with charter schools.
Principals of traditional public schools getting the flexibility of charters
Students in four classrooms at Vallecito Elementary School, part of Dixie School District outside of San Francisco, now use standing desks.
Hundreds of schools use standing desks, especially as costs drop to around $100 per unit
Hacienda La Puente USD in California signed a five-year, $5.3 million energy savings performance contract in part to upgrade exterior lighting at four high schools.
Districts turns to "energy savings performance contracts"
New Birmingham Superintendent Kelley Castlin-Gacutan is a native of the area and formerly served as  interim superintendent for Bibb County Schools in Georgia.
Stephen Green takes over as superintendent of Dekalb County School District in Georgia this summer

District Administration, June 2015

Districts deliver the more rigorous instruction that advanced students need to reach full potential
23 states have high populations of American Indian students, and reservations see high turnover rates of teachers and administrators
Project’s funding came from bond passed by voters in 2012 and state money
Ohio administrators may face pressure to keep more art and music teachers, nurses, librarians and other staff, but have more control to reduce the numbers.
Law urges districts to focus on psychologists, computer teachers, gifted education specialists and ESL teachers
Universal Design for Learning (UDL) addresses students’ individual learning needs to reach standards
46 states provide additional funding dedicated to ELL education, says a March report from the Education Commission of the States. (Click to enlarge)
Some 34 states fund ELL programs through their state’s primary funding formula
New PD apps can save districts money on travel costs by connecting them virtually with education consultants.
Some apps allow teachers to videotape themselves so they can get instant feedback from peers and mentors
Leadership is second only to classroom instruction when it comes to influencing student learning
An ASCD survey found only a small number of people sensed a strong Common Core opt-out movement. (Click to enlarge_
It remains unclear how widespread the opt-out movement is across the nation
Curtis Jones is the first permanent superintendent in two years at Georgia's Bibb County School District.
Administrator creates new alternative high school program at Westerville City School District in Ohio