assessment

16 Race to the Top District Winners Announced

On December 11, 2012, the Education Department announced the 16 winners of the Race to the Top school district grants (RTTD). Sixty-one finalists had been announced recently out of an original 372 districts that turned in applications in November. A total of $400 million was due to go out, and winners ranged from $10 million to $40 million for a period of four years, depending on the population of the given district. The winners included urban and rural districts, small districts and large consortia, and public and charter schools.

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U.S. Lags in International Education Assessments

The results for international assessments on math, science, and reading are in: Students from East Asian countries, along with a select group of European countries, outperformed those in the United States, according to the results for the 2011 Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) and the Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS), released Dec. 11.

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Conn. Releases New 'Performance Index' For Every School

Parents who want a quick, easy snapshot of their child's school's performance can have it now with the release of a "school performance index" number for each of the state's 1,200 schools.

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Reshaping Alabama's Education System

Former Hanceville student Miranda Robertson made good grades and got all the inspiration she needed from her high school experience to eventually return as a teacher’s aide in the Cullman County school system. What she didn’t get? A diploma. Robertson would have graduated in 2005, and though she got to walk and received a certificate of attendance, she still couldn’t technically graduate because she failed one section of a certain standardized test. It didn’t matter that she made As and Bs every year — what she really needed was a passing mark on the Alabama High School Graduation Exam.

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NAACP Volunteers Pushing for Education Overhaul

The NAACP says it is mobilizing volunteers to lobby at the state and local levels for its biggest push to overhaul public education since the 1954 Supreme Court decision that integrated the nation’s classrooms. The historic civil rights organization unveiled a plan Thursday for salvaging U.S. public education. It advocates having children spend more hours and days in school, extending the number of years devoted to school, improving teacher training and preschool programs, and routing a greater share of school funds to the neediest students.

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Fla. Education Chief Defends Teacher Evaluations

Florida's interim education commissioner told worried lawmakers on Thursday that glitches in the first release of scores under the state's new teacher evaluation system are being fixed and that there's no reason to delay its implementation. The Department of Education took down a website showing nearly 97 percent of Florida teachers were rated "effective" or "highly effective" in the last school year within hours of putting it up on Wednesday.

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N.J. Superintendent Explains Test Scores As Just One Tool for Determining Success

While they can also be deemed useful, state-issued test scores are just one highly subjective piece of the puzzle in determining student progress, according to Superintendent of Schools Donna Cardiello.

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United Township Is First Ill. District to Use Performance Matters Assessment and Data Management System

Grappling with decreased local and state revenue and new, more rigorous learning standards for math and English language arts, Illinois school districts are seeking innovative ways to increase their efficiency as they strive to improve student performance. One system that is making it easier to meet rigorous requirements while saving time for school and district staff is Performance Matters, a web-based solution that provides an integrated platform for student assessment, data management and teacher effectiveness.

Highest Graduation Rates in America Announced

Preliminary data released by the U.S. Department of Education this week shows that Texas — along with five other states — ranks fourth in the nation for its four-year high school graduation rates. With an overall rate of 86 percent in the 2010-11 school year, the state follows Iowa, with 88 percent, and Wisconsin and Vermont, both at 87 percent.

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Report Cards For New York City Public High Schools Show Mixed Results

While almost half of city students enroll in college, Shael Polakow-Suransky, the city's Chief Academic Officer, thinks schools can do more.

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