Opinion & Analysis

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When school leaders empower teachers, better ideas emerge

In a distributed leadership model, no one person at the top of the hierarchy makes all the decisions that will affect the work lives of the adults in the building. When done well, it can create a community of people on the same page. And when teachers feel valued and trusted, they are more likely to trust and empower their students.

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Let's take a time-out on testing

Florida's new testing regimen encourages fear and cynicism. This week's technological issues only fuel that fire, and they're not the full extent of the problem. It's time for a time-out.

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School construction bill needs speedy action in Nevada

The longer it takes to pass SB119, which allows school districts to extend construction bonding for 10 years, the greater the chance that some new schools won’t be complete in time for the start of the 2017-18 school year.

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Why schools should undermine moral teachings

By letting moral values remain opinion - questionable at will by second graders and college students alike - we give those opinions the power to change, and the power to change us. So as a parent, we should teach morals, values and opinions. The schools will teach the children to question us. In that way, we all end up on the right side of history.

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Invest in low-income community schools' energy efficiency

Securing billions of new private dollars for school energy-efficiency projects in low-income, disadvantaged areas would allow the resulting energy savings to remain with each school.

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Oregon school attendance bill could backfire

A bill that would tie school funding to attendance, not enrollment, is well-intentioned, but it runs the risk of penalizing school districts for circumstances beyond their control. It follows the familiar pattern of state-ordered requirements without funding to implement them.

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Community schools and nonprofits could work and live together

What if we focused on developing integrated approaches in which schools and nonprofits not only shared space, but also shared expertise, planning, decision-making power, successes and failures? There is an opportunity to offer more to children by aligning operations and service delivery to save resources for organizations and communities.

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Shortchanging our schools

Although Kentucky school boards are allowed to raise property tax rates enough to produce 4 percent more revenue each year without being subject to recall by voters, fewer districts have done so since the 2007-08 school year, according to an analysis of state data.

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Utah Legislature should look to keep school board elections nonpartisan

Utah's Senate has passed a bill injecting partisan politics into elections for the state school board and for school boards in large districts. Attempts to turn state and local school board races into partisan contests are solutions looking for a problem, and they would create far too many new problems of their own.

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Stop bickering over standards and fund schools

Recent proposals gloss over the fact that Arizona's education system is already underfunded when compared to the rest of the nation. If Arizona funded an equivalent of the national average per pupil, its classroom percentage would far exceed the 61 percent goal set by the governor.

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