Opinion & Analysis

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It will take more than money to improve Idaho's schools

Idaho's State Board of Education is proposing to change significantly the way Idaho pays and evaluates teachers. Their proposal will markedly increase cost. But will their proposals actually make things better?

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It’s time to legalize charter schools in Alabama

If there is a silver lining to coming late to the charter school game, it is that Alabama does not have to face uncharted obstacles of student selection, teacher accountability, and the myriad of other challenges to starting and operating a new kind of public school.

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Deaf children need proper accommodations in school

Deaf and hard-of-hearing students are not receiving the accommodations they need in K12 schools. Many of these students already start school with language deficits simply because they are hard of hearing and are not able to get all of the pertinent information that is necessary for their success.

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Student testing time is 'huge problem,' says N.J. schools superintendent

The result of so many assessments is hours of instructional time sacrificed in favor of testing and test prep, testified Hanover Park Regional High School District Superintendent Carol Grossi in front of the Study Commission on the Use of Student Assessments in New Jersey.

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Struggling online school model raises serious questions

The current model for internet-based schools doesn’t seem to work. What that tells us is that the fundamentals remain crucial. Teachers, time in a classroom and resources matter. So far, the evidence suggests many online schools in Colorado have failed to develop a model that delivers on these fundamentals.

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States move to make citizenship exams a classroom aid

The growing trend to require students to pass the citizenship test has created controversy, and not because of any issues related to immigration. Rather, at a time when resistance to standardized testing is growing, some educators worry that the new requirement will rob teachers of instructional time.

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Minnesota has critical need for school counselors

Minnesota’s public schools have fewer counselors per student than all but two other states. A state senator is working on a bill that would have the state pay for half the cost of additional counselors when school districts pay for the other half.

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Oregon bill would nudge parents to say 'no' to state testing

Opponents of standardized testing who consider noncompliance have found an ally in an Oregon state representative who has sponsored legislation that would give Oregonians the "unrestricted right" to yank their children from statewide assessments. It would also require schools to notify parents of this right prior to testing.

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Parents need trigger law to hold low-performing schools accountable

As long as accountability measures are fully controlled by government institutions, the accountability will be lacking. Public officials will always be more tolerant of the systemic failure of schools than the public itself because, with rare exceptions, their children aren’t the ones being failed. Real accountability is rooted in choice.

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Why we need school choice

When children are matched with schools that reflect their interests, talents, skills and needs, they feel more comfortable, more motivated and more inspired to learn.

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