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Evaluations give New Mexico's teachers more data

This year, in response to complaints that teachers didn’t fully understand how the new teacher evaluation ratings were generated last year, New Mexico's Public Education Department will include more detailed evaluation categories, including student test scores, principal observations, teacher attendance and student surveys.

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Texas governor signs bill exempting seniors from graduation exams

Gov. Greg Abbott approved a measure to reduce the required number of end-of-course tests to pass from five to three. The legislation will immediately exempt thousands of high school students from the stricter graduation requirements. Students still have to get a passing average in all their core classes.

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California bill to limit how districts investigate school residency

The Assembly bill does not specifically prohibit investigators from posing questions to children but it does require school boards to adopt a policy for residency investigations. The bill also requires investigators to identify themselves truthfully and five days' written notice to families before an investigation starts.

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In Palo Alto's high-pressure schools, suicides lead to soul-searching

The factors that lead to suicide are extremely complex, and simple lines cannot be drawn between academic stress and young people taking their own lives. But there's been a great deal of soul-searching about the pressures on high school students in the wake of these deaths.

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Virginia's largest school district now protects trans students and employees from discrimination

Fairfax is the largest school system in Virginia with more than 186,000 students. School board member Ryan McElveen, a proponent behind the amendment, said the proposal is designed to bring a "new age of respect," for transgender individuals.

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Vermont schools at the tipping point

State officials have long hoped for voluntary district consolidation. Current proposals would ratchet up the pressure on school districts to move forward.

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Schools rethink health class, incorporate mindfulness training

More independent schools are pushing to redefine what it means to teach health, shattering the stereotype of awkward classes and squirming students.

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Arizona school district at risk of losing federal dollars if more training isn't done

Special education teachers and providers at a Flagstaff school must receive more training by early October or risk a loss in federal funding, Arizona education officials said.

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Wyoming pays Montana to school Yellowstone students

Wyoming was forced to cover the costs of Mammoth Hot Springs students' education in Gardiner after the federal government abruptly announced last year that it could no longer foot the bill for the Yellowstone students, as it had for decades.

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Utah education board adopts new teacher evaluation system

Efforts to revamp the evaluation process were spurred by Utah lawmakers' passage in 2012 of a bill requiring teachers to be ranked on a 4-point scale, with only those earning top rankings eligible for scheduled salary increases.

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