Top News

Army base growth may depend on local school performance

For the first time, the U.S. Army is using public school quality as a determining factor in where to station soldiers and their families, as the military further prepares for downsizing.

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Gov. Christie signs bills to expand N.J. vocational education

Five bills were signed that are intended to expand vocational education in New Jersey, including requiring public colleges to set up partnerships with high schools for college-level vocational courses.

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Chicago gives schools new ratings to judge success and trouble

Chicago Public Schools officials unveiled new school performance ratings. Under the system, most of the district's 664 schools have been put into one of five levels, two more than used previously.

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Controversial Illinois state rule overturned, allowing foreign players to compete

A controversial Illinois High School Association regulation that was passed to force out a group of Sudanese teens from competing for their adopted home school was overturned, clearing the way for Mooseheart to feature South Sudanese and Congolese students who arrived in the town after fleeing their war-torn homelands.

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New school takeover rules on the table for Indiana state board

The Indiana State Board of Education will consider changes to the state’s takeover process for failing schools this week. Under state takeover, failing schools are severed from school district oversight and turned over to outside groups — so far all charter school operators — to be run independently under a contract with the state.

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Florida school boards take a stand against overtesting

The Florida School Boards Association urged lawmakers to delay the consequences associated with new state tests until 2017. In the meantime, the group stated, local districts should be allowed to determine when students are promoted, when they graduate and how teachers are evaluated — tasks that are largely dictated by student test scores.

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8 Phoenix-area school districts face dramatic cuts

Eliminating free all-day kindergarten classes, reducing school weeks to four days to save energy and staff lay-offs are among the options the districts will begin to consider in January. Eight districts say they must now cut millions from their budgets because voters failed to support their override requests in the November election.

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Minneapolis brings real-time student data to school, classroom

The Minneapolis district is merging everything from attendance to test scores to discipline data into one computer dashboard for teachers and administrators. School officials are hoping the new information will help close what has been one of the largest achievement gaps in the country between whites and students of color.

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Connecticut education officials consider change in social studies curriculum

The Connecticut Elementary and Secondary Social Studies Frameworks curriculum proposal is a model that local districts can use but is not state mandated. The instruction focuses on students not only knowing the answers to key questions in history, economics, geography and civics but also understanding what questions to ask to separate out valuable information.

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Vermont school spending, tax bills to rise next year

Gov. Peter Shumlin says school spending projections will require a 2-cent increase in the statewide school property tax rate. The new report by Vermont's tax department estimates that education spending will increase by just under 3.1 percent in fiscal 2016.

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