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Articles: Assessment

Passing the University of Cambridge's Cambridge Primary curriculum culminates with an Advanced International Certificate of Education, recognized by colleges and universities around the world. (Gettyimages.com: chrisdorney).

Florida’s Collier County school district will use the Cambridge Primary curriculum, which was developed by the University of Cambridge, in every one of its 29 elementary schools.

Nearly 315 religions and denominations exist in the U.S. alone. (Gettyimages.com: peterhermesfurian).

The National Council for the Social Studies this past June released new guidelines for teaching religion in schools.

Maine led the nation in 2012 in becoming the first state to require that students demonstrate proficiency in academic areas to earn a high school diploma. (Gettyimages.com: qingwa).

Eighth-graders in Maine in the 2017-18 school year will be the first to adhere to proficiency-based standards.

Patrick J. Kearney is a veteran teacher and an advocate for public education. He currently serves as the facilitator for teacher leadership in Johnston Community Schools in Iowa.

The honest and complex truth is that there are incredible things happening in every school in the country and there are massive challenges being faced by every school as well.

Superintendent of Flint Community Schools, Bilal Tawwab, expands staff to support students harmed by lead-tainted water

Superintendent Bilal Tawwab of Flint Community Schools in Michigan has expanded staff to support students harmed by lead-tainted water.

OFFERING INSIGHT—Students at Saint Louis Public Schools work on tablets. The district is using technology to share student academic and behavioral data with parents in real-time.

More than a decade after Response-to-Intervention and Positive Behavior Interventions and Supports (PBIS) took root on school campuses across the country, multi-tier strategies have become the standard for identifying and assisting struggling students.

District leaders and experts weigh in on the four steps to having a successful intervention.

When Gary Brantley began his career as an IT leader 14 years ago, he primarily provided technical support and made sure the hardware was running. “It had everything to do with techy stuff,” he says.

Fatme Faraj is director of School Improvement/Leadership Coaching for ​Dearborn Public Schools. Glenn M. Maleyko is superintendent of Dearborn Public Schools.

Evidence-based best practice is a hot topic in education, especially in regard to the proposed ESSA accountability system.

BUILDING BONUS —Island Trees School District in New York saved about $500,000 a year after it reorganized a pair of K4 elementary schools into a K1 building and a school for grades 2 through 4.

Districts devote nearly 80 percent of their budgets to personnel costs—leaving little wiggle room for administrators tasked with maintaining fiscal responsibility and boosting the quality of education in a time of nearly stagnant funding.

Free or low-cost resources exist to help districts start or improve computer science education.

Many states lack well-defined computer science standards; others don’t count computer science courses toward core graduation requirements. And in many districts, computer science courses aren’t reaching enough students.

Jennifer Abrams is a communications consultant and author of Having Hard Conversations, The Multigenerational Workplace: Communicate, Collaborate and Create Community. She can be found at jennifer@jenniferabrams.com and on Twitter @jenniferabrams.

Positive public relations experiences are critical to our survival as public entities and, unfortunately for many school leaders, we face an uphill climb. According to a June 2016 Gallup poll, only 30 percent of Americans feel “a great deal” or “quite a lot” of confidence in public schools, down from an equally disheartening 36 percent when the survey was administered a decade earlier.

Andre Spencer is the superintendent, Rupak Gandhi is the research, data, and accountability officer, and Laurie Eastup is the RDA Coordinator at Harrison School District Two in Colorado Springs.

In the 2010-11 school year, the Harrison School District Two in Colorado Springs began one of the most rigorous pay-for-performance plans in the nation: Called “Effectiveness and Results,” this overhaul of the human capital management system was a risk worth taking because the status quo failed to adequately serve students.

Academic performance levels at Windsor Locks Middle School.

Five years ago, Windsor Locks Public Schools in northern Connecticut was designated an Alliance District, meaning it was one of the 30 lowest-performing academic districts in the state and needed help.

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