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From DA

He called her Sunshine. But it was more of a hope than a true reflection of the high school senior's life. "I had never seen this kid smile," says Principal Don B. Austin.

Dressing up like scarecrows in the fall and donning leprechaun hats and jackets in March is all the rage in some kindergarten classes in Indiana. It's hard to tell these students are learning the beginnings of complex math, but it's easy to see they are having fun doing it.

Dressing up like scarecrows in the fall and donning leprechaun hats and jackets in March is all the rage in some kindergarten classes in Indiana. It's hard to tell these students are learning the beginnings of complex math, but it's easy to see they are having fun doing it.

While the pint-sized children giggle with delight in their costumes at Fox Hill Elementary School in Indianapolis, they are learning the core basics of algebraic thinking.

With two scarecrows, they figure out how many hats the two scarecrows would wear. And with five

Dressing up like scarecrows in the fall and donning leprechaun hats and jackets in March is all the rage in some kindergarten classes in Indiana. It's hard to tell these students are learning the beginnings of complex math, but it's easy to see they are having fun doing it.

While the pint-sized children giggle with delight in their costumes at Fox Hill Elementary School in Indianapolis, they are learning the core basics of algebraic thinking.

With two scarecrows, they figure out how many hats the two scarecrows would wear. And with five

The JASON Foundation for Education

Westward, Ho! The Lewis & Clark Bicentennial in Class

Golden StateMaking Strides

California schools appear to be making progress toward federal goals for student proficiency in English and math.

A new report by the state Department of Education shows 55 percent of all schools meet adequate yearly progress targets as outlined in the No Child Left Behind Act, compared to 32 percent last year.

Results based on California's 2003 Standardized Testing and Reporting program reveal significant increases, mostly in lower grades, in the percentages of students meeting or exceeding proficiency levels.

New NAEP Results: Urban Districts Closing the Gap

Big city students are trailing their national counterparts, according to 2002 reading and writing test scores, but some results reveal pleasant surprises, officials say.

10/2003

Algebra is a gateway to better math scores on standardized tests, higher math courses, and college attendance. Several studies have now established these benefits. Yet in districts or states that do not require algebra for graduation from high school, many students never study it, including a disproportionate number of poor and minority children. They will be at a disadvantage when the new SAT is administered in March 2005: the math section will cover not only Algebra I and Geometry but some concepts from Algebra II.

While on a recent flight across the South Pacific, I pondered the challenges facing American education. Somewhere high above Guam, it hit me. What we really need is a witty leadership book replete with checklists, platitudes, alliterations and loveable characters we can all relate to. Schools are in trouble, and the job is too big for mice, fish or even Dr. Phil.

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