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In an effort to promote movement and educational growth, schools are adding playground equipment for younger students. (Gettyimages.com: fatcamera).

The growing evidence showing that students learn better when they get a chance to move has inspired K12 designers to create classroom furniture and playground equipment that keep youths active, even as they learn.

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.

JUGGLING ACT—Mike Peterson, left, and Randy Collins, right, each lead more than one school district in Iowa.

Sharing superintendents is becoming smart business in Iowa. In 2007, the state introduced a program that provides financial incentives to districts that share administrative personnel.

GREEN IS GOOD—In this propagation map of Albemarle County, colors show signal quality for broadband. Green is nearly unobstructed.

Free internet access at home will soon be a reality for students in Albemarle County Public Schools.

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.

Fast disappearing from schools are internet “lock and block” policies that keep students off social media and restrict them to carefully curated websites. Even with sophisticated filters and firewalls, today’s learners carry all the access in the world in their back pockets.

Every K12 IT manager wants all school software to work together seamlessly, but incompatible programs often prevent the sharing of key data.

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.

Across the country, thousands of school districts are building and publicizing summer meal programs, components of a 48-year-old, federally funded effort to keep low-income children from suffering the health and cognitive effects of summer hunger.

The latest K12 school designs in classrooms favor versatile and adaptive spaces to support blended and project-based learning, as well as other progressive education techniques.

Janet Poppendieck is a nationally recognized scholar and activist. She is the author of Free for All: Fixing School Food in America (University of California Press, 2010).

Janet Poppendieck, author of Free for All: Fixing School Food in America, says more must be done to end stigmatizing students who receive free lunches in school because it’s not a problem that will change anytime soon.

KANSAS CITY, Kansas—Superintendent Cynthia Lane learned the cello a few years ago, but not to fulfill some lifelong dream of soloing with the local symphony. The leader of Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools now performs alongside fourth- and fifth-graders in their annual spring strings concert.

Jean Fleming brings over 25 years of experience in education to her role at the Northwest Evaluation Association, where she specializes in PD practices and instructional supports.

Building teacher capacity is the best way to make sure students grow. The research on this is unequivocal: No single school-based factor impacts student achievement more than the teacher.

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