How some colleges plan to reopen this fall amid the coronavirus pandemic

Some universities across the country have started to reveal plans to open their campuses in the fall, after the coronavirus pandemic forced universities across the nation to shut down in favor of remote learning. The University of Notre Dame announced earlier this week it will welcome students back to campus this summer, starting the semester two weeks earlier than usual. Students there will skip fall break, allowing them to complete the semester by Thanksgiving. The university hopes that by Read More

Teachers Union Blasts Trump, Lays Out Plan for Reopening Schools

THE AMERICAN FEDERATION of Teachers, the 1.7-million member teachers union, issued guidance Wednesday for how and when schools should safely reopen, slamming President Donald Trump for his comments to governors suggesting they look at opening schools. “Our blueprint serves as a stark contrast to the conflicting guidance, bluster and lies of the Trump administration,” said AFT president Randi Weingarten. The 20-page guidance, which Weingarten said would evolve as the status of the coronavirus epidemic evolves, includes five major Read More

Coronavirus Public Health Emergency Underscores Need for Department of Education’s Proposed Distance Learning Rules

U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos proposed new rules today that would govern distance learning for higher education students. Although work on the proposed Distance Learning and Innovation regulation started more than a year ago, the COVID-19 National Emergency underscores the need for reform and for all educational institutions to have a robust capacity to teach remotely. “With our support, colleges and universities were among the first to transition to online and distance learning so learning could continue during Read More

White, Affluent Parents Like the Idea of Integrated Schools – But Not for Their Kids

THE VAST MAJORITY OF parents – regardless of political affiliation, race, class and where they live – strongly favor schools that are racially and economically integrated. But when it comes time to enroll their children, white, affluent parents who actually have a choice often choose schools based on the number of white, affluent students enrolled. “Despite parents’ espoused support for integration, in districts where parents are actually given greater opportunities to choose schools, schools appear to Read More

How scaffolding lessons can strengthen critical thinking development

Assigning students real-world projects can help them build critical thinking skills, and incorporating scaffolding can help guide them further while also deepening these skill sets, seeing them in a context of how they might potentially be used when faced with solving real-world problems at work or in the classroom. Scaffolding is used at the university level, for example, to help students strengthen the skills they’ll need when they move on into the workplace, noted Lynn Read More

Supreme Court Case May Open Door to Vouchers Nationwide

Betsy DeVos’ unwavering support of private school vouchers long precedes her tenure as U.S. Education Secretary.  Despite being supported by the resources and influence of the federal government, however, DeVos’ efforts to expand vouchers legislatively have been stymied by lack of support in Congress (even when the GOP held majorities in both houses) and stubborn public opposition. American voters have rejected programs that transfer scarce taxpayer dollars away from public schools to pay for private school tuition. For champions Read More

Ed Dept proposes easier access to federal funds for religious schools, emphasizes school prayer

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos said in a press release she hopes the reinforcement of old guidelines and changes in grant requirements will “protect the constitutional rights of students, teachers, and faith-based institutions” and “level the playing field” between public and religious schools.  However, education organizations are claiming this is an effort to push a larger agenda expanding private and religious schools while sidelining public education. “DeVos and Trump are trying to rewrite the Constitution Read More

How Making A Podcast Enriched Students’ Lives

English teacher Tim Wasem says he’s still getting his head around it. “I have students coming in this semester … who are asking, like, ‘When are we gonna do the podcast challenge? When’s that gonna happen?’ “ That’s because a year ago, an unlikely team of 11th-graders at Elizabethton High School in east Tennessee won NPR’s first-ever Student Podcast Challenge. Their 11-minute entry told the story of how the nearby town of Erwin is trying Read More

San Diego Schools Sue Juul Labs Over Youth Vaping Epidemic

San Diego’s public school schools have filed suit against Juul Labs, Inc., the largest U.S. producer of e-cigarettes, accusing the company of deliberately marketing its vaping products to young people, effectively rolling back years of progress made by anti-smoking campaigns. A 40-page complaint filed in San Diego Superior Court on behalf of the San Diego Unified School District on Tuesday alleges that Juul’s product “disrupts the learning environment,” causing an increase in student absences due Read More

Report: Florida, Ohio called ‘advanced leaders’ in K-12 media literacy efforts

As the U.S. enters another presidential election year, 14 states have “some media-literacy language on the books,” according to a new report detailing legislative efforts to integrate media literacy instruction into curriculum. But “action is too slow compared to the urgent need,” wrote Erin McNeill, president and board member of Media Literacy Now, a nonprofit advocacy organization that defines media literacy as the “ability to access, analyze, evaluate, create and take action with all forms of communication.” The Read More