Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Quick Hits

Education Standards Likely to See Toughening: The Obama administration will likely toughen rules on areas like teacher quality and academic standards. Education Secretary Arne Duncan said the administration was “laying the foundation for where we want to go” with the No Child Left Behind reauthorization. (N Y Times)

Study: 1 in 10 Texas kids has an undocumented parent: A growing share of the children of illegal immigrants are U.S.-born citizens, illustrating a sensitive, demographic shift in the makeup of America’s undocumented migrant population. (Houston Chronicle)

5,400 L.A. teacher jobs in jeopardy: LOS ANGELES (AP) — The Los Angeles Board of Education has voted to lay off as many as 5,400 teachers and support personnel for the upcoming school year. (USA Today)

Parents to be hit with penalties if children misbehave at school: Parents will be hit by severe penalties if children misbehave under a back-to-basics crackdown on indiscipline in schools, it is announced today. (London Daily Telegraph)

Education board in Texas faces curbs: Texas state legislators are considering reining in the Board of Education amid frustration with the board's politically charged debate over how to teach evolution. (Wall Street Journal)

School's noise irks neighbor; cops issue ticket to principal: They say good fences make good neighbors, but at Olympia Elementary School, a fence was not nearly enough. Late last month, police issued Principal Terri LeBleu a citation for violation of the Universal City noise ordinance after a neighbor who has long complained about commotion at the school called again during its Family Fitness Day. “They’ve built a 7-foot fence at the back of the school,” LeBleu said. “They’ve put special backing on the basketball hoops because he doesn’t like hearing the basketball hit, and they’ve even taken out the loudspeakers that allowed me to make announcements to the kids who are outside, so now I’m not able not do that.” During the March 20 fitness event, parents were invited to walk the track with their children. “We had some music playing, and that’s probably what started some of his concerns,” said LeBleu, who also said she’s had no complaints about noise except Armstrong’s. (San Antonio Express-News)
'Spirituality for Kids' class draws fire: The program, created by a leader of the L.A.-based Kabbalah Centre International, is promoted as a way to teach children how to make wise choices. Critics say it brings religion into public schools. (L A Times)
Vermont Lawmakers Look To Legalize Teen 'Sexting': Text messaging graphic pictures of yourself could soon be legal for teens in Vermont. Lawmakers there are considering a bill that would make it legal for teenagers 18 and under to exchange explicit photos and videos of themselves – an act that's come to be known by teens as "sexting." Under the current law, teenagers could be prosecuted as sex offenders if they get caught sending graphic sexual images of themselves, even if it was consensual. (CBS)
School Strip-Search Case Heads to Supreme Court: The U.S. Supreme Court next week will hear a case on the strip-search of a 13-year-old girl at a public school, wading into the legal balancing act between protecting students’ privacy rights and allowing school officials to take steps to ensure a safe campus environment. The case, which has attracted national media attention—as well as friend-of-the-court briefs from national education groups, civil-liberties advocates, and the Obama administration—could have major implications for how schools proceed when they wish to search students. At issue in Safford Unified School District v. Redding (Case No. 08-479) is the search of 8th grade honor student Savana Redding amid suspicion she possessed prescription-strength ibuprofen tablets. (Ed Week)

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