education

Schools
7:24 am
Wed July 31, 2013

Why School Grades In Florida Are Full Of Controversy

Florida legislators recently enacted what they call a safety net that ensures no school's performance drops more than one letter under the state's grading system. But despite students' academic improvement, there are a record number of F-rated schools this year.

An "A" was always the gold standard.  Every student knows that the better the grade, the greater the reward, whether the reward is a gold star, a trophy or a scholarship.

It’s no different for schools.  Since 1999, Florida schools have worked to measure student learning gains and to objectively measure teacher and school performance.  An "A" school brings recognition, prestige and financial gain.

But measuring school accountability has become more difficult than anyone thought it would be.  And, as recent legislative decisions show, may carry huge political consequences.

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Standards
9:12 am
Tue July 30, 2013

Rubio Opposes Florida's Common Education Standards

U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio is the highest-profile Florida Republican to oppose Common Core State Standards.
Credit JIM LO SCALZO / EPA/LANDOV

Add U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida to those opposing shared education standards fully adopted by Florida and 44 other states.

The standards, known as Common Core, have been under fire from those on the political right and left. Conservatives argue the federal government coerced states with money to adopt the standards, undermining local control of education. Those on the left protest increased testing.

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Aerospace
12:02 pm
Mon July 29, 2013

What Happens When Science Teachers Go To A Rocket Launch

Lockheed Martin-NSTA Teacher Fellows Mary Maddox and Steve Kirsche watch the MUOS-2 satellite launch.
Courtesy Lockheed Martin

Lauren Case already knows what she’s going to say on the first day of school when her students ask what she did over summer break:

“I saw a rocket launch; it was awesome. You want to go too? Maybe you should become an engineer,” says Case, a 10th grade science teacher at South Fork High School in Stuart, Fla.

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Teaching
8:08 am
Mon July 29, 2013

Classroom Contemplations: What Silicon Valley Tells Us About Evaluating Performance

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 12:00 pm

Are search engines really more complicated than children?

That question occurred to me last week when the annual earnings report for Yahoo! came out and it became clear that CEOs are cut a lot more slack than teachers are.

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Standards
1:25 pm
Fri July 26, 2013

Common Core Opponents Respond To Former Florida GOP Chairmen

Originally published on Fri July 26, 2013 8:12 am

Earlier this week we published an email sent to Florida Republicans urging their support for Common Core State Standards fully adopted by Florida and 44 other states. The letter was signed by five former Republican Party of Florida chairmen, including American Conservative Union chairman Al Cardenas.

Common Core opponents have written a rebuttal.

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School Grades
11:20 am
Fri July 26, 2013

2012-2013 Florida Elementary And Middle School Grades

The State Board of Education changed state rules so that no school could lose more than one letter grade in 2012-2013.
Credit MARSMET TALLAHASSEE

The Florida Department of Education released 2013 elementary and middle school grades, part of the state’s school accountability system.

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Technology
11:19 am
Thu July 25, 2013

Florida Matters -- How Schools Are Preparing For New Technology Requirements

Originally published on Wed July 24, 2013 12:15 pm

Florida schools are gearing up for new education standards and accompanying online testing. Schools must also prepare to deliver half of all classroom instruction digitally by 2015.

So what will this mean for students, teachers and schools? It’s the subject of this week’s Florida Matters on WUSF radio.

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Community Contributor
7:44 am
Wed July 24, 2013

Is the Millennial Generation Selfish or Selfless?

The Class of 2013 faces an increasingly competitive and insecure job market, but that doesn't dampen their optimism.

Gabriella Nuňez graduated near the top of her high school class. Her resume rivals that of many college graduates.  She juggled rigorous courses with part-time work, a myriad of extracurricular activities and a thousand hours of community service.  She held various leadership positions ranging from class president to design editor of her newspaper and she began her college career this summer with over 24 college credits under her belt.

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Common Core
4:28 pm
Tue July 23, 2013

Teachers Hit The Books To Master New Education Standards

Teacher Karen Pate assists math teachers with Common Core materials in Baltimore. As in other states, Maryland teachers are attending trainings to prepare to implement the new standards this fall.
Gwendolyn Glenn WYPR

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 6:16 pm

Almost all the states and Washington, D.C., are grappling with a big challenge as the new school year nears: getting teachers up to speed on the Common Core, a sweeping set of new education standards for English language arts and math.

The Common Core will soon apply to most of America's students from kindergarten through high school. The policymakers behind the Core know that it could fail if they don't help teachers make the change. So this summer, the state of Maryland has been hosting what it calls "academies" to do just that.

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Digital
12:31 pm
Tue July 23, 2013

Giving Brightest Kids The 'Cram School' Experience, Online

With Brilliant.org, students around the world can get challenged with high-level concepts and problems.
Eric Cabanis AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue July 23, 2013 2:54 pm

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Common Core
1:18 pm
Mon July 22, 2013

Florida Supporters And Opponents Race To Explain Common Core

Originally published on Mon July 22, 2013 10:26 am

When Gov. Rick Scott and Education Commissioner Tony Bennett met with school superintendents in April, Florida’s new education standards led the questions.

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Community Contributor
11:35 am
Mon July 22, 2013

Florida’s School Grading System Remains Flawed, Parent Says

Carolina Garcia

My son went to a school that received an “A” grade from the state of Florida. During fifth grade, his last year as a public school student, his standardized test score significantly dropped. From here he went on to a private school that does not put such an emphasis on a single test.

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Digital
7:21 am
Fri July 19, 2013

Hashtag in the Classroom: Can Social Media Improve Education?

Ninety-five percent of teenagers use the Internet and 8 in 10 of them use social media. Can educators find a way to harness that in the classroom?

Thirty years ago parents had to tell their kids to turn off the television and go to sleep.  Today, it’s their mobile phone.  Teenagers are more socially active than ever before, at least virtually.

A Pew Institute Research study on Teens, Social Media and Privacy found that 95 percent of teenagers use the Internet and eight in ten of them use some kind of social media, especially Facebook and Twitter.

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Testing
8:16 am
Thu July 18, 2013

House And Senate Leaders Want Florida Out Of PARCC

Originally published on Wed July 17, 2013 3:01 pm

Both leaders of Florida’s legislative chambers are asking Education Commissioner Tony Bennett to withdraw from a coalition of states developing a new standardized test.

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Community Contributor
7:41 am
Tue July 16, 2013

After No Goodbyes In Cuba, Exile Makes Miami Home

This article, originally published in the Miami Herald, is part of HistoryMiami's Miami Stories project.
Credit historymiami.org

When I arrived in Miami in the early 1970s, I never could imagine that I would end up calling this city home.

We came to Miami after a short stay in Spain. I came with my parents, Isabel and Ramon Santos, and my younger sister, Ana. Like many young children, we were excited about moving into a new place, learning a new language and making new friends.

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