Education Opportunity Network

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6/18/2016 – Clear Choices For Education In 2016, So Far

THIS WEEK: Jeb Bush’s Shoddy Education Record … Congress Shorts Special Ed Kids … Whole Child Approach Works … Factors Outside School Affect Learning … Sen Warren Calls For Student Loan Reform

TOP STORY

Political Parties Present Clear Choices For Education In 2016, So Far

By Jeff Bryant

“For years, there’s been an agreement – a ‘Washington consensus’ – among Beltway policy makers and political elites that America’s schools are in ‘crisis’ and only a punitive program of standards, testing, and accountability can remedy them … ‘Republican and Democratic presidential candidates have been happily copying each other’ on education policy … But there are signs this era may be coming to a close … As prospective and declared candidates in the 2016 presidential race kick off their campaigns, what we’re hearing are clear divisions between Republicans and Democrats. So far.”
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NEWS AND VIEWS

Here’s What Jeb Bush Really Did To Public Education In Florida

The Washington Post

Education journalist Valerie Strauss writes on her blog, “Now that Jeb Bush is officially in the race for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination, expect his campaign to talk a lot about school reforms he spearheaded in Florida when he was governor … Here’s what you won’t hear … Bush advocates using public money for students to use to pay for private school tuition … The Florida Senate, controlled by Republicans, refused his request to place a constitutional amendment on the ballot repealing a provision in the state constitution separating church and state … He likes outsourcing public education to for-profit education companies who open public charter schools … He doesn’t mention a 2014 report that Florida charter schools had math and reading test scores that were either no better or worse than traditional public schools. Or that under his program of assigning letter grades to schools based on test scores, a disproportionate number of charters get failing academic letter grades … Or that Florida’s charter sector has been marred by numerous closures of charters – some even during the school year – and repeated financial mismanagement scandals.”
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Congress’ Broken Promise On IDEA Hurts State Budgets, Special Education Students

The National Education Association

“Before IDEA, U.S. schools educated only one of every five children with disabilities … Since then, the majority of children with disabilities have been educated in their neighborhood public schools in the general classroom. Their high school graduation rates, college enrollments, and job opportunities increased dramatically … Although Congress committed to paying 40% of the average cost to educate a child with disabilities, it has never met even half of that commitment. Currently, the federal share of funding for special education services to approximately 6.9 million students is about 16% … Each year, the remaining costs are shifted to the states … The federal cost shift to states in 2014 alone was $17.6 billion … Some members of Congress are working to fix the problem.”
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City Year Schools Twice As Likely to See Math, English Boosts, Study Finds

Education Week

“Pleasant View School was one of a slew of high poverty schools in Providence, RI, marked for an overhaul in 2012, but three years later, it is out of academic crisis … A big part of the school’s revival … the City Year program’s ‘Whole School, Whole Child’ school wide initiative … Schools that participated in City Year’s 150 school wide programs in 22 cities were more likely to see overall improvements on their states’ mathematics and English/language arts tests than similar schools that did not participate … Rhode Island schools participating in City Year in 2012-13 were 25 percent more likely to improve in language arts during the study and 11 percent more likely to improve in math.”
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Researchers: Five Ignored Factors Affect Outcomes For Poor Children

The Washington Post

“School leaders and policymakers trying to improve academic results for disadvantaged children need to look outside the classroom at social and economic conditions that directly affect a child’s ability to learn … Five factors that new research suggests hinder the achievement of poor children: parenting practices in low-income households, single parenthood, irregular work schedules of parents in low-wage jobs, poor access to health care and exposure to lead … Efforts to improve academic outcomes for the increasing number of poor children in public schools focus too heavily on incentives aimed at teachers and schools instead of taking on the underlying conditions that hamper children even before their formal schooling begins.”
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Elizabeth Warren Calls Out Education Department Over Student Loans

The New York Times

“Senator Elizabeth Warren took the Department of Education to task … calling for external checks to be placed on the department, including moving the student loan complaint system from the department to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and granting borrowers the right to take legal action against loan contractors … Ms. Warren laid out a plan for making college more affordable and relieving growing student debt. In doing so, Ms. Warren did not limit her criticism to the Education Department, assigning blame to colleges and universities, as well as to state governments. She also renewed calls to refinance outstanding student loans and reform the federal Pell grant program … College affordability and student debt has become a leading topic for both Democrats and Republicans on the presidential campaign trail.”
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Category: EON Newsletters

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