Education Opportunity Network

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6/4/2015 – Common Core Distracts From What Matters Most

THIS WEEK:The Education Civil Rights Agenda … Key School Stats … What To Call Skills … Jeb Bush And Common Core … Community Colleges Get Screwed


Dumb Arguments About The Common Core Distract From What Matters Most

By Jeff Bryant

“When the subject turns to Common Core, there is a tendency among Democrats to immediately assert their support for the policy because of concerns for equity in the public school system For sure, inequity is a problem – if not the problem – in American schools … If Democrats want to have some credibility in the debate on equity in the public school system, they should focus on policy proposals that really have something to do with equity.”
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DC Civil Rights Organizations Fail To Represent Education Civil Rights Agenda

The Hill

A trio of prominent civil rights leaders outside Washington, DC write, “A few national civil rights organizations … uniting under the banner of the Washington, DC-based Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights … are urging parents to comply with annual testing requirements. We strongly disagree. Data from these annual assessments are not a reasonable proxy for educational opportunity, and even more, educational equity … Children of color are more likely to be subjected to over-testing and a narrowing of curriculum in the name of test preparation … We now know students cannot be tested out of poverty, and while NCLB did take us a step forward by requiring schools to produce evidence that students were learning, it took us several steps backward when that evidence was reduced to how well a student performed on a standardized test.”
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Key Numbers From A Government Report To Congress On The Status Of US Education

Associated Press Via US New And World Report

“More U.S. school-age kids live in poverty and need English-language services … Enrollment in public schools is up, including in charter schools … Smaller numbers of children attend private schools. Fewer students are dropping out of high school. And, while more undergraduate students seek financial aid to obtain a four-year degree, college graduates continue to earn more than their peers.”
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Nonacademic Skills Are Key To Success. But What Should We Call Them?


“More and more people in education agree on the importance of learning stuff other than academics. But no one agrees on what to call that ‘stuff’. There are least seven major overlapping terms in play … 21st century skills … Character education … grit … growth mindset … noncognitive traits and habits … social and emotional skills … soft skills … Maybe one day there will be a pithy acronym or portmanteau to wrap all these skills up.”
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On Common Core, Jeb Bush Is A Party Of One


“The Republican flip-flop on the Common Core is nearly complete … Virtually every 2016 Republican presidential candidate has turned against the education standards, other than former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush … Bush has said the Common Core should serve as a floor for quality and rigor if states are looking to replace the standards. But this month he said the standards must be state driven, a statement appealing to conservatives … ‘Common Core means a lot of things to different people, so they could be right based on what’s in front of them,’ Bush said.”
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How Higher Education Funding Shortchanges Community Colleges

Inside Higher Ed

“Community colleges tend to receive the least amount of public financial support compared to other institutions, yet they are asked to push high numbers of low-income students into the middle class with few resources … The most funding tends to go toward highly selective four-year colleges … Wealthy colleges also receive huge tax subsidies … From 2001 to 2011 … funding increased substantially at public and private research universities, while public community colleges actually saw a $904 decline in real funding … A number of states are devising performance-based funding approaches that recognize low-income students have additional needs and need additional support.”
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Category: EON Newsletters

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