Here are several stories in today’s news about Delaware education and from across the nation:
The News Journal
Christina needs to fill board vacancy
Christina School Board member Gina Backus has resigned due to a job-related relocation, leading officials to seek nominees to fill her position. That sets up a possible repeat of a controversy over board appointments that took place last year. The board’s selection will fill the seat until elections next May, with the winner completing Backus’ term that ends in 2016.
Teacher preparation bill signed into law
A bill bolstering Delaware’s teacher preparation programs is now law. Gov. Jack Markell (D-Delaware) signed the legislation Wednesday at Wilmington University’s Dover campus. “Teacher quality is the single most important school factor in a student’s academic success,” said Markell.
Delaware Department of Education
Delaware students to show their ‘know & how’ at NTSA Conference
Nearly 90 students and educators from across the state will represent Delaware at the National Technology Student Association Conference because of their outstanding performance at the state TSA conference. At the National TSA Conference, the students will demonstrate their skills in hands-on, minds-on competitions against nearly 5,000 other participants from throughout the United States and world.
The New York Times
Private preschools see more public funds as classes grow
Starting this fall, under an expansion led by Mayor Rahm Emanuel, the number of Catholic schools in the city receiving taxpayer money for preschool will nearly double. Across the country, states and districts are increasingly funneling public funds to religious schools, private nursery schools and a variety of community-based nonprofit organizations that conduct preschool classes.
Study gauges value of technology in schools
With school districts rushing to buy computers, tablets, digital white boards and other technology, a new report questions whether the investment is worth it. In a review of student survey data conducted in conjunction with the federal exams known as the National Assessment of Educational Progress, the nonprofit Center for American Progress found that middle school math students more commonly used computers for basic drills and practice than to develop sophisticated skills.
Kansas City Star
Kansas approves new science standards
The Kansas school board approved new multistate science standards for schools that treat evolution and climate change as key concepts to be taught from kindergarten through the 12th grade. Though the new standards drew some criticism over their treatment of evolution, it wasn’t nearly as vocal or public as in the past. The standards were developed by Kansas, 25 other states, and the National Research Council.
Inside Higher Ed
Mind the gap
The percentage of adults who will hold a college degree in 2025 is projected to hit 48%, far short of Lumina Foundation’s 60% goal for degree- and certificate-holders. To achieve that “big goal,” the foundation’s new report calls for 10 incremental targets to hit by 2016. The targets focus to some extent on black and Hispanic students, as well as working adults.