By Daily Republic Staff
The Western Growers Foundation has grants up to $1,500 available to support school gardens.
Any public, charter or private school that has a school garden program or wants to start one, or any school district or nonprofit that supports school gardens, can apply for the grants.
Source: School garden grants available through Western Growers
By Ashley Hopkinson
One of the state’s leading child advocacy organizations, Early Edge California, has appointed a new executive director.
Patricia Lozano will succeed Deborah Kong, who has been executive director since January 2014. Lozano has extensive experience in early childhood policy and research, as well as dual language education. She will continue the organization’s work in promoting increased access early education and steering policy strategies to attract and retain a quality early education workforce for California, according to a statement.Patricia Lozano has been appointed the new executive director of Early Edge California.
“We are thrilled that Patricia Lozano is taking the helm at Early Edge,” said Catherine Atkin, chair of the Early Edge California Advisory Committee and executive director of The Early Learning Lab. “As Early Edge California’s advocacy and policy for quality early learning grows, she brings a deep commitment to supporting educators and improving the early care and education of California’s children.”
Source: Early Edge California appoints new executive director to lead early education efforts | EdSource
By Theresa Harrington
While California legislators debate a bill to ban secondary schools from starting before 8:30 a.m., a new report shows the change could contribute $10.2 billion to the state’s economy within 10 years and $24.8 billion after two decades.
In fact, if all schools nationwide were to convert to this later start time, the RAND Corporation and RAND Europe found that the U.S. economy would get an $83 billion boost within a decade.
The RAND report released Wednesday is the first-ever economic analysis of 47 states based on a shift in school start times. It is a follow-up to research by RAND Europe in 2016 that found insufficient sleep among U.S. workers causes economic losses of up to $411 billion a year.
Source: State could reap big economic benefits with later school start time | EdSource
By Elissa Nadworny
The start of the school year can be rough on some kids. It’s a big shift from summer’s freedom and lack of structure to the measured routines of school. And sometimes that can build up into tears, losing sleep, outbursts and other classic signs of anxiety.
“Going back to school is a transition for everyone,” says Lynn Bufka, a practicing psychologist who also works at the American Psychological Association. “No matter the age of the child, or if they’ve been to school before.”
In the vast majority of cases, this is pretty standard stuff. It doesn’t mean it’s not painful — for you and your kids. Just watch this viral video — (Andrew is now in first grade and doing fine).
“If you see that in your kids, don’t panic,” says John Kelly, a school psychologist in Long Island, N.Y. “For most kids, there’s gonna be some level of anxiety.”
Source: How To Counter Back-To-School Anxiety : NPR Ed : NPR
By The Associated Press
The number of international students coming to the U.S. for high school is leveling off after years of rapid growth, according to a new study released Wednesday.
Researchers at the nonprofit Institute of International Education in Washington say growth is slowing as students face more education opportunities in their home countries and abroad. But the U.S. remains a top study destination for international students, researchers say.
“The numbers have been growing at slower rates each year, but there’s still definitely interest and growth in international students coming to earn a high school diploma in the U.S.,” said Christine Farrugia, author of the new study.
Source: More students coming to US for high school, but growth slows
By Thomas Arnett
If you’ve followed the K–12 education dialogue over the last decade, then you’re probably familiar with the term “disruptive innovation.” Edtech entrepreneurs and school choice advocates sometimes invoke it as an indomitable force that will redeem and transform broken school systems. Meanwhile, people on the other sides of these debates worry that “disruption” is a flawed yet rhetorically powerful narrative used to rationalize K–12 privatization. Somewhere in the middle are skeptics who give consideration to the idea, but wonder if disruption is an oversold term that is likely to underdeliver on its proponents’ promises.
So how do we make sense of the tumult of opinions? What is disruptive innovation and is it relevant in the current debates about K–12 education?
In the mid-1990s, Harvard professor Clayton M. Christensen coined the term “disruptive innovation” to describe how large and well-resourced industry incumbents like U.S. Steel and RCA were toppled by upstarts like Nucor and Sony. Christensen’s 1997 best-selling book, The Innovator’s Dilemma, articulated a theory to explain this phenomenon and catapulted the term “disruptive innovation” into the popular business lexicon.
Source: Is Disruptive Innovation Driving K-12 Privatization? – Education Next : Education Next
According to the latest Pew Research data, college graduation rates are up for Americans in nearly every racial and ethnic group.
Last year, former President Barack Obama spoke about how crucial this is for the U.S. economy.
“By 2020, two out of three job openings will require some form of higher education,” he said during an event at Benjamin Banneker Academic High School in Washington, D.C. “Our public schools had been the envy of the world, but the world caught up. And we started getting outpaced when it came to math and science education. And African American and Latino students, in part because of the legacy of discrimination, too often lagged behind our white classmates — something called the achievement gap that, by one estimate, costs us hundreds of billions of dollars a year.”
Source: How Schools, Parents And Organizations Are Trying To Close The Achievement Gap (Rebroadcast) – 1A
By Lauren Camera
States across the U.S. are taking more seriously the importance of early childhood education and ramping up their offerings, but compared to the rest of the world, the U.S. has a long way to go.
While enrollment rates for children under age three hover just below 30 percent – the middle of the pack compared to other countries – the U.S. falls significantly behind when it comes to enrollment rates of 3- and 4-year-olds, according to a new report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
“Giving all children access to high-quality early education and care will lay the foundations for future skill development, boost social mobility and support inclusive growth,” said Gabriela Ramos, OECD chief of staff, in a statement. RELATED CONTENT Best Countries for Education [RELATED: Best Countries for Education] The report assessed early childhood education enrollment, access, funding, staffing and its impact on academic performance in later years across 36 industrialized countries.
Source: U.S. Falls Behind Other Developed Countries in Early Childhood Education Enrollment | Best Countries | US News
By Richard Bammer
In its first year, the Ernest Kimme Charter Academy For Independent Learning sends students, teacher Roxann Lynch-Burns said, on a “journey” toward academic and life success.
As a “dependent” charter school overseen by Vacaville Unified, it is a campus, currently adjacent to the Sierra Vista School campus on Bel Air Drive, that “serves everybody,” she added.
For students who do not quite fit in a traditional school setting, the K-12 school, with nearly 300 students, is “tailored” to fit the needs of the home-schooled or Independent Study student, noted Lynch-Burns.
Source: Kimme Charter sends students on ‘journey’ to academic, life success – The Reporter
By Kimberly K. Fu
Continuous squirming, talking, negative reactions due to sensory issues and more are just some of the issues plaguing families of special needs children.
On Sunday, all of that was embraced as, thanks to a local police officer and a theater executive, many of those local families were invited to a movie outing just for them.
“It was fantastic,” Said Nicole Neff, whose daughter, Rayna, is autistic. “It was very appreciated. … It was an awesome thing to do for the community.”
Turns out, about 70 people got to enjoy the exclusive showing of “Boss Baby,” complete with free popcorn, soda and candy. All of which usually come with a hefty price tag, especially if you have a large family.
Source: Special needs families enjoy outing thanks to cop, theater exec
By Richard Bammer
If you are a leader, student or parent in the Vacaville, Dixon, Travis or Fairfield-Suisun school communities, you may have a story you want to share with the public, say, about a teacher using cutting-edge technology or an exciting curriculum, a student’s achievement, a trend in education. Do you?
If you don’t know where to begin, that is, how to get word out via The Reporter, in print and online, then you may want to clip and save this column or cut and paste it into a document for reference later.
The Reporter welcomes your school news. So here are some tips and thoughts on how to get our attention, how to submit press releases for consideration:
• How to get in touch with the person who handles education-related news items: Email and phone are the first steps and means, letting us know you want something covered — or at least considered for coverage. (We want to establish a good working relationship with you and I’m sure the desire is mutual.)
Source: Richard Bammer: Help us get important school news in the newspaper
By Rob Peters
We’re not very good at waiting – our western culture rather abhors it. And up ’till now, many of Benicia’s families and students have been doing it for months – years, in some cases.
For these days, you can hear certain sounds ripping the air from the families of Benicia’s high school seniors: sighs and gasps, winces and cringes, crying and yelping and OMG’ing and trash-talk a la rap star prima donnas. All these wholesome wails are in service to the thin or slightly bulging (bulging is better) envelopes that come in the mail, announcing whether or not you’ve been fully – or partly – or conditionally – accepted to a college of your interest. Most colleges have been lined up in some sort of priority, numeric system: the first and second choices, the fall – backs, the I’m –desperate-for-someplace choices, the ones-momma-wanted-me-to-apply to, the I’ve -changed-my-mind-I-would-NEVER-go-freaking-there, and the also-rans.
Source: Counseling matters: Waiting for that little white envelope…
By Susan Hiland
Dark blue and silver pinwheels spun in the spring breeze, representing the bright future for children in Solano County.
Child Haven planted a garden of blue pinwheels for April’s National Child Abuse Prevention Month in front of its offices in Fairfield.
The agency displayed 762 pinwheels, of which 603 children were represented as being helped from Child Haven in 2016. The remaining 159 are children served by the Solano Courage Center, which is a new partner with Child Haven.
President Ronald Reagan proclaimed April as National Child Abuse Prevention Month in 1983, the same year Child Haven got its start. Since then, child abuse and neglect awareness activities have been promoted across the country each April.
Source: Pinwheels garden in Fairfield shows care given to Solano children
By Ronnie Burt
Earlier this month, I was invited to discuss student privacy and publishing student work on the web with students in a graduate course at CSU Channel Islands. The course is ‘Advanced Teaching with Technology’ and is taught by Michelle Pacansky-Brock.
The students are all practicing K12 teachers in California, and they came ready with questions and perspectives.
This was the first time I had ever used VoiceThread to collaborate, and I enjoyed the experience. One thing that the students in the course may not know, is that VoiceThread allowed me to delete and re-record a few of my answers after I listened back to them, and nobody was none-the-wiser. I appreciated this 🙂
Source: An Important Conversation About Student Privacy – The Edublogger
By Sophia Boyd
What’s the best time for students to have recess? Before lunch, or after? What happens if it rains? If students are misbehaving, is it a good idea to punish them by making them sit out recess?
Those are just a few of the issues addressed in new guidelines designed to help schools have good recess. The recommendations come from a group called SHAPE (Society of Health and Physical Educators) America and from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Recess might seem simple — just open the doors and let the kids run free. But only eight states have policies that require it, according to last year’s Shape of the Nation report. And when researchers started looking, they found very little consistency or guidance about what makes recess effective.
Source: Not All Fun And Games: New Guidelines Urge Schools To Rethink Recess : NPR Ed : NPR
California’s K-12 education spending per student has increased significantly since 2012-13, but continues to trail the nation as a whole. While not reflective of how much it actually costs to provide California’s students a high-quality education, rankings of state K-12 education spending are often used to assess California’s public investment in its schools. According to the most recent available information,
- In 2015-16, California ranked 41st among all states in spending per K-12 student after adjusting for differences in the cost of living in each state (see table below). California schools spent $10,291 per K-12 student in 2015-16, which is about $1,900 less than the $12,252 per student spent by the nation as a whole. California’s spending per student in 2015-16 was about $2,000 higher than it had been in 2012-13, at which point California ranked 50th in the nation.
- California ranked 37th among all states in K-12 spending as a share of the state economy in 2015-16. California’s K-12 school spending in 2015-16 was 3.29% of state personal income — a measure that reflects the size of the state’s economy — compared to 3.78% in the nation as a whole. In 2012-13, California’s K-12 school spending equaled 3.18% of state personal income — compared to 3.93% in the nation as a whole — and ranked 46th among all states. Gauging school spending as a share of the personal income received by the state’s residents can be useful because it takes into account differences in states’ wealth and thus in their capacity to support K-12 schools.
Source: California’s Support for K-12 Education Is Improving, but Still Lags the Nation – California Budget & Policy Center
By Carolyn Jones,
California’s hundreds of high school career academies can now boost their prestige — and create a greater degree of uniformity — through a voluntary certification program, an education nonprofit announced Tuesday.
The Linked Learning Alliance, which includes teachers, employers, colleges, policy organizations and other groups, announced its new certification program at its annual conference this week in Oakland.
“It’s like taking the Wild West and bringing it into a lane of coherence,” said Alex Taghavian, vice president of the Linked Learning Alliance. “Having clear, set standards is something we need as linked learning expands and more and more districts and schools join in.”
Source: New program aims to create more uniform standards among linked learning academies | EdSource
By Joan Moss, Catherine D. Bruce, Bev Caswell, Tara Flynn, and Zachary Hawes
Our journey began when we conducted an extensive literature review at the outset of the project (Bruce, Flynn, & Moss, 2012) and learned about the crucial importance of spatial reasoning. This theme was consistent across many research disciplines, including biology, cognitive sciences, psychology, developmental sciences, education, as well as educational neuroscience—an emerging transdisciplinary ﬁeld which sits at the intersection of these other disciplines and aims for a collaborative approach in which educational theory and practice are informed by new ﬁndings in the cognitive sciences, and vice versa (Fisher, 2009). We also learned—and have experienced in our careers as mathematics educators and researchers—that spatial reasoning is a curiously unacknowledged and neglected area of the curriculum. During our involvement with the M4YC project, we have become more and more convinced of reasons why we should pay attention to spatial reasoning in early years mathematics. Below we offer our Top Five reasons why, as educators, we should care about spatial thinking when we plan, observe, and assess mathematics in our classrooms.
Source: Five Compelling Reasons For Teaching Spatial Reasoning To Young Children | MindShift | KQED News
By Julie Freeland Fisher
At the Clayton Christensen Institute, we track disruptive innovations in K–12 schools that upend the traditional factory-based model of school in favor of instructional approaches that better center on each individual student. Here are four trends in personalized learning we’ll be watching unfold in the coming year:
1. Platform plays will play themselves outOver the past few years, we have witnessed homegrown learning platforms crop up inside of schools trying to push the boundaries of personalization. In 2016, a number of these new cloud-based learning platforms—such as Summit Public Schools’ Personalized Learning Platform, Matchbook School’s Spark, Brooklyn Lab’s Cortex, Alt School’s Alt School Open, and Leadership Public Schools-Gooru’s Learning Navigator—proliferated beyond their original founding school networks. These next-generation platforms all represent bold attempts to digitize the instructional and logistical coordination at play in successful personalized learning models. The hope is that traditional schools adopting these platforms might be able to likewise buck traditional instruction in favor of more individualized pathways and supports. 2017 will see the first robust data sets coming out of partner schools adopting these new platforms that they themselves did not develop. These schools, in turn, will provide an initial test case of an operating hypothesis in the personalized learning space: that a high-quality platform and professional development supports surrounding platform implementation could be critical levers to scaling personalized approaches across traditional settings.
Source: Education Innovation in 2017: Four Personalized-Learning Trends to Watch – Education Next : Education Next
By Claudio Sanchez
Every year for the past few years, I’ve dusted off my crystal ball and offered a few predictions for the new year. Back on Nov. 9 though, I threw out the ones I had been working on and started over. The election of Donald Trump altered the landscape for K-12 and higher education and created greater political uncertainty in the debate over how to improve schools. Here’s my revised, updated list of predictions for 2017.
Donald Trump’s focus on school choice, vouchers and his overall ambivalence about the federal role in education will complicate matters for ESSA (the Every Student Succeeds Act). That’s the recently revised federal law through which billions of dollars flow to states and local school districts. Most of that money targets low-income kids and students with learning disabilities.
Source: Predictions For What Will Happen In Education Under The Trump Administration : NPR Ed : NPR