Two weeks ago I blogged about interesting education news from across the country. There are more that have grabbed my attention recently, so here’s another installment, with some personal perspectives.
*PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT ON SCHOOLWORK: Failed your test? Just try again. Forgot to turn your homework in on time? Your teacher can’t give you a zero just yet. Those are the new rules in Dallas schools, policies the district says will help level the playing field but that others say will undermine teachers’ work. My parents live in the DFW metroplex, and tell me that discussion is abuzz with talk of trying to raise the graduation rate and reduce the impact of the state’s no-pass-no-play athletics rule, while debating whether the outcome will help or hurt students. Full story.
*TEACHERS ARMED WITH MORE THAN A RED PEN: Forget those “gun-free zone” signs in Harrold, Texas, not far over the Oklahoma border. Teachers there are now allowed to carry concealed firearms if they are properly licensed and trained. The 110-student campus is a half-hour from the nearest sheriff’s office but only 340 feet from a major highway, a situation the superintendent says leaves the school in a vulnerable position. My in-laws in Massachusetts brought this up over the phone this weekend, so I know it’s already stirring discussions far from the Lone Star State. Full story.
*MEDIA CALL COULD SET OFF GAME OF TELEPHONE: A superintendent in Rapid City, S.D., is pushing for a new protocol that would obligate school board members to call him whenever they are contacted by the media. The superintendent says the protocol would help ensure the media gets accurate information, but some board members say it would institute a control over the publicly elected body. I got to know the reporter covering the story at a seminar for education reporters in New York in July. Original story. Follow-up story.