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What teachers really want to tell parents

What teachers really want to tell parents
Teacher Ron Clark is pictured with his students. Ron Clark is an award-winning teacher who started his own academy in AtlantaHe wants parents to trust teachers and their advice about their students Clark says some teachers hand out A grades so parents won't bother themIt's OK for kids to get in trouble sometimes; it teaches life lessons, Clark says Editor's note: Ron Clark, author of "The End of Molasses Classes: Getting Our Kids Unstuck -- 101 Extraordinary Solutions for Parents and Teachers," has been named "American Teacher of the Year" by Disney and was Oprah Winfrey's pick as her "Phenomenal Man." He founded The Ron Clark Academy, which educators from around the world have visited to learn. This article's massive social media response inspired CNN to follow up with Facebook users. Some of the best comments were featured in a gallery. (CNN) -- This summer, I met a principal who was recently named as the administrator of the year in her state. So, what can we do to stem the tide? Wow. Related:  To Read LaterInteresting

A primer on Social Security - The Fact Checker (J. Scott Applewhite/AP) This is an updated version of The Fact Checker’s guide to Social Security and how it is financed. What is Social Security? Social Security was created in response to the pervasive poverty during the Great Depression. About 70 percent of the 57 million beneficiaries are retired workers; the rest are disabled workers, dependents or survivors. The benefits are inflation-adjusted after initial receipt, a feature that is almost impossible to find in the U.S. annuity market. How is Social Security financed? About 96 percent of workers must pay a certain amount of their paycheck, generally 6.2 percent, into the system, an amount that is matched by their employers. This results in a 12.4 percent tax on income, as most economists would agree that the full amount is taken from the worker’s wage compensation. Social Security is a pay-as-you-go system, which means that payments collected today are immediately used to pay benefits. This is where it gets confusing.

The Summer's Top Stories | Scholastic News Online The space shuttle Atlantis landed back on Earth on July 21, ending NASA's 30-year space shuttle program. (Michael Williamson / The Washington Post / Getty Images) After years of war, the nation of South Sudan formally declared independence from Sudan in July. (Reuters / Asmaa Waguih / Landov) Labor Day, the holiday that traditionally marks the end of summer, is on Monday. This summer, a new nation was born. The space shuttle Atlantis landed on Earth for the final time on July 21. From hurricanes to historic heat waves, America has been sweating through one tough summer. Meanwhile, states in the South and along the East Coast suffered from heavy flooding and record rainfall this summer. Americans won't vote for a new President until November 2012—but the race is already getting started. Who will become the Republican nominee? Two weeks ago, rebels stormed Tripoli, the capital of Libya, and took over the compound of the country's dictator, Colonel Muammar el-Qaddafi.

Those persistent myths about the Sept. 11 attacks - The Fact Checker (Michael Lutzky/THE WASHINGTON POST) Somehow, there are still people who don’t believe that on Sept. 11, 2001, a group of terrorists seized four commercial jetliners and piloted them toward New York and Washington, killing thousands of people. Never mind the reams of sober and professional reports that have explored what actually happened and why. * that a missile struck the Pentagon, not a Boeing 757 * that U.S. air defenses were ordered to “stand down” on 9/11 * that government agents gathered all of the passengers from the four jets on Flight 93, and then brought it down * that World Trade Center 7 was professionally demolished. A team of journalists from Popular Mechanics has done a remarkable job exploring 25 of the most prominent conspiracy theories. The book completely demolishes all of the most outlandish assertions, using actual facts and information provided by an impressive array of experts. The Air Force was ordered to stand down on 9/11, allowing the plot to unfold The Facts:

Homosexuality Before the Bible « Half Wisdom, Half Wit Posted by Mary W. Matthews in Religion & Theology. trackback At a new (or newish) web site called Quora, someone asked, “Was homosexuality an issue before the Bible was written?” Homosexuality was only an “issue” in pre-biblical times in the sense that it is hard-wired into the human species. Remember also that Israel and Judea were about the only places on Earth where women were respected as having been created by God in God’s image (Gen. 1:27, 5:1-2). Another thing you should be aware of is that Yahweh was by no means the only god worshiped in the Fertile Crescent during Bible times. See also “Homosexuality in the Bible.” Like this: Like Loading...

SAT Reading Scores Reach Record Low SAT reading scores for the high school class of 2011 were the lowest on record, according to the College Board. Copyright © 2011 NPR. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required. MELISSA BLOCK, host: Reading scores for high school students taking the SAT this year were the lowest on record. And as NPR's Kathy Lohr reports, the results have education officials scrambling to understand exactly why they're so bad. KATHY LOHR: More than 1.6 million students took the exams and their scores in critical reading, math, and writing all dropped. Dr. LOHR: James Montoya is with the College Board, the group that released the scores. MONTOYA: We have made a concerted effort to reach out, particularly to underserved students. LOHR: Montoya says one in five came from low-income families and qualified to take the test free. Bob Schaeffer is with FairTest, a group that monitors standardized tests, including the SAT. Dr. Kathy Lohr, NPR News.

What You Don't Know About Copyright, but Should - Technology By Jennifer Howard If Nancy Sims had to pick one word to describe how researchers, students, and librarians feel about copyright, it would probably be "confused." A lawyer and a librarian, Ms. Sims is copyright-program librarian at the University of Minnesota Libraries. She's there to help people on campus and beyond—both users and owners of protected material—understand their rights. "I'm not sure anybody has a very good knowledge" of copyright, she says. For instance, in a recent informal survey she conducted at the university, only 30 percent or so of the faculty respondents knew the answers to basic questions such as how one gets a copyright and how long it lasts. For the multitudes out there who are copyright-confused, here are some pointers Ms. If you think you don't own any copyrights, think again. At the rights sessions she holds for small groups of faculty members, she asks them if they own any copyrights. Don't be ruled by fear. Ask for help. Compiled Ben Wieder

Addiction: A Disorder Of Choice? : 13.7: Cosmos And Culture Ted Aljibe/AFP/Getty Images "Shall I have Chinese food tonight, or Italian? I like Chinese more, but I had it last night, and I find that I enjoy it less if I have it two nights in a row. And anyway, I guess I'm kind of in the mood for Italian." This imagined interior dialog brings out an interesting fact about values, preferences and choices. This is a general truth about life and choice. The Chinese food example comes from Gene M. So consider the dining example again and notice that there are two different ways I might reason about the question what should I eat? But there is also a global approach available to me. There's a lot to be said for the global perspective. Whatever we say about the relative merits of local versus global perspectives, the critical thing is this: values are dynamic and the choices we make affect not only what we do but the pleasure we take in what we do. And this is because addictive substances are, in Heyman's phrase, behaviorially toxic.

Lisa Bloom: How to Talk to Little Girls I went to a dinner party at a friend's home last weekend, and met her five-year-old daughter for the first time. Little Maya was all curly brown hair, doe-like dark eyes, and adorable in her shiny pink nightgown. I wanted to squeal, "Maya, you're so cute! Look at you! Turn around and model that pretty ruffled gown, you gorgeous thing!" But I didn't. What's wrong with that? Hold that thought for just a moment. This week ABC News reported that nearly half of all three- to six-year-old girls worry about being fat. Teaching girls that their appearance is the first thing you notice tells them that looks are more important than anything. That's why I force myself to talk to little girls as follows. "Maya," I said, crouching down at her level, looking into her eyes, "very nice to meet you." "Nice to meet you too," she said, in that trained, polite, talking-to-adults good girl voice. "Hey, what are you reading?" "I LOVE books," I said. Most kids do. "YES," she said. "Wow, amazing!" "I'll go get it!