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The National Center for Fair & Open Testing

The National Center for Fair & Open Testing
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Chicago Is Focus of National Debate on Schools At stake are profound policy questions about how teachers should be granted tenure, promoted or fired, as well as the place standardized tests will have in the lives of elementary and high school students. One of the main sticking points in the negotiations here between the teachers union and Mayor Rahm Emanuel is a new teacher evaluation system that gives significant and increasing weight to student performance on standardized tests. Personnel decisions would be based on those evaluations. Over the last few years, a majority of states have adopted similar systems, spurred by the desire to qualify for the Obama administration’s Race to the Top education grants. Proponents say these measures are needed to improve teaching in a country where 33 percent of fourth graders are not reading at grade level and about one-quarter of public high school students do not graduate on time, if at all. That sentiment certainly permeated the picket lines and rallies in Chicago this week.

Four Financial Tips Every High School Senior and College Freshman Should Know | EdCircuit Photo credit: 401kcalculator.org by Afoma Okoye Financial planning is important for students seeking post-secondary education. Poor financial planning is one of the major reasons why students drop out of college. Fill out the FASFA The first step all students need to take during their senior year is to apply for FASFA. Federal student loans must be paid back after college graduation, or in the event that the student drops out of college. Students should talk to their parents about ways they can contribute money towards their own education. Some parents cannot afford tuition, but they can help by providing groceries, offering a home if their child wishes to commute, or they could help their child find local and national scholarships. Parents and student should be attentive to the interest rates on the loans. Focus on the college program, not the name of the college Apply for scholarships There are many scholarships for prospective college students. Do not feel pressured to attend college

Frequently Asked Questions | Should I test again? Many students test twice, once as a junior and again as a senior. You should definitely consider retesting if you had any problems during testing, such as misunderstanding the directions, or feeling ill. You may also want to consider retesting if you don't believe that your scores accurately represent your abilities, especially if you see a discrepancy between your ACT scores and your high school grades, or if you have subsequently completed coursework in the areas covered by the ACT. If you test more than once, you determine which set of scores are sent to colleges or scholarship programs. Research shows that of students from the 2013 graduating class who took the ACT more than once: 57% increased their Composite score on the retest21% had no change in their Composite score on the retest22% decreased their Composite score on the retest Example for how to read the table below:For students who received an ACT Composite score of 20 the first time they tested:

U.S. Education Reform and National Security Order Report Publisher Council on Foreign Relations Press Release Date March 2012 Price $15.00 paper 120 pages ISBN 978-0-87609-520-1 Task Force Report No. 68 Share Overview The United States' failure to educate its students leaves them unprepared to compete and threatens the country's ability to thrive in a global economy and maintain its leadership role, finds a new Council on Foreign Relations (CFR)–sponsored Independent Task Force report on U.S. "Educational failure puts the United States' future economic prosperity, global position, and physical safety at risk," warns the Task Force, chaired by Joel I. The report notes that while the United States invests more in K-12 public education than many other developed countries, its students are ill prepared to compete with their global peers. Though there are many successful individual schools and promising reform efforts, the national statistics on educational outcomes are disheartening: Carole Artigiani, Global Kids, Inc. Craig R. Edith L.

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Penn Admissions How to Fix the Schools It’s not just the school days that are being lost. Far more important, the animosity between the Chicago Teachers Union and Mayor Rahm Emanuel and his administration will undoubtedly linger long after the strike ends. The battle will end, but the war between education reformers and urban public schoolteachers will go on. Teachers — many of them — will continue to resent efforts to use standardized tests to measure their ability to teach. Tucker, 72, a former senior education official in Washington, is the president of the National Center on Education and the Economy, which he founded in 1988. “We have to find a way to work with teachers and unions while at the same time working to greatly raise the quality of teachers,” he told me recently. What is also a given in other countries is that teaching has a status equal to other white-collar professionals. Second, he believes that it makes no sense to demonize unions. High-performing countries don’t abandon teacher standards.

Congratulations to Class of 2014, Most Indebted Ever - The Numbers ByPhil Izzo As college graduates in the Class of 2014 prepare to shift their tassels and accept their diplomas, they leave school with one discouraging distinction: They’re the most indebted class ever. The average Class of 2014 graduate with student-loan debt has to pay back some $33,000, according to an analysis of government data by Mark Kantrowitz, publisher at Edvisors, a group of web sites about planning and paying for college. Even after adjusting for inflation that’s nearly double the amount borrowers had to pay back 20 years ago. Meanwhile, a greater share of students is taking on debt to finance higher education. The good news for the Class of 2014 is that they likely won’t hold the title of “Most Indebted Ever” very long. But as the debt burden of college graduates continues to rise faster than inflation, it begins to complicate the question of whether a bachelor’s degree is worth the expense. Zuma Press But will the debt associated with a college degree always be worth it?

Class of 2018 Essays That Worked These “essays that worked” are distinct and unique to the individual writer; however, each of them assisted the admissions reader in learning more about the student beyond the transcripts and activity sheets. We hope these essays inspire you as you prepare to compose your own personal statements. The most important thing to remember is to be original and creative as you share your own story with us. The Unathletic Department—Meghan A blue seventh place athletic ribbon hangs from my mantel. Two years ago, I joined the no-cut swim team. The blue for the first loser went to me. However, as I walked back to my team, carrying the seventh place blue, listening to the splash of the new event’s swimmers, I could not help but smile. So, the blue seventh place ribbon sits there, on my mantel, for the world to see. “The first thing that stands out about this essay is the catchy title, which effectively sets up an essay that is charmingly self-deprecating. The Musketeer in Me—Vikas Undecided—Daniel

Current Work « NCEE NCEE has returned to its original goal of analyzing the world economic and educational scene to identify the best course for American education policy and present its proposals for change in the education system to the American public. Specifically, it decided to follow up on the work of the first Commission on the Skills of the American Workforce by creating another, the New Commission on the Skills of the American Workforce, to examine the workings of the current global economy and their implications for education and training in the United States. That Commission released its report, Tough Choices or Tough Times, that called for a fundamental restructuring of how America educates its people. It features an innovative set of policy proposals designed to yield a system that would boost students to unprecedented levels of learning while creating a structure to give them the best teachers and schools the country can offer.

The Teacher’s Guide To Open Educational Resources You’ve probably heard about Open Educational Resources and maybe even used some in your classroom. But the world of OERs is growing constantly, with more quality resources available every day. If you aren’t taking advantage of them yet, now is a great time to take a closer look. What’s so great about OERs? Open Educational Resources are learning tools like textbooks, lesson plans, and other media that are in the public domain or openly licensed, meaning that use you can freely use and adapt them. You can also contribute your new, modified version of the work back to the public, making OERs a wonderful way for you and your students to share your work with other classrooms around the world. How can I tell whether a work is an OER? The easiest way to find out whether a work is an OER is to look for a Creative Commons (CC) license. Where to start Since anyone can create an OER and share it online, the field of resources available out there is constantly growing. Literature Math and Science

College | APUSU Information Greetings! I hope you’ve enjoyed the Coursera “Applying to US Universities” online course and have found it helpful. By participating in the course, you should have a better understanding of what you hope to gain by studying at a US institution of higher learning and how to find the right university match for you. I’m excited that you are considering Rhodes College in your university search. While I hope you’ll explore the entire Rhodes website, as an international student, you may find these links particularly helpful: You can also chat via Google Talk with an International Student Advisor on Fridays, from 2:30-4:30 CST. Good luck with your college and university search and we hope to see you explore Rhodes College even further! Lauren Sefton Associate Director of Admission

Gifted Students Deserve More Opportunities BARACK OBAMA and Mitt Romney both attended elite private high schools. Both are undeniably smart and well educated and owe much of their success to the strong foundation laid by excellent schools. Every motivated, high-potential young American deserves a similar opportunity. But the majority of very smart kids lack the wherewithal to enroll in rigorous private schools. They depend on public education to prepare them for life. Mostly, the system ignores them, with policies and budget priorities that concentrate on raising the floor under low-achieving students. Public education’s neglect of high-ability students doesn’t just deny individuals opportunities they deserve. Today’s systemic failure takes three forms. First, we’re weak at identifying “gifted and talented” children early, particularly if they’re poor or members of minority groups or don’t have savvy, pushy parents. Here and there, however, entire public schools focus exclusively on high-ability, highly motivated students.

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