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Schools We Can Envy by Diane Ravitch

Finnish Lessons: What Can the World Learn from Educational Change in Finland? by Pasi Sahlberg, with a foreword by Andy Hargreaves Teachers College Press, 167 pp., $34.95 (paper) In recent years, elected officials and policymakers such as former president George W. Nothing is said about holding accountable the district leadership or the elected officials who determine such crucial issues as funding, class size, and resource allocation. The belief that schools alone can overcome the effects of poverty may be traced back many decades but its most recent manifestation was a short book published in 2000 by the conservative Heritage Foundation in Washington, D.C., titled No Excuses. For a while, the Gates Foundation thought that small high schools were the answer, but Gates now believes that teacher evaluation is the primary ingredient of school reform. The main mechanism of school reform today is to identify teachers who can raise their students’ test scores every year.

Attachment disorder: The families struggling to stay in control | Society On a good day, Amy Robson's 14-year-old stepson James is just like any other teenage boy – he'll happily regale you with the latest footie scores or challenge you to a game on the PlayStation at his home in Cumbria. But on a bad day, the same teenager has been known to threaten classmates, attack teachers and even defecate in the classroom. Two years ago James was diagnosed with attachment disorder, something that occurs when the attachment between a child and a care-giver is not formed during early childhood. It was brought on by his chaotic start in life, when he lived in a violent household with an alcoholic mother. "We hit a crisis point [last year] as we just weren't getting any help," Robson says. Help could soon be at hand, following the award of a government grant to a group of child psychiatrists from Hull York Medical School to carry out a systematic review to determine which interventions are most effective among parents of children with attachment problems.

Teacher Page In accordance with longstanding past policy and practice, the first two days of Passover (Tuesday, April 15 and Wednesday, April 16, 2014) are NOT SCHEDULED AS HOLIDAYS since it has been contrary to policy and practice to schedule holidays that would result in a workweek limited to two non-consecutive work days; most recently it occurred in 1993, 2004, 2007, 2010, and 2011. In future years these two days will remain paid holidays for employees (i.e., when scheduled on weekdays except when their scheduling results in a workweek limited to two non-consecutive workdays), except for "prevailing wage rate employees" subject to Section 220 of the New York State Labor Law and managerial/confidential employees, i.e., pedagogic managers not covered by a collective bargaining agreement (even when receiving benefits through the CSA), all administrative managers, and employees in Original Jurisdiction (OJ) titles receiving benefits through the City of New York Management Benefits Fund (MBF).

How do we make our schools fit to face the 21st century? | Education | The Observer The Observer panel, chaired by Yvonne Roberts: Guy Claxton, professor of learning sciences; Sue Street, inner city school teacher; Melissa Benn, journalist and campaigner; Rachel Wolf, education adviser; Peter Hyman, teacher and former political strategist. What is education for in the 21st century? Rachel Wolf The best thing that schools can do now is make sure people have the core of knowledge and skills and ability to decide what they want to do with their lives. Guy Claxton Education means learning to think for yourself, learning to make and repair friendships, learning to see other people's points of view, learning not to be frightened of uncertainty or difficulty. Melissa Benn There's something more to education, which is about learning how to live in society, learning how to be a citizen, learning how to be self-reliant and all those kinds of skills. Peter Hyman I think we're preparing children for the middle of the 20th century and not for the 21st. Guy Claxton Absolutely.

Des collégiens en stage dans l'armée : retour sur un fiasco Le stage en immersion à la caserne de Monthléry s’est révélé une expérimentation hasardeuse et à l’idéologie dangereuse. Image extraite du reportage de France 3 Paris Ile-de-France sur le stage des collégiens au 121e régiment Cela s’est passé durant la semaine du 2 au 6 mai, dans la caserne militaire du 121e régiment de Montlhéry. Dix collégiens venus de l’établissement de réinsertion scolaire (ERS) de Nanterre ont été aux ordres de l’armée pendant une semaine. Ce stage en immersion était présenté par l’inspecteur d’académie des Hauts-de-Seine comme une « expérimentation de coopération entre l’Education nationale et la Défense ». Car le principe d’une immersion a été respecté à la lettre : uniforme pour tout le monde, y compris pour le personnel présent sur le terrain (dont une psychologue scolaire !) Des sorties ont aussi été organisées, notamment la visite du musée de l’Armée aux Invalides et le ravivage de la flamme du soldat inconnu sous l’Arc de Triomphe.

Why ICT must be a key part of the school curriculum « Malcolm Bellamy's Lifelong Learning Blog Posted on December 29, 2011 by malbell I have just read a really interesting post by Dan Barker in the Huffington Post United Kingdom edition. The post is titled “Decline and Fall: The UK’s Shocking IT Education Record”. In the post, Barker, a professional software developer, bemoans the fact that U.K. schools have a terrible record when it comes to teaching ICT skills. This is a young I.T. professional who is only too aware of the place that ICT skills have in the current world economy. His final paragraph is perhaps the most concerning for us: “The good news is that the problem is apparently now moving up the political agenda, with Michael Gove, the education secretary, admitting recently that he thought that computer science needed to be taught more in schools. Like this: Like Loading... Filed under: Digital Technology, The 21st Century school Tagged: | ICT, Information and communication technologies in education, Ofsted

Creating a Game-Based Online Class One of the things that I like the most about the field of instructional design is the opportunity to think about that hard to quantify meta-level where you are teaching someone how to teach someone else. The most effective way to do this is to have your learner live the experience that you are trying to teach them to create. Unfortunately, the medium of a blog post does not permit me to teach you how to create a game-based curriculum by experiencing it. This adds a layer of complexity to my task, but one that is not insurmountable. It is my hope that you can follow these easy steps to design and implement your own game-based class in the near future. Step 1: Define your Objectives This is exactly the same process you should undertake at the beginning of planning for any class. Content knowledge objectivesDiscipline-specific knowledgeDiscipline-specific technical skillsOther technical skills (technology skills)Other academic skills Image: dream designs /

Twitter in the Classroom There are so many GREAT educators on Twitter and it’s great to connect, learn, and grow from them. One day my class and I tweeted about Greece with someone IN Greece. Now that I have completely embraced Skype in my classroom, I’m realizing even more that global learning adds a whole new wonderful layer to an ordinary day in the classroom. I could use my own Twitter account. Since I’ve started it, I’ve been following other classrooms and even started a list of Classrooms that Tweet. Uses for Twitter in the Classroom: 1.) 140 a day Learning Log: Ask a student to tweet “What did we learn today?” 2.) 3.) 4.) 5.) 6.) 7.) Tips: 1.) 2.) 3.) 4.) I’m really just starting this journey with my class and I can’t wait to see where it takes us.

4/3 Fun Dexteria | Home Learning Technology Trends To Watch In 2012 Sharebar As the technologies of the 21st century evolve and mature, we become the beneficiaries of exciting approaches for designing learning experiences. The convergence of informal and social media learning, combined with the explosion of smartphone and tablet use, is having a huge impact on how we think about training and education. So while last year’s list of learning technology trends to watch in 2011 is still viable, there are new and important learning trends to follow and explore this year. Backchannel Several years ago, audience members at presentations and workshops began communicating with each other using their smartphones and laptops. One dedicated practitioner of using the backchannel in this way is David Kelly, who collects the communications regarding an event in one place. Content Curation Digital curation is nearly a necessity for dealing with information overload. Developing in the Cloud Expanded Instructional Designer’s Role Flipped Learning Gamification HTML 5 for Mobile

The future of libraries, with or without books (CNN) -- The stereotypical library is dying -- and it's taking its shushing ladies, dank smell and endless shelves of books with it. Libraries are trying to imagine their futures with or without books. Books are being pushed aside for digital learning centers and gaming areas. "Loud rooms" that promote public discourse and group projects are taking over the bookish quiet. And that's just the surface. Authors, publishing houses, librarians and Web sites continue to fight Google's efforts to digitize the world's books and create the world's largest library online. Some books will still be around, they say, although many of those will be digital. "The library building isn't a warehouse for books," said Helene Blowers, digital strategy director at the Columbus [Ohio] Metropolitan Library. Think of the change as a Library 2.0 revolution -- a mirror of what's happened on the Web. Library 2.0 People used to go online for the same information they could get from newspapers. Community Centers

The Original Internet: Still a Great Place to Visit As happens many a Sunday, today I spent the afternoon with some friends getting brunch and then browsing an independent bookstore on Court Street in Brooklyn. I spend an unhealthy amount of time browsing blogs and websites. Fewer and fewer of these sites (and their content) are inspiring me. Yes, there is a lot of interesting stuff going on with Facebook, OpenSocial and the like, but everyone writes about the same stuff. Bookstores however, never fail to inspire – especially the independent ones. Maybe this is Google’s killer next app. In any event, if you’re looking for some inspiration, or simply to do something not involving your laptop, go find a bookstore and get lost for a while.

Are Libraries Dying or Thriving? One of the towns I used to live in is apparently raising two million dollars for renovations to its library. I told my mother (an active supporter and board member of her public library) that I thought this was a waste of money as the role that libraries play in society has been/will be diminished. I suggested the town is better served spending its money on a public space like a park or garden. My mother was disgusted. She informed me that that public libraries are being used as much, or more than ever before. I was pretty surprised to hear all this because I’d assumed that libraries were a dying breed as people increasingly access information online from home, or opt to sit and read at a Barnes & Noble instead. While I don’t for a minute doubt my mother’s facts on library use, given the choice of allocating money either toward a park or toward a library, I would still opt for the park. How about you?

If Schools Are Broken, What Is the Solution? Answer: Urban School Reform–WRONG! « Larry Cuban on School Reform and Classroom Practice Here we go again. Another 24/7 media frenzy over the direction of school reform has erupted over David Guggenheim’s documentary “Waiting for Superman,” Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s gift of $100,000,000 to Newark public schools, and the resignation of Chancellor Michele Rhee’s from the Washington, D.C. schools. Oops! also the urban superintendents’ recent “manifesto.” But why “here we go again?” Because: 1. We forget, however, that U.S. schools are incredibly diverse and decentralized (100,000 schools, 14,000 districts, 56 million students, 3, 000,000 teachers). Policymaker talk amplified by media hype and the blogosphere make urban school reform–”schools are broken and need to be fixed”–the norm for all school change. Pause for a moment and reflect on the flawed logic of those who tar all public schools with the urban brush. 2. 3. Enough of the criticism, Larry, what do you propose to avoid the “here we go again” syndrome? Like this: Like Loading...