Recess round-up: July 9, 2010

A daily dose of education news around the nation – just in time for a little mid-day break!

Technology and education: With all the talk of the internet as equalizer, David Brooks writes that literary culture, as in life with a library, still produces better students. Meanwhile, if you haven’t seen last month’s white paper “Assessing Technology Literacy: The Case for an Authentic, Project-Based Learning Approach” out of Virginia Commonwealth University, take a peek. (The New York Times, Generation YES blog)

Job readiness: Back to school, no more on-the-job training for high school students in Barstow, Calif. (Desert Dispatch)

Higher education costs: Spending on recreation and administration outpaced spending on instruction. The Delta Project report, “Trends in College Spending: 1998-2008,” offers nifty “plug-and-play” features for anyone who’s interested in “following the money.” (The New York Times, The Huffington Post, Inside Higher Ed)

School improvements: In San Diego, the school board allowed the King-Chavez Arts Academy charter school to stay open after it landed on a state list of persistently failing schools, but only if the school meets a long list of conditions. (Voice of San Diego)

For details on the status of California schools, have a look at the School Improvement Grant applications. King-Chavez Arts Academy is categorized here as a “Transformation” school, which means it would have to “replace the principal and take steps to increase teacher and school leader effectiveness,” in addition to enacting other reforms.  State board deliberations begin on August 2nd.

And if you are still interested, for background, take a look at this report, by the Center on Education Policy, on efforts to improve persistently low-performing schools.

Education reform: It’s complicated living in a post No Child Left Behind (NCLB) world. (Quick and Ed)

Edujobs vs. ed reform: John D. Podesta, who  co-chaired President Obama’s transition team and served as White House Chief of Staff to President Clinton, accounts for the debate within his own organization, the Center for American Progress (CAP). CAP Senior Fellow Scott Lilly had called proposed cuts to Race to the Top — to salvage a $10 billion bill to avoid additional teacher layoffs — a “tradeoff worth making.” His colleagues disagreed, saying any such cuts would be “a very unfortunate setback.”

Common standards: New Hampshire and Georgia are the latest states to adopt the common core standards. The  state-led effort was coordinated by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers. (Education Week and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Susan Sawyers