Roundup: Senate ESEA Debate, Clinton Endorsement/Speech

Today’s education news includes more debate about ESEA in the Senate plus an AFT endorsement of Hillary Clinton (no surprise) just before her big economic speech today:

Senate ESEA Debate: What to Expect This Week PK12: Pressure rises, with nearly 150 amendments filed so far on the bill to overhaul the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, though it’s unclear how many will make it to the floor.

GOP senator: Let states fix No Child Left Behind The Hill: “Continue the law’s important measurements of academic progress of students but restore to states, school districts, classroom teachers and parents the responsibility for deciding what to do about improving student achievement,” he said.

AFT Endorses Hillary Clinton in Democratic Race for White House PK12: The American Federation of Teachers kicks off primary season by throwing its muscle behind the former U.S. Senator and Secretary of State. See also HuffPostWashington PostPoliticoWSJNYT.

Hillary Clinton Will Call for Economic Policy Changes to Lift Middle-Class Wages NYT: A major teachers’ union voted on Saturday to give Hillary Rodham Clinton an early endorsement for president, a boost to her pro-labor credentials as she prepares to outline in more detail an economic vision focused on lifting middle-class incomes and tries to fend off a stronger-than-expected challenge from the left.

Report: Most NYC Charter Schools Replace Students who Leave WNYC: The I.B.O. looked at attrition patterns at 53 privately managed charter schools between 2008 and 2014. Most of them backfilled between 70 and 100 percent of their empty seats. But Raymond Domanico, the education research director, found six of them only filled a third or less of their available seats, which can be relevant when looking at their test scores. See also ChalkbeatNY.

Study calculates low-income, minority students get the worst teachers in Washington State Hechinger Report: No matter which of these three measures of teacher quality they used, guess what? They got the same result. Disadvantaged students across the state’s elementary, middle and high schools ended up with the worst teachers — the ones who not only produced the smallest test score gains, but also had the fewest years of experience and the lowest licensure exam scores.

Malala Turns 18, And Opens A School For Syrian Refugee Girls NPR: The Pakistani education activist, who was shot in the head in 2012 by a Taliban gunman, marked her birthday with refugees in Lebanon. She warned that the world is “failing … Syria’s children.” See also PBS NewsHour.

The new trend in validating top students: Make them all valedictorians Washington Post: The top student in a high school’s graduating class used to earn the honor of being the valedictorian, and traditionally that one student delivered a commencement speech that helped send his or her classmates out into the adult world.

Alexander Russo

Alexander Russo is a freelance education writer who has created several long-running blogs such as the national news site This Week In Education, District 299 (about Chicago schools), and LA School Report. He can be reached on Twitter at @alexanderrusso, on Facebook, or directly at alexanderrusso@gmail.com.