The Talking Page Literacy Organization's Tutoring Approach
- U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings announces grants for emergency school repairs
- U.S. Deputy Secretary of Education, Ray Simon visits Elementary School in Virginia where he paid tribute to American troops
- Secretary Spellings launchs the fifth meeting of her Commission on the Future of Higher Education
- Secretary Spellings announces the first two States approved and implementing their growth model pilots for the 2005-2006 academic year.
- Secretary Spellings delivers commencement remarks and receive an Honorary Degree at Montgomery College (MD)
- Secretary Spellings and the Deputy Director of the National Science Foundation, address the first national summit on the advancement of girls in math and science
- Secretary Spellings sends a letter to all Chief State School Officers
- Secretary Spellings delivers the commencement address to the Texas Tech University Class of 2006
- The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) releases The Condition of Education 2006
- NCES released results of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2005 science assessment
- NCES releases the National Indian Education Study
- New 2005 Digest of Education Statistics
- NCES has created a new version of the College Opportunities Online Locator (COOL) website
- A new NCES study examines the link between kindergarten enrollment status and students' first grade reading and mathematics achievement
- Annual NCES Summer Forum and Data Conference
- The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) is accepting applications for the NAEP Secondary Analysis Research Program
- Grant awards for the Teaching American History program
- The U.S. Department of Education awards two grants
- The Thomas B. Fordham Foundation has releases two charter school reports
- Desert Sands Unified School District (CA) receives national recognition
- A study from the Center for the Future of Arizona and Morrison Institute for Public Policy
- The Big Read Program
- Nancy S. Grasmick, Maryland's first female state superintendent, will receive the 2006 James Bryant Conant Award
- A new report from the Colorado-based Daniels Fund
- A new study from ACT
- The Western States Certification Consortium offers a website and newsletter
- The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) has released a report
- National Education Association (NEA) released a list of the top five trends in the teaching profession
- PBS receives the 2006 Education Commission of the States (ECS) Corporate Award
Innovations in the News
- Charter Schools
- Closing the Achievement Gap/School Reform
- Teacher Quality and Development/Leadership
Brain Matters: The Talking Page Literacy Organization's Tutoring Approach
Look at the word "bat." Silently concentrate on reading the word. Now say the word out loud. Surprisingly, the brain uses very different circuits, or pathways, to perform each of these tasks: looking, reading, and speaking. The Talking Page Literacy Organization (TPLO) is employing recent research on how the brain works to inform how it may help children learn to speak, read, write, and understand the English language.
TPLO is a nonprofit organization that offers after-school tutoring services in English to local educational agencies, including school districts, and faith-based organizations using phonics and current research in Neurolinguistics. Neurolinguistics is the study of how the human brain learns and processes written and oral language. In order to tutor individuals with different learning styles, the program utilizes four "learning pathways to the mind," which include hearing, saying, seeing, and writing. Students first practice how to recognize the sounds of letters, pronounce sounds, form letters, spell whole words, and then write sentences.
According to TPLO, this approach to instruction can be represented in the form of a "linguistics tree." Phonemes , graphemes , and morphemes are the basic foundation of language and constitute the "roots" of the tree, which is where the tutoring program starts. A phoneme is the smallest unit of sound in language that is capable of conveying a distinction in meaning, such as the b in bat and the m in mat . A grapheme consists of all the letters and letter combinations that represent a sound, such as f , ph , and gh for the phoneme / f /. Next, a morpheme is a language unit that cannot be divided into smaller meaningful units, such as the ed in walked . Once a student has mastered these three main roots, he or she can begin practicing how to say and write words and phrases, which make up the trunk of the "linguistics tree." Sentence construction and grammar are the last elements of the program and form the branches of the metaphorical tree.
Martin Chekel, founder and president of TPLO, states, "The design we use is sequenced we take the fundamental parts of language and then build upon them. In creating this service, I wanted to bring new ideas into classrooms and after-school programs, to change instruction and accelerate it."
TPLO was established in 1998 for the purpose of improving "early childhood literacy in America" and the philosophy that all children should be able to read, spell, and write English by age six. In 1998, TPLO provided research reports and testimonials about effective early childhood writing, spelling, and reading programs to Congress, State legislatures, and local school boards. In 2001, TPLO began providing services to school districts in California, where the organization is based.
Currently TPLO offers three programs, "Early Childhood and Family Literacy," "America's English Language Tutoring," and "English Linguistics Literacy." All three programs generally last seven to ten weeks and tutor students in writing, spelling, and reading. Within each TPLO program, trained tutors or teachers lead students. TPLO has developed a series of "Tutoring Academy" workshops for teachers and tutors in which they are trained using specific professional development modules. These modules are designed to support California's English-Language Arts Standards in kindergarten through eighth grade and focus on topics such as phonemic awareness, decoding, phonics, listening and speaking integration, and vocabulary and writing development. During professional development sessions, teachers and tutors view a presentation on neurolinguistic brain research, observe trained tutors during classroom demonstrations, review instructional materials, learn how to integrate a TPLO-developed audio system into their tutoring instruction, and analyze TPLO-created pre- and post-tests.
Individual mini-lessons for each program generally take five to ten minutes for students to complete. Students then spend time reviewing lesson concepts with their tutors before moving on to the next mini-lesson. TPLO uses explicit instruction with an audio system called SONO. Explicit instruction is a series of required instructional steps or procedures designed to guarantee that students understand explicitly what is expected of them and what is being taught. TPLO tutors speak with students before each mini-lesson about the lesson's objectives. The SONO system delivers the majority of tutoring instruction to students and consists of a headphone and microphone set as well as an audio player capable of voice replay and recording. During a lesson, a student first listens to a recording where a phonemic sound is pronounced. Next, the student repeats that sound into the microphone on the headset. The audio player allows the student to hear his or her own voice saying the phoneme. The student then writes the letter that represents the phoneme using a clock face as a writing guide. To write the letter g , for example, the student would start at the number two then trace all the way around the clock back to the number four, making a circle. Then the student would pull the line straight down, rounding the line up toward the number eight. After writing the letter four times, the student says the phoneme again. According to studies from the National Institute of Child and Human Development (NICHD), direct instruction in decoding skills emphasizing the alphabetic code results in more favorable outcomes than does a context-emphasis or embedded approach.
In his 2000 address to Congress, Dr. Reid Lyon, former Chief of Child Development at NICHD, noted, "The average child needs between four and fourteen exposures to a new letter, letters, or words to automatize the recognition in the brain."
By listening to the phoneme, saying it twice, hearing the pronunciation of it, and then writing it four times, each TPLO lesson allows for nine exposures to a particular letter. Review is a large part of the process. Parents whose children participate in the Early Childhood and Family Literacy Program are encouraged to review the lessons with their children as homework.
TPLO has patented the term "SONOgram" to describe the working set of 26 letters and 44 phonemes that are needed to write English speech on paper. Each SONOgram is numbered and then introduced and reviewed in different mini-lessons. During the first five weeks of the program, students learn the sounds of 54 SONOgrams, how to form all the letters in the alphabet, write simple sentences, and spell several hundred words. During the next four weeks, students learn the remaining 16 SONOgrams, additional vocabulary words, and begin to read basic-level books.
The process is informed by the work of Dr. Sally Shaywitz, a neurolinguist and Co-Director of the Yale Center for the Study of Learning and Attention. According to Dr. Shaywitz, "In order to learn how to read, an individual must begin to learn that the letters, the orthography, the graphics that are present on a page, represent the same sound units that an individual hears in spoken language."
TPLO conducts pre- and post-tests for students using two exams. Both tests were developed at the Reading Research Center at Cornell University and are administered by TPLO tutors. First, the tutor tests the student's ability to write the 70 SONOgrams heard in English speech and simple spelling words using the TPLO English Linguistics Assessment Tests that are on the SONO Audio System. Next, the tutor administers TPLO's Diagnostic Reading Test to assess the student's reading comprehension and skills. The diagnostic tests are offered for students in first through fifth grade and another set of diagnostic tests is offered for students in sixth through eleventh grade. Dr. Walter Pauk, director of Reading Research at Cornell University, Linda Browning, and her husband, Glenn Browning, developed both sets of diagnostic tests. The tests provide tutors, teachers, and parents with an indicator of the student's weaknesses and strengths. During the test, the student must be able to recall facts from a given passage, identify the main idea of a passage, draw conclusions, and choose the correct meaning of a vocabulary word from a particular context. The diagnostic tests employ the Fry Readability Scale to determine the student's reading level. The Fry Scale utilizes a special graph to plot the average number of syllables and sentences per 100 words in a piece of writing to ascertain the grade level of the material. Once TPLO tutors have gathered information from all tests, they generate Individual Student Learning Plans for each tutee.
In 2001, TPLO provided 145 Early Childhood and Family Literacy Program Kits to students at Garfield Elementary School in Santa Ana, California. Garfield has a student enrollment of 1,028 Hispanic children who perform significantly below average in English language skills measured by the state's STAR (Standardized Test And Reporting) exam. The TPLO kits included student books, SONO audio players, writing papers, lesson booklets, and reading comprehension tests for grades one through five. Students who were reading both below and far below basic in grades two through five were selected to participate in the after-school TPLO program. The organization trained 23 teachers and 20 aides for the project.
The year before the program was implemented, six percent of second and third grade students and 11 percent of fourth and fifth grade students were reading on grade level. By 2003, after fully implementing the TPLO program and other school-based interventions during the academic day, the percentages increased by 26 percent for the second grade, 18 percent for the third grade, 32 percent for the fourth grade, and 23 percent for the fifth grade.
The Talking Page Literacy Organization is an approved supplemental educational services (SES) provider in California under the federal No Child Left Behind Act . Currently, the organization has contracts in diverse areas across the state, some of which include Orange County, San Diego County, Los Angeles Unified School District, San Joaquin County, Pomona Unified School District, and Sacramento County. The term "supplemental educational services" refers to free extra academic help, such as tutoring or remedial help, that is provided to students in subjects such as reading, language arts, and mathematics. This extra help can be provided before or after school, on weekends, or in the summer. Low-income families can enroll their children in supplemental educational services if their children attend Title I schools that have been designated as in need of improvement for more than one year by the State. Across the country, providers of supplemental educational services include nonprofit and for-profit organizations, local educational agencies, public schools, public charter schools, private schools, public and private institutions of higher education, and faith-based organizations. The Office of Innovation and Improvement coordinates the supplemental educational services provision of the No Child Left Behind Act .
From the U.S. Department of Education
U.S. Secretary of Education Margaret Spellings today announced the award of more than $27 million in grants for emergency school repairs under the Department's Impact Aid Discretionary Construction Program. (June 9)
U.S. Deputy Secretary of Education, Ray Simon visited Franklin Sherman Elementary School (VA) where he paid tribute to American troops as part of the "ThanksUSA" initiative to mobilize citizens to thank the men and women of the armed forces for their contributions to the country. Deputy Secretary Simon stressed the value of American history in schools along with the importance of Memorial Day as a national holiday for recognizing the sacrifices of service men and women. (May 26)
Secretary Spellings launched the fifth meeting of her Commission on the Future of Higher Education in Washington, DC. The Commission discussed access, affordability, accountability, innovation, and workforce development among other topics. (May 19)
Secretary Spellings announced that Tennessee and North Carolina are the first two States approved and implementing their growth model pilots for the 2005-2006 academic year. Tennessee has received full approval to implement its growth model for this year. North Carolina is approved to implement its growth model, provided that its assessment system is fully approved by July 1, 2006. Six additional States that had applied this year, but did not meet the necessary criteria to be approved for the 2005-2006 school year, will have the opportunity to submit revised proposals for the 2006-2007 school year. (May 17)
Secretary Spellings delivered commencement remarks and received an Honorary Associate of Arts in Public Service Degree at Montgomery College (MD). She lauded community colleges like Montgomery noting, "Community colleges can bob and weave to prepare students for new opportunities and better jobs." (May 17)
At the first national summit on the advancement of girls in math and science, Secretary Spellings and co-host Dr. Kathie Olsen, Deputy Director of the National Science Foundation, joined representatives from the National Science Foundation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Girl Scouts of the USA, Sally Ride Science, and other organizations to address the math-science gender gap in the nation's schools and its effect on women entering the future workforce. (May 15)
Secretary Spellings sent a letter to all Chief State School Officers requesting their assistance with more effectively implementing the public school choice and supplemental educational services (SES) provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act . The letter also invites States to apply to participate in an SES pilot for the 2006-2007 school year, in which up to seven districts per State would be allowed to offer SES to students who attend schools in year one of improvement. States and districts must meet certain eligibility requirements to participate. (May 15)
Secretary Spellings delivers the commencement address to the Texas Tech University Class of 2006. As the first U.S. Secretary of Education with school-aged children, she gave graduates advice and reminded them to never forget the lessons their mothers taught them. (May 13)
The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) released The Condition of Education 2006. This annual report summarizes developments and trends in education using the latest available data. The 2006 report presents 50 indicators on the status and condition of education and an analysis of international assessments. Secretary Spellings issued a statement regarding the report's findings. (June 1)
NCES released results of the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) 2005 science assessment, which show national performance in the fourth, eighth, and twelfth grades and state performance for most states in the fourth and eighth grades. Fourth-graders made significant improvements in science over 1996 and 2000 levels, with the lowest-performing students making the largest gains and achievement gaps narrowing. (May 24)
NCES released the National Indian Education Study (NIES) PDF (968 KB), which is a two-part report describing the condition of education for American Indian/Alaska Native students across the country. Part I of the report highlights the performance of these students in grades four and eight on the 2005 NAEP reading and mathematics assessments. Part II of the report is a survey of the educational experiences of these students and their teachers, and will be released later this summer. (May 23)
The new 2005 Digest of Education Statistics provides readers with an array of data covering topics in pre-kindergarten education through graduate school. Topics include: numbers of institutions, teachers, enrollments, and graduates, along with information about educational attainment, finances, federal funds for education, employment and income of graduates, libraries, and international comparisons. (May 17)
NCES has created a new version of the College Opportunities Online Locator (COOL) website, an information tool designed for students, parents, guidance counselors, and others interested in American postsecondary education. The site allows visitors to view and compare profiles of nearly 7,000 colleges and universities. (May 15)
A new NCES study examines the link between kindergarten enrollment status (e.g., repeating kindergarten or delaying entry into kindergarten) and students' first grade reading and mathematics achievement. (May 12)
The annual NCES Summer Forum and Data Conference will be held July 24-28 in Washington, DC. Activities will include training for Common Core of Data (CCD) Coordinators, presentations by national experts in school finance, and information about NCES survey and assessment programs. The registration deadline is July 13. (May 11)
The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) is accepting applications for the NAEP Secondary Analysis Research Program. The program was developed to encourage reports that analyze information in NAEP assessments and in the NAEP High School Transcript Studies (HSTS). The application package is available online. The application deadline is July 27. (Apr. 12)
From the Office of Innovation and Improvement
Grant awards for the Teaching American History program have been announced and a list of grantees is posted online. (June 2)
The U.S. Department of Education awarded two grants under the FY 2006 Congressional Academies for Students of American History and Civics competition. (May 31)
The Thomas B. Fordham Foundation has released two charter school reports. Trends in Charter School Authorizing uses information from surveys of charter school authorizers and finds that these organizations are becoming more selective and taking action to close unsuccessful charter schools. Playing to Type? categorizes charter schools across the country based on their instructional approaches. (May 4)
Desert Sands Unified School District (CA) has received national recognition for its Voluntary Public School Choice (VPSC) environmental studies curriculum. Second grade Language Enrichment Academic Program (LEAP) students from Abraham Lincoln Elementary School (CA) were honored with the President's Environmental Youth Award for their class project: The Wonderful Weird World of Worms. The Desert Sands district receives VPSC funds from the Office of Innovation and Improvement. (May 15)
Closing the Achievement Gap
A study PDF (1.42 MB) from the Center for the Future of Arizona and Morrison Institute for Public Policy uses the methodology of Jim Collins, author of Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap ... and Others Don't, and finds 12 Arizona elementary and middle schools that are improving mathematics and reading scores for low-income Latino students. (March 2006)
The Big Read Program from the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, encourages individuals to read for pleasure and enlightenment by engaging libraries and community and school partners across the country. Approximately 50 organizations will be selected for programming occurring between January and June 2007. The deadline for these applications is September 12, 2006. An additional 50 organizations will be selected for programming occurring between September and December 2007. The deadline for these applications will be April 2007. (June 8)
Nancy S. Grasmick, Maryland's first female state superintendent, will receive the 2006 James Bryant Conant Award for her contributions to American education. The Education Commission of the States (ECS) will give the award, which is named for its co-founder, on July 13 as part of the ECS 2006 National Forum on Education Policy. (May 17)
A new report from the Colorado-based Daniels Fund offers advice about creating successful and lasting school/business partnerships and examines why some school partnerships are more effective than others. The report highlights seven strategies for successful partnerships based on its findings. (June 8)
Raising Student Achievement
A new study from ACT shows that high school graduates need similar skills to succeed in the workplace as they do to succeed in postsecondary education. The study offers a number of recommendations to policymakers. (May 8)
Teacher Quality Development
The Western States Certification Consortium offers a website and newsletter to recruit former military personnel and spouses to become teachers. The Consortium is funded through a Troops to Teachers grant from the Office of Innovation and Improvement. (June 8)
The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) has released a report PDF (1.38 MB) that examines coursework and textbooks used at 72 colleges of education. The report asserts that most of these colleges use outdated approaches to teaching reading, especially for underprivileged children. The report also posits that only 11 colleges studied currently introduce teachers to the five "scientific components of reading," which highlight phonics, vocabulary, phonemic awareness, guided oral fluency, and reading comprehension. (May 2006)
As part of its annual National Teacher Day celebration (May 9) the National Education Association (NEA) released a list of the top five trends in the teaching profession as well as a "portrait" of the 21st century American schoolteacher. (May 2)
PBS has been selected to receive the 2006 Education Commission of the States (ECS) Corporate Award. Each year, ECS recognizes a for-profit corporation, nonprofit organization, or a foundation that has demonstrated a sustained commitment to improving public education in the United States. PBS has developed products under the Office of Innovation and Improvement's Technology in Education Program through Ready to Teach (RTT) and Ready to Learn Television (RTL) grants. (May 18)
Innovations in the News
Options for Youth (OFY), a group of public charter schools serving at-risk middle and high school students in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, and Sacramento (CA), is posting higher test scores than the majority of its counterparts statewide. The scores are based on the State's official accountability measures, including the Academic Performance Index (API) and the California High School Exit Exam (CAHSEE). According to data collected from the State, all OFY charter schools' API scores are, on average, 105 points higher than the scores of other alternative schools in the districts where they operate. Additionally, in comparison to peer schools, OFY charter schools' passage rates are, on average, 36 percent higher in English language arts and 17 percent higher in mathematics. [More-U.S. Newswire] (May 25)
Closing the Achievement Gap/School Reform
A new study finds that female primary and secondary school students often perform better than males in timed situations, an advantage that could explain why girls generally outperform their male counterparts in school. The study, by professors Stephen Camarata and Richard Woodcock from Vanderbilt University (TN), involved more than 8,000 people aged two to 90 from across the United States. Professor Camarata notes, "The higher performance in females may contribute to a classroom culture that favors them, not because of teacher bias but because of inherent differences in processing speed." [More-The Age] (May 25)
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation has awarded North Carolina more than $10 million to continue the state's New Schools Project, which aims to create 150 new reformed high schools over the next five years. The funds also will be used to expand Governor Mike Easley's Learn and Earn program, which gives students the opportunity to earn a high school diploma along with an associate's degree or college credits. Governor Easley hopes to create 75 Learn and Earn schools by 2008. North Carolina's latest Gates grant comes after an $11 million contribution from the foundation in 2003 to begin high school improvements, develop teacher curriculum, and offer students more relevant coursework. [More-eSchool News] (May 24)
According to a new University of Michigan study, the Federal Reading First program is successful in improving grade-school students' reading scores on the Iowa Test of Basic Skills. The Reading First program was established as part of the No Child Left Behind Act . Funds are dedicated to help States and local school districts eliminate the reading deficit by establishing high-quality, comprehensive reading instruction in kindergarten through third grade. As part of its Federal grant, Michigan is receiving $28 million a year for six years. [More-The Ann Arbor News] (June 1)
A professional team of educational examiners and observers has found that the Alamo Navajo Community School (NM) has improved its reading scores in kindergarten through third grade by 71 percent. According to the team, "Alamo Navajo Community School is a national leader among all Bureau of Indian Affairs schools in the country including Hawaii and Alaska." As a result of the school's performance, it will automatically qualify for a fourth year of continued Federal funding through the Reading First program. [More- The El Defensor Chieftan] (June 1)
Teachers and administrators at Iroquois High School in Jefferson County (KY) are dealing with a different kind of problem: they can't get many of their students to stop reading. With most incoming freshmen in any given year identified as struggling readers, getting students to read, even for pleasure, has always seemed a struggle. According to school staff, now that Iroquois High has adopted the Ramp-Up to Literacy program, developed by the Washington-based National Center on Education and the Economy, students' reading skills and their motivation to read has greatly improved. The school has trained dozens of teachers to use the curriculum, purchased thousands of books, and assigned instructional coaches to classrooms. The program also has spread to 18 of Jefferson County's 21 high schools. [More-Education Week] (May 24)
Teacher Quality and Development/Leadership
Gene Noel's retirement was short: just two days. Mr. Noel retired on a Friday after working for 24 years with the U.S. Air Force handling weapon systems. The next Monday, he walked into a classroom and began working at a Phoenix (AZ) school serving low-income children. Mr. Noel is one of more than 8,400 former military personnel who, since 1994, have changed careers under the Troops to Teachers program. The Federal grant program, which is managed by the Office of Innovation and Improvement, covers teacher certification costs and pays bonuses to individuals who teach in schools with a high percentage of disadvantaged students. Mr. Noel says, "[Teaching] is the fulfillment of a dream." [More-The Arizona Republic] (June 2)
Pamela Bookbinder thought that after graduating from Washington University (MO) she would enter law school. Her plans changed, however, after being actively recruited by Teach For America (TFA) on her college campus. Now, after many emails, meetings, interviews, and phone calls, Ms. Bookbinder is preparing for her two-year teaching commitment with TFA. TFA places recent college graduates in poor urban and rural areas to boost the academic achievement of students. About one in ten seniors at Washington University applied to TFA this year, twice as many as two years ago. About one-third of the students who applied were accepted. Nationally, about 19,000 individuals applied this year, up from 17,000 last year, for 2,400 positions. TFA's ramped up recruitment efforts at colleges and universities like Ms. Bookbinder's school are aimed at doubling its teaching corps to 7,500 teachers by the year 2010. [More-The Kansas City Star] (May 31)
Master Sergeant Bobby Matthews, a senior Army instructor with the Junior Officers' Training Corps in St. Stephen (SC), is one of many former military members now teaching in public schools. Former soldiers, sailors, Marines, and airmen can enter classrooms in different ways. Some serve as Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps ( JROTC) instructors while others earn accreditation through the Troops to Teachers program. Sergeant Matthews says that his mission is to provide students with training for jobs and for life. In March, Sergeant Matthews was honored at his school as the Cross High School Teacher of the Year. [More-The Post & Courier] (May 1)
A grant from the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Indian Education is helping more American Indians become school administrators. Sandy Johnson, a 20-year veteran of special education, is one of 15 Indian educators who will move to the principal's office after studying at the University of North Dakota (UND). UND and the United Tribes Technical College (UTTC) secured the Federal grant, amounting to more than $1 million. The grant covers the costs of tuition, books, and fees and offers participants a stipend. UTTC manages the financial aspects of the program, while UND provides the coursework. Participants engage in several internships and job shadowing experiences. After graduating from UND, participants are paired with veteran administrators who serve as mentors. [More-The Bismarck Tribune] (May 10)
The Call Me MISTER (Men Instructing Students Toward Effective Role Models) program seeks to address a shortage of African-American male teachers, particularly in South Carolina's lowest performing schools. The program aims to place 200 participants, or MISTERs, in the State's elementary schools. This number would more than double the number of African-American male teachers currently teaching in South Carolina elementary schools. Fifteen MISTERs now are in their first or second year of teaching. The program was recently recognized as a member of Oprah Winfrey's "Angel Network" and received the first Southern Regional Council Corporate/Community Partnership Award in recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Brown vs. Board of Education case. Call Me MISTER receives funding from the Office of Innovation and Improvement's Fund for the Improvement of Education program. [More-Teachers of Color] (Apr. 2006)
School districts across the country are working to implement data-management systems that analyze student performance. In Plano, (TX) elementary school teacher Stacy Kimbriel used her school's data system to target students that needed extra help and is now able to see how those students performed on the Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) after they received tutoring. In addition to tracking grades and attendance in one easily accessible place, some new data systems are noting standardized test questions, the skills they measure, and individual student answers. By matching student errors with skills tested, the data systems can show "who knows what." Systems can also spot class-wide weaknesses so that teachers can identify when they need to re-teach particular topics. [More-The Dallas Morning News] (May 30) ( Subscription required. )
The Bluegrass State will soon celebrate its status as the first State in the nation to send a satellite into space. The venture is a cooperative effort among State universities and agencies to promote economic development as well as education and research for Kentucky students ranging from kindergarten through college. The satellite program could help attract high-tech businesses to what is being called "Silicon Holler," an area near Morehead State University. Morehead State will house the satellite's ground operations and a team of undergraduate and graduate students from Morehead State, Murray State, and Western Kentucky Universities will design, build, launch, and guide the satellite through its estimated 18-month orbit. The cube-shaped, Pico KentuckySatellite (KySat) is scheduled to launch in late 2007 from a site in Kazakhstan. [More-Lexington Herald-Leader] (May 26)
Richard Baraniuk, an electrical and computer engineering professor at Rice University has created an online system called Connexions where users can freely exchange curriculum material and other educational research. Members of the National Council of Professors of Educational Administration (NCPEA) plan to use the resource to store peer-reviewed materials on various aspects of educational leadership and are encouraging school administrators and other educators to consider submitting reports to the website. Though the website is intended as a resource for instructors and students, anyone with an interest in learning more about a particular subject area can log in and use the information they find. [More-eSchool News] (May 25)
**Editor's Note: The Education Innovator will take a brief summer break in July. Look for the next issue during the second week of August. In the meantime, the Office of Innovation and Improvement wants to know what you think about the timeliness and usefulness of The Innovator's new distribution cycle. The newsletter recently moved from publishing once each week to publishing once each month. Please email your comments to email@example.com. [Morefirstname.lastname@example.org ]
Last Modified: 07/09/2009