Renascence School Education News - private school

Monday, January 26, 2015

Family Breakdown and Poverty

Education Next – Robert P. George and Yuval Levin

“As a general rule, assistant secretaries in the Labor Department do not produce lasting historical documents. The so-called Moynihan Report, produced by Assistant Secretary Daniel Patrick Moynihan in the winter of 1965 and published under the title “The Negro Family: The Case for National Action,” is surely the only exception to that rule. But it is quite an exception. The Moynihan Report gained notice and notoriety almost immediately. Its statistical analysis was cited, and its call to action was repeated, by President Lyndon Johnson within a few months of its publication—again, an uncommon fate for a Labor Department report. But its analysis was just as quickly resisted and disputed in the government and in the academy. Moynihan was accused of arguing that low-income black families were simply causing their own problems and of trying to undermine the civil rights movement. The social psychologist William Ryan actually coined the now-common phrase “blaming the victim” (which he used as a title for a 1971 book) specifically to describe the Moynihan Report. Of course, Moynihan did no such thing. To the extent that he attributed blame at all, it was to the long and ugly legacy of slavery and to the persistence of racism in American life. Both, he argued, had worked to undermine the standing of black men, and thereby their roles in their own families, and to deform the structure of family life in the black community.”(more)

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Poor countries spend more on richer pupils

BBC News – Sean Coughlan

“The United Nations children’s charity says that almost half of education spending in low-income countries is focused on 10% of the population. It means that poorer children in poor countries get the least chances. Unicef is calling for a fairer distribution of education spending…It argues that investment in education must be more equitably shared, so that all types of pupils have access – including those who are most likely to miss out, such as poor, rural children, girls and ethnic minorities…The research shows that low-income, developing countries disproportionately favour the educational needs of their wealthier families.”(more)

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Study: American Students Have High Levels Of Education, But Stressful Lives

The Huffington Post – Rebecca Klein

“While American students have high levels of educational achievement and decent test scores, they may also experience high levels of social stress and poverty. A new report out Tuesday…argues that more than just test scores should be taken into consideration when comparing countries’ education systems. In the report, researchers look at 24 indicators in six categories — student outcomes, school system outcomes, social stress, support for families, support for schools and economic inequity — in order to evaluate the educational success of nine countries. Study authors compare school systems in the G-7 nations, seven of the world’s largest economies — the United States, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the U.K….Authors also include Finland and China “due to global interest in the educational performance of their students.”…Comparison results were bleak for the United States.”(more)

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Concerns about parenting in poorer families ‘misplaced’

The Telegraph – Staff Writer

” Common perceptions that poorer mothers and fathers are likely to be less involved in their children’s lives are unfounded, according to research. A new study argues that less well-off parents are just as likely to help with homework, play games and read with their children as those from wealthier backgrounds. Researchers from Bristol University and Cardiff University analysed data on 1,665 UK households looking at how often mothers and fathers were involved with their children’s leisure activities and those that have been linked to success at school. The findings show that overall, more than half of parents said that during the previous week, they had read to their child and played games with them on at least four days. The proportions were similar for helping with homework, eating together and watching TV together.”(more)

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Helping the Poor in Education: The Power of a Simple Nudge

The New York Times – SUSAN DYNARSKI

“There are enormous inequalities in education in the United States. A child born into a poor family has only a 9 percent chance of getting a college degree, but the odds are 54 percent for a child in a high-income family. These gaps open early, with poor children less prepared than their kindergarten classmates. How can we close these gaps? Contentious, ambitious reforms of the education system crowd the headlines: the Common Core, the elimination of teacher tenure, charter schools. The debate is heated and sometimes impolite (a recent book about education is called “The Teacher Wars”). Yet as these debates rage, researchers have been quietly finding small, effective ways to improve education. They have identified behavioral “nudges” that prod students and their families to take small steps that can make big differences in learning. These measures are cheap, so schools or nonprofits could use them immediately.”(more)

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Majority of U.S. public school students poor enough for lunch help: report

Reuters – Staff Writer

“(Reuters) – The share of public school students who qualify for free or reduced lunch in the United States has grown to 51 percent, in an indication of growing poverty, according to a report released on Friday. The problem is most acute in Mississippi where 71 percent of students were in that category, according to the report from the Southern Education Foundation.”(more)

Friday, January 16, 2015

Majority of U.S. public school students are in poverty

The Washington Post – Lyndsey Layton

“For the first time in at least 50 years, a majority of U.S. public school students come from low-income families, according to a new analysis of 2013 federal data, a statistic that has profound implications for the nation. The Southern Education Foundation reports that 51 percent of students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade were eligible under the federal program for free and reduced-price lunches in the 2012-2013 school year…The shift to a majority-poor student population means that in public schools, more than half of the children start kindergarten already trailing their more privileged peers and rarely, if ever, catch up…It also means that education policy, funding decisions and classroom instruction must adapt to the swelling ranks of needy children arriving at the schoolhouse door each morning…Schools, already under intense pressure to deliver better test results and meet more rigorous standards, face the doubly difficult task of trying to raise the achievement of poor children so that they approach the same level as their more affluent peers.”(more)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Rethinking Unemployment: Why We Need to Invest in Children

The Huffington Post – Traci Donnelly

“…to really find lasting solutions for chronic unemployment, we can’t focus only on the unemployed. We have to start in childhood, with measures that help children build on their strengths and thrive despite difficult circumstances. Some of these approaches have already garnered broad support, like universal pre-kindergarten, which closes the gap for children in poverty and helps them enter kindergarten at the level of their peers…Surprisingly, one of our best opportunities to help children find a path to a happy, healthy adulthood is still not widely used, despite a relatively low cost and years of research that shows how well it works. This is an approach based on resilience, the inner strengths, skills and attitudes that help children handle challenges. Resilience has been shown to be crucial for academic as well as lifelong success. Highly resilient students feel more confident and in control, and have better attendance and better grades…Often, children in poverty don’t get the support and nurturing they need to find their inner resources. But the best thing about resilience is that it is easily taught.”(more)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Do Politicians Love Kids?

The New York Times – Nicholas Kristof

“Abundant research suggests that early help for disadvantaged children could chip away at inequality, save public money and help those children reach the starting line…Here’s a rare issue where it’s just conceivable that we could make progress and build a stronger more equitable future for our nation…If our politicians really do love children, here’s a way to prove it.”(more)

This 17-Year-Old Has Given 45 African Girls An Education By Selling Headbands

The Huffington Post – Robbie Couch

“About five years ago, Mary Grace Henry of Harrison, New York, asked for a sewing machine for her birthday. She wanted to design and sell headbands to pay for just one African girl’s schooling. Now, 11,000 creations later, the 17-year-old has sold enough to give 45 girls living in extreme poverty the gift of an education…”When you see a need, act,” Henry said of the advice she’d give to others who want to make change…”(more)