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Finding the Sweet Spot Between Defeatism and Utopianism When Setting School Standards

Education Next – Michael J. Petrilli

“I do support the Common Core, which is designed to get students to “college and career readiness” by the end of high school. But I also see that goal as aspirational; I don’t believe we should actually deny diplomas to young people who gain basic skills and pass their classes but don’t reach that lofty level. Nor do I think that we should force all students to take a college-prep course of study all the way through twelfth grade. How do I square this circle? Am I hypocrite for claiming to support high expectations while not being willing to enforce those expectations when it comes to crunch time?” (more)

Get to Know Your Public Schools: 7 Revealing Numbers About America’s Education System, From Diversity to Safety, Absenteeism & More

The 74 Million – Staff Writer

“All summer long at The 74, we’ve been using our “Big Picture” series to offer parents a richer understanding of the nation’s public school system — maps and charts that look at specific aspects of district policy and classroom behavior. Even if it wasn’t a complete sampling of every single issue facing families, teachers, principals, and policymakers, the series offered a revealing breakdown of just who’s going to school (and teaching) each day in America’s classrooms and some of the key issues confronting those charged with running your local school district.” (more)

A blanket ban on cellphones in class would not be smart

The Toronto Star – Staff Writer

“France is going in a similar direction. When millions of French elementary and middle-school students returned to class this week, they were forbidden from using their phones in the classroom or even during breaks. The government of Emmanuel Macron ordered a phone “detox” for all pupils under the age of 15. These are simplistic solutions to a complex problem. The problems presented by addictive cellphone use are clear, but it’s impossible and unwise to ban such technology entirely from schools.” (more)

What Governors Should Know About K-12 School Quality and the Economy

Education Next – Bruno V. Manno

“How can quality K-12 schools improve a state’s economy? Many people—including elected officials—don’t automatically make the connection between these two issues, though economic health and education are both top of mind for voters across the country, including those participating in this fall’s 36 gubernatorial races.” (more)

The State of School Security Spending: Here’s How States Have Poured $900 Million Into Student Safety Since the Parkland Shooting

The 74 Million – Carolyn Phenicie

“The response to the Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, was immediate. Students across the country, led by Stoneman Douglas survivors, walked out of school to call for gun control. President Donald Trump alternately mused about more gun control and the need to arm teachers. Major retail outlets stopped selling guns.” (more)