The principals of seven low-performing Minneapolis-area schools share with the Star-Tribune various strategies that enabled them to meet performance targets this year. Their approaches include analyzing state test results to pinpoint which students needed reading help and which math classes were most effective and using a co-teaching model that mainstreamed as many students in special education as possible.
Discovery Channel's "Mythbusters" TV show uses the scientific method to confirm, deem plausible or "bust" popular myths -- such as whether the Hindenburg's spectacular explosion resulted solely from its hydrogen fuel load. Even though co-host Jamie Hyneman says his team doesn't pretend to teach science, the California Science Teachers Association have named him and colleague Adam Savage honorary lifetime members.
The Charlotte-Mecklenburg (N.C.) school system is facing a shortage of qualified principals, as veteran educators reach retirement age. Superintendent Peter Gorman will shortly provide details for a plan to train assistant principals and groom teachers to become principals.
Washington Post education columnist Jay Mathews rejects the claims in two recent books that students' homework load has "sykrocketed" in recent years. Mathews cites studies that indicate time spent on homework has increased slightly for young children and teens since 1981, but that amount remains far less than the roughly 2.5 hours a day these same students spend watching TV or doing nonschool-related computer activities.
St. Louis School Board President Veronica O'Brien on Monday asked a Missouri education advisory committee to recommend the state intervene in some way -- including a temporary suspension of the superintendent's office-- to help the struggling district. O'Brien cited her concerns over a report Superintendent Diana Bourisaw submitted to the state last week that claimed the district was shrinking the minority achievement gap.