Policy Issues


HUD's Castro Looks to Tech Sector to Connect 275,000 Poor Families to Broadband

More than half of all low-income families in this country are not currently connected to the Internet, according to Julián Castro, Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

Yes, High School Graduation is Up, but Not Uniformly

A group of organizations monitoring the high school graduation rate report that the country is overall behind in the stated goal of seeing 90 percent of students graduating annually by the year 2020.

Report: Education Tech Spending on the Rise

Spending for education technology is up this school year, continuing a rise that started last year following three years of recession thrift.

New UNESCO Portal Delivers Ed Support Globally

The IIEP Learning Portal offers summaries of and links to research on ways to improve learning, with coverage of teachers and pedagogy, learners, curriculum, schools and classrooms and education system management.

State of Union More Forward-Looking, Less Fiery

President Barack Obama used his eighth and final State of the Union address to remind Congress and the viewing American public that he would continue his "fight" this year to implement free community college "for every responsible student." He also gave a plug for a major success of his administration: a record-setting number of high school graduations.

Income Disparity Drag on Diversity in Elite Institutions

Schools may want to examine whether race- and ethnicity-based admissions preference policies should give way to "poverty preference." If they did, the outcome could be as much or more diversity than is currently being achieved. That's the message from a new report by the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation that examines high-achieving, low-income student representation within "selective" institutions.''

Online Report Cards Rate Teacher Prep Programs

In the state of Texas the University of Houston got an A for its elementary and secondary education programs, while Texas A&M received a C+ for secondary education, and Wayland Baptist University earned Fs across the board. These grades, along with 2,300 others, were issued on a new online resource that ranks the teacher education programs run by American colleges and universities. The site was developed by the National Council on Teacher Quality, a research and policy organization focused on improving the teaching profession.

Student Curiosity Offered as Key Spice in Latest Reform Recipe

Educators have taken on standards, accountability plans and any number of reform measures in an effort to improve learning outcomes. Could the answer be as simple as sparking curiosity in students? That's the proposal offered in a whitepaper recently issued by McRel International, a nonprofit organization that works with school systems to improve student learning.

New York State Issues Recommendations To Support Blended and Online Learning

Online and blended learning programs can increase course options for students in rural areas and have the potential to transform face-to-face instruction, as long as state-level supports are in place, including professional development opportunities for teachers and related training for pre-service teachers, according to a new report from the New York State Online Learning Advisory Council.

ED's Top Tech Director Steps Down To Head Home

Where do you go after you leave a high-profile position in the Obama administration? Back home. That's where United States Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan headed at the end of the year when he returned to Chicago. And now, so is Richard Culatta, who is stepping down as director of the Office of Educational Technology within the same federal agency.

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