Education Trust News

Ordinary People, Extraordinary Results

On October 24 and 25, over 600 educators, administrators, and advocates convened in Baltimore for the Education Trust National Conference, Ordinary People, Extraordinary Results: Working Together to Raise Achievement and Close Gaps. The meeting was jam-packed with inspiration for closing gaps in opportunity and achievement and information on what it takes to get this work done. While the conference is now over, the learning doesn’t have to be. Check out the presentations from some of our great, equity-focused concurrent sessions. 

California Legislation Curtails Public’s Ability to Get Data on Student Performance

Public information on the performance of students and student subgroups on standardized tests is a cornerstone for parents, teachers, and educational leaders who want to know whether achievement is rising and gaps are closing. But a piece of recent California legislation threatens to undermine the public’s ability to receive this critical information on student performance.

Assembly Bill 484, signed into law last month by California Gov. Jerry Brown, means neither parents nor teachers can access data on how children are performing on state assessments in English-language arts and mathematics. Similarly, the legislation blocks teachers’ ability to receive professional feedback on whether they are successfully teaching to the state’s new college- and career-ready standards.

Michigan Lawmakers Move State Forward on Common Core

Michigan House leaders approved a Senate resolution to restore funding to the statewide implementation of Common Core State Standards, reaffirming the state’s commitment to increasing academic rigor and preparing all students to succeed after high school. Other states debating whether to proceed with implementing college- and career-ready standards would do well to take a clue from Michigan and move forward — it’s what’s best for kids.

Groups Applaud the Bipartisan Student and Family Tax Simplification Act

WASHINGTON (October 31, 2013) - Yesterday, Reps. Diane Black (R-Tenn.) and Danny Davis (D-Ill.) introduced the Student and Family Tax Simplification Act. The Act simplifies and better targets higher education tax benefits, making it easier for students and families to afford college.

Low-Income Students Do Enroll In College — Given the Right Supports

A new report finds that just over half of graduates from low-income urban high schools immediately enroll in college, compared with more than 60 percent of graduates from higher income, urban high schools. The report adds to a large, and growing, body of research showing that low-income students are less likely to enroll in college — an especially worrisome prospect given that more financial, academic, and social benefits accrue to those with a college education. But high schools, including those serving large concentrations of low-income students, have incredible power to help ensure that virtually all of their students continue on to college.

The Education Trust Announces 2013 Dispelling the Myth Award Winners

WASHINGTON (October 22, 2013) — On Thursday, Oct. 24, The Education Trust will present the 11th Annual Dispelling the Myth Awards to four public schools from across the country. Each of these schools has demonstrated that it is committed to educating students to high academic levels regardless of their race, socioeconomic status or zip code.

Conference Feature: Getting to Graduation and Beyond

A generation ago, having a high school diploma may have been enough to earn a family-supporting wage in the middle class. Today, it no longer is — and so teachers and principals across the nation are working hard to make sure their students are prepared for college or training when they graduate from high school. At this year’s Education Trust National Conference, participants will hear from districts and schools successfully working to ensure that all students are prepared for postsecondary success.

New Resources Support Equity in Common Core Implementation

One of the most promising aspects of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) is the potential for all students to finally have access to rigorous, high-quality instruction. But this will only happen if teachers incorporate the standards with consistency and hold all students — including those who have previously struggled — to new, high expectations. To do so, district and school leaders must do more to empower teachers to achieve this goal. A new transition guide for school leaders can help them do just that.

Conference Feature: Leading School Change

Principals play a crucial role in setting the tone for their school and helping their staff identify and act on areas for improvement. This year’s Education Trust National Conference, which takes place Oct. 24-25 in Baltimore, will feature a number of concurrent sessions highlighting the role of principals in leading school change.