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Lights, Camera, Action: Recording Teachers to Improve Instruction
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 10, 2010, 01:36 pm   

When my students would ask me why I became I teacher, I responded with the same explanation every time. "Isn't it obvious? I want to be an actress. Here in Los Angeles being a teacher is the best kind of acting because I hold a captive audience for an hour five times a day. I make you laugh in disbelief and cry in agony all by a simple statement like 'Pop quiz.'" (I know, I know I'm hilarious—don't worry folks, I'll be here all week.)

But it's turning out that my little white lie isn't too far from the truth. With changes in how would-be teachers are being prepared for the classroom, it is looking like future teachers in at least 19 states will get face time in front of the camera before they are deemed ready for the ultimate goal—their own classroom and teacher certification. These assessment strategies require future teachers to be recorded while teaching in order to prove that they can "walk the walk" and not just "talk the talk" when it comes to educating students.
 
Changes to Teacher Pay Structure
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 09, 2010, 10:19 pm   

For years, rigid union contracts have put teachers on very structured pay schedules that are predetermined based on years in service and level of education. On the heels of the recent trends in education reform, several districts around the country are experimenting with different methods of restructuring teacher pay.
 
Liberals' mouths drop over White House defense of religious school tuition tax credit
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 04, 2010, 03:43 pm   


The Supreme Court heard oral arguments yesterday in a case that involves tax credits and religious education.  A surprising, even shocking, alliance has emerged between the Obama administration and some of the court's most conservative justices.

 
Are Longer School Hours Coming?
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 01, 2010, 11:27 am   

 

During Education Nation on NBC last month, President Obama recommended lengthening the school day and year as a potential solution to our children falling behind. The suggestion inspired praise from some reformers and critique from others, citing more expenses and stringent union contracts. Are longer days and shorter summers the wave of the future for students and teachers?

 
School Choice Case to be Argued Nov. 3
posted by: Cindy Omlin | November 01, 2010, 10:24 am   

Just when you thought you could rest from political news, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on a big school choice case November 3rd.  The case is Garriott v. Winn, an Arizona tax credit program.  The ACLU opposes the tax credit program.  It believes it violates both the Arizona Constitution and the Establishment Clause of the U.S. Constitution because it allows taxpayers and parents to contribute to, and claim a $500 tax credit for, contributions to School Tuition Organizations that award scholarships to private schools including religious schools.  The Institute for Justice, on the other hand argues that there is well-established U.S. Supreme Court precedent which allows states to create programs that emphasize parental choice among various educational options, including private religious schools.

 
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