Today's education news: CTU protests Whole Foods firing. CPS coach and kids involved in separate shootings. CPS wants to change charter school discipline policies, too. Elsewhere: NYC has to decide how much to pay pre-K teachers. Houston goes ahead with its 1:1 computer initiative.
WHOLE FOODS FIRING
That’s cold, Whole Foods: Polar vortex firing spurs Chicago strike Salon: Whole Foods workers in Chicago walked off the job Wednesday in support of a co-worker they say was wrongly fired after staying home with “her special needs son” during last week’s polar vortex.
CTU boss among 40 protesting firing of Whole Foods employee Sun Times: Broschat, who said she'd worked at Whole Foods for about two years before she was fired, said she was a good, reliable employee who found herself in a bind when Chicago Public Schools canceled classes on Jan. 28 — a day she was scheduled to work.
CTU President, Protesters Push Back Against 'Unjust' Whole Foods Firing Progress IL: Before protesting at the store, located at 3460 N. Halsted St., the protesters picketed the regional offices for Whole Foods on Lasalle Street in the River North neighborhood. The protesters were joined by Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis, who spoke out in support of Broschat.
No bail in shooting that paralyzed coach Sun Times: The alleged gunman who left a Marshall-Metro High School coach paralyzed from the waist down after he tried to shield his daughter from gunfire was ordered held without bail Wednesday.
Family members mourn teen shot dead at Rogers Park McDonald’s CLTV: Students from Amundsen High School sent these messages of condolence to the Carr family this afternoon. Some say–Markeyo, we’ll miss you– rest in peace. Sentiments echoed outside school Thursday.
CPS moves toward ending zero-tolerance discipline Tribune: Byrd-Bennett said that as part of a larger effort for more accountability from charter schools, she wants her team to look at the charter approval and renewal process and look at giving preference to charters that agree to align with the district's limits on suspensions. She said the district could ask charters to adopt the policy of cutting 10-day suspensions for severe misbehavior to five days.
Controversial Rahm Skit Stays in Teen Play, Sells Out Opening Night DNA Info: In "Cold Summer," Omari Ferrell, a junior from Kenwood Academy, plays "Mayor Rahmye," a cross between Emanuel and Kanye West, who proclaims, "I'm Hitler, Stalin, Christopher Columbus."
Chicago Teachers Union Backs Former Education Activist in State Race DNA Info: Jay Travis got an early endorsement Tuesday from the Chicago Teachers Union in her bid to unseat Christian Mitchell as the state representative for the 26th District.
High schools' charity drives are big business Tribune: The two high schools have an involved process to select the charities that benefit from their drives and draw enormous interest from small to mid-sized Chicago area non-profits. The process involves applications, interviews and video presentations.
An Olive Branch? Chancellor to Meet with Charter School Leaders WNYC: It's noteworthy because Fariña's boss, Mayor Bill de Blasio, has been cool to the privately-run but publicly-financed schools. Charters are waiting to hear how he may proceed with a proposal to charge charters rent on a sliding scale, and whether he will impose a year-long moratorium on any more co-locations, the placement of new schools inside existing school buildings and a favored policy of the Bloomberg administration.
UTLA tax return offers glimpse behind the curtain LA School Report: For the year ending August, 2012 (the most recent available), the union reported a 2.5 percent drop in total revenue, and a 4 percent drop in membership dues. While salaries remained about the same, at $8 million, expenses were trimmed, avoiding a repeat of the deficit it reported in 2011.
In teacher pay gap, another obstacle for de Blasio’s pre-K plan ChalkbeatNY: Public school pre-K teachers, who are part of the city teachers union, need a college degree and a state teaching certificate. The head pre-K teachers at childcare centers also must have a college degree, but they can start teaching without a certificate if they have a plan to earn one within five years.
In Boston, low-performing schools navigate Common Core standards Hechinger Report: Jim Stergios, executive director of Pioneer Institute, a Boston-based think tank that focuses on education, says the new standards will only increase inequality and achievement gaps.
How much time do D.C. Public Schools spend testing? Washington Post: Teach Plus examined school system assessment calendars in 12 large cities. Teachers surveyed by Teach Plus said that they actually lose much more instructional time to testing than is reflected on official calendars. Elementary-school teachers said they spent more than twice the amount of time testing than accounted for on the calendars.
New Orleans school closure process has uneven effect on students at failing schools The Lens: The reality, however, is messier. Of the four schools that were closed last summer, students from two of them generally attend better ones — in the case of Habans, significantly better. Those who were at the other two mostly ended up in similar, poorly performing schools.
CORE districts’ tackling of tough issues impresses federal official EdSource: A high-ranking federal education official – a woman with Secretary Arne Duncan’s ear – said she liked what she heard at the first meeting of the committee overseeing eight California districts that have received the nation’s only district waiver from the federal No Child Left Behind law.
Unfazed, Houston Pushes Ahead on 1-to-1 Computing EdWeek: Jackie Cornejo, 16, left, and Elisa Martinez, 16, work on a problem in a math class at the Young Women's College Preparatory Academy in Houston. The school is one of the first in the Houston district to give laptops to students for use at school
Bold Lesson: Florida School District Swaps Cops for Counseling EdNation: A couple of years after arriving as superintendent of the Broward County Public Schools, Robert Runcie turned the district's discipline policies upside down.
Harkin: A High-Quality Early-Education Program Will Cost Money PK12: On Wednesday, the chairman of the House education committee—Rep. John Kline, R-Minn.—said that Congress must get a handle on the patchwork of existing federal programs before diving into a brand new, pricey initiative. (The bill has been introduced in the House by Rep. George Miller, D-Calif.)
Who 'Won' The Creation Vs. Evolution Debate? NPR: Days after a wide-ranging debate on creationism and evolution between Bill Nye and Ken Ham, the topic is driving an online conversation about points raised in the debate. Themes of belief and literalism, logic and faith — and, for some, relevance — are being debated online.
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