Mark B. Miller’s Blog Thursday, April 20th, 2017 by admin
Investigative Reporting: Magazines and Weeklies
The Erie School District’s overhaul is ready to start. And it is all but certain to occur in full in 2017-18. The School Board voted 7-2 on Wednesday night to accept the district administration’s proposal that the schools reconfiguration plan occur in its entirety by the first day of classes on Aug. 28. The board still must vote on June 22 to give final approval, though Wednesday night’s vote sets the plan in motion. The board rejected another option, also by a 7-2 vote, that would have delayed the full reconfiguration by a year. The board cannot take a formal vote until June 22 to abide by a state-imposed timeline for closing public schools. But the majority of the school directors said Wednesday night that they would not alter the reconfiguration plan unless the district’s gets an infusion of state aid before June 22. Though the district still hopes to get more state aid in 2017-18, it unlikely to receive anything before July 1, the deadline for passage of the state budget.
After months of reviewing reports on the Erie School District’s proposed reconfiguration, the School Board’s vote on the plan will come down to one phrase: sooner or later. The board meets at 6 p.m. Wednesday at East High School to decide whether to have the district complete the entire reconfiguration immediately or over a year or more. The sooner the completion the better for Superintendent Jay Badams, who favors the first of five options his administration has presented to the School Board. It is known as Option A, in which completion of the reconfiguration, including consolidation of the district’s high schools, would occur by the time students start the 2017-18 academic year on Aug. 28. The School Board discussed all five options a week ago at nonvoting session. The four other options would put off the consolidation of the high schools for a year to as many as four years.
Turns out, too, that the young men of Boys’ Latin have become pretty good at distinguishing their ad hominem from their ad honorem. This month the school received the results on the introductory level National Latin Exam, a test taken last year by students around the world. Among the highlights: Two Boys’ Latin students had perfect scores; 60% of its seventh-graders were recognized for achievement, 20% for outstanding achievement; and the number of Boys’ Latin students who tested above the national average doubled from the year before. “I invite anyone who doubts what this does for our students to come to a graduation and watch 100 black boys sharply dressed in caps and gowns and proudly reciting their school pledge in Latin,” says the school’s chief executive officer, David Hardy. “Not only is this an unexpected sight, it defies the low expectations society puts on young black men.”
Education Week By Mark Walsh April 17, 2017
Advocates on both sides of the debate over private school choice are paying close attention to a case before the U.S. Supreme Court involving recycled tires—specifically, whether Missouri violated the Constitution in refusing to give a church a grant to use scrap tire material to improve its preschool playground. The court's decision in Trinity Lutheran Church of Columbia v. Comer (Case No 15-577), which it was slated to hear this week, could weaken or eliminate one of the last legal barriers to vouchers and tax credits for use at private religious schools: state constitutional provisions that strictly bar government aid to religion. Missouri is one of some three-dozen states with such "Blaine amendments" in their state constitutions. The provisions are named for James G. Blaine, the 19th-century congressman who led an unsuccessful 1876 effort to amend the U.S. Constitution to prohibit public funding of religious schools at a time when the growing Roman Catholic population was pressing for government funding for parochial schools.
Thomas Murray, Director of Innovation for Future Ready Schools, a project of the Alliance for Excellent Education
Kristen Swanson, Director of Learning at Slack and one of the founding members of the Edcamp movement
*Leadership for Learning
*Professional and Community Leadership
— Sen. Pat Browne (R-Lehigh), Senate Appropriations Committee chair
- Monday, May 1, 6-8 p.m. — Parkway West CTC, 7101 Steubenville Pike, Oakdale, PA 15071
- Tuesday, May 2, 7:30-9 a.m. — A W Beattie Career Center, 9600 Babcock Blvd, Allison Park, PA 15101
- Tuesday, May 2, 6-8 p.m. — Crawford County CTC, 860 Thurston Road, Meadville, PA 16335
- Wednesday, May 3, 6-8 p.m. — St. Marys Area School District, 977 S. St Marys Road, Saint Marys, PA 15857
- Thursday, May 4, 6-8 p.m. — Central Montco Technical High School, 821 Plymouth Road, Plymouth Meeting, PA 19462
- Friday, May 5, 7:30-9 a.m. — Lehigh Carbon Community College, 4525 Education Park Dr, Schnecksville, PA 18078
- Monday, May 15, 6-8 p.m. — CTC of Lackawanna Co., 3201 Rockwell Avenue, Scranton, PA 18508
- Tuesday, May 16, 6-8 p.m. — PSBA, 400 Bent Creek Boulevard, Mechanicsburg, PA 17050
- Wednesday, May 17, 6-8 p.m. — Lycoming CTC, 293 Cemetery Street, Hughesville, PA 17737
- Thursday, May 18, 6-8 p.m. — Chestnut Ridge SD, 3281 Valley Road, Fishertown, PA 15539