Aug 8, 2017 6:07 PM
A recent article in The Eagle-Tribune discussed a summer program where Haverhill teachers participated in an AP course "Summer Institute."
"Five teachers from Haverhill High School ... spent the last few days at a weeklong program at Bridgewater State University, where they spent time with instructors and hundreds of fellow teachers from various states and foreign countries, honing their teaching skills specifically for Advanced Placement courses.
"The Summer Institute program is put on each year by Mass Insight Education, a national nonprofit that aims to improve school systems and student achievement through district restructuring and academic rigor. It runs two sessions, one week long each, and this year will see a total of 520 participants from 39 states and 10 foreign countries. "
The article continued, "Teaching an AP course requires different skills from teachers than an average high school course. Darshan Thakkar, the chief academic officer for Haverhill schools, said teachers need to impart more than the course material — they must teach students to synthesize information from various sources, then analyze that information and articulate their own argument about that information. "
Jul 24, 2017 10:05 AM
An article by eSchool News discusses the importance of writing to improve student learning in all disciplines, not just to prove students are learning.
"Simply put, writing is our critical thinking made visible.
"Through the process of writing, writers put nascent thoughts into comprehensible language for others to read. In their pursuit of self-expression, they often find themselves challenged to find new words or motivated to develop academic vocabulary.
"Because it is a critical thinking process, writing isn’t merely an act of jotting down what you have in your head. Once the initial thoughts in your head start to flow, you naturally begin iterating on them."
Jun 29, 2017 7:23 PM
School districts must give students with disabilities the chance to make meaningful, "appropriately ambitious" progress, the United States Supreme Court unanimously ruled in March, National Public Radio reported. The 8-0 decision sets a higher standard for how public schools must educate students with disabilities.
The decision in Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District may have implications for the 6.5 million students with disabilities in the United States and the local school districts that must provide a free and appropriate public education. The unanimous opinion held that the meaning of "appropriate" under the federal Individuals With Disabilities Education Act goes further than what the lower courts had held.
The case centered on a child with autism and attention deficit disorder, Endrew F., whose parents removed him from public school in fifth grade. He went on to make better progress in a private school. His parents argued that the individualized education plan provided by the public school was not adequate, and they sued to compel the school district to pay his private school tuition.
Read the United States Supreme Court Opinion (Endrew F. v. Douglas County School District)
Jun 6, 2017 10:24 AM
A June 3, 2017, editorial in the Boston Globe mentions the situation with the Silver Hill Horace Mann Charter School.
"Back in 2006, in its pre-charter existence, the K-5 school was underperforming and facing a possible state takeover. The approach to fixing those problems was to transform the school into an automatically unionized Horace Mann charter, thereby giving it more latitude to set its own course. By 2013, Silver Hill had made enough progress to win Level 1 status. That is, a spot in the state’s top school tier."