18 Must-Read Education Stories from This Week

White House Supports Ending Forced Union Dues, Experts Share a Warning about Grad Rates, and More

1. Interview with David Osborne, Author of “Reinventing America’s Schools”

David Osborne, author of “Reinventing America’s Schools: Creating a 21st Century Education System,” argues that cities that have doubled-down on increasing charter schools have greatly benefited from that policy choice. Watch Now

2. Trump Administration Urges SCOTUS to Rule Against Forced Union Dues

The Trump administration urged the Supreme Court yesterday to rule against public sector unions in a case involving whether government employees can be forced to financially support labor groups. Read Now

3. NEA Teachers Union’s $151 Million Influence Spree

It is clear that the nation’s largest teachers’ union is spending even more to maintain its influence in education policy. Read More

4. Feds Say Graduation Rates Have Risen, But Experts Warn Students May Not Be Prepared

The graduation rate rose by nearly a percentage point from 2015 to 2016, from 83.2 percent to 84.1 percent. Read More

5. U.S. 4th-Graders Fall Behind International Peers on Reading Test

Reading comprehension among fourth-grade students in the U.S. has flatlined since 2001, allowing education systems in other countries to catch up. Read More

6. Associated Press Criticizes High Rates of Minority Families Choosing Charter Schools

As of school year 2014-2015, more than 1,000 of the nation’s 6,747 charter schools had minority enrollment of at least 99 percent. Read More

7. Ed Reformers Blast AP Report Blaming Charter Schools for ‘Racial Isolation’

Many charter school advocates have criticized the report for ignoring the successes of charters in minority neighborhoods. Read More

8. Organizations Push the ‘Portfolio’ of Schools Model to Replace Traditional Districts

A growing number of philanthropists, advocates, and policymakers say the way to improve schools is to upend the traditional school district. Read More

9. GOP Tax Plan Would Expand 529 College Savings Accounts to K-12 Costs

An amendment to the Republicans’ tax overhaul plan would allow parents to put money they save for their children’s college costs toward K-12 education. Read More

10. U.S. Congressional Report: The Fiscal Benefits of School Vouchers

Adding choice in education is consistent with the tradition of other large government-funded programs. Read More

11. Districts Offer Special Needs Students Alternative Diplomas, But That May Not Lead to Opportunities

The stakes for these students are high. Diplomas, specifically for students with disabilities, usually fall short of what is required for college entrance. Employers often require a standard diploma for jobs. Read More

12. Analysis Shows Chicago Hands Out High School Diplomas to Students Who Failed State Tests

Despite dismal student performance on annual exams covering math and reading, Chicago Public School graduation rates remain high, according to a Chicago City Wire analysis. Read More

13. Investigation Suggests District-Wide Grade Tampering in Memphis

The average number of grade changes across the district was 53 changes, according to an audit from Dixon Hughes Goodman auditing firm. Read More

14. Students and Teachers Sue California Because Too Many Children Can’t Read

Among the plaintiffs are current and former teachers and students from three of California’s lowest performing schools. Read More

15. More Than 80,000 L.A. Students Chronically Absent Last Year

The district spends about $40 million each year to increase student attendance. Read More

16. Why Homeschooling Is an Increasing Option for Black Families

An estimated 220,000 African-American children are currently being home schooled, according to the National Home Education Research Institute. Read More

17. Six-Year-Long CO School Voucher Saga Likely to End Without Decisive Legal Resolution

Douglas County became the only school district in the country to start its own voucher program in 2011. Read More

18. Ohio Supreme Court Denies Latest ECOT Online Charter Request to Keep Money

The ruling is the latest in a string of court and administrative defeats for ECOT. Read More

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