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The Friday Report

October 26, 2018

Forum News

This Week on Education Matters: Community Fights School Takeover

Carver Heights Elementary School in Wayne County has been picked by the Innovative School District to become the 2nd NC school to be taken over by the state-run program created by the General Assembly in 2016. That takeover will not happen if district leadership and many in the Goldsboro school’s community have their way. This week we talk to Wayne County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Michael Dunsmore, as well as parents and community leaders, on how they plan to respond to the state’s plan to take over Carver Heights.

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Guest:

  • Dr. Michael Dunsmore, Superintendent, Wayne County Public Schools (pictured above)
  • Sylvia Barnes, President, Wayne County NAACP (pictured below, left)
  • Iris Robinson, Grandparent, Carver Heights Elementary School (pictured below, right)

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When and Where to Watch Education Matters

Saturday at 7:30 PMWRAL-TV (Raleigh/Durham/Fayetteville)

Sunday at 8:00 AM, FOX 50 (Raleigh/Durham/Fayetteville)

Sunday at 6:30 AM and Wednesday at 9:30 AM, UNC-TV’s North Carolina Channel (Statewide)

The North Carolina Channel can be found on Time Warner Cable/Spectrum Channel 1276 or check your local listings and other providers here.

Online at https://www.ncforum.org/.

Education Matters is also available as a podcast on iTunes, SoundCloud, Stitcher, Overcast, and Google Play Music.

When School Desegregation Mattered in Charlotte

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Dorothy Counts, center, tried to desegregate Harding High School in Charlotte on Sept. 4, 1957, but met hostility from white classmates and parents. Photo Credit: UNC library collection. 

By Keith Poston

On October 8, 1984, President Ronald Reagan made a campaign stop in Charlotte, just weeks shy of his landslide re-election victory.

During the standard campaign stump speech, President Reagan brought up busing for school desegregation, calling such programs failures that “takes innocent children out of the neighborhood school and makes them pawns in a social experiment that nobody wants.”

The previously raucous crowd of Charlotteans fell silent.

Perhaps President Reagan’s campaign aides failed to tell him who his audience was that day. What Reagan clearly didn’t understand was that the Charlotte community took enormous pride in the integrated schools that busing had produced. Former Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools Superintendent Dr. Jay Robinson – the first president of the Public School Forum of North Carolina – was quoted in news reports at the time: “[Reagan] was met with dead silence. What happened in Charlotte became a matter of community pride.”

The next day the Charlotte Observer published an editorial entitled, “You Were Wrong, Mr. President.” The editorial board rebuked the president in a powerful statement in support of school desegregation, writing, “Charlotte-Mecklenburg’s proudest achievement of the past 20 years is not the city’s impressive skyline or its strong, growing economy. Its proudest achievement is its fully integrated schools.”

An edited version of this article appeared this week in the Charlotte Observer and on the Capitol Broadcasting Opinion page.

To continue reading the complete article, click here

Excerpt from:

Poston, K. “When School Desegregation Mattered in Charlotte.” Public School Forum of NC. 10/25/18.

State News

Why Can’t NC Kids Read? Another Study Shows Read To Achieve Produced No Gains.

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Summer reading camps are one-way schools are helping struggling readers hone their skills. Under state law, third-graders struggling to read on grade level could be forced to repeat the grade. Photo Credit: Amanda Harris, The Herald.

With five years of test scores showing little benefit from North Carolina’s Read to Achieve program, researchers from N.C. State University decided to dig deeper for hidden gains.

They found nothing.

That’s grim news for a state that has spent more than $150 million on a third-grade reading campaign, believing it could set young children on a path to academic success. In a study released last week, researchers from NC State’s College of Education found no benefit to holding students back if they couldn’t pass reading exams by the end of third grade, nor to giving them free summer reading camps.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Doss Helms, A. “Why can’t NC kids read? Another study shows Read To Achieve produced no gains.” The Charlotte Observer. 10/22/18.

In This Issue

This Week on Education Matters: Community Fights School Takeover

When School Desegregation Mattered in Charlotte

Why Can’t NC Kids Read? Another Study Shows Read To Achieve Produced No Gains.

The Real Bully in the CMS-Suburbs Debate

UNC President Margaret Spellings Is Leaving the University System, Sources Say

The Latest SAT Scores Are Out. How Did North Carolina Students Do on the Exam?

The Cost of Summer: With Camp Out of Reach, a Raleigh Family Gets Creative

Rowan-Salisbury School District Considers Changes to Teacher Hiring Requirements

Parents Tell Durham Public Schools to Address Racial Gaps in Achievement, Discipline

We Followed 15 of America’s Teachers on a Day of Frustrations, Pressures and Hard-Earned Victories

Hurricanes Deal Deep Blow to Schools’ Finances

Public School Forum Seeking a Policy Analyst

FAST NC Fundraising Drive to Aid Public Schools

Biogen Foundation Spark Video Contest

Hope Street Group Annual Survey

The William Friday Teachers Retreat

Upcoming Professional Development at NCCAT

Synergy Conference 2019

Public School Forum Programs

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Nominate a Leader for Children in Your Community

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Do you know a leader in your community supporting our schools and making a difference in the lives of children both in and out of school? The Public School Forum is seeking nominations for individuals to be highlighted on our weekly statewide TV show, Education Matters. Click here for an example of a recent spotlight.

Nominees could be principals, superintendents, teachers, teacher assistants, guidance counselors, parents, students, business leaders, community volunteers, afterschool providers, and the list goes on!

To nominate someone, please fill out the form at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/educationmatters.

The Real Bully in the CMS-Suburbs Debate

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Public school teachers joined a ‘Rally for Respect’ in Raleigh in May to urge the General Assembly to increase education funding. Photo Credit: N.C. Association of Educators.

In late summer 2011, after a rousing first session as North Carolina’s Speaker of the House, Thom Tillis met with a group of charter school advocates in Raleigh to tell them he’d only begun to deliver on school choice.

The new legislature had finally lifted a 100-school cap that had been in place since the state first approved the publicly funded, privately run schools in the mid-1990s. Back then, believe it or not, there was bipartisan support. Over time, though, campaign contributions and lobbying groups fixed the inconveniences of unity and consensus, and throughout the 2000s Democrats and Republicans argued over the charter school limit. Pro-public school political action committees, such as one for the National Education Association, became big donors to Democrats, while Republicans like Tillis began receiving contributions from PACs such as Parents for Educational Freedom. It came as no surprise to anybody, then, that one of the first things legislative Republicans did after routing the Democrats in the November 2010 election was eliminate the cap.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Graff, M. “The Real Bully in the CMS-Suburbs Debate.” The Charlotte Magazine. 10/22/18.

 UNC President Margaret Spellings Is Leaving the University System, Sources Say

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UNC President Margaret Spellings started her tenure in 2016. Photo Credit: Chris Seward, The News & Observer.

UNC President Margaret Spellings will leave the job, after only three years leading the university system, according to three sources, including one with direct knowledge of the situation.

In recent days, Spellings has quietly negotiated her departure with the UNC Board of Governors. Sources close to Spellings said she wanted to leave the post and return to her home state of Texas. The timing is unclear, but it could be early next year, sources said.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Stancill, J. “UNC President Margaret Spellings is leaving the university system, sources say.” The News & Observer. 10/25/18.

The Latest SAT Scores Are Out. How Did North Carolina Students Do on the Exam?

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Photo Credit: Ben Mullins, Unsplash.

The average score for North Carolina high school students on the SAT exam shot up 17 points this year, according to new results released early Thursday morning by the College Board.

North Carolina’s Class of 2018 posted an average score of 1,098 on the SAT exam, compared to 1,081 for the Class of 2017. The state’s average score on the revamped SAT is now 30 points above the national average of 1,068, which was up eight points from the prior year.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Hui, K. “The latest SAT scores are out. How did North Carolina students do on the exam?” The News & Observer. 10/25/18.

The Cost of Summer: With Camp Out of Reach, a Raleigh Family Gets Creative

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Kaiden gives her sister Karisma a ride on her bike as they play at home during summer break in Raleigh. While their mom Ayeisha Owens is at work, they stay at home with their great-grandmother. They make up games and dance routines and read books, but their mom still worries about them being bored. Photo Credit: Madeline Gray, WUNC.

Low-income students stand to lose two to three months of academic progress over the summer when wealthier students are often making slight gains, according to the National Summer Learning Association.

Researchers have come up with the “faucet theory” to explain why this happens. During the school year the faucet is on for all students, with school as an access point for learning, extracurricular activities, books, and even food. During the summer, it slows for disadvantaged students, but not for middle and upper class students who can afford things like family vacations, specialized summer camps, trips to museums, and home libraries.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Philip, L. “The Cost Of Summer: With Camp Out Of Reach, A Raleigh Family Gets Creative.” WUNC. 10/23/18.

Rowan-Salisbury School District Considers Changes to Teacher Hiring Requirements

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Photo Credit: WSCO-TV.

The Rowan-Salisbury School District is considering making changes to hiring requirements for teachers as it looks to widen the field of candidates to educate your children.

A new proposal being considered by the district drops a four-year college degree requirement for applicants hoping to be hired as a teacher. Instead it requires a relevant degree, relevant work experience, a 2.5 grade point average and successful completion of orientation.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

“Rowan-Salisbury School District considers changes to teacher hiring requirements.” WSCO-TV. 10/23/18.

Parents Tell Durham Public Schools to Address Racial Gaps in Achievement, Discipline

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Parents and community members called upon the Durham school board Thursday night to address racial disparities in academic and disciplinary practices. Photo Credit: AP file photo.

The Durham school board got an earful Thursday night with 15 people, almost all black or Latino, urging Durham Public Schools to do more to address racial disparities in the district.

Several speakers wore “PAAC” T-shirts, for “Parents of African American Children.”

They talked about the low percentage of black and Latino teachers in the district; restorative justice, an alternative method of discipline that can avert suspensions; and the achievement gap between black and Latino students and students of other races.

To continue reading the complete press release, click here.

Excerpt from:

Goad, M. “Parents tell Durham Public Schools to address racial gaps in achievement, discipline.” The News & Observer. 10/19/18.

National News

We Followed 15 of America’s Teachers on a Day of Frustrations, Pressures and Hard-Earned Victories

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Edward Lawson checks to see if a student is on the list to enter the before school activities program at Julian Thomas Elementary School in Racine, Wisconsin. Photo Credit: Bill Schulz, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel via USA Today Network. 

This story was reported by Beatriz Alvarado, Thyrie Bland, Jason Gonzales, Leigh Guidry, Rick Hampson, Bracey Harris, Lori Higgins, Joe Hong, Austin Humphreys, Kristen Inbody, Annysa Johnson, Byron McCauley, Amanda Oglesby, Kelly Ragan, Meg Ryan, Lindsay Schnell, Devi Shastri and Alden Woods and written by Hampson, USA TODAY.

It’s shortly after dawn when Edward Lawson, one of America’s 3.2 million public school teachers, pulls his car into the parking lot of Julian Thomas Elementary in Racine, Wisconsin. He cuts the engine, pulls out his cell phone and calls his principal. They begin to pray.

Lawson is a full-time substitute based at a school with full-time problems: only one in 10 students are proficient in reading and math.

That may be explained by the fact that 87 percent of the students are poor and one in five have a diagnosed disability. Blame for test scores, however, often settles on the people who are any school’s single-most-important influence on academic achievement – teachers.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Hampson, R. “We followed 15 of America’s teachers on a day of frustrations, pressures and hard-earned victories.” USA Today. 10/19/18.

Hurricanes Deal Deep Blow to Schools’ Finances

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Heaps of debris surround the damaged gymnasium at Jinks Elementary School in Panama City, Fla., where Hurricane Michael caused widespread destruction. Photo Credit: Scott Clause, The Daily Advertiser via AP.

Getting back to normal after a devastating hurricane is long, arduous, and expensive for schools.

In Florida’s Panhandle, education leaders have started the strenuous work of cleaning up and repairing schools ravaged by Hurricane Michael earlier this month, but they are also running into a longer-term problem: steep cost estimates that could lead to mounting piles of bills.

In North Carolina, where Hurricane Florence walloped communities across the state and some schools remain closed more than five weeks later, education officials are just now getting a clear picture of the storm’s heavy hit to districts’ finances and the deep emotional blow to students, teachers, and school communities. Some districts were running into roadblocks with their insurance providers—including the state education agency—over what storm damage would be covered.

To continue reading the complete article, click here.

Excerpt from:

Superville, D. “Hurricanes Deal Deep Blow to Schools’ Finances.” Education Week. 10/19/18.

Opportunities

Public School Forum Seeking a Policy Analyst

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The Public School Forum of North Carolina is seeking a Policy Analyst. This individual will contribute to policy analysis and research efforts on a number of key educational issues in North Carolina. This position would be an excellent early career opportunity for an individual interested in education policy. Reports to the Senior Director of Policy.

Primary Job Responsibilities:

  • Monitor, document, and provide analysis of current education policy issues in North Carolina, with a focus on school finance, teacher pipeline, and education data systems.
  • Conduct and interpret quantitative and qualitative research on K-12 education policy topics.
  • Attend state legislative convenings and committee meetings.
  • Contribute to the Forum’s communications efforts including op-eds and guest columns, newsletter articles and social media efforts addressing current policy issues and initiatives impacting education in North Carolina.

To learn more about this position and how to apply, click here.

FAST NC Fundraising Drive to Aid Public Schools

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A historic storm has devastated parts of North Carolina. In response, a historic, bipartisan coalition of current and former state education leaders presented their effort to aid schools to the State Board of Education, promoting Florence Aid to Students and Teachers (FAST NC) as a drive to help North Carolina’s public schools as students and educators struggle to return to normal.

Hurricane Florence caused at least 1.2 million, or about 80 percent, of North Carolina’s public school students to miss some school. Many school buildings are damaged, and several school districts are still closed due to displacement, flooding and storm-related disruptions. Now, FAST NC has brought together an illustrious steering committee for the effort to help schools recover.

To learn more about FAST NC and how to donate, click here.

Biogen Foundation Spark Video Contest

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The Biogen Foundation is inviting middle and high school students in Massachusetts and North Carolina to create videos on the topic of biotechnology in your life. These videos must be between thirty seconds and three minutes, accurate, and creative. We are accepting videos from September 14 through December 17. Work with a teacher at your school to submit your video (up to two submissions per school), because the first 200 schools to submit an eligible video will win $500! See spark.biogenfoundation.com for more information about the contest and to submit your video today!

Submissions are open until December 17th.  ALL NC schools are eligible to enter. Teachers MUST be the ones to submit the videos; students and parents are not allowed to submit videos.

Questions? Contact the Biogen Foundation here.

Hope Street Group Annual Survey

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Are students tracked to certain careers based on socioeconomics or the reputation of a job? How can we better connect students to businesses and ensure all students are aware of their career potential?

Hope Street Group, in concert with the North Carolina Business Committee of Education, needs your perspective to improve work-based learning for K-12 students in North Carolina. Visit ednc.org/hopestreet for a 15-minute survey that will be used by local and state decision-makers to discuss how we best support students in career awareness and exploration.

All teachers, school staff, administrators, parents, business leaders, district staff, and community members can participate—so please share. Perspectives from everyone are needed: elementary educators, small business owners, principals, literacy coaches, school counselors, community college staff and educators, parents of students across K-12. If you have an interest in education, please take this survey by 10/31/18 and encourage others to do the same at ednc.org/hopestreet.

Your colleagues in the Hope Street Group North Carolina Teacher Voice Network are counting on you to help them amplify your voice and opinions.

The William Friday Teachers Retreat

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Sunday, Nov. 11 – Tuesday, Nov. 13, 2018 | UNC-Chapel Hill’s Wilson Library

Designed to equally educate and appreciate our state’s incredibly teachers, UNC-Chapel Hill’s Carolina K-12, in partnership with the North Caroliniana Society and Wilson Library’s North Carolina Collection, invite 4-12 grade teachers from around the state to join us for an engaging (and FREE!) two and a half day academic retreat in beautiful Chapel Hill, NC, with a special “field-trip” to Historic Hillsborough. Throughout these engaging three days, teachers will enjoy a snapshot of some of North Carolina’s most captivating history, events and people, all the while celebrating each participating teacher and the important work you do!

Check out the agenda here. For additional information and to apply, click here.

Upcoming Professional Development at NCCAT 

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North Carolina educators have plenty of opportunities throughout the fall to attend the North Carolina Center for the Advancement of Teaching (NCCAT), a recognized national leader in professional development programming for teachers. Applicants are encouraged to register as soon as possible to ensure a spot. Programs are available to North Carolina educators at the Cullowhee and Ocracoke campuses, online and with NCCAT faculty visiting school districts. NCCAT provides food, lodging and programming. Teachers and or their districts are responsible for travel to and from the center and the cost of the substitute teacher.

For a complete list of upcoming NCCAT programs, click here.

For more information on how to apply for NCCAT programs, click here.

Synergy Conference 2019

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The Friday Report is published weekly by the Public School Forum of NC and is distributed to Forum members, policymakers, donors, media, and Forum subscribers. Archived editions can be found at www.ncforum.org.

©2018 Public School Forum of North Carolina. All Rights Reserved.

Public School Forum of North Carolina

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