State and local support for higher education in Illinois plunged as the state’s lawmakers and governor were unable to reach a budget agreement and instead passed severely pared-down stopgap funding. Educational appropriations per full-time equivalent student in the state skidded 80 percent year-over-year, from $10,986 to $2,196. Enrollment in public institutions dropped by 11 percent, or 46,000 students.
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How D.C. Became the Darling of Education Reform
Rachel M. Cohen | The American Prospect
When it comes to education reform, perhaps no city has inspired more controversy and acclaim over the last decade than Washington, D.C. Even today, uttering the name “Michelle Rhee”—the city’s first schools chancellor appointed in 2007 after a major shakeup in the district—still evokes heated reactions from local residents. Following the dissolution of the local school board and the centralization of education decision-making within the mayor’s office, then-Mayor Adrian Fenty commanded an unusual amount of power to change D.C.’s schools.
Over the past 10 years, the policies undergirding the national education-reform movement—offering more school choice, weakening teacher-union power, and creating new accountability systems (with incentives like pay-for-performance and teacher evaluations based partly on student test scores)—have taken hold in the nation’s capital.
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The ‘90s Edutainment Renaissance
Marc Snetiker | Entertainment Weekly
With the newly announced return of yet another paragon of millennial mystique—Carmen Sandiego, she of oversized fedoras and under-detailed itineraries—it appears time to make The Announcement: 2017’s hottest new trend is ‘90s education.
You must understand something about the so-called “’90s kids” you read so much about on weblogs. It’s not just all Nickelodeon cartoons and Disney princesses and discontinued lines of dunkable graham crackers. For this generation of Geocities slickers, growing up in the ‘90s also meant living on the receiving end of what the advent of computers meant for education; the 20- and 30-somethings whose thinkpieces you now actively ignore online probably first learned their typing skills and pixelated prowess through the educational programs worshipped in an ancient house of sacrifice known as a “computer lab.”
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Language-Learning Apps Are Failing to Help Struggling Students
Jenny Abamu | EdSurge
Waves of language-learning apps like Babbel and Duolingo have hit the market. But as the number of apps increases, academic achievement for [English-language-learner] students remains staggeringly low. Ninety-two percent of fourth grade ELL students scored below proficiency on the 2015 National Assessment of Educational Progress reading exams. According to WestEd, a nonprofit research and development organization, older ELL students struggle more than younger ones and are significantly more likely to drop out of high school than their native English-speaking peers.