ED Review (02/10/06)

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************************************************************************** Black History Month All Year Long http://www.edu-cyberpg.com/culdesac/bhm/bhm.html

Classroom resources - slave songs, including stories of the people,
often passed from elders to the next generation, learn through the oral tradition.
Find 2 original Anansi Folktale E-books. Download, read, and hear each
story narrated in both American Virgin Island Creole and Standard English,
plus find out how these stories survived in tact from the original
storyteller. The Virgin Islands Dutch Creole folktale below was collected
by a Dutch anthropologist, J. P. B. de Josselin de Jong, who visited the
Virgin Islands in 1923. De Josselin de Jong does not say who told him this
story. However, we do know that all of the people who told him stories
lived on St. Thomas and St. John and that they spoke both Dutch Creole and
Virgin Islands English.

ED REVIEW February 10, 2006

...a bi-weekly update on U.S. Department of Education activities
relevant to the Intergovernmental and Corporate community and other


In the wake of his annual State of the Union Address
(http://www.whitehouse.gov/stateoftheunion/2006/) -- during which he

the importance of math and science education, as part of his broader
American Competitiveness Initiative -- President Bush unveiled his
Fiscal Year 2007 budget request, including $54.4 billion in
discretionary funding for the U.S. Department of Education.  That
figure represents a $3.1 billion, or 5.5%, decrease from FY 2006
appropriations.  However, one-half of that decrease is one-time costs
for Hurricane Katrina/Rita relief ($1.6 billion).  Moreover, even with
the proposed reduction, discretionary funding for education would be
up $12 billion, or 29%, since FY 2001, the greatest percentage
increase of any non-Defense or Homeland Security Cabinet agency.
Among the highlights:

American Competitiveness Initiative
·       $125 million for the Math Now for Elementary School Students
initiative, modeled after Reading First, to prepare K-7 students for
secondary math;

·       $125 million for the Math Now for Middle School Students
initiative, modeled after Striving Readers, to support math
interventions in middle schools

·       a $90 million increase (to $122 million) for Advanced
Placement programs, to train an additional 70,000 teachers for math,
science, and critical foreign language AP or IB courses and increase
the number of students taking and passing AP or IB tests

·       $10 million for a National Math Panel to identify and
disseminate promising practices in math instruction;
·       $5 million to evaluate math and science programs across the
federal government; and
·       $25 million to initiate an Adjunct Teacher Corps of qualified
professionals to help teach high school math and science (goal: 30,000
by 2015).

High School Reform
·       $1.475 billion for High School Reform formula grants, to
support interventions and high school assessments in two additional
grade levels.

National Security Language Initiative
·       a $35 million increase (total: $57 million) for Education's
portion of the President's foreign language initiative, to
significantly increase the number of U.S. students and workers
learning critical foreign languages, such as Arabic, Chinese, Farsi,
Japanese, Korean, Russian, or Urdu.

Choices for Parents
·       $100 million for a new America's Opportunity Scholarships for
Kids program, which would provide parents of students enrolled in
schools identified as in need of restructuring (six years of missing
Adequate Yearly Progress) with the option of transferring their
children to a private school ($4,000 to cover tuition, fees, and
necessary transportation) or obtain supplemental educational services
($3,000 for either after-school or summer school tutoring programs).

Higher Education Assistance
·       $850 million for Academic Competitiveness and National SMART
grants, to bestow up to $1,300 to high-achieving first- and
second-year students who have completed a rigorous high school
curriculum and up to $4,000 to high-achieving third- and fourth-year
students majoring in math, science, engineering, technology, or
critical foreign languages;

·       expanded teacher loan forgiveness ($17,500) for highly
qualified math, science, and special education teachers serving
challenging, low-income communities; and

·       $12.7 billion for Pell Grants, reaching 5.3 million students.

Other Priorities
·       $200 million for first-time funding for Title I School
Improvement Grants, to build state capacity to support school and
school district improvement;

·       $10.7 billion (an increase of $100 million) for special
education grants to states; and
·       $54.6 million (an increase of  $30 million) for statewide data
systems, to expand support for state longitudinal data systems, to
improve graduation/dropout data, and to help states comply with
federal reporting requirements.

And, the budget changes or eliminates dozens of programs, guided by
the government-wide Program Assessment Rating Tool, or PART, that
evaluates programs' evidence of effectiveness.  FOR MORE INFORMATION,
http://www.ed.gov/about/overview/budget/budget07/summary/.  (A
supplemental guide to the President's budget, "Meeting the Challenge
of a Changing World," is available at
http://www.ed.gov/about/inits/ed/competitiveness/, and state-by-state
data has been posted at http://www.ed.gov/about/overview/budget/statetables/.)

FY 2007 BUDGET (cont.)

Can't get enough of the budget?  Last week, the President visited
(http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2006/02/20060203-13.html) and
Secretary Spellings visited Florida
(http://www.ed.gov/news/speeches/2006/02/02022006.html) and Alabama to
elaborate on key budget provisions.  Also, on February 3, the
Secretary participated in an "Ask the White House" chat:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/ask/20060203.html.  Then, yesterday
(February 9), she testified before the Senate's education committee
(http://www.ed.gov/news/pressreleases/2006/02/02092006.html).  In
addition, a new Office of Management and Budget (OMB) web site,
http://www.ExpectMore.gov/, provides candid, easy-to-understand
assessments of nearly 800 federal programs.

NCLB UPDATE (http://www.ed.gov/nclb/)

On January 25, the Department released peer review guidance for No
Child Left Behind growth model applications (deadline: February 17).
Under the pilot program announced by Secretary Spellings late last
year, up to 10 states may use growth models to evaluate the progress
of schools and school districts in making Adequate Yearly Progress
(AYP) this school year.  However, these models must meet seven "core


Following the President's lead, the next "Education News Parents Can
Use" broadcast (February 21, 8:00-9:00 ET) will discuss math and
science literacy in the global economy.  Over the last half-century,
American ingenuity and innovation accomplished what was once
unthinkable.  Unfortunately, many American students -- especially
minorities and high school students -- are lagging behind and remain
ill-prepared for the demands of today's workforce.  Indeed, while
students in the rest of industrialized world have improved in math,
scores on international assessments for American 17-year-olds have
remained flat since the early 1970s; a large achievement gap in math
and science exists between white students and their black and Hispanic
peers across all age groups; and, while jobs requiring engineering or
technical training will increase by over 24 percent over the next
eight years, the U.S. share of the world's science and engineering
doctorates is predicted to fall to 15 percent.  The American
Competitiveness Initiative aims to reverse these "trends" and
cultivate the next generation of innovators.  FOR MORE INFORMATION,
PLEASE GO TO http://www.ed.gov/news/av/video/edtv/.  (You can watch
live and archived webcasts at http://www.connectlive.com/events/ednews/.)


According to the College Board's annual "Advanced Placement Report to
the Nation," 14.1 percent of the graduating class of 2005 demonstrated
mastery (at least a 3 on a 5-point scale) on one or more AP exams --
up from 10.2 percent for the 2000 class and 13.2 percent for the 2004
class.  And, all 50 states and the District of Columbia reported an
increase in the percentage of students succeeding on AP exams.  FOR


On the heels of the recent adult literacy study (see
http://nces.ed.gov/naal/), a new, national study by the American
Institutes for Research (AIR) finds 20 percent of American college
students completing four-year degrees -- and 30 percent of students
earning two-year degrees -- have only basic quantitative literacy
skills, or the skills necessary to compare ticket prices or calculate
the cost of a sandwich and a salad from the menu.  At the same time,
the study finds no difference between the quantitative literacy of
current graduates versus previous generations.  Also, today's
graduates are superior to previous graduates when it comes to other


"We need to encourage children to take more math and science, and to
make sure those courses are rigorous enough to compete with other
nations....  Tonight, I propose to train 70,000 high school teachers
to lead Advanced Placement courses in math and science, bring 30,000
math and science professionals to teach in classrooms, and give early
help to students who struggle with math, so they have a better chance
at good, high-wage jobs.  If we ensure that America's children succeed
in life, they will ensure that America succeeds in the world."

-- President George W. Bush (1/31/06)

New Leaders for New Schools, a non-profit organization attracting,
preparing, and supporting the next generation of outstanding
principals for urban public schools, is accepting applications for
candidates who meet 10 selection criteria and want to lead change for
children in low-income communities.  The training program features
rigorous academic coursework, a year-long paid residency with a
mentor, and three years of professional development and coaching.  FOR
MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE GO TO http://www.nlns.org/NLWeb/Leader.jsp.

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