Colorado

Colorado

Colorado Measure Against Civil Disobedience Incites Student Protests

At least 700 high school students in Jefferson County Colorado walked out of class Wednesday morning to protest proposed changes to their schools’ history curriculum.

colorado protest

The suggested changes from their school board include an evaluation-based system for awarding teachers’ raises, and a curriculum committee that would push for the promotion of “positive aspects” of the United States and its history. The committee would ask educators to avoid any material that may encourage or condone “civil disorder, social strife or disregard of the law.”

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Teachers Allowed to Hit Students in 20 U.S. States

the 20 states allowing student hitting

The 20 States in red currently allow teachers to legally hit their misbehaving children

Most parents recognize that even in the most well-respected and established education institutions, their children will inevitably misbehave, which will subject them to punishment in accordance to the school’s disciplinary guidelines.

In fact, in most instances, parents, teachers and administrative professionals understand and agree that negative reinforcement is sometimes deemed necessary when disciplining a disruptive pupil. Most, however, envision a trip to the principal’s office or a missed after school activity an appropriate punishment.

One thing they probably don’t envision is a child being hit with a belt or wooden paddle as an appropriate punishment for misbehavior. Read the rest of this entry »



The Best Oktoberfest Celebrations in the U.S.

OktoberfestAsk almost any college student what their favorite type of beer is, and you are likely to get a long babble about a particular brand or style and how this beer is the best beer in the world. However, we college students don’t know squat about beer compared to the Germans.

In Germany, there is a 16-day long festival devoted to beers, drinking beer, singing songs about beer, and just about any other beer-related activity you can think of. What is this fantastic beer-belly-inducing celebration called? Oktoberfest!

The original Oktoberfest is held in Munich, Germany every September. It is also the world’s largest fair, with around six million people attending every year. This year is the 200th anniversary of Oktoberfest, and the celebrations will start on September 18 and last until October 4, 2010. Read the rest of this entry »



Obama’s Race to the Top Finalists Announced

UPDATE [1/27/11]: President Obama discussed the success of Race to the Top in his State of the Union address on January 25th. “Race to the Top in the most meaningful reform of our public schools in a generation. For less than one percent of what we spend on education each year, it has led over 40 states to raise their standards for teaching and learning…and Race to the Top should be the approach we follow this year as we replace No Child Left Behind with a law that’s more flexible and focused on what’s best for our kids.” Since the program’s initiation, it has help 25,000 schools nationwide and 13.6 million students, according to White House statistics.

School budgets have been stretched tight with the nation’s recent economic recession. Last year in my hometown, Wichita, KS, several schools were forced to give up yearly field trips. And this year, the school district is proposing to do away with driver’s education. Hopefully with Obama’s Race to the Top competition, some states will be able to lessen this financial strain.race to the top

As of July 27, eighteen states and the District of Columbia could win part of the $3.4 billion in education grants to assist in an overhaul of education policies.

In this second round of the competition, federal officials say they anticipate 10 to 15 winners that will receive federal financing. The winning states will be revealed in September.

Here are the 19 finalists: Arizona, California, Colorado, the District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and South Carolina. Read the rest of this entry »



Colorado’s New Tenure Policy Upsets Teacher Unions

apple for teacherIt just got a little bit harder for teachers to keep their jobs in Colorado. A new change to the state’s legislature requires teachers to be evaluated each year, and half of their rating will be based on whether or not their students made progress during the school year.

As for the new teachers, they will have to show they’ve improved their student’s achievement for three consecutive years to earn tenure.

Colorado’s teacher unions, who have defended the previous tenure policy for several years, are up in arms about the new one, while education advocates believe it is a step in the right direction. The tenure policy will make it easier to get rid of mediocre or even incapable teachers.

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