Ohio to Start Grading University Teaching Programs

Teachers who go to school in Ohio will now be graded to reflect how well their college education has prepared them for their job. The state of Ohio has adopted a report card system that will go into effect in 2011 that grades teaching programs at private and public universities. This type of grading system will judge how well students perform after college.

There are a total of 14 standards that will be used to analyze a college’s performance through the teachers they produce. Some of the included criteria for evaluation include how well the university places teachers in hard to staff schools, how a graduate scores on the state’s new teacher performance assessment and how much students learn in a teacher’s class in one year.

Overall, this grading system has been accepted by both private and public university groups. The effort to increase accountability will offer room for improvement and produce more teachers who are equipped to do their job. Some data received from this grading system will be available immediately, but a full report on the findings will not be available until the end of 2012.

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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 »

Ohio Plan Turning Graduates Into Homeowners

If the Ohio Senate has its way, its in-state graduates could also become homeowners. “Grants for Grads” is a $2 million grant program that proposes college graduates receive anywhere from $2,500 to $10,000, depending on level of degree earned, payable toward the down payment on a new home. The recipients must agree to live in the state of Ohio for no less than five years.young homeowners

To be eligible for one of the 300 grants, students will have to register within 60 days of graduation and have 12 months to use it.

“If we truly want to get our economy back on track, Ohio cannot afford to lose the next generation of skilled workers to other states,” said Sen. Stephen Buehrer, R-Delta, who is sponsoring the bill. “This program will provide an extra incentive for our best and brightest to purchase their own homes and become invested in our communities.”

It’s a win-win for students who might not otherwise have the funds available to purchase a new home and create room in their budgets to pay toward student loans. Also a way to stimulate the housing market in Ohio.

Do you think it’s a plan that could work in other states?


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