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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

I GET SARAH PALIN, AND I LIKE HER. BUT I'M NOTHING LIKE HER

My Great Campaign for school board is over. I looked before I leaped this week, the final week to turn in paperwork for the office. After repeated attempts, and some footwork by the DMPS legal staff, I found that I am ineligible. Iowa statutes provide that no one who receives retirement benefits... Sign in to see full entry.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

THIS IS THE CORE KNOWLEDGE SEQUENCE THAT WE NEED

Knowledge Builds on Knowledge We learn new knowledge by building on what we already know. Students in Core Knowledge schools know a lot, because they are offered a coherent sequence of specific knowledge that builds year by year. For example, in sixth grade they should be ready to grasp the law of... Sign in to see full entry.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Another Way We Have Decieved Ourselves

Until now we have thought that the 4th grade reading gap, aka the minority achievement gap, which leads to the drop out rate, was caused by families who send children to kindergarten without a good literacy background. No one read to them -- talked much to them -- and there was not a lively and... Sign in to see full entry.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Reading Strategies vs. Reading Comprehension

During the replay of the June 16 school board meeting, the superintendent presented something she calls "ends". Evidently it is a reading of assessments for the district, especially in Reading, Science, Social Science and Math. The president of the DMEA got up and made the statement that annual... Sign in to see full entry.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Des Moines Drop Out Rate

2007‐2008 Student Dropout Demographic Breakdown Student Group 2007‐2008 %of Total Dropout Count Minority 270 38% Non‐Minority 440 62% ELL 69 10% Non‐ELL 641 90% SpecialEducation 28 4% Non‐Spec.Education 682 96% Low SES 342 48% Total Student DropoutCount –710 students Sign in to see full entry.

2005 Data on School Drop Out Improvement

Table 1 Dropout Rates 1 and Number and Percentage Distribution of Dropouts Ages 16 to 24, by Selected Characteristics: October 2005 Characteristic Dropout rate (percent) Number of Dropouts (thousands) Percent of all dropouts Percent of population Total 9.4 3,457 100.0 100.0 Gender Male 10.8 2,008... Sign in to see full entry.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

10 Things That We Can Do to Save Des Moines' Schools 1. Admit that we have a serious flaw in our curriculum: supervisors tend to blame the teachers, parents, and students for the failure; 2. Fix the flaw by changing the curriculum to reflect recent research (E.D. Hirsch, 2007); 3. Allow Reading... Sign in to see full entry.

Tell Me If You Think This is Too Much?

Vote for Mike King for School Board September 8, 2009 Des Moines Public Schools Pic Here Stop Discrimination Against At-Risk Students Inner-City Families ESL / ELL Community Sign in to see full entry.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Ten Things That We Can Do to Save Des Moines' Schools

1. Admit that we have a serious flaw in our curriculum: otherwise, supervisors tend to blame the teachers, parents and students for the failure; 2. Fix the flaw by changing the curriculum to reflect recent research (E.D. Hirsch, 2007); 3. Allow Reading Classes to teach "the Mayflower, Continents,... Sign in to see full entry.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Interesting Educational Factoid

The definition of reading comprehension is: using background knowledge to make meaning from current text. Where that is relevant is at ITBS Assessment time. Current Reading Strategies in the middle school (nationwide) is to teach metacognitive reading strategies. It is incoherent to teach... Sign in to see full entry.

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