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Preview: ADEPT at the Chicago Teachers' Center

ADEPT at the Chicago Teachers' Center

The Assessment, Documentation & Development, Evaluation, and Publication Team Weblog

Last Build Date: Mon, 09 Jun 2003 14:52:51 GMT

Copyright: Copyright 2003 Assessment, Documentation and Development, Evaluation, & Publication Team

Mon, 09 Jun 2003 14:49:32 GMT

The Changes Unwelcome, a Model Teacher Moves On

A kindergarten teacher, perhaps the best one in Florida, is leaving her job because of the new focus at both the state and federal levels on standardized tests. By Michael Winerip. [New York Times: Education]

Mon, 21 Apr 2003 14:56:55 GMT

The Push for Usability of Research

This four-part series from Education Week examines the movement to make education research more "usable" and explores some efforts to connect the worlds of research and practice.

Mon, 21 Apr 2003 14:52:59 GMT

Charter school options going way outside box

Whether it's a school that focuses on high expectations and a longer day of instruction or one where students use facilities at Lincoln Park Zoo as their classroom, what once were just ideas for charter schools now can become a reality in Chicago. Sponsors began preparing concepts for new schools long before Wednesday when Gov. Rod Blagojevich signed legislation authorizing the city to double its charter schools from 15 to 30. Read the whole article here

Fri, 21 Feb 2003 15:23:10 GMT

Another School System May Lose Federal Funding

The Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation, which has trained some 14,000 teachers over the past five years in the essential components of effective reading instruction, may now be in jeopardy after a federal panel suggested it is not aligned with current research in the field. This is another story (read it all here) of caution to those that design professional development for teachers and educational programs for children. The federal government, using the NCLB law, is serious about not funding any program that is not "aligned with current research in the field." Read what the Federal Government considers to be the five key components here on its FAQ page. -Steve

Fri, 14 Feb 2003 15:02:40 GMT

For Hispanics, Barriers Can Complicate College

Only 16 percent of Latino high school graduates earn a four-year college degree by age 29, according to a recent study. By Mireya Navarro. [New York Times: Education]

Fri, 24 Jan 2003 17:16:05 GMT

Funding for Non-Researched Reading Program in Jeopardy

The New York Times reported that President Bush's top adviser on reading said yesterday that the citywide phonics program unveiled this week by Schools Chancellor Joel I. Klein had no proven track record, suggesting that its adoption could cost the city millions of dollars in federal aid. This is a direct result of No Child Left Behind, which mandates that educational programs be backed by research in order to qualify for federal dollars. This will affect all professional development organizations like the Chicago Teachers' Center. I have been watching this issue closely, and this is the first time I have seen a threat to revoke funding. Read the entire article here. -Steve

Fri, 17 Jan 2003 16:40:25 GMT

December 18, 2002 ADEPT Meeting

ADEPT had its latest meeting on December 18, 2002. We discussed the outline for the Annual Report and finalized some of its components. Read the entire meeting minutes here.

Fri, 17 Jan 2003 14:47:39 GMT

Teaching Aides Facing Higher Standards

The Illinois Board of Education is expected to approve a first-of-its kind math, reading and writing exam for teaching assistants today, a move that some educators worry will cut into the pool of extra hands that keep schools running. From the Chicago Sun-Times: January 16.

Fri, 03 Jan 2003 16:15:31 GMT

Interesting Results of Weblog Use for KM

Rick Klau over at Tins has had some experience in the last months trying to implement a K-Log at his company. A K-Log is a network of weblogs used for knowledge management. I have always thought that this would be something important for the Chicago Teachers' Center to employ, as knowledge is our most important asset. So far I have not been able to generate much participation. Rick has some intersting insights:
Bottom line: we learned a lot about how we want to share information internally. Noone in the company had a bad experience with their weblog. Some gravitated to it, while others found themselves more as a "consumer" of information rather than a "producer".  This experience provoked a number of excellent conversations about what kind of information would be valuable inside the company. Sales people started thinking about what they did that might be useful for product management; development started thinking about what marketing was working on that might make them more effective.
Read the rest of his story here. -Steve

Fri, 03 Jan 2003 16:09:10 GMT

More Schools Rely on Tests, but Study Raises Doubts

Rigorous testing does little to improve achievement and may worsen academic performance and dropout rates, according to the largest study ever on the issue. By Greg Winter. [New York Times: Education]

Fri, 20 Dec 2002 15:03:37 GMT

Several CTC Partner Schools on ISBE Academic Watch List

The Illinois State Board of Education released the list of schools that will be placed on its academic watch list. These schools have been on the early warning list for two years because more than 50% of their students are not satisfactorily meeting state standards and the schools have not made adequate progress toward getting off the list. Of the 52 schools that are on the list, 48 are from the city of Chicago. Several of the schools on the list are Chicago Teachers' Center partner schools. You can read the Chicago Tribune article discussing this, or go straight to the ISBE press release. The list of schools on the watch list can be downloaded in pdf format by clicking here. -Steve

Wed, 18 Dec 2002 15:16:01 GMT

Thinking About Edublogs

The thoughts about edublogs are at that point when it comes time to show what kind of outcomes can be expected in using them in the classroom. Seems like many of the people that are adventurous to use weblogs as an educational tool have taken the time to explore them. But as Pam over at The Teachers Asylum is saying, not many more teachers are taking up the challenge. It has been difficult here at the Chicago Teachers' Center to get people to take the plunge as well. Maybe everyone is waiting for more definitive results to be published? Could be. Read some thoughts posted by Will over at Weblogg-ed. -Steve

Fri, 13 Dec 2002 15:33:26 GMT

What Works Clearinghouse

Here is some more news that relates to the No Child Left Behind act and its requirements for the use of "scientifically rigorous" interventions.
The "What Works Clearinghouse" has been established and is being headed by Dr. Larry V. Hedges of the University of Chicago. The What Works Clearinghouse (WWC) is a national project, created in August 2002 by the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Educational Research and Improvement, to meet this need. Through a set of easily accessible Web-based databases on what works, the WWC will provide decision-makers with the information they need to make choices based on high quality scientific research. The WWC will develop standards for reviewing and synthesizing rigorous research and will provide its findings in accessible, straightforward language through the following user-friendly, searchable online databases.
Read about the WWC at -Steve

Wed, 11 Dec 2002 15:01:15 GMT

Achievement Gap Un-American

While the gap between black and white students continues to grow, the dollars that No Child Left Behind act will follow only those progrmas that meet "scientific rigor." Rod Paige said, "We know how to teach reading, yet we still waste time . . . with systems that don't meet scientific rigor. A large majority of our children are not being educated well." This means that the programs that organizations like the Chicago Teachers' Center provide to schools will have to meet certain government criteria if we want federal dollars to support them. This could mean a drastic shift in the way we, and other universities, do business with local school districts. Read the whole article about Paige's address here. You can also read about what "scientific rigor" means here. -Steve

Fri, 06 Dec 2002 15:20:13 GMT

Schools Getting Rid of Unpopular Exam

The CASE exam, a controversial high school exam written by Chicago public school teachers, is being dumped in favor of a new test that will probably be written by professional test writers, officials said Thursday. By Rosalind Rossi, December 6, 2002. [Chicago Sun-Times]

Fri, 06 Dec 2002 15:05:40 GMT

Study: Hispanic immigrants make education gains, though gaps remain

The overall gap with U.S.-born residents persists in part because many Hispanic families cannot afford rising college costs, experts said. In other families, kids may not attend school regularly in order to work, while undocumented students find it hard to get financial aid. AP via New Jersey Online Dec 5 2002 9:06AM ET [Moreover - US education news]

Fri, 06 Dec 2002 15:02:09 GMT

More black women than men in college, journal finds

The Journal of Blacks in Higher Education's spring issue noted that women earned 67 percent of bachelor's degrees awarded to blacks. Women earned 69 percent of master's degrees and 66 percent of doctoral degrees awarded to blacks. They earned 58 percent of all professional degrees awarded to blacks, according to the U.S. Department of Education's National Research Council. Dec 6 2002 0:26AM ET [Moreover - US education news]

Wed, 04 Dec 2002 14:53:22 GMT

Lozano Bilingual Named School of Distinction

Lozano Bilingual and International Center, recently named a School of Distinction and awarded $10,000 by the CPS, has seen a spectacular improvement in its ITBS math scores since 1999. The improvements have been so exceptional that they triggered retesting by the CPS in 1999 and 2000. Including 2000, math test scores have gone from 53% of eighth graders meeting or exceeding national norms, to 71% in 2001, and 89% in 2002. Lozano also has the distinction of having zero eighth graders scoring in the bottom quartile on the 2002 ITBS. To read the entire story, click here. -Sheila Castillo

Mon, 02 Dec 2002 21:32:14 GMT

First Outline for Annual Report

Click here for a brief outline of the first draft of an Annual Report outline. This was developed by ADEPT at its Novemebr 27, 2002 meeting. You can read the full minutes by clicking here. We welcome all comments, which can be added to the comments on the homepage, or by e-mailing Steve.

Mon, 02 Dec 2002 21:26:22 GMT

Novemebr 27, 2002 ADEPT Meeting

ADEPT had its latest meeting on Wednesday, November 27. We spent the entire meeting discussing outlines for the Annual Report. To read the minutes of the latest ADEPT meeting, click here.

Mon, 02 Dec 2002 15:15:40 GMT

Why Are Black Students Lagging?

A book to be released next year argues that minority communities themselves contribute to student failure. Immediately when I read this I get suspicious, like when I read the blurbs announcing "The Bell Curve." Could it possibly be that hundreds of years of segregation take hundreds of years to undo? And the longer institutions and government officials drag their heels in resisting the changes necessary to undo that damage, the longer it will be before real change will be apparent at all levels of US society? -Steve

Mon, 02 Dec 2002 15:11:10 GMT

Who Ya Gonna Trust?

The Chicago Teachers' Center spends a lot of time building trust in the partners with whom it works. One of the strategies used are Teams Courses that build teamwork and group trust. This has been a methodology used and perfected by our Experiential & Adventure Learning and Play for Peace initiatives. A major global public opinion survey, however, suggests that trust in many key institutions has fallen to critical proportions. The survey of 36,000 people conducted by Gallup International and Environics International reveals a dramatic lack of trust in democratic institutions and global and large national companies; and trust is even low when it comes to non-governmental organizations (NGOs), trade unions and media organizations around the world. Could there be a larger role for the work that CTC does? [PR Watch's Spin of the Day]

Wed, 20 Nov 2002 15:07:47 GMT

Relegating Student Research to the Past

The teacher professional development done by the Chicago Teachers' Center routinely focuses on asking teachers to create authentic learning experiences like in-depth research papers. Research from the Consortium on Chicago School Research supports this effort by showing that these types of assignments increase students' performance on standardized tests better than "drill and kill." But a recent survey shows that teachers are reluctant to assign this type of work because of curricular constraints - they have too much material to cover to make it practical. The move in general toward State standards that include content seems to be driving the decision by educators to avoid long, in-depth research projects. Read about a survey of history teachers in this article in Education Week Nov 19 2002 10:27PM ET [Moreover - US education news]

Wed, 20 Nov 2002 15:00:31 GMT

Survey Discounts Attitude In Races' Education Gaps

A survey released yesterday found that blacks and Latinos are as likely as whites and Asian Americans to be eager and ambitious students, puncturing one of the assumptions often used to explain the yawning achievement gap separating the races. By Michael A. Fletcher. Washington Post Nov 20 2002 0:04AM ET [Moreover - US education news]