Too often, STEM reform has entailed well-intentioned efforts to superimpose good ideas on a rickety, aged set of institutions and organizations. If today’s earnest efforts are to deliver more than that, then good intentions and thoughtful proposals must be joined by a fierce commitment to remaking America’s schools and school systems for the 21st century.
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Compared to public school choice under NCLB, there has been far more research and evaluation done on the impact of SES. While the main factor for determining the success of SES must be its impact on increasing student achievement, parent satisfaction also can demonstrate the extent to which the program has been successful. Indeed, most states take into account parent satisfaction when it comes to evaluating individual providers.
Aside from actual limitations on services due to factors such as funding, the utilization of SES and public school choice has also been limited in many places by poor implementation.
Since 2003, participation in SES has increased from 233,000 students to nearly 700,000. During this same period, participation in public school choice has grown from approximately 50,000 students to roughly 150,000.
NCLB, for the first time in ESEA history, required low-performing schools to offer parents two choices: move their child to a higher-performing public school in their district or to a nearby charter school, or opt into free tutoring services. Both of these parental options were based on the premise that, rather than wait for a school to improve, parents deserve to have the opportunity to seek options that can provide immediate academic support to meet their needs – options that are widely available and utilized by millions of students from higher-income families.
This issue of the ICW newsletter provides an overview of the parental options under NCLB; the extent to which students and parents have selected these options; issues surrounding their implementation; and a look at their overall impact on students.
While there is broad consensus that high-quality teachers are key in raising student achievement, there is significant disagreement about how to measure and reward quality, as well as how to ensure that every classroom has a high-quality teacher. This In Focus brief, the first of four, will discuss what is driving the teacher quality conversation at the national, state, and local levels.
West Virginia Coal Conversion Initiative
The West Virginia Coal Conversion Initiative is a comprehensive plan that will encompass public/private development of liquefaction and other coal conversion facilities and infrastructure. These facilities will convert coal into liquid fuels and other products for commercial and non-commercial uses.
The West Virginia Coal Conversion Initiative will focus on the development of state-of-the-art, multi-product facilities that adapt to the changing needs of the marketplace and produce whatever product is most needed at a specific time – be it natural gas, diesel fuel, jet fuel, hydrogen, or chemicals.
Alaska’s Place in the Rankings
1st Budget Gap
1st State and Local Tax Burden
2nd Business Tax Climate
2nd Short-term Job Growth
2nd Economic Output Per Job
3rd Long-term Job Growth
3rd Small Business Lending
3rd High Speed Broadband Intensity
5th Academic R&D Intensity
5th College Affordability
6th Gross State Product Growth
6th STEM Job Growth
8th Productivity Growth
10th Per Capita Income Growth
12th Job Placement Efficiency
13th STEM Job Concentration
15th Small Business Survival Index
24th Business Birth Rate
Arkansas’ Place in the Rankings
1st Budget Gap
3rd Entrepreneurial Activity
4th Cost of Living
6th Higher-ed Efficiency
6th High School Advanced Placement Intensity
6th Academic R&D Intensity
9th Short-term Job Growth
9th Productivity Growth
9th Per Capita Income Growth
10th Export Intensity Growth
17th STEM Job Growth
17th Job Placement Efficiency
18th Gross State Product Growth
19th Long-term Job Growth
22nd Small Business Lending
24th Small Business Survival Index
24th College Affordability
25th Business Birth Rate