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U.S. Departments of Education and Justice Release Joint Guidance to Ensure English Learner Students Have Equal Access to High-Quality Education

January 8, 2015 Comments off

U.S. Departments of Education and Justice Release Joint Guidance to Ensure English Learner Students Have Equal Access to High-Quality Education
Source: U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice

The U.S. Departments of Education (ED) and Justice (DOJ) today released joint guidance reminding states, school districts and schools of their obligations under federal law to ensure that English learner students have equal access to a high-quality education and the opportunity to achieve their full academic potential.

The guidance explains schools’ obligations to:

  • identify English learner students in a timely, valid and reliable manner;
  • offer all English learner students an educationally sound language assistance program;
  • provide qualified staff and sufficient resources for instructing English learner students;
  • ensure English learner students have equitable access to school programs and activities;
  • avoid unnecessary segregation of English learner students from other students;
  • monitor students’ progress in learning English and doing grade-level classwork;
  • remedy any academic deficits English learner students incurred while in a language assistance program;
  • move students out of language assistance programs when they are proficient in English and monitor those students to ensure they were not prematurely removed;
  • evaluate the effectiveness of English learner programs; and
  • provide limited English proficient parents with information about school programs, services, and activities in a language they understand.

Almost 5 million students in the United States are English learners—about 9 percent of all public school students. From 2002 to 2011, the percentage of English learners in public schools increased in 40 states and the District of Columbia, and currently three out of every four public schools enroll English learner students.

Findings From the First-Grade Rounds of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-11

January 5, 2015 Comments off

Findings From the First-Grade Rounds of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-11
Source: National Center for Education Statistics

This brief report provides a first look at the overall first-grade reading, math, and science achievement of the students who were attending kindergarten for the first time in the 2010-11 school year and who advanced to first grade for the 2011-12 school year. The report uses new data from the first-grade rounds of the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, Kindergarten Class of 2010-11 (ECLS-K:2011). Reading, mathematics, and science assessment scores in the fall and spring of first grade are shown, both overall and by selected child and family characteristics.

For Public Feedback: A College Ratings Framework

December 22, 2014 Comments off

For Public Feedback: A College Ratings Framework
Source: U.S. Department of Education

Based on extensive consultation with stakeholders and experts, the Department has now released a draft framework for the ratings system for further public comment. We will continue to refine the ratings system over time based on user and institutional experience, input from the field, and the availability of additional data.

The purposes of the ratings system are:

  • To help colleges and universities measure, benchmark, and improve across shared principles of access, affordability, and outcomes.
  • To provide better information about college value to students and families to support them as they search for select a college,
  • To generate reliable, useful data that policymakers and the public can use to hold America’s colleges and universities accountable for key performance measures. In the future this can be used to help align incentives for colleges to serve students from all backgrounds well by focusing on the shared principles of access, affordability, and outcomes; ensuring wise and effective use of $150 billion in financial aid.
  • In additional to federal efforts, and those of individual institutions, we believe the ratings system can help inform policy, accreditation and funding decisions by states education authorities, policies and practices of accreditors and others.

Education Department Clarifies Requirements for Offering Single-Sex Classes

December 11, 2014 Comments off

Education Department Clarifies Requirements for Offering Single-Sex Classes
Source: U.S. Department of Education

The U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) released guidance today for K-12 schools that offer or want to offer single-sex classes.

In response to numerous inquiries about the legality of single-sex classes, OCR issued guidance that charts a path for schools on how they can provide boys-only or girls-only instruction while remaining in compliance with civil rights laws.

“As we receive increasing inquiries about single-sex offerings we want to be clear what federal law allows: Protect civil rights and promote achievement,” said Catherine E. Lhamon, assistant secretary for civil rights. “It is our hope that this guidance will give schools, students and parents the tools they need to ensure compliance with the Title IX regulations on single-sex classes.”

To offer single-sex classes or extracurricular activities, schools must:

  • Identify an important objective that they seek to achieve by offering a single-sex class (such as improving academic achievement);
  • Demonstrate that the single-sex nature of the class is substantially related to achieving that objective;
  • Ensure that enrollment in the single-sex class is completely voluntary (through an opt-in, rather than an opt-out, process);
  • Offer a substantially equal coed class in the same subject;
  • Offer single-sex classes evenhandedly to male and female students;
  • Conduct periodic evaluations at least every two years to ensure that the classes continue to comply with Title IX;
  • Avoid relying on gender stereotypes;
  • Provide equitable access to single-sex classes to students with disabilities and English language learners and,
  • Avoid discriminating against faculty members based on gender when assigning educators to single-sex classrooms.

The guidance document is presented in a convenient question-and-answer format, offering common scenarios aimed at assisting schools and educators in designing single-sex programs that comply with Title IX.

Secretary Duncan, Attorney General Holder Announce Guidance Package on Providing Quality Education Services to America’s Confined Youth

December 9, 2014 Comments off

Secretary Duncan, Attorney General Holder Announce Guidance Package on Providing Quality Education Services to America’s Confined Youth
Source: U.S. Department of Education and U.S. Department of Justice

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder today announced a Correctional Education Guidance Package aimed at helping states and local agencies strengthen the quality of education services provided to America’s estimated 60,000 young people in confinement every day.

This guidance package builds on recommendations in the My Brother’s Keeper Task Force report released in May to “reform the juvenile and criminal justice systems to reduce unnecessary interactions for youth and to enforce the rights of incarcerated youth to a quality education.” Today’s guidance package is a roadmap that states and local agencies can use to improve the quality of educational services for confined youth.

Ninth-Graders’ Mathematics Coursetaking, Motivations, and Educational Plans

December 5, 2014 Comments off

Ninth-Graders’ Mathematics Coursetaking, Motivations, and Educational Plans
Source: National Center for Education Statistics

This Statistics in Brief uses data from NCES’ High School Longitudinal Study (HSLS:2009) to examine what motivates high school students to take mathematics, and how those motivations vary depending on students’ plans for the year after high school. For students who have the same after-high-school plans, the report also examines how students from different socio-economic backgrounds compare in terms of their mathematics coursetaking and their motivations for coursetaking.

Mobile Digest of Education Statistics. 2013

November 28, 2014 Comments off

Mobile Digest of Education Statistics. 2013
Source: National Center for Education Statistics

This publication is a mobile compilation of statistical information covering the broad field of American education from kindergarten through graduate school. The statistical highlights are excerpts from the Digest of Education of Statistics, 2013.

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