First Bell 2-6-13

A first look at today's most important education news:

Fordham's latest

"Science standards 2.0," by Chester E. Finn, Jr. and Kathleen Porter-Magee, Common Core Watch

"Authors provide insights about debated issues in American education," by Jeff Murray, Ohio Gadfly Daily

Happy Digital Learning day! Democratic congressman George Miller has proposed the “Transforming Education Through Technology” act, which is intended to “encourage schools to use technology to improve testing, teacher training, and other aspects of instruction and learning.” (Digital Education)

In a larger call to broaden of the GOP’s focus, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor pushes school choice, weighted student funding, and college affordability. (Wall Street Journal, Politics K–12 and Thomas B. Fordham Institute)

A coalition of ten groups representing governors, state chiefs, and state and local public officials urge Congress to update the NCLB act; while they sent a nearly identical letter last May, this one takes a tougher stance against the Obama administration’s waiver program. (Politics K–12 and Reuters)

The New York Times wonders why some kids can handle the pressures of standardized tests and why some kids can’t.

Among fifteen-year-olds around the world, girls largely outpace boys in science—but, interestingly, not in the United States. (New York Times)

The D.C. Council will consider a bill to outlaw cheating on standardized tests. (Washington Post)

Teacher ratings in areas with new measures remain quite similar to ratings under the old measures, leading Education Week to surmise that the K–12 system remains “hesitant to differentiate between the best and the weakest performers.”

A Danish study found that sending kids to school on bikes, rather than driving them, increases their ability to concentrate. (Atlantic Cities)

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