August 27, 2020
NCTR and Partner News

New grant funding for the Albuquerque Teacher Residency Partnership (ATRP) will increase teacher residents’ stipends from $15,000 to $20,000, building on successful years of training New Mexico educators. The boost of more than $256,000 will also “provide tuition for residents to get a Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages (TESOL) endorsement as part of their program.”
Featured News

According to a report from Pew Charitable Trusts, the state of Virginia is training educators in an enhanced African American history curriculum that would be integrated throughout entire year-long courses, not just relegated to “Black History Month” spotlights in February, the shortest month of the year. This development mirrors modifications to other states’ education plans after months of racial reckoning in America spurred by the police murders of unarmed apprehended man George Floyd in Minneapolis, and sleeping EMT Breonna Taylor in her own Louisville home. 

In Texas, the state board recently approved an African American studies elective for public high school students, joining a Mexican American studies course offered beginning in 2018. Kentucky’s largest school district, Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS) comprising Louisville, heard from Black student union representatives about their lack of comprehensive Black history and made changes in alignment with a new racial equity policy, aiming to make history less Eurocentric.

Under the Developing Black Historical Consciousness curriculum created by LaGarrett J. King, founding director of the University of Missouri’s Carter Center for K-12 Black History Education, JCPS students will “learn history organized through five principles: oppression and power, agency and perseverance, Africa and the African diaspora, Black love and joy, and modern connections and intersectional history.”

Various decisions made in states including Florida, Connecticut, Arkansas, Maryland, West Virginia and Rhode Island intend to bring awareness to whole student populations about the arc of history for Black Americans, rather than focusing on only the experiences of enslavement, the Jim Crow era, and the Civil Rights Movement.

Resources and Connections

Tutoring, extended learning time, remediation—what’s the best way to help students who lost ground due to the COVID-19 pandemic catch up? In a Thursday, August 27 Education Week webinar, experts Elaine Allensworth (Lewis Sebring Director of the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research) and Nate Schwartz (Professor of Practice at Brown University’s Annenberg Institute) will help sort through the research to identify which approaches can be modified for remote learning, and which ones are less likely to work.  Register for “Strategies and Solutions for Mitigating COVID-19 Learning Loss,” a free, hour-long session beginning at 3pm EDT on 8/27, here.

Chiefs for Change and Council of Chief State School Officers has created a “Day in the Life Of” (DILO) Simulation kit, a detailed protocol for education teams to consider the needs of diverse student learners in any given school building upon returning for the 2020-2021 year.
In The News

Rigor Through Distance Learning Calls for Quality Not Quantity (Opinion)

Writer Tom Armelino, executive director of the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence, warns that an emphasis on the academic rigor of distance learning runs the risk of having educators increase time-consuming, complex content without considering the needs of the student learners and preserving their love for learning. He offers tips that include supporting teachers through this new world so they are best equipped to design instruction that works.

Police in Chicago Public Schools will get more training and oversight in reforms announced by Mayor Lori Lightfoot
Chicago Tribune

New rulings in Chicago are changing police presence in Chicago Public Schools (CPS), including the creation of a civilian review process for complaints against school officers,  and the prohibition of officers entering student data into a crime database on campuses. Regarding the student-led calls for reduced presence of law enforcement on their campuses, CPS CEO Janice Jackson said, “The activism that has been demonstrated among our students gives me hope for the future."

Philadelphia to open centers for students whose families have ‘no other options’
Chalkbeat Philadelphia

Philadelphia’s Office of Children and Families is organizing 31 city recreation centers to serve as learning centers for about 800 students with more plans to expand as needed. Enrollment is available beginning August 24 for families whose students are entering Kindergarten through 6th grade, designed for young people “whose caregivers work outside the home and cannot afford child care, and/or have no reliable internet service at home.”

'Supposed to be accepting': Private school forces out Black children with locks, parents say
Cincinnati Enquirer

Through a religious exemption to the Ohio city’s anti-bias law, which bans discrimination based on natural hair, Zion Temple Christian Academy in Cincinnati—a private school in a majority Black neighborhood—has refused to enroll a 6-year-old boy with dreadlocks, even though he attended the school last year. The family has opted to school the child elsewhere.

Please note that the articles and events in the NCTR E-Blast do not reflect the opinions of our organization, but rather represent information that we believe will be relevant to you and your programs.

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