Schools cash-in on Bailout, slowly improve teacher policies

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Today in K-12 Education News

South Carolina public schools will be cashing-in on the Stimulus/Bailout. Emerging details:

From the US House Committee on Education and Labor (link)

From the US Senate Democratic Policy Committee (link)

Newspaper reports the public school districts in Kershaw already eager about the money:

Kershaw County school officials would like to get a piece of President Barack Obama’s proposed $1 trillion stimulus package.
They are hoping for about $1.5 million, which could be used for a six-classroom addition at Blaney Elementary.

Note: Kershaw School district would receive a total 2-year increase of $6.6 million according to the plan released by Senate Democrats.

Jim “tax and spend” Rex wants taxpayers in South Carolina to give public schools more money through “voluntary contributions” on their tax returns. From the State:

State Schools Superintendent Jim Rex wants taxpayers to consider checking the box on their South Carolina tax form and donate money to financial literacy programs.
Rex says the program in state schools depends heavily on public support.
Rex says financial literacy programs are especially important during bad economic times like these, teaching children about how mortgages work, how interest is calculated and why it is so important to begin saving early for retirement.

Charleston Post and Courier reports on 50-state ranking of public school teacher policies:

The report concluded that most states’ laws and regulations discourage promising new teachers from sticking with the profession and do little to identify and remove ineffective teachers.

The NCTQ, a nonpartisan research and advocacy group committed to restructuring the teaching profession, did its first, much more comprehensive study during 2007. In that study, South Carolina and eight other states were labeled “weak but progressing” — not as good as “weak but ahead of the class” for Massachusetts, New Jersey, Tennessee and Texas but much better than “last in the class” for eight states or “languishing” for 12 states.

In this year’s report, South Carolina was commended for requiring objective evidence of student learning in teacher evaluations and for its robust testing requirements. Its biggest problems were in allowing alternative routes to teacher certification and preparing special education teachers.

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