Policy Issues


Open Educational Resources: iNACOL Outlines Policy Recommendations

"Today’s textbooks are obsolete and the acquisition process is broken," according to a new report from the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL), but as schools work toward implementing Common Core State Standards, open educational resources (OER) can help them provide students with customized content much faster and more cost effectively than the traditional textbook acquisition model.

Oklahoma Joins Partnership for 21st Century Skills

The state of Oklahoma has joined with 18 other states to become the latest member of the Partnership for 21st Century Skills' State Leadership Initiative.

ConnectED: Great Idea, Lousy Implementation

The Whitehouse announced the ConnectED initiative June 6 with the goal of connecting 99 percent of America's schools in five years and providing teacher training. But, no new money was allocated to realize those lofty goals. Who is the Whitehouse trying to fool?

President Obama Reveals Initiative To Connect 99 Percent of Students to High-Speed Broadband Within 5 Years

President Barack Obama has announced the ConnectED initiative to build high-speed digital connections to the country's schools and libraries. The initiative aims to connect 99 percent of students to high-speed Internet within five years.

Smarter Balanced Releases Practice Common Core Tests

The Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium has released practice versions of its online tests for Common Core State Standards in grades 3 through 8 and grade 11.

Conference To Focus on Common Core Standards

Professional Educators of Tennessee, a statewide membership organization for teachers, administrators, and non-certified staff from kindergarten through graduate levels, will host a professional development conference focused on Common Core Standards June 22. Leader U 2013 will take place 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Marriott Hotel in Franklin, TN.

Common Core Falters in Michigan

Michigan has taken the first steps in what could result in the end of Common Core in the state. The version of the budget passed by the House this week prohibits the Michigan Department of Education from allocating funding for the implementation of the standards. The Michigan House also has a separate bill in committee that, if eventually ratified, would formally withdraw the state from Common Core.

Alaska Joins Smarter Balanced but Remains Independent of Common Core

Even as some states begin pushing back against Common Core State Standards, the state of Alaska has signed on as an "advisory" member with one of the two consortia responsible for developing CCSS assessments. But the move does not signal that Alaska will adopt Common Core State Standards.

Report: Policy Reform Needed for Digital Learning

Digital Learning Now! has released a new Digital Learning Report that measures the progress made by individual states toward digital learning and makes recommendations for future reforms.

Google Uses TV White Spaces To Provide Wireless Broadband to 10 Schools

Google is launching a new pilot that will tap unused portions of the TV spectrum to provide wireless broadband to 10 schools in South Africa. The test follows an earlier, smaller pilot in the United States back in 2010 in Ohio that involved a single hospital.

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