Some of the News Fit to Print
ABOUT HIGHER ED
OVERHAUL OF TEACHER PREP STANDARDS TARGETS RECRUITMENT, PERFORMANCE
A set of proposed standards for teacher-preparation programs unveiled today by the Washington-based Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation are leaner, more specific, and more outcomes-focused than any prior set in the 60-year history of national teacher-college accreditation. Put together by a CAEP-commissioned panel of some 40 members, including teacher educators from both traditional and alternative programs, representatives from advocacy organizations, states, and districts, the standards would for the first time require accredited programs to adhere to a prescribed minimum-admissions standard. CAEP is the newly created successor to two former national teacher-college-accreditation bodies. The post is from Education Week’s Teacher Beat blog.
PRIVATE CAPITAL, COMMUNITY COLLEGES
A new investor-backed company, Quad Learning, is teaming up with community colleges to build a national network of honors programs with a collaborative curriculum that they envision giving students an affordable, high-quality associate degree and helping them transfer to topnotch colleges and universities. The network, American Honors, seeks to tap into national concern about the affordability of higher education and interest in lower-priced, high-quality educational alternatives. The article is in Inside Higher Ed.
EDUCATION SECRETARY OUTLINES COSEQUENCES OF LOOMING BUDGET CUTS
Looming budget cuts would end financial aid for thousands of students and force the U.S. Department of Education to slice payments to contractors that administer the federal student-aid programs, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan told members of Congress on Thursday. In a hearing before the Senate Appropriations Committee, Mr. Duncan said that "sequestration"—the across-the-board spending cuts that are scheduled to take effect on March 1—would slash Federal Work Study and Supplemental Educational Opportunity Grants by $49-million and $37-million, respectively, resulting in 33,000 fewer work-study awards and 71,000 fewer supplemental grants. Pell Grants would be exempt from the cuts this year, but would be vulnerable in future years. The article is in The Chronicle of Higher Education.
PUBLISHERS RETHINK K-12 STRATEGIES
The push continues for school districts to move away from paper textbooks and toward digital curricula and e-textbooks. U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan urged educators last year to move quickly to adopt digital textbooks and materials. Also last year, the Federal Communications Commission and the Education Department released a report, the "Digital Textbook Playbook," which provided a blueprint for schools to make the shift. The article is in Education Week.