- Nashvile: Haslam signs bills abolishing teacher collective bargain, permitting corporate contributions
Thousands of Tennessee teachers will lose their collective bargaining powers while corporations can now contribute directly to state and local political campaigns under two GOP legislative initiatives signed into law by Republican Gov. Bill Haslam.
- Federal Government Shouldn’t Mandate Kids’ Meals—or Their Education
The recent reauthorization of federal nutrition programs has slapped additional regulations onto school cafeteria menus, dictating everything from the number of orange slices a child must put on his or her plate to whether peas and corn are acceptable foods for the lunch line. And, of course, these mandates don’t come without a price. The cost associated with these regulations is estimated to reach nearly $7 billion over the next five years.
- Parents Unionize in California to Gain a Voice in Education
Bolstered by the parent trigger law and backed by Parent Revolution, parents in Los Angeles are beginning to organize in the hopes of winning better educations for their kids. But, with the first parent trigger petition still in legal limbo and the ability of parents to actually unionize called into question, the nascent movement is being tested early.
- Students get to see courts in action
The SCALES program — Supreme Court Advancing Legal Education for Students — is an initiative to educate students about how the law works. As part of the weeklong American Legion Auxiliary Girls State program, the 500 Girls State delegates will hear oral arguments in two Supreme Court cases at Lipscomb University in Nashville.
- Central Magnet School passes first-year test
Central Magnet has completed its first year with flying colors. The East Main Street campus was converted from a traditional middle school with the opening of Oakland and Whitworth-Buchanan middle schools into one for high achievers this year. The school served about 700 students in grades 6-10 and will be open to about 100 juniors next school year.Central’s academic focus is college prep with an emphasis on math and science.
- General Assembly passes bill to end social promotion
Legislation requiring results-based promotion for third graders across the state was approved by state lawmakers before the General Assembly adjourned the 2011 session. The measure requires a third grade student to show basic understanding for curriculum through standardized test scores or daily grades before passing to the fourth grade.
- Haslam: Teacher quality trumps numbers
As Tennessee school districts continue to wrestle with budget cuts, Gov. Bill Haslam on Tuesday downplayed concerns about the impact on class size, telling student leaders that teacher quality ultimately matters more. “Most studies have shown that class size is not as direct a relationship to achievement as people have thought in the past, that having a great teacher with 25 students is better than having a mediocre teacher with 18 students,” Haslam said.