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EduClips: Post-Maria, Puerto Rico Looks to Charters, Vouchers; Education Department Delays Action on Racial Disparities in Special Ed — and More Must-Reads From America’s 15 Biggest School Districts

By Andrew Brownstein | February 6, 2018

EduClips is a roundup of the day’s top education headlines from America’s largest school districts, where more than 4 million students across eight states attend class every day. Read previous EduClips installments here. Get the day’s top school and policy news delivered straight to your inbox by signing up for the TopSheet Education Newsletter.

Top Story

SPECIAL EDUCATION — A U.S. Department of Education Official said the department is seeking to delay an Obama-era rule meant to counter racial disparities in special education. In December 2016, the Obama administration said “students of color remain more likely to be identified as having a disability and face harsher discipline than their white classmates” and issued a rule that required states to intervene if there were strong racial disparities in their districts. The rule was to take effect in July 2018.

Department Press Secretary Liz Hill told The Associated Press Monday that the agency wants to postpone the rule by two years because of concerns from states, school districts, superintendents and others involved. “Because of the concerns raised, the department is looking closely at this rule and has determined that, while this review takes place, it is prudent to delay implementation for two years. The postponement will be issued for public comment.” (Read at U.S. News & World Report)

National News

EDUCATION RESEARCH — The Tricky Dance of Researchers and Educators Gets Even More Complex (Read at Education Week)

SCHOOL SHOOTINGS — At Least 6 People Killed, 20 Injured at American Schools in January (Read at The74Million.org)

ESSA — Three States Raise Their Hands for ESSA Innovative Assessment Pilot (Read at Politics K-12)

District and State News

PUERTO RICO — Post-Maria, Puerto Rico Looks to Charter Schools, Vouchers as Part of New Education Reform Strategy (Read at The74million.org)

NEW YORK — Families for Excellent Schools says it will close, altering the education debate in New York City (Read at Chalkbeat)

VIRGINIA — School system’s appeals process for gifted students leaves some minorities out (Read at The Washington Post)

ILLINOIS — After record school closures, new Chicago plan draws fury (Read at Fox News)

FLORIDA — Teachers union launches media war on HB 7055 — and Corcoran (Read at Politico)

NEW YORK — At state budget hearing, Mayor de Blasio says he won’t ‘crowdsource’ chancellor search (Read at Chalkbeat)

NEVADA — Sisolak pledges to donate governor salary to education groups if elected (Read at the Las Vegas Sun)

CALIFORNIA — De Anza police continue search for man who attacked transgender student (Read at Mercury News)

ILLINOIS — State rep wants to mirror federal K-12 savings benefits in Illinois (Read at Illinois News Network)

NEVADA — State, Clark County gang up to lift underperforming schools (Read at the Las Vegas Review-Journal)

CALIFORNIA — Contrary to critics, parents tell pollster they find California’s school dashboard useful (Read at EdSource)

Think Pieces

FOOTBALL — How Princeton Beat Alabama in College Football (Read at The Wall Street Journal)

TECHNOLOGY — At High Tech High, Focus Goes Beyond the Classroom (Read at Education Writers Association)

CHARTER SCHOOLS — Good Neighbors: Traditional Public Schools See Higher Test Scores When a Charter School Opens Nearby (Read at The74Million.org)

RACE — Black-led schools matter (Read at The Hechinger Report)

TECHNOLOGY — Screen Addiction Among Teens: Is There Such a Thing? (Read at NPR)

SLAVERY — Teachers, how does it feel to be an oppressor? (Read at Hechinger Report)

Quote of the Day

“We’re not looking to go crazy. This is super important: I’m not privatizing education. It’s not New Orleans all over again.… But what I do think is fair for kids is to give them more options.” —Julia Keleher, Puerto Rico’s education secretary, on a plan to revitalize the island’s school system in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. (Read at The74million.org)

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