Education Policy

School District to Copyright Student and Teacher Work

Located in Upper Marlboro, Maryland, the Prince George’s County School District has named many of their schools after important innovative leaders, such as Barack Obama, Cesar Chavez, Martin Luther King Jr. and Frederick Douglass, among others. The district’s mission statement reads, “The Prince George’s County Board of Education will advance the achievement of its diverse student body through community engagement, sound policy governance, accountability and fiscal responsibility.”

While the district prides itself on the celebration of diversity and student achievement, its ability to practice “sound policy governance” has come under intense scrutiny by a n…

School Athletics to Become More Inclusive of Students with Disabilities

On the official blog of the U.S. Department of Education, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan recently emphasized the need for sports and extracurricular activities to be more inclusive of students with disabilitie\, as “participation in extracurricular athletic activities promotes socialization, the development of leadership skills, focus and, of course, physical fitness.” Reflecting on his own history of playing basketball and the lessons that he gained from those experiences, he reminds students and coaches that students with disabilities are “no different” than any other student, and all athletes should be chosen based on their abilities rather than individual differences.


Study: School Design Affects Student Performance

They say that “clothes don’t make the man,” but when it comes to schools, looks matter. Several recent studies have shown a connection between school environment and student performance. Not only can well-designed schools boost student performance, poorly designed schools can negatively affect student achievement.


The Huffington Post reported the findings of a study that is currently being conducted in the United Kingdom. The architecture firm Nightingale Associates paired up with the University…

Dartmouth College Stops Accepting AP Credit

With over 34 subject area offerings, more high school students than ever before are pursuing college credits through Advanced Placement (AP) examinations.

Recently, we shared an infographic documenting rising trends in AP offerings and exams (click on the image to view our infographic). However, Dartmouth College has expressed concerns with the rigor of these exams, and after a decade of discussion, college faculty have decided to stop awarding college credit for AP exams starting in 2014.

In an Associated Press article, Holly Ramer explains th…

When Teachers Refuse to Give a High-Stakes Test

This blog was originally published on Finding Common Ground at Education Week by Peter DeWitt on January 14, 2013 7:15 PM.

19 teachers at Garfield High School in Seattle, Washington refused to administer the district required Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) to ninth grade students on January 9th. After many years of out of control high stakes testing in the U.S. it was bound to happen sooner or later. It was another example of some strong teachers who are putting the needs of their students first.

More Elementary Schools Offering Foreign Languages

While foreign language instruction has been around for decades as part of public school curriculums, it has predominantly been taught at the secondary school levels. According toEducation Week, 91 percent of public schools offer foreign language instruction at the high school level, with only about 58 percent of middle schools and 25 percent of elementary schools offering foreign language instruction. But recently, more public schools have been striving to offer foreign language instructio…