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Morning Read: iPads Appear As Choice Elsewhere, Too

LA School Report | November 22, 2013

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Educators weigh iPad’s dominance of tablet market
Keith A. Bockwoldt is not an Apple salesman, but sometimes he feels frustrated that this might be the impact he has on educators. As the director of technology services for Illinois’ second-largest high school district, Mr. Bockwoldt has hosted a steady stream of more than 1,000 visitors who want to learn how Township High School District 214—25 miles northwest of Chicago—developed its 1-to-1 computing initiative, which ultimately chose iPads, and the positive impact that device decision is having. Ed Week

Teaching the 50th anniversary of JFK’s assassination
This Friday, Nov. 22, marks the 50th anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Because Kennedy’s life and death remain such a deep source of public fascination—and because he was such a central figure in 20th-century political history—many educators are viewing this as a significant teaching moment. “Sometimes these opportunities are moments that can suddenly spark a student’s deep interest in learning about the historical past,” Gorman Lee, the social studies director in the Braintree, Mass., school district, told a local news service. Ed Week

New entity to oversee, support LCFF accountability
Support, not punishment, is the guiding mantra for state education officials in the early stages of planning an entity that will ultimately be responsible for helping districts meet new goals under Gov. Jerry Brown’s sweeping school finance reform. Sitting in the shadows of the regulatory work currently underway around the Local Control Funding Formula and its associated accountability plans is the mandate to create the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence – a governmental body envisioned to provide comprehensive technical assistance to districts tasked with meeting new student accountability goals. Cabinet Report

Larger classes with effective teachers improves achievement
A new study released by the Thomas B. Fordham Institute found that placing more students in the classrooms of highly effective teachers can improve student achievement. The study, by Michael Hansen of the American Institutes for Research, simulates the impact on student achievement if schools were to purposely assign larger classes to the strongest teachers and smaller classes to the weakest. Education News

In jazz-loving Culver City, music starts in kindergarten
Kindergarten students at El Rincon Elementary school in Culver City know something most kids their age don’t: how to read music. They know the difference between whole notes and a half note and during a recent morning, expertly clapped and counted out a few measures. “It felt like I was on a stage and singing,” said five-year-old Allisson Rastelli, who wants to be a singer when she grows up. The success of these public school students at a time when most of their peers are still mastering the alphabet can be largely credited to the Symphonic Jazz Orchestra. KPCC

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