The Georgia Department of Education released today the compiled data of the Georgia 2013 CRCT results. Overall, the data is pointing to an improved performance across all grades tested. We have compiled an infograhic to present this data. The main takeaway is that for students exceeding the standards, there has been an improvement on 24 of the 30 content-area tests. And there is a one year improvement on 18 of the 30 content-area tests for students meeting and exceeding the standards.
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This is an inspirational story of a woman, an adventurous Sue Austin, who has decided to live life her way. She does not see her age as an impediment to achieving her goals. One of her main goals was to follow in the footsteps of her parents and see the country–and the world. Her book, Never Too Old for Adventure has Sue outlining her adventures as she visited all 50 states in less than 5 months. She chronicles her experiences criss-crossing the country by land, air and sea, and outlines how she was able to achieve her goal of seeing the entire country.
According to a press release published by PrWeb, some of the experiences that Sue encountered included:
“Among the experiences Austin details are the cliff swallows of San Juan Capistrano, Colonial Williamsburg, Potomac River tour, Clippership sail in New York City, Cape Cod Bay, Plymouth Rock (a nod to Austin’s four direct descendants who sailed on the Mayflower), Badlands National Park in South Dakota, Devils Tower in Wyoming, Old Faithful geyser in Yellowstone National Park, Grand Canyon and Waikiki Beach. She saves money on souvenirs by buying T-shirts at thrift shops for places she planned to see. Thanks to her flexibility about accommodations – sleeping in her car, staying with friends and family and using vouchers from Groupon and Living Social – Austin saved thousands of dollars on her trip, inspiring anyone with an eye for deals and an adventurous spirit to plan his or her own journey.”
To read the press release in its entirety click here.
WRAL out of North Carolina is reporting that the State Superintendent of Public Instruction, June Atkinson, has asked lawmakers to exempt teachers from paying income taxes.
Atkinson sees this as a strategic move that lawmakers in North Carolina should take on an effort to make teaching more attractive for teachers in the state. Currently, North Carolina ranks 46th across the nation in teacher pay. It will take a new teacher 5 years to make $31, 000 after starting out making $30, 800 per year. Teachers without advanced degrees or certification from the National Board of Professional Teacher Standards must have 15 years experience before they are eligible to make $40, 000 on the state salary schedule.
Atkinson was quoted by WRAL as saying that the state’s lawmaker’s focus on corporate income taxes to keep and lure businesses to the state should be widened to excuse teachers from paying taxes on their salaried incomes:
“Much has been said about the need for North Carolina to become more competitive with our surrounding states when it comes to corporate income taxes.” She continued, “Let’s keep our competent teachers in North Carolina classrooms. Let’s position North Carolina to be a more attractive state for new teachers. Exempt them from paying personal state income taxes, ” she beseeched the lawmakers.
Will her efforts to get North Carolina teachers exempt from paying income taxes on their salaries materialize? Well, I think that she has an uphill battle ahead of her if she tries to get that passed.
Regarding Akinson’s tax plan, the Charlotte Observer reported:
“The House and Senate have developed separate tax proposals. Neither included a tax exemption for teachers, and Atkinson’s proposal probably won’t be considered.”
What do you think? Will something like this ever come to fruition? I wonder if there are other state legislators looking into the possibility of offering something like this to the teachers in their states.
First Book, a nonprofit social enterprise that provides new books to kids in need, has published an original infographic illustrating the effects of a summer without books on low income students. As the infographic simply shows, summer loss is a reality-poor kids are especially impacted by the ills of summer because they are less likely to read a book, to be read to, or be placed into situations where they can easily get access to books to read.
Teens will be sharing information on social media sites. Therefore, it is critical for parents and teachers to educate students about staying safe online in this era of social media. The Pew Research Council has conducted a research of 802 teens between the ages of 12 and 17 years old, and the infographic below outlines what they have discovered about teens using Facebook.
Synopsis of the Infographic
Just over one in every five social media teenage user, or 26%, falsify their personally identifiable information. And over 90% of teens have a photo of themselves compared to 24% posting videos of themselves. Do you see why Facebook bought Instagram now? For the most part, teens are more likely to make connections with people that that they actually know or have met- between 70% and 90% having connections with friends and family members, versus 30% and 33% that have connections with people they have never met in person, such as teachers and coaches.
Teens are way more likely to have their personal information public on Twitter when compared to how they share their personal information on Facebook. 64% of teens have their information public on Twitter, while only 14% have their information public on Facebook.
Florida Governor Rick Scott has 1 billion dollars at his disposal, and the governor is proposing to spend nearly half of that money on teacher pay increase, $480 million. However, here is the catch. Teachers will be given $2500 extra per year if they are rated effective and $3500 extra per year if they are rated highly effective. Senate President Don Gaetz says it shows Florida cares about its schools according to WHJG Florida.
Governor Scott is quoted as saying:
“Here’s the positive. I proposed 480 million dollars in the budget for teacher compensation. There is 480 million dollars that the legislature put in the budget. The positive is the school districts are going to have flexibility. Our teachers, all teachers are going to have the opportunity for pay raise.”
Details of the merit based pay increases are currently being developed and will not be ready until summer of 2014. Currently, the vast majority of Florida teachers are rated at effective and highly effective. This fact has resulted in the Florida Education Association, a Florida based teachers’ union, brandishing this proposal as a “gimmick.”
Florida Education Association president, Andy Ford said:
“It appears that the legislative leaders really don’t like teachers and they don’t want to pay them more money. So they went through these gimmicks to make it look like they’re going to give money but most likely is not going to happen.”
Additionally, administrative and other support personnel have been added to the merit based pay increase initiative.