» Hard times for educators: According to a report released today spearheaded buy the White House Council of Economic Advisers, as well as the National Economic Council and Domestic Policy Council, the above figure represents the losses in educational jobs since June 2009. The report does originate from the White House team, and as such is expectedly supportive of the President’s proposal to stem this tide – a package of $25 billion to prevent further layoffs. The last few years have seen heavy cuts to public funding, largely pushed by conservative politicians during dire economic times, and thus public-sector jobs have dwindled in states and localities, driving up unemployment despite months of sustained (if underwhelming) private-sector job growth.
» The money will finance drastically increased salaries for Corps-selected teachers — with each set to receive a $20,000 pay raise — and would require participating teachers to commit to program participation for a multi-year period. Over $100 million in funding will be set aside for the new project, effective immediately, and the President will include another $1 billion in his budget proposition for fiscal 2013. ”I’m running to make sure that America has the best education system on earth, from pre-K all the way to post-graduate,” Obama told a crowd in San Antonio, continuing, “And that means hiring new teachers, especially in math and science.”
» A similar attack took place last month: Last month’s incident, which poisoned at least 150, contaminated the water at a school. This time, it was powder that contaminated the air. Officials believe Taliban officials opposed to the education of women are attempting to force the closure of as many schools as possible before the United States withdraws combat troops from the country in 2014. According to Afghan officials, more than 550 schools in Taliban-friendly parts of the country have already been forced to close in 11 different provinces.
One way to remember them is to go to class. That’s what they were doing, and that’s what we live for.Virginia Tech Provost Mark G. McNamee • Commenting on the school’s decision to hold class today, and every April 16th going forward, only five years after the deadly on-campus shooting that claimed the lives of 32 people. Professors were given freedom to handle the day as they saw fit: Some observed a moment of silence at the beginning of class, while others canceled class out of respect. Classics instructor Trudy Harrington Becker chose to hold class under a century-old oak tree near the memorial for victims of the massacre. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell is expected to speak during a candlelight vigil at the Drillfield for the victims this evening. source (via • follow)
I like to know I’m writing for a real flesh-and-blood reader who is excited by the words on the page. I’m sure children feel the same way.Harvard College Writing Program director Thomas Jehn • Fathoming the idea of automated essay grading — essentially, essays graded by robots. The idea is getting pitched in a contest by the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, which plans to offer $100,000 in prize money to any group of programmers that can figure out a way to automate the process of grading essays. We’re with Jehn: If students are spending all this time writing essays, it’s only right that the person on the other side of the coin is also a human being.
» Although that number has dropped from 2011 — by 7% according to the Department of Education — an increasing number of parents are taking out loans for their childrens’ pre-college education. Your Tuition Solution, a market leader, reports that loan requests are up 10% from 2011, with their average loan size up to $14,000. Roughly 20% of the new demand for loans comes from families making $150,000 or more, according to the National Association of Independent Schools. Loans repayment periods can range from 2-7 years, carry interest rates anywhere from 4-20%, and in some cases don’t have to be paid until the student graduates college. Of course, that route leaves parents paying for grades K-12 and college simultaneously.