Maggie Severns: All Related Content

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Brookings Event Outlines Benefits of Wired Classrooms

July 19, 2012

At a Brookings Institute panel discussion Tuesday, two experts in educational technology -- James Werle, director of the non-profit Internet2 K20 Initiative, and Eric D. Fingerhut, vice president of education and STEM learning at the research organization Battelle -- discussed opportunities to deploy technology in the classroom. The conversation brimmed with optimism.

Federal Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Against Head Start Recompetition

July 10, 2012

In April, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) launched its highly anticipated Designation Renewal System, which will redistribute federal funding away from low-quality Head Start and Early Head Start providers and favor providers with more proven track records. HHS was met with pushback from the media, individual Head Start providers, and from state Head Start associations--most notably, the Ohio Head Start Association, which filed a lawsuit against HHS claiming the “recompetition” process was arbitrary and unfairly penalized providers for past infractions that may have been corrected.

A federal judge dismissed the suit yesterday, leaving little doubt that Head Start providers in Ohio and elsewhere will participate in the new Designated Renewal System.

Could Teachers and Developers Work it Out? An Anecdote About Khan Academy

June 27, 2012

Digital media is having a big impact on classrooms for students of all ages, and no name is more recognizable in the field than Salman Khan, the founder of the popular video tutorial site Khan Academy.

Talking about Young English Language Learners at NALEO 2012

June 22, 2012

Yesterday, I gave a presentation on Illinois's strategy for young English language learners at the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) annual conference in Orlando, Florida. The presentation was based on Starting Early with English Language Learners: First Lessons From Illinois, a paper we published this spring.

Obama’s Immigration Policy: What Will This Mean for Families With Young Children?

June 18, 2012

President Obama’s announcement Friday that his administration will stop deporting eligible undocumented people under the age of 30 is certain to provide fodder for more election-season debates over immigration.

How Messages about Gender and Ability May Affect Young Children

June 15, 2012

Over at Slate this week, I discuss a recent study in Psychological Science that examined how messages about gender and other social categories are interpreted by young children. Previous studies have shown that when children believe that something about them is innate -- such as being good or bad at a particular subject in school -- their performance can suffer, because they are less likely to engage in constructive, hard work to do well or improve.

Podcast: PreK-3rd and the Race to the Top District Competition

June 11, 2012
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Education officials around the country are now waiting for the final guidelines for the Race to the Top district level competition, which will award between $15 million and $25 million to as many as 20 school districts across the country. Like previous rounds of Race to the Top, the U.S. Department of Education plans to award schools that promise to make reforms to their standards and assessments, improve teacher effectiveness by revamping teacher-evaluation systems, collect and use better data, and turn around low-performing schools.

Illinois Offers Lessons in Teaching English as a Second Language

  • By
  • Maggie Severns,
  • New America Foundation
June 1, 2012 |

The news that minority babies make up a majority of all births in the United States should be a wake-up call. This shift to a majority-minority population has been taking place for years, while the way minorities are educated in our public schools has stayed the same. It’s time to think about next-generation America — a young, unprecedentedly diverse group with different needs, and strengths, from generations past.

Teaching America's New Majority, in Today's Washington Post

June 1, 2012

A couple weeks ago, the Census bureau announced that minority babies made up the majority of births in the United States in 2011. I wrote an opinion piece for today's Washington Post about why this symbolic shift should be a wake-up call for the public school system: Student demographics are changing, but policies revolving around how we instruct Engilsh language learners have yet to catch up.

Eyes on 2012: Romney Introduces Education Agenda, Says Little About Early Ed

May 24, 2012

In a speech yesterday to the Latino Coalition’s Annual Economic Summit in Washington, D.C., Mitt Romney outlined his K-12 education platform, which includes expanding school choice, offering parents more access to information on school performance, and consolidating federal teacher quality programs into block grants to states. Though Latino voters have demonstrated strong support for pre-K programs, Romney did not discuss early education in either his speech or in an education policy white paper released by his campaign.

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