education reform

Recent Posts

Another push to delay linking teacher evaluations with test scores

More time is needed before requiring that teachers be evaluated based in part on student test scores, says the panel the State Board of Education relies on for advice in such matters. The state board has pushed back the deadline for doing so year after year, and the last time members said it would be the last. Continue Reading →

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Troubled schools on trial: Will a scathing court decision lead to action?

While changing the way the state distributes school aid among towns may draw substantial support from legislators and the governor, they have shown little interest in, or have outright rejected, changing other polices a Superior Court judge found unconstitutional. Last of seven stories. Continue Reading →

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Troubled schools on trial: Special education driving costs and controversies

The rate at which students are identified for special education varies drastically across school districts, and school officials differ on whether that’s because districts are over- or under-indentifying students. But they agree the rising cost to educate these students has outpaced inflation and crowds out other supports for students. The state judge presiding over a recent school funding trial blamed the state for not enforcing clear mandates on who is entitled to special education. Sixth of seven stories. Continue Reading →

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Troubled schools on trial: What does a high school diploma prove?

A seeming paradox – rising graduation rates coupled with low standardized test scores and high demand for remedial courses in college – was among the reasons that a Hartford Superior Court judge ruled that the state fails to provide students with the education the state constitution says they are entitled to. Fifth of seven stories. Continue Reading →

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Troubled schools on trial: Who’s in charge? State vs. local control

Introducing bold reforms or enforcing standards to aid struggling students in poor districts have largely stalled at the state Capitol or the State Department of Education amid conflict over policy, local control or whether resources are adequate. Fourth of seven stories. Continue Reading →

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Troubled schools on trial: Building boom, pensions lock in big costs statewide

School construction costs, coupled with well over $1 billion the state must contribute each year toward teachers’ pensions, mean about 40 percent of the state’s annual education spending is locked in for years to come. Third of seven stories. Continue Reading →

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Troubled schools on trial: A broken formula for state aid

To fix the formula, legislators would have to decide whether there is inequity in how state aid is distributed to towns, simply a lack of money, or both. Any major change would mean huge fiscal consequences and political battles. Second of seven stories. Continue Reading →

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Judge strikes down state education aid choices as ‘irrational’

In a broad indictment of how Connecticut supports its poorest schools, Superior Court Judge Thomas Moukawsher ruled Wednesday that the state’s method for distributing education aid is irrational and unconstitutional, while declining to second-guess the General Assembly on the ultimate level of state spending. Continue Reading →

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Judge presses state on approach to school funding as trial wraps

The five-month trial examining whether the lowest-performing schools in Connecticut are providing students with the education the state constitution requires came to a close Wednesday with final arguments from the attorney defending the state and sharp questioning from the judge. The judge will now craft a complex decision almost certain to become the basis of an appeal to the state Supreme Court. Continue Reading →

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Congress’ approval of education bill allows CT to overhaul K-12 system

Washington — The Senate voted overwhelmingly to repeal the controversial No Child Left Behind and sent President Obama a bill that will eliminate most federal mandates and give states like Connecticut broad authority to change their K-12 education systems. Continue Reading →

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Schools redirecting money intended for reforms, officials say

A considerable amount of the $132.9 million the state provided the lowest-performing districts to pay for improvements like extending the school day or offering free preschool was  “inappropriately” used last year to close budget deficits districts were facing, state education leaders said Wednesday. Continue Reading →

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