1. Tomorrow is Count Day. A day that makes a huge difference in the budgets of school districts around the state. Please make sure your kids go to school, or if they're sick, call them in for excused absences. Why does it make a difference? Read about Proposal A here.
2. Want to learn more about the Sinking Fund schools proposal on the Ann Arbor ballot? Here's your opportunity: There is a Community Forum on Wednesday,
3. There was an interesting piece last night on Michigan Radio on the effects of the sequester on education, especially special education and Head Start preschool. Listen to the story, or read it, here.
4. At the state level, you might remember that the Legislature was fighting about the implementation of the Common Core curriculum last year. I think we were left, at the end of the last legislative session, with the legislative decision that no funding could go for the Common Core. (That, by the way, was heavily influenced by "tea party" Republicans.) So today, Gongwer News Service reports this ridiculousness (taken from the Michigan Parents for Schools facebook page):
Tuesday, October 1, 2013, 10:24 AMMDE Website To Be Shuttered Under Common Core Spending Ban5. Oh yeah, and then there's the US government shutdown. Here is information from the U.S. Department of Education about the shutdown. And here is the scoop from Education Week.
The Department of Education website was still up this morning, but is expected to go offline sometime during the day because the site contains resources to help teachers implement the Common Core State Standards, officials said in an email to teachers and local school officials.
The new budget effective today prohibits the department from spending money to implement the Common Core or Smarter Balanced Assessment without legislative approval. Since that approval is still pending in the Senate, Martin Ackley, communications director for the Department of Education, said his department was asking the Department of Technology, Management and Budget to take the MDE site down because of the integration of Common Core into the site.
Pages of the site are to be restored as Education officials have time to review them for Common Core elements, Mr. Ackley said in his email.
The current budget also could affect some federal grants to districts, the email said, because implementing the Common Core is an element of the state’s No Child Left Behind waiver. That waiver expires essentially at the end of the current school year.