“Editor’s note: Please don’t tag any Units. This article is exclusively for use in a CSEP e-newsletter, not a website.”

The following resources focus on the educational climate and betterment of those serving the K–12 educational community.

One Third of Middle- and High-Schoolers Were Bullied Last Year, Study Shows  A third of students say they were bullied last school year, according to a report released today by non-profit group YouthTruth. That’s an increase from two years ago, when just over one in four students had been. (USA Today)

House Passes Bill With 2019 Education, NIH Funding  The bill includes the second consecutive annual increase in funding for the Education Department despite two White House budgets that called for shrinking the department. (Inside Higher Ed)

Laying Down the Law on Bullying and Cyberbullying  Although it’s well known that bullying is a widespread problem that can have serious implications on students’ academic and non-academic well-being, the anti-bullying and cyberbullying legislative mandates districts must follow are complex and can be hard to navigate. (eSchool News)

State Election Cheat Sheet: Education Issues to Watch  Public education has fueled the midterm-election debate in many states, with candidates sparring over how—or whether—to give school districts more money, changes to teachers’ working conditions, and pay, and how to improve academic outcomes.

The Unequal Impact of Suspension on the Opportunity to Learn in CA  In 2016-17, school children in California lost an estimated 763,690 days of instruction time, a figure based on the combined total of 381,845 in-school suspensions and out-of-school suspensions. By translating the underlying suspension rates into conservative estimates of the resulting lost instruction, this report highlights the unequal educational impact of suspensions. The authors assume an average of two days per suspension and estimate the number of days of instruction lost due to suspension by doubling the reported rates of suspension per 100 enrolled students. California has been engaged increasingly in discipline reform efforts at the state and local level for well over six years. The subgroup trends indicate that the racial gap has narrowed. The six-year trends indicate that black students had the highest rate of lost instruction per 100 in 2011-12, and they have experienced the steepest decline in rates of lost instruction among all racial groups. (Civil Rights Project)

Tax Hikes to Fund Schools? Once Taboo, the Idea Is Gaining Momentum  Politicians on the state campaign trail this year are making some eye-popping promises for parents and educators: billions more dollars for schools, double-digit pay raises for teachers, and hundreds of millions more to replace dilapidated schoolhouses.

States Put Data to Work for Students  The Data Quality Campaign has tracked and analyzed legislation from all fifty states to learn more about how leaders are looking to use data to improve the outcomes of all students. For the fifth year in a row, DQC’s summary and analysis breaks down what policymakers, advocates, and the public need to know from this research

Charter School Grants Made by the Education Department  DeVos has awarded $399 million in federal grants to expand and support charter schools across the country.

Charter School Research Has a Long Way to Go to Inform Policy and Practice  The volume of research on charter schools has grown enormously over the past decade. Even so, the sum of our knowledge is a lot less than some of us in the research field have suggested when we talk with journalists and policymakers.

Great American High School: Reforming the Nation’s Remaining Low-Performing High Schools  A new report from the GradNation campaign takes a closer look at low-performing high schools in need of serious improvement. Many of these schools are concentrated in 18 states, from the inner city to the heartland, and sit at the fault lines of race, class, and inequity in America.

Why spacial reasoning is important in education policy

  • Most tests and school curricula are primarily suited to the types of students who excel in mathematics and verbal reasoning.
  • The missing factor in testing and education policy is the measurement, selection, and talent development of students with strengths in spatial reasoning-the ability to generate, retain, retrieve, and transform visual images.
  • The failure to identify spatial reasoning capacity throughout K-12 and higher education leads society to neglect many potential innovators and even “future Einsteins and Edisons” from disadvantaged backgrounds.
  • Including spatial measures in tests, teaching spatial reasoning, educating teachers, and developing matching curriculum to help students with spatial reasoning strengths are policy solutions that could significantly expand educational opportunities and improve innovation in society.

CTE Action in the 2018 Legislative Session  More than 30 states enacted legislation related to career and technical education this year. Tom Keily takes a look at the top trends in those bills, using the State Education Policy Tracking resource.

GED and Other High School Equivalency Degrees Drop by More Than 40% Nationwide Since 2012  High school graduation rates have soared in recent years, hitting a new record of 84 percent for 2015-16 in the most recent federal government count, but there are still millions of Americans who didn’t get a diploma in high school. (Hechinger Report)

Enrollment Instability Is a Major Reason Why Schools Are Struggling — so Why Isn’t Anyone Tracking the Problem?  A Milwaukee newspaper that surveyed the education departments in all 50 states found that half don’t collect or post data on students hopping around. And of states that do collect the data, the numbers they collect are so inconsistent that making state-to-state comparisons is nearly impossible. (Chalkbeat)

IRS Rule on Vouchers  Public education and anti-voucher advocates are inundating the IRS with thank yous for a proposed rule seeking to limit the federal deductibility of contributions to charitable organizations. The rare and profuse gratitude for the usually choice-friendly Trump administration comes as the public comment period on the rule is set to close Thursday, October 11, 2018.