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Culture of change: Successful colleges can tell a passing trend from a true opportunity.

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 8, 2015 - 10:00pm

"You have to run your old business while you’re figuring out what your new business is," says one expert.

Categories: Higher Education News

Taming the Toxic Trustee

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 8, 2015 - 10:00pm

The best antidote is prevention. Failing that, the steps get tougher.

Categories: Higher Education News

Spotlight on retention: Students can’t graduate if they don’t return.

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 8, 2015 - 10:00pm

Predictive analytics help colleges keep students enrolled, but that doesn’t always mean they’re progressing toward degrees.

Categories: Higher Education News

Team science: Research cooperation grows as federal money tightens.

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 8, 2015 - 10:00pm

Shrinking budgets are pushing university scientists to form partnerships beyond their own campuses.

Categories: Higher Education News

Board battles: Conditions are ripe for the rise of the rogue trustee.

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 8, 2015 - 10:00pm

Frustrated with the pace of change, some board members go it alone.

Categories: Higher Education News

My Brother’s Keeper: A Year of Progress

U.S. Department of Education Blog - March 6, 2015 - 12:21pm

This post originally appeared on The White House Blog.

When President Obama launched the My Brother’s Keeper (MBK) initiative one year ago, he did so with a powerful call to action to help more of our young people stay on the right track and achieve their full potential. Too many young people, including boys and young men of color, face daunting opportunity gaps and, like all of us, the President knows that America will be most successful when its young people are successful.

At the launch of MBK, the President called for government, businesses, nonprofits, schools, districts, and individuals, to commit to making a difference in the lives of our nation’s young people. Since then, nearly 200 cities, counties, and tribal nations from 43 states have accepted the MBK Community Challenge, a call to build and execute locally driven plans with a focus on achieving excellence and equity from birth through adolescence and the transition to early adulthood.

Last May, I joined young men in Denver, an MBK Community, for an open and honest discussion about their lives – their challenges, support systems, and visions for the future. So many of their stories – both heart-wrenching and inspiring – stick with me, but what perhaps struck me most were the words of Elias, who was once told he was “an exception to his race.” The words weighed heavily on him, as they did on me.

Elias told me that he doesn’t want to be an exception to his race. Rather, he envisions a system where schools partner with nonprofits and higher education to create a pipeline to success that will work for everybody.

The good news is that Elias’s vision is starting to take shape. Partners from across the country are recognizing the important work of MBK, with more than $300 million independently pledged by foundations and corporations. And, in July, AT&T, the NBA, and the NBA Players Association announced efforts that will expand opportunities for learning, mentorship, volunteerism, and jobs for all youth, including boys and young men of color. From nonprofits and foundations to businesses, private sector efforts are accelerating the work of MBK to promote academic and career success, and mentoring and public engagement.

The Department of Education is doing its part, too, by improving existing programs to better serve our youth, and by creating new and better public-private partnerships that best serve the needs of our young people. And, the Council of the Great City Schools is coordinating the leaders of 63 of the largest urban school systems in the country in an unprecedented joint pledge to change life outcomes by better serving students at every stage of their education.

In December, the Department of Education convened the White House Summit on Early Education, where we announced $750 million in new federal grant awards from the Departments of Education and Health and Human Services, to support early learning for over 63,000 additional children across the country.

And, I was pleased to join US Attorney General Holder in releasing a Correctional Education Guidance Package, which builds upon the recommendations in the My Brother’s Keeper Task Force report. The guidance will help states and agencies strengthen the quality of education services provided to the approximately 57,000 young people in confinement every day.

Earlier this year, the Department of Education and the Department of Justice released joint guidance reminding states, school districts and schools of their obligations under federal law to ensure that English learner students have equal access to a high-quality education and the opportunity to achieve their full academic potential. The Departments also released additional tools and resources to help schools in serving English learner students and parents with limited English proficiency, including a toolkit to help school districts identify English learner students.

Great efforts are underway in communities across the country – but our young people still face great challenges. To truly change the face of opportunity in this country – to truly make the bounty of America available to the many, and not just the few – we must replicate and expand what’s working.

Our work is far from over. Let’s move forward, together, to do right by all our nation’s young people.

Read the My Brother Keeper’s Task Force one-year progress report to the President.

Arne Duncan is the U.S. Secretary of Education.
Categories: Higher Education News

#AskDrBiden About Community Colleges at SXSWedu 2015

U.S. Department of Education Blog - March 6, 2015 - 7:21am

Cross-posted from the White House blog.

Dr. Biden meets with students during her Community College to Career bus tour in 2012. (Gary Fabiano/U.S. Department of Labor)

Community colleges have entered a new day in America. They lead the way in preparing graduates in the fields of green technology, health care, teaching, and information technology — some of the fastest-growing fields in America and the rest of the world. Community colleges are able to meet the needs of their community and provide students and workers with the education and skills they need to succeed and to get good-paying jobs to support their families.

That’s why I am excited to attend SXSWedu 2015 to discuss the importance of community colleges to America’s future. I have been an educator for more than 30 years, and I have spent the last 20 years teaching at community colleges. And, as Second Lady, I have traveled across the country to see firsthand the critical role community colleges play in creating the best, most-educated workforce in the world.

Before I get to SXSWedu 2015, I want to hear from you. Starting today, you can tweet your questions about community colleges to me @DrBiden using the hashtag #AskDrBiden. Then, watch here on Tuesday, March 10 at 9 a.m. CST/10 a.m. EST as I respond to some of your questions during a live event moderated by a community college student.

Dr. Jill Biden is a full-time community college English professor and Second Lady of the United States.
Categories: Higher Education News

158 Private Colleges Fail Government’s Financial-Responsibility Test

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 6, 2015 - 2:56am

The latest figures, for the 2013 fiscal year, show an improvement from the previous year, when 168 institutions had scores below passing on the controversial test.

Categories: Higher Education News

For 529 College-Savings Plans, a Big Challenge Is Setting the Record Straight

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 6, 2015 - 2:55am

Advocates of the plans have long struggled to show that they’re more than just for the rich, but at a meeting this week, the talk was of how far they have to go.

Categories: Higher Education News

An Entrepreneur Sets Out to Do Better at Education Than His College Did

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 6, 2015 - 2:55am

The idea for the Minerva Project sprang from the brow of a student two decades ago. Now he's testing it in reality.

Categories: Higher Education News

A Community College Contemplates a Future Without State Money

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 6, 2015 - 2:55am

Arizona's governor has proposed a budget slashing all funding for three of the state's two-year colleges. Here's how one chancellor is grappling with getting "zeroed out."

Categories: Higher Education News

Overcoming Challenges through Perseverance and the Arts

U.S. Department of Education Blog - March 5, 2015 - 7:14am

Thomas Ledbetter creates inspirational artwork in his Studio and Media Art class to encourage students to consider the effects of bullying and to inspire hope. (Courtesy Thomas Ledbetter)

At age two, Thomas Ledbetter was diagnosed with Autism and was not expected to be able to speak; however, thanks to a great support system and an incredible amount of work on his part, he managed to overcome many of the obstacles in his life. Thomas experienced bullying throughout elementary and middle school and decided to channel these negative experiences and feelings into positive graphic design.

Thomas had this to say about his piece, “Everyone in this world is like a flower: biologically similar, but personally distinct and beautiful in [their] own way… However these flowers will sometimes go through experiences that will take away their personal happiness, joy.” Using this metaphor, Thomas hoped to create something that, “shed light on the complex and often emotionally ambiguous nature of bullying,” and something that would, “give people hope and help them embrace who they are despite the obstacles standing in their way.”

“I created my poster for my Studio in Media Art class. Many people have seen the printed copies of the poster I made in the hallways of the school and have told me how amazing they thought it was and asked me about what the art means. After explaining the message I wanted to convey, they said that they really liked the poster’s meaning and loved how inspiring and poignant it was. I’m glad to see that people understand the message I wanted to send and that they’re being inspired by my poster little by little.”

Thomas’ father, Tom Ledbetter, is a member of the local Board of Education and has been working to increase the surrounding community’s awareness of bullying and how it impacts students. He constantly advocates for, “more comprehensive policies that include educating students and staff about bullying prevention; that create effective counter measures to prevent bullying; and that include consequences that are appropriate, educational and effective deterrents to bullying.”

Thomas’ plans for the future include, “teaching others that people who have a disability [or a difference] are worth just as much as anyone else and that all people have value.” Most of all, he wants to help others overcome adversity and find joy and happiness in their lives.

“My dream job is to become a psychologist, more specifically a neuropsychologist, and even though I want to specialize in helping people with neurological disabilities, I want to be able to help anyone and everyone as a psychologist and give people the ability to see their own value and worth one small step at a time.”

The U.S. Department of Education (ED) is strongly committed to preventing bullying of all students, including the 6.75 million public school students with disabilities. ED’s Office for Civil Rights (OCR) investigates and resolves complaints of disability discrimination at public schools. OCR recently issued guidance to public schools to help school officials understand their federal responsibilities to respond to bullying of students with disabilities. This guidance builds on anti-bullying guidance the U.S. Department of Education has issued in recent years concerning schools’ legal obligations to address bullying, including ensuring that students with disabilities who are bullied continue to receive a free appropriate public education. OCR issued a fact sheet for parents (available in Spanish) that addresses key points of the recent guidance and provides information on where to go for help. To learn more about federal civil rights laws or how to file a complaint, contact OCR at 800-421-3481 (TDD: 800-877-8339), or ocr@ed.gov.

Sarah Sisaye is with the Office of Safe and Healthy Students at the U.S. Department of Education.

Categories: Higher Education News

Sweet Briar’s Sudden Closure Plans Leave Students and Employees Scrambling

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 5, 2015 - 2:56am

Other colleges offer to take in jettisoned students, but faculty and staff members fear being left without decent jobs, money, and even homes.

Categories: Higher Education News

What a Promise of Financial Aid Might Mean to a Middle Schooler

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 5, 2015 - 2:55am

The path to college, a new paper emphasizes, starts in middle school—as does concern about how to pay for it.

Categories: Higher Education News

Just How Private Are College Students’ Campus Counseling Records?

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 5, 2015 - 2:55am

The U.S. Education Department has weighed in on, but not resolved, a dispute stemming from an alleged rape at the University of Oregon over the limits of students’ privacy protections.

Categories: Higher Education News

Audio: What 8th Graders Know About Paying for College

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 5, 2015 - 2:55am

A Chronicle reporter talked with a group of middle-school students from low-income families about the cost of higher education.

 

Categories: Higher Education News

Republican Governors' Shared Goals for Higher Ed: Accountability and Work-Force Preparation

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 5, 2015 - 2:55am

GOP leaders might not be on the same page when it comes to public-college funding, but most of them agree on some key ideas.

Categories: Higher Education News

Sweet Briar’s Demise Is a Cautionary Tale for Other Colleges

Chronicle of Higher Education - March 5, 2015 - 2:42am

To avoid a similar fate, small colleges need to be hard-nosed about what works and what doesn’t, experts say.

Categories: Higher Education News

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