Gifted education. When I mention that I’m part of an education reporting team, it’s one of the first things people want to discuss. It’s also frequently mentioned in education writing from across the nation, along with teacher quality and politics. Here’s a bit of what we’re reading. (Education Lab editor Joy Resmovits gets into writing about gifted education much deeper here.)
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More students qualify for gifted programs when more students are tested
The short version: a Memphis, Tennessee, school district shows that if you test every student for the gifted program instead of just relying on teacher recommendations, more students are accepted into the program. Chalkbeat reports the universal testing makes the program more accessible, too. Though it did result in more students of color enrolled in gifted classes, the early-stage program hasn’t solved the problem of their disproportionately low representation.
Does getting an M.A. in teaching improve teacher quality?
In many districts, teachers are paid more if they get a master’s degree in education. But studies show that while getting a graduate degree takes significant time and money, it does not necessarily make M.A. recipients better teachers. According to Washington Monthly, many teachers say the programs spend too much time on theory and not enough on building practical skills. From one Cleveland High School teacher reflecting on the irony of being lectured about not lecturing to students: “I found that really funny. It would have been funnier had I not been so bored.”
Renton education-union members vote out all of their leadership after national investigations into leadership conduct
And now for some local school politics: a national investigation showed problems with the Renton teachers union’s election and financial policies. The Renton Reporter obtained documents from the investigation showing there were insecurities in the union’s voting system and a lack of financial oversight. As a result, the union membership voted out all of the leadership this week. Leaders say they planned on resigning anyhow.