Trends in the News

Alternative Education Models and Funding Mechanisms

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Des Moines Register, 2/9/18

Iowa plan to expand school choice includes ESAs, charter school access

Education savings accounts function similar to a voucher program by allowing parents to use state money tax-free to fund private school tuition or other non-public school expenses. Rogers’ plan would prevent the money from being used for home-school expenses. Proponents say the proposal is a way to ensure their tax dollars support their own child’s education, even if they don’t attend public schools. Others favor education savings accounts as a way to ensure lower-income families can access the education facilities of their choice.

The 74, 2/13/18

Analysis of personalized learning programs in Chicago shows that strong teacher leaders, not technology, key for financial sustainability

The key to financial sustainability is a principal’s ability to discern what matters for their model and then use the flexibilities they have to align resource allocation to supporting those key elements. In the schools studied, teachers and teacher leadership were critical to model success.

The analysis is part of a new report, titled “Sustaining Innovation & Preparing for Scale: Financial Sustainability and Analysis of Personalized Learning School Models,” released Tuesday by Afton Partners and LEAP Innovations, a nonprofit that supports personalized learning.

Education Week, 2/8/18

Personalized learning for the ‘whole educator’? Chan Zuckerberg announces new grants

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative has already said it wants to expand the notion of “personalized learning” to include the “whole child.” Friday, the group went a step further, announcing a new round of grants that will focus on supporting the “whole educator,” including the “professional, social, and emotional well-being” of teachers.

The 74, 1/30/18

In America’s smallest state, a proposal for a colossal surge in public dollars for private schools

The Scholarship Alliance could not say how many Rhode Island students are on the waiting list for the scholarship, but it said the demand is large. Only 15 of the 130 businesses that applied to donate in 2017 were accepted before the $1.5 million cap was reached. An increase to $5 million could potentially expand the program to serve over 1,000 students, Lancia said.

The 74, 1/2/18

12 important education storylines we’ll all be reading about in 2018

This is a quick primer of 12 groundbreaking education storylines we’ll be following in the new year, including: teachers unions, high school graduation rates, higher education debates, personalized learning, New Orlean’s next chapter, NYC’s turnaround plans, Illinois’ pension crisis and more.

Forbes, 1/8/18

3 biggest education innovation questions for 2018

In this spirit, here are three big, important questions for 2018, the answers to which have implications not only for the coming year, but for the next decade and beyond.

  • Is education technology poised for a new wave of innovation?
  • An increased focus on social-emotional learning opened an innovation window over the last few years. Has it closed already?
  • Will our renewed focus on career and technical education stimulate smart investments in ways to better prepare all young people for the future of work?
Education Week, 1/5/18

Commentary: Make public education a market economy

Charter schools introduce market forces so that the revenue follows the child, and students can attend the school of their choice no matter where they live. This way, if schools fail to provide what students need and parents want, the school loses students and revenue. And gradually, as parents increasingly choose charter schools, the idea of competition in the production of education will gain a foothold in the public square and allow the political transition to purely private schools.