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December 2004

Law & Education:
The Ten Commandments Revisited
By Martha McCarthy
No school issues are more emotionally and politically charged than church/state concerns, and posting the Ten Commandments on public property is among the most volatile recent controversies.

Students Taking the High Road to Religion:
Imam Oliver Mohammad
By Nazneen Malik
Oliver Mohammad never really had a desire to become an Imam; it was more of a calling. READ ARTICLE

Seminarian James Grace
By Sarah Ann Mockbee
James Grace has known since he was in junior high school that he wanted to be a priest, but his desire to serve his community through ministry has not stopped him from pursuing other interests along the way. READ ARTICLE

The Road to the Rabbinate
By Liza Young
Elie Kaunfer did not always have the aspiration to become a Rabbi. “As the son of a Rabbi and nephew to two out of three uncles who are Rabbis, I knew I wasn't going to be a Rabbi,” Elie reminisced.

Sesame Street Launches Health Habits Campaign

By Sarah Ann Mockbee
In an effort to address the growing epidemic of childhood obesity, Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street, has developed a comprehensive program that will educate children, parents and caregivers about the importance of cultivating a healthy lifestyle at an early age.

The Delicious Revolution: Transforming Education through School Lunch Curriculum
By Alice Waters
For me life is given meaning and beauty by the daily ritual of the table—a ritual that can express tradition, character, sustainability, and diversity. READ ARTICLE

Second Graders Cook at PS 98
by Dorothy Davis
Lisa Lloyd's Second Grade class at PS 98 in upper Manhattan reinforced counting, reading and teamwork skills while enthusiastically preparing tasty treats. READ ARTICLE



City Cracks Down on Our First Amendment Rights

Literacy Award MORE

Start the School Year Right
with a Grant from the NEA Foundation


2Sky Planetarium Software by Mitchell Levine

Celestron Nextstar GPS by Mitchell Levine

Business In Education

Vendors Address Widening Achievement Gap
by Matt Stein
Despite the billions of federal dollars that have been poured into education in the U.S. since the enactment of the Elementary and Secondary Act (ESEA), there is a still widening gap between the achievement levels of students, which generally occurs along the lines of socioeconomic status. READ MORE

Supporting Science Education: Public/Private Partnership At Work
by Carlo Parravano, Ph.D.
“Write a check and get out of the way!” That’s the answer some school administrators give me when I ask them how the most effective business partnerships operate. . . . READ MORE

Report Card on School Year Spending
While the majority of the citys 1.1 million students have put away their schoolbooks for the summer, the Board of Educations... READ MORE

Summertime Blues: Nearly 15,000 Fewer Summer Jobs for Teens
Despite an increase of $8 million in city funds for the Summer Youth Employment Program (SYEP), 14,848 fewer New York City...

Teachers Should Save Receipts for New Tax Deduction
The Internal Revenue Service recently advised teachers to save their receipts for purchases of books and classroom supplies. READ MORE

The Business of Education

Total spending on education and training in the United States is estimated at about $800 billion, making it the second... READ MORE

JP Morgan Chase Helps Kids Cope With Sept. 11th
by Jessica Shi
Although the immediate shock and confusion of Sept. 11th are over, the long-term effects of this disaster are still in question. READ MORE

Real Estate: A Great Time to Buy
by Marsha Mack Frances
The New York real estate community suffered the same shock, horror, bereavement, numbness, and despair as the... READ MORE

Business Education & Real Estate
by Marsha Mack Frances
New York City provides some of the country’s most sought after residential real estate and educational opportunities. READ MORE

CFE v. State of New York:
Explaining the Landmark Decision

by Tom Kertes
While many people say that education has problems, not many are willing to examine the complex question of how to make it better. READ MORE

Real Estate May Be Key to Tuition
by Marsha Mack Frances
The location and value of your New York apartment may...

Mayor’s Budget Would Slow City Spending on Schools
From the New York City Independent Budget Office

After four years of increasing city funding for the Board of Education... READ MORE

Students Call for Raise in Activity Funds at
Budget Hearing

by Sarah Elzas
Chancellor Harold O. Levy released the preliminary version of his budget for the 2001-2002 school year in the wake of the...

Continuing Education

Information on new GED READ MORE

WNET Programs for Adult Educators READ MORE

Channel 13 Honors Adult Learners
by Rachel Mittelman
The familiar paradigm—graduate college, get a job, retire and move to Florida—played no role in the recent ceremony held at Channel Thirteen/WNET headquarters on West 33rd Street. READ MORE

Something for Everyone at MMC’s Writing Conference
by Sarah Elzas
Lewis Frumkes, director of the Marymount Manhattan College’s Writing Center, founded the annual Writers Conference nearly ten years ago in order to “restore Marymount as a premiere cultural institution.”

Child Care, Family Style
by Dynishal P. Gross
Like many Americans, Yvette Gore Graham has held a number of jobs in her adult life. She has been a bank teller, a cosmetologist, a security officer, and has even served in the military. For many years, she worked as... READ MORE

Prison Prep
by Dynishal P. Gross
In what educational institution in the city are the best teachers found? The question is impossible to answer without considering the needs of the students being taught. READ MORE


Problems with Standardized Testing
by Diane K. Trumbull
I have been haunted by some clearly wrong assumptions about educating children in some local newspapers; but I decided to write this only after I read a journalist quote that “standards-based education reform assumes that every child should possess a basic set of knowledge and that there is an objective standard for judging whether a child has acquired that knowledge.” READ MORE

The Debate Over English Language Acquisition
by Kara H. Stein & Heidi Fisher
In the past decade, as the student population in the U.S. has grown increasingly ethnically and linguistically diverse, the debate around English language acquisition has come to the forefront of national educational policy... READ MORE

A Word with Jesse Sheidlower, Lexicographer,
Oxford U. Press

by Marie Holmes
Part cultural archive, part authoritative database, nothing, perhaps, fits the definition of “living document” as well as the dictionary...

English Language Learners Let Down by Board
of Education

by Priya Athiappan
Advocates for Children claims English Language Learner (ELL) students are receiving an inferior education. READ MORE

My Experiences In Italy
by Molly Wallace
Suor Paola was a nun, a sports commentator and a teacher. It was the day of my tenth birthday when I started as a student in her fifth grade class. READ MORE

Language Events
Dr. David Birdsong to Give Presentation on Late Learning of Second Languages
Dr. David Birdsong (Ph.D., Romance Languages, Harvard University), Associate Professor of French Linguistics at the University of Texas,... READ MORE

Queensborough Community College Establishes Language Program for Immigrants
Queensborough Community College (QCC) has been awarded a $300,000 grant to fund the Queens Civics Collaboration of the City University of New York (QCCC), a partnership program between Queensborough,... READ MORE

Preserving the Cheyenne Language
by Richard E. Littlebear
Cheyenne speakers are uneasy about losing our language. They say, “It’s scary” when asked about it. The loss is scary because most do not realize... READ MORE

Foreign Language Conference Encourages
Study Abroad

by Katarzyna Kozanecka
Leadership was the theme of the 2002 Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (NECTFL), which convened at the Hilton... READ MORE

New TV Show for Hispanic Children
Designed for a pre-school aged audience, “Mi Casita” (My Little House) now runs every morning on Hispanic cable network Galavision.

Englishclub.com Voted “Best English Language Site”
In a survey of 7,000 English language students and teachers conducted by Study Saint, the 100 percent free-access englishclub.com, was ranked... READ MORE

Foreign Language Teaching Around the World
by Marie Holmes
In Thailand, students begin learning English in the first grade. French instruction now begins in the second grade for Moroccan children.

Study Abroad Options Compiled
by Marie Holmes
Considering study abroad? More students than ever are taking advantage of the opportunities that study abroad offers. READ MORE

New York High School Student Wins Summer
in London

by Marie Holmes
Rachel Moran, a student at Pittsford Sutherland High School in Rochester, New York, has won first prize in InternationalEducationWeek.com’s.... READ MORE

U.S. Departments of State & Education Announce International Education Week
by Marie Holmes
U.S. embassies and consulates around the world, as well as other governmental and educational institutions, will hold events to...

Exchange Student Experiences: Japan
by Christopher Lapinig
It was the language of Japan that brought me thousands of miles away from my home; the prospect of speaking to native speakers and nurturing my language skills. READ MORE

September in History
Compiled by Chris Rowan READ MORE

A Children’s Story: Cycling Away the Day
by Adam Ben Simcha READ MORE

Learning English with English Jump Start at IS 119
by Katarzyna Kozanecka
At 8 a.m. at IS 119 in Glendale students from all over the world sing jazz chants, not the Star-Spangled Banner. Throughout the day, they read and talk in English. This is particularly amazing because it is their recently adopted language; many have been speaking it only since the beginning of this year. READ MORE

Berlitz International: An Institute for Language Lovers
by Toni Brett
In a city as culturally diverse as New York, the sounds of Spanish, German, Italian, French and many other foreign tongues fill the air like international symphonies. And if music soothes the soul, language lures the intellect. Should the passions of your mind and spirit merge in a quest to learn a foreign language, then the 125-year old Berlitz International is to foreign language students what Carnegie Hall is to concert musicians. READ MORE

Francophone Radio & TV in NYC READ MORE

ELL Resolution Passed by the Board
Recently, the Board of Education passed a resolution revising the teaching of English Language Learners. The resolution implemented a new system of parental choice among ELL programs and emphasizes the need to clearly inform parents about their options. READ MORE

Law & Education

High Court Finds Religion Constitutionally Distinctive
by Martha McCarthy, Ph.D.

State of Religion in Public Schools
by Martha McCarthy
The federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, signed into law in 2002, is the most comprehensive reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965. Among its many provisions, the NCLB Act requires school districts to certify to the state education agency that no school policy prevents participation in constitutionally protected prayer in public schools. The law also requires the U.S. Secretary of Education to issue guidance to school districts regarding permissible religious activities. For the first time, federal funds can be withheld from school districts that are not in compliance with the certification requirement. READ MORE

Briefly Noted
Bully Policy: Michigan Debates Legislation, Disabled Students Must Pass Indiana Exam, NY Professor Receives Supreme Court Book Prize READ MORE

Cracks in Wall Between Church & State
by Martha McCarthy, Ph.D.
On June 11, 2001 the Supreme Court delivered a significant decision, Good News Club v. Milford Central School, allowing a private Christian organization to hold its meetings in this New York school district.

Act to ‘Leave No Child Behind’ READ MORE

Court Rules against Curriculum Censorship
A three-judge panel of the second U.S.Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against the efforts of three Catholic families to censor the curriculum in the Bedford Central School District in Westchester County. In the mid-nineties, the families sued the district alleging their religious rights were violated by, among others, the DARE drug education program.

Funding for Girls in Non-Traditional Subjects:
The Go Girl Act Representative Lynn Woolsey (D-CA)

introduced a bill last month authorizing $50 million in grants during fiscal year 2002 to encourage girls, grades 4 through 8, to succeed in math, science, engineering and technology courses, and pursue jobs in these fields. READ MORE

Anti-Harassment Policies in Public Schools: Are They Vulnerable?
by Martha McCarthy, Ph.D.
In February 2001, the Third Circuit Court of Appeals rendered a surprising ruling, Saxe v. State College Area School District, striking down a Pennsylvania school district’s anti-harassment policy and thereby overturning the lower court’s decision. READ MORE

Politics In Education

Regents Must Refine Standards for Vocational Students & New Immigrants
by Assemblyman Steven Sanders
The educational establishment, the private sector, many politicians and almost all the editorial pages have confused high standards (good) with high-stakes testing (often bad), which will have terrible consequences for many of our high school seniors, especially for recent immigrants and those pursuing vocational careers. READ MORE

Arts Education & Internships: A Road To Success
by Assemblyman Steven Sanders
With headline after headline focusing on standards and high-stakes testing, it is too easy for New Yorkers to lose sight of some of the important success stories in our public schools—among these, the restoration of arts education. READ MORE

Professionalize Supervision of Mentoring Programs
by Assemblyman Steven Sanders
Today there are countless mentoring programs run by social service, academic, health and community institutions which match youngsters with caring adult volunteers. These adults serve as positive role models and provide extra support, guidance and friendship in a young person’s life. READ MORE

A Necessary and Enduring Power
by Matthew Elias Koch

Assembly Passes Record State Aid Increase
for City Schools

by Assemblyman Steven Sanders
On March 21, the Assembly passed its budget resolution, which includes, for the first time, State school aid to New York City at a level that meets or exceeds the city’s proportion of enrolled students statewide. Public school enrollment in the City represents 37.4 percent of statewide public school enrollment, and under the Assembly’s proposed budget, New York City would get over 38 percent of the State’s overall school aid. READ MORE


San Francisco: City on the Bay
by Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
San Francisco holds great visual appeal: its hills and architecture combine the gracious curves of the past with the edges of the present and everywhere, the sense that all streets lead to the beautiful bay. READ MORE

A Bacchanalian Feast in the Napa Valley
by Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
The Napa Valley, a verdant checkerboard of vineyards, picturesque towns with sophisticated restaurants, comfortable inns nestled in the hills and art galleries combined with local wineries make for a marvelous California vacation. READ MORE

Family-Friendly Puerto Rico: The Beach and Beyond
by Jan Aaron
We are walking down the palm lined path behind the Inter-Continental Hotel in San Juan, Puerto Rico. My guide is a curly-haired moppet, Lara, with one hand in mine and the other clutching a sticky red lollipop. Lara, on loan from her mom, shows me the hotel’s day camp where she plans to make sandcastles. Almost all major hotels here have supervised daycare facilities. READ MORE



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