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JUNE 2009


Union Leaders Speak
The Inconvenient Truth About ‘Waiting for Superman’

By Anita Gomez-Palacio
Recently, the education conversation has been dominated by praise for and critiques of “Waiting for Superman,” the new documentary on American education. I usually do not become involved in these public discussions on schools, which happen often now that education has become a “hot” topic for celebrities and billionaires. But the current hullabaloo over this movie caused me to reflect that the charges in this movie could not be left unaddressed....READ MORE

Union Leaders Speak
Pension Shortfall is Wall Street’s Doing
By Michael Mulgrew
New York’s professional hand-wringers are leading the public fight against union pensions and benefits, calling them major causes of the city’s fiscal distress....READ MORE

Union Leaders Speak
Report Calls for the Overhaul of Teacher Education Programs

By Randi Weingarten
NCATE has used research, common sense and the experience of everyday educators to create a blueprint for thoughtful and dramatic improvements in the way America’s teachers are prepared for their careers....READ MORE

College Board Program Highlights Role of School Counselors
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Own the Turf, the College Board’s new program aimed at strengthening the image and performance of the nation’s school counselors by way of offering strategic guidelines to help inspire and prepare youngsters for college and careers, is responding to a growing concern that teachers and parents and even guidance counselors themselves can’t do it all....READ MORE

Marymount School Launches Innovative Program
By Judith Aquino
Students at Marymount School, an all-girls high school in the Upper East Side, proved that philanthropy is a lesson best learned through research, creativity and teamwork....READ MORE

Afro-Latin Dance ‘Tour of Schools’ Thrills Students
By Judith Aquino
It was 10 a.m. at a school assembly and teen girls screamed his name as he swiveled his hips and winked at the audience....READ MORE

P.S. 34 Students Learn About FDR’s Four Freedoms
By Jennifer MacGregor
Forty years ago, Franklin Delano Roosevelt addressed the nation and delivered what would become know as his “four freedoms” speech. Students at P.S. 34 in Manhattan, named the Franklin D. Roosevelt Public School, honored that anniversary recently by learning how Roosevelt’s words are still resonating today....READ MORE

JUNE 2009

Strip Searches in Public Schools
By Martha McCarthy, Ph.D.
The United States Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in Safford Unified School District # 1 v. Redding, involving the strip search of a thirteen-year-old girl in an Arizona school district....READ MORE


An Interview with Dr. Tony Bryk, New President of Carnegie Foundation
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
It’s clear that Anthony S. Bryk is not only “privileged” and “honored” to have been selected as the next president of one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious education institutions, The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, a post he officially takes up in September 1—he’s also delighted at the “challenge” to hasten urban school reform, particularly in regard to the integration of technology to foster and enhance teaching and learning....MORE

An Interview with Vice Admiral Joseph D. Stewart, Merchant Marine Academy
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Of the five United States service academies—the Army at West Point, the Navy at Annapolis, the Coast Guard in New London, CT, the Air Force in Colorado Springs—the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA), located on 82 glorious acres in Kings Point, L.I., is perhaps the least understood, an irony, considering that it is so close to the city and that its authorization in 1936, its full accreditation as a degree-granting institution in 1949 and its designation in 1956 as a permanent federal academic institution signaled a deepening investment by the government in maritime education....MORE

A Warming Trend Despite Cold Economic Reality
By Ernest Logan
It was cold in Albany as I listened to Gov. Eliot Spitzer deliver his State of the State address early last month, but I was warmed by his words as he outlined his efforts to temper the effects of an increasingly troubled economy on his commitment to education....MORE

School Report Card Risks
By Randi Weingarten
When making comparisons or judging the quality of goods or services, people often find it convenient to use letter grades because they can convey complex impressions quickly and simply....MORE

Averting a Crisis in Mathematics Instruction
By Dr. Alfred S. Posamentier
As if mathematics teachers did not have enough to worry about with the constant focus on their students’ performance on standardized tests—further exacerbated by the No Child Left Behind law—beginning September 2008 New York City high schools will be introducing a new geometry course which is part of the New York State mathematics standards initiative....MORE

A Force for British Style Band Music at King’s Point
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Captain Kenneth R. Force, Director of Music and leader for 37 years of the Regimental Band of the United States Merchant Marine Academy is a force of human nature....MORE

10th Annual Virtual Enterprise Competition at Deloitte Touche
By Alberto Cepeda
Virtual Enterprise International (VE) recently held its annual Citywide Business Plan Competition at the Deloitte & Touche Offices at the World Financial Center in Lower Manhattan....MORE

Education Key To Polar Bear Survival
By Jan Aaron
The chunky shape ahead might be a rock....MORE

Free Teaching Resources:
African American History & More

By Kirk Winters
African American History Month
Features more than 60 resources related to African American history....MORE

High-Need Schools Participate In School-Wide Performance Pay Program
Chancellor Joel I. Klein and United Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten announced recently that more than 200 high-need schools will participate in New York City’s first-ever school-wide performance bonus program and that $15 million in private funds have been committed to date to support this initiative....MORE

High School Dropouts:
A Problem For Girls And Boys

An alarmingly high number of girls are dropping out of high school and these female dropouts are at particular economic risk compared to their male counterparts, according to a report by the National Women’s Law Center....MORE

Michigan First State to Have Online Requirement for HS Grad
Susan Patrick, President & CEO of the North American Council for Online Learning (NACOL), and John Watson, founder of Evergreen Consulting and author of the annual Keeping Pace with K-12 Online Learning report, will give the closing keynote address titled, “Current and Future Trends in Online Learning” at Michigan Virtual University’s Online Learning Symposium in February....MORE

New Leaders for New Schools
New Leaders for New Schools is a national nonprofit organization that recruits extremely talented individuals to become urban public school principals....MORE

New Report by Educational Testing Service: Family Factors Critical to Closing Achievement Gap
Gaps in the critical home conditions and experiences of young children mirror achievement gaps that begin early in life and persist through high school, according to a new report from ETS....MORE

PTA Leads in Closing Achievement Gap
In an effort to close the achievement gap for urban and underserved students, three major parent, teacher and education organizations are joining to create pilot programs, community-based projects, and resources....MORE

Building Custom Guitars
Your students know what an electric guitar is—some probably play them—but do they know how a guitar is made?...MORE


Facing History and Ourselves
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Everyone’s always in a hurry, but though it’s tempting to refer just to “Facing History,” it’s important to invoke the full title of this unusual international educational and professional development organization for educators. READ MORE

Teachers Learn in the Summer:
Unraveling Sonnets with Poet Jill Mcdonough at NY Public Library

By Liza Young
Education, as pointed out by Harvard Professor Howard Gardner, does not end with the attainment of a formal degree, but ideally is a lifelong process. READ MORE

Lessons on Humanity & Fighting for What’s Right: Reverend Al Sharpton Speaks at Oxonian Society
By Gillian Granoff
For Reverend Al Sharpton, an activist at the forefront of progressive politics for over ten years and ordained minister, speaking to an audience of progressive minded liberals is nothing new. READ MORE

Teaching Poetry:
Kevin Stein, Poet Laureate, Illinois

Q: At what age did you start writing? READ MORE

Family Travel:
Compelling Campobello: FDR’s Summer Home
By Jan Aaron
Feel you need a break from summer in New York? READ MORE

Can You Answer This?
By Chris Rowan
Which U.S. General has a street named after him in New York City and has his right leg bone on display in Washington D.C.? Where is the street and where is his leg? READ MORE

JULY 2006

Joe Klein Speaks at Oxonian Society on Democracy
By Gillian Granof
Recently, Joe Klein, the prolific writer of Time Magazine and acclaimed author of numerous works of political commentary, including, most notably, Primary Colors, addressed a packed audience at the Cornell Club. READ MORE

The Birth of a New School, Bronx, NY:
Ken Baum, Principal Extraordinaire

by Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
Ken Baum, principal extraordinaire, started a new public school in September 2004, The Urban Assembly for Applied Math and Science. READ MORE

Best Practices
Science Workshops
By Sherlyne Gilles, Teacher, Ebbets Field Middle School, Brooklyn

JUNE 2006

Best Practices in the Classroom from Outstanding Educators of the Year 2006

Common Sense on Class Size
By Randi Weingarten
Sad to say, foresight is an attribute seldom displayed these days. READ MORE

Children First?
By Jill Levy
I am not certain, but I think we are still in the stage of form over substance. READ MORE

Scientists Debate Teaching Evolution or Intelligent Design
by Sybil Maimin
Concerned by the increasingly strident national debate about the teaching of evolution in the public schools and the campaign by some to teach intelligent design, the New York Academy of Science held a two-day conference for scientists, secondary school and college teachers of science, and public officials responsible for education policy to explore the controversy and to offer skills and background needed to deal with the issue. READ MORE

E2Classroom: Delivering Cutting Edge Science to Schools
By Michael J. Passow, Ed.D.
How can classroom educators learn about cutting-edge investigations not yet in textbooks? READ MORE

Encouraging Young Scientists at the American Museum of Natural History
By Judith Aquino
Recently the Urban Advantage Middle School Exit Project Initiative marked the end of another successful year with its 2nd Annual City-Wide Science Expo. READ MORE

Baruch College Campus HS
By Victoria Florsheim
It is rare to find a high school student roaming the halls of a college building, unless the student actually attends school there, but this is the norm at Baruch College Campus High School (BCCHS). READ MORE

Townsend Harris HS & Queens College
by Thomas Cunningham, Principal
Admissions: Admission is highly competitive. READ MORE

MAY 2006

Harvard’s Howard Gardner
Receives Standing Ovation at Bank Street Event

By Liza Young
Professor Howard Gardner is at it again, never ceasing to create innovative approaches to traditional conceptions of thinking and learning. READ MORE

From the Superintendent's Seat:
Mothers, Celebrate Your Day
By Dr. Carole G. Hankin with Randi T. Sachs
Yes, there are those who say that Mother’s Day is just a profit-maker for the greeting card company, but then they are probably not mothers themselves. READ MORE

The Dean's Column:
When Numbers are Friendly (to each other)
By Alfred Posamentier, Ph.D.
What could possibly make two numbers friendly? READ MORE

Another Attack on Principals?
By Jill Levy
Even before I began to read The New York Times front-page article, “Principals Face Review in Education Overhaul” (April 12) about the new school report cards it was clear from the headline alone that Joel Klein was following his basic instinct, one he shares with the Queen of Hearts in Alice in Wonderland. READ MORE

Former President Bill Clinton
Combats Diabetes & Obesity at PS 197

By Sybil Maimin
It was a day filled with excitement at PS 197, the John B. Russwurm Elementary School in Harlem, as former President Bill Clinton stood on a makeshift stage in the gym to launch an attack on childhood obesity, a major initiative of the Alliance for a Healthier Generation, a partnership between the William J. Clinton Foundation and the American Heart Association with critical support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. READ MORE

Lab Schools Lead the Way in Educational Practice
By Sybil Maimin
Laboratory, or lab, schools generally associated with colleges or universities are prime sources of research, experimentation, curriculum development, clinical training, and staff development at the cutting edge of education. READ MORE

Honoring Outstanding Teachers
& Administrators of the Year

On Thursday, June 22, 2006 at 9 am at the Harvard Club, Education Update will be honoring teachers and administrators for their outstanding contribution to children in the public schools of New York City. READ MORE

APRIL 2006

Diane Ravitch Receives Bialkin/Citigroup Public Service Award
By Emily Sherwood, Ph.D.
Preeminent education historian and N.Y.U. professor Diane Ravitch added yet another award to her distinguished collection of accolades last month, the coveted Kenneth J. Bialkin/Citigroup Public Service Award for her contribution to education, presented to her by none other than her close friend and colleague, Kenneth Bialkin, Chairman of the American Jewish Historical Society (AJHS). READ MORE

Profiles in Education:
Nane Annan
By Emily Sherwood, Ph.D.
Nane Annan, wife of United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan, recalls sitting down on the damp Pakistani earth with a little girl after last year’s horrific earthquake. READ MORE

The Value of An All Women’s Education
by Kathleen ponze, Maureen Colburn and Chris Farmer
Do you believe academic achievement is higher for girls in an all-girls academic setting? Is there a benefit to single sex education in non-academic areas? READ MORE

Channel 13 Celebrates Teaching & Learning:
A Great Teacher, Rafe Esquith

By Liza Young
Rafe Esquith literally lives to teach. Working at least 12 hour days and foregoing Saturdays and vacations, Esquith devotes all his passion and energy towards improving the minds of his students at Hobart Boulevard Elementary School in Los Angeles as well as their lives in general.  READ MORE

MACH 2006

Views on All-Girls’ Education:
Convent of the Sacred Heart

by Mary Blake, Ed.D.
Do you believe academic achievement is higher for girls in an all-girls academic setting?

There is a growing consensus, based on an increasing amount of solidly researched data from around the world, that single sex-schools allow children to achieve greater success. READ MORE


Dr. Henri Ford, Pediatric Surgeon Extraordinaire
by Joan Baum, Ph.D.
It was quite a leap for Haitian-born Henri Ford who knew no English to attend John Jay High School in Brooklyn—where he was called “Frenchie”—and then go on for his B.A. at Princeton, not to mention moving from there in record time to Harvard Medical School, but for this Vice President and Chief of Surgery at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and Vice Chair of the Department of Surgery at the Keck School of Medicine (USC), affiliated with Children’s Hospital, “leaps” are “challenges.” READ ARTICLE

William C. Thompson, Jr.:
A First-Class Leader On His Second Term

By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Though The New York Times noted in its report on the Mayor’s January 26th  State of the City address that William  C. Thompson, Jr. had been reelected with 92 percent of the vote, the admirable Comptroller of The City of New York wondered why this fact was even mentioned two months after the fact, when he ran virtually unopposed in a race without a Republican or Independent candidate. READ ARTICLE

William L. Taylor:
Passionate Advocate of the Civil Rights Movement

By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
The title of William L. Taylor’s influential, well received legal autobiography, The Passion of My Times: An Advocate’s Fifty-Year Journey in the Civil Rights Movement—just out in paperback—is taken, he proudly points out, from Oliver Wendell Holmes’s comment that “As life is action and passion, it is required of a man that he should share the passion and action of his time, at the peril of being not to have lived.” READ ARTICLE


Profiles in Education:
Vartan Gregorian Carries on the Heritage of the Carnegie Corporation
By Joan Baum, Ph.d.
Assuming the presidency of the Carnegie Corporation eight years ago seems to have been inevitable for this much-celebrated scholar and chief administrator who had already made his mark in the education and corporate worlds. READ ARTICLE

Profiles in Education:
Kurt Landgraf, ETS Pres. & CEO Refocuses Premier Testing Organization
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
It seems to be not just his job but his “profession,” a matter of passion and faith: Kurt M. Landgraf, the president and CEO of the Educational Testing Service (ETS), the world’s largest private testing and research organization, is talking about the ETS mission to advance “quality and equity in education.” READ ARTICLE

Dr. Martin Florsheim: Visionary in Educating Deaf & Hearing Children
By Liza Young
Great strides are being made in the field of special and general education, at School “47,” American Sign Language and English School. READ ARTICLE

Comptroller William Thompson Highlights Jewish Heritage
By Liza Young
Scores of people recently gathered at City Chambers for a spiritually rich evening—sponsored by NYC Comptroller William  C. Thompson as well as the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York and the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty—celebrating Jewish Heritage and honoring the contributions of leaders in the world of education, theatre, journalism and publishing. READ ARTICLE

Preparing Young Leaders for the Global Economy 
By Michael Levine
Our nation’s future competitiveness depends on preparing young people to be engaged citizens in an era where knowledge of the world’s interconnections is becoming a new basic skill. READ ARTICLE

The Dean’s Column:
A Juicy Math Problem
By Alfred Posamentier, Ph.D.
When students are challenged by a problem, they often set it aside if it involves too much reading, for fear that the concentration required would be too exhausting to make the problem pleasurable. READ ARTICLE

WNBC and WNJU Donate Grants to Six Non-Profits
By Liza Young
WNBC and WNJU recently gave $400,000 in grants to six leading non-profit organizations in recognition and support of their devotion and dedication to the future of youth. Checks were officially presented at WNBC studios at Rockefeller Plaza to the following non-profit organizations: ASPIRA, NAACP NYC ACT-SO, Learning Leaders, Abyssinian Development Corporation, and ThinkQuest, Inc. READ ARTICLE


On-Line Learning: Vantage Learning Offers Student Writing Feedback at the Stroke of a Keyboard
By Emily Sherwood, Ph.D.
Imagine a tenth grade, Spanish-speaking student who is reading at a sixth grade level. READ ARTICLE

Veteran Coach Arrives at Staten Island Academy
to Guide Girls Basketball Program

By Richard Kagan
It’s been a long time since the varsity girls’ basketball program at Staten Island Academy (SIA) reigned supreme in New York. The Lady Tigers captured the New York State Association of Independent Schools crown during the 1992-1993 season.  There have been some lean years since then. READ ARTICLE

The Dean's Column:
Surprising Rope Around the Earth
by Alfred Posamentier, Ph.D.
At this time of the year a teacher needs to seek ideas that will put some life into
the instructional program. READ ARTICLE

Scholastic Early Childhood Products
Selected by U.S. Department of Ed
Early childhood products and services from Scholastic Education, a leading provider of research-based print and technology solutions proven to raise reading achievement for students in grades pre-K and above, have been selected by three of the five grant recipients of the U.S. Department of Education 2005 Early Childhood Educator Professional Development (ECEPD) Program. READ ARTICLE

AIFL Fosters International Unity Among Youth
By Liza Young
With information about nations around the world just a mouse click away, misconceptions still abound with respect to the nature of different cultures and nations. READ ARTICLE

The Law & Education:
Will Student Uniforms Become the Norm?
By Martha McCarthy, Ph.D.
In general, school authorities can ban student attire that disrupts the educational process, is lewd or vulgar, promotes unlawful activity, or conflicts with the school’s objectives. READ ARTICLE

92 Street Y Nursery: A Comprehensive
Learning Program For Youngsters

By Liza Young
It’s not surprising that so many parents of pre-school age children vie competitively in pursuit of sending their kids to the 92nd Street Y nursery school. READ ARTICLE

Put Calculus in its Right Place
By Alfred Posamentier, Ph.D.
Who would think that the very course designed to add prestige to a high school’s curriculum might be one of the causes for a school’s poor performance on mathematics tests—of late a great concern for local school districts ever since the federal “No Child Left Behind” law made testing the criterion for federal financial support. READ ARTICLE

NYC Virtual Enterprise Holds
Local Business Plan Competitions
Winners Advance To Citywide Competition
By Iris Blanc
Now approaching its tenth anniversary in New York City public schools, the Virtual Enterprises (VE) program represents a well-established approach to teaching high school students about business through task-oriented and hands-on applications. READ ARTICLE


Update on Children’s Mental Health, 2005
By Harold S. Koplewicz, M.D.
This month’s issue of Education Update highlights the tenth anniversary of a publication that has been integral in informing school professionals about important health, education and parenting issues. READ MORE

Corporate Leaders In Education:
Interview with Suzanne Wright: Education Leader & Passionate Advocate
By Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
With regard to your education what are some of the challenges you’ve faced and how have you met them? READ MORE

Corporate Leaders In Education:
Bob Wright: CEO & Chairman, NBC Universal
By Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
It’s no accident that NBC Universal chairman and CEO Bob Wright has reached the top of his field. His media empire includes NBC, MSNBC, CNBC, Telemundo, and Bravo, as well as stakes in the History Channel and the A&E network, among many others. READ MORE

Hundreds Attend Reading Reform Foundation Conference
*By Sybil Maimin
In a workshop on using the newspaper to develop skills, Roz Eskenazi, a consultant to The New York Times Knowledge Network, shared tips and examples of exciting and effective ways to incorporate daily papers into the curriculum. READ MORE
*By Liza Young
Reading Reform Foundation—with its credo that every child can learn to read—has been going strong for over two decades with its mission of bringing the joys of fluency in reading to children across the city. READ MORE

College Presidents Series
President Michele Tolela Myers, Sarah Lawrence College
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Delighting in fact that Sarah Lawrence is known as “most inky college” because of the extensive presence of writing in all classes, President Michele Tolela Myers also notes with pleasure another possible designation: “most idiosyncratic.” READ MORE

Heart Disease #1 Killer of Women
Lord & Taylor hosted a “heart-healthy” breakfast for executive women to launch the NYC part of a national campaign for awareness of heart disease as the leading cause of death in women. READ MORE

Group For ADHD - Ask the clinician
Do college age students diagnosed with either ADHD or Learning Disabilities have rights to accommodations in college. If so what is the procedure? READ MORE

Gilder Lehrman Institute Recognizes History Teacher of the Year
The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History recently announced the 2005 History Teacher of the Year Award to Rosanne Lichatin, a U.S. history teacher at West Morris Central High School in Chester, New Jersey. Mrs. Lichatin’s 30-year career in education includes experience in both elementary and secondary levels of instruction. READ MORE

Town Hall Honors Laurie M. Tisch & Peter Yarrow
By Liza Young
Celebrities and visionaries recently gathered at the lavish Princeton Club for the gala celebration of Town Hall’s 84th season. READ MORE

Neighborhoods—East End Avenue
Suburbs in the City?

By Marsha Mack Frances
Families love living on East End Avenue because of Carl Schurz Park, spectacular river views, the Asphalt Green with its Olympic size pool and elegant schools [such as Spence, Chapin, and Dalton], the FDR and the whole city. READ MORE

A Potential Win for All
By Randi Weingarten, UFT President

After almost two years of a bitter struggle, New York City’s public school teachers have reached a tentative agreement with the city that has the potential to be good news for educators, students, administrators and all New Yorkers who care about our schools. READ MORE

United Nations Association Honors Leonore Annenberg
“Education is the foundation of society” according to Leonore Annenberg who was represented at the gala awards dinner recently by her youngest granddaughter, Liz. Dr. Lucia Rodriguez, VP, UNA-USA said, “Only through education can we have hope for the future.” SEE MORE


Now is the Time for Action
By Randi Weingarten
Most politicians know that even the best poll ratings can be undone by a crisis. Sometimes the crisis can be foreseen and averted, sometimes not. READ MORE

Scholastic Education Takes Lead in Literacy
Scholastic Offers Solutions in the Face of National Reading Crisis
By Michelle DeSarbo
With 68 percent of 8th graders failing to meet proficiency requirements in reading, schools are facing a staggering literacy crisis nationwide.

Scholastic Education Takes Lead in Literacy
Scholastic Hosts School Reform Initiative
By Liza Young
Opening at the Majestic Ballroom of the Westin Hotel before a crowd of scores of superintendents from around the country, Scholastic graciously hosted a two-day Superintendents’ Literacy Leadership Summit to address the national dilemma of adolescent literacy.

News From The Front-Line:
A Life Is Spared Because Of A Teacher’s Skill And Swift Action
By Phyllis C. Murray
When a choking victim can’t speak or breathe and needs your help immediately, the fine line between life and death is incalculable. Fortunately, because of swift and heroic action of Scott Dentz, a seasoned teacher and part time volunteer fireman, a young life was saved at P.S.75, Bronx. READ MORE

Learning Leaders Support & Inspire NYC Public School Students
By Liza Young
Learning Leaders, the organization aptly named for its volunteers who lead kids throughout New York City public schools towards optimal learning, recently held a kickoff event for the new school year at the Times Square Marriott, where there was a buzzing crowd of 2,400 of the nearly 15,000 learning leaders. READ MORE

Teaching Matters Celebrates Tenth Anniversary
By Emily Sherwood, Ph.D.
Recently, Teaching Matters, a non-profit educational organization that helps teachers and students use technology effectively in the classroom, celebrated its tenth anniversary with an evening program at Rockefeller University’s Caspary Auditorium featuring guest speaker George Stephanopoulos, ABC Sunday news anchor. READ MORE

2005 McGraw Prize In Education Given to Leaders In Early Childhood Education & Teacher Education
Preparing students and teachers for success has been the focus of three exceptional educators who were being honored for their innovations and accomplishments. READ MORE

$1 Million Broad Prize Awarded To Norfolk Public Schools, Four Finalist Districts NYC was one of the five finalists.
The Broad Foundation announced recently that Norfolk Public Schools is the winner of the 2005 Broad Prize for Urban Education, the largest education prize in the country awarded to the most outstanding urban school districts. READ MORE

The Dean’s Column
Some Amazing Number Relationships
By Dean Alfred Posamentier
Who said numbers can’t form beautiful relationships! Showing your students some of these unique situations might give them the feeling that there is more to “numbers” than meets the eye.

Free Resources for Teachers


A Season of Hope Denied
By Randi Weingarten
The start of school is usually a season of hope as students, parents and educators look forward to building on the gains of the previous school year. New York City’s teachers certainly had reason to be hopeful because of statements Mayor Bloomberg made at a town hall meeting just last month. READ MORE

Corporate Contributions to Education
George “Vanilla” Weiss: Say Yes to Education
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
“My kids.” The phrase recurs often as the founding member of SayYes To Education starts talking about what his nationally known program has been doing for inner-city youngsters over the years, and it seems possible the first couple of times that he means his own family...

Independent Colleges and TIAA-CREF Offer Unique College Savings Plan
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
For sure, customers who can’t remember what TIAA CREF stands for—and most can’t (for the record it’s: Teacher Insurance Annuity Association / College Retirement Equities Fund) but who regularly receive reports from this 85-year old, 350 billion-dollar financial services company... READ MORE

Profile: Susan Kent, Director & Chief, NY Public Library
By Joan Baum, Ph.D
It sounds apocryphal, but the new Director and Chief Executive of The Branch Libraries for the New York Public Library (NYPL) swears it’s true, and she beams in the retelling: there she was last year in LA, where, as City Librarian for the Los Angeles Public Library...

Profiles in Education
Chris Whittle, CEO, Edison Schools
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
At 58 Chris Whittle, communications entrepreneur, remains totally committed to the project that has claimed his heart and head for the last 16 years—The Edison Schools, a for-profit company he runs as CEO with Benno Schmidt, Chairman of the Board, and that now boasts some remarkable numbers... READ MORE

More “Intelligent” Challenges to Evolution
By Martha McCarthy, Ph.D.
Historically, several states barred public school instruction that conflicted with the Genesis account of creation, and the Tennessee Supreme Court upheld such a law in the famous Scopes “monkey trial.”

‘Song of America’ Concert Tour to Kick Off Library of Congress Road Show
By Emily Sherwood, Ph.D.
What do you get when you bring together a pre-eminent historical scholar and America’s leading baritone to design a program celebrating American creativity? READ MORE

The Dean’s Math Column
Perfection in Mathematics
By Alfred S. Posamentier, Ph.D.
What is perfect in mathematics, a subject where most think everything is already perfect? Over the years various authors have been found to name perfect squares, perfect numbers, perfect rectangles, and perfect triangles. READ MORE

The Cathedral School
The Cathedral School has been nurturing the hearts and minds of its students since 1949. We are a co-educational, independent school serving families from a variety of backgrounds. Featuring small classes and caring teachers, our “neighborhood” dimensions make us a community in which each child is known well by many adults.

Claremont Preparatory School
Claremont Preparatory School is the first independent on-going school to open in Manhattan in the last 50 years and the first nonsectarian K-8 school below Canal Street. READ MORE

The Greenwich House
The Greenwich House Preschool is the city’s first day-care program for children. It opened at Greenwich House in 1920 and our tradition as caregiver and educator of the city’s children continues today.


Harlem Children’s Society Excels with Dr. Sat Battacharya
By Nazneen Malik
“We are all made of genes [and like genes] we cannot be appropriately expressed without the right environment,” muses Dr. Sat Bhattacharya, founder of the Harlem Children’s Society, a nonprofit dedicated to providing students from under-resourced and under-represented communities with the opportunity to explore the sciences. READ MORE

Ode to Those Hobart Shakespeareans
By Liza Young
It is rare to see a school year come to a close with a room full of students with tears streaming from their eyes, but when it’s the classroom of Rafe Esquith it’s not a surprise. READ MORE

Interview with Karen Winnick:
“Books Implore Us To Go After Our Dreams”
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Though she always wanted to bring toge ther her training and talent in art and writing, the publication of Mr. Lincoln’s Whiskers (1996), which she composed and illustrated, proved to Karen B. Winnick that she could make her mark in the crowded world of children’s literature by pursuing her love of history. READ MORE

JULY 2005

Corporate Leaders In Education:
An Interview With Adam Bronfman
By Sybil Maimin
Through its four major programs – the Bronfman Youth Fellowships in Israel (BYFI), Hillel: the Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, My Jewish Learning.com, and The Curriculum Initiative (TCI), the Bronfman Foundation focuses on strengthening Jewish identity among young Jews from a wide range of religious and cultural perspectives. READ MORE

JUNE 2005

Interviews with Nobel Laureates
Around the Nation

Illustrious CCNY graduates, nobel laureates, recently came together to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the seminal discoveries of Albert Einstein who had visited City College when he came to New York in 1921. Education Update interviewed several of the nobelists about their school days, lives in science and views about stem cell research.

  • Dr. Paul Nurse, President, Rockefeller University
    Scientists have a responsibility to the public that goes beyond their science. Scientists must engage the public in a dialogue so that people can understand and make informed decisions about scientific advances that affect society, such as genetically modified foods or embryonic stem cell research. READ MORE
  • Kenneth Arrow, Stanford University
    I had two significant challenges. One was to stay the academic course. My parents had undergone great economic insecurity, and I wanted to avoid that. READ MORE
  • Herbert Hauptman, SUNY Buffalo
    Winning the Nobel Prize meant acceptance of our work on the part of the crystallographic community that for many years had rejected our work as not valid. To be vindicated in this way was important and meant a lot to me. READ MORE

It’s Time to Stop the Blame Game
By Randi Weingarten
Public officials who falter on a pledge generally have two choices: They can admit the task was too tough and promise to work harder, or they can blame someone else. Sadly, the current school system administration has chosen the latter. READ MORE

Corporate  Leaders  In  Education
An Interview with Peter Boneparth, CEO, Jones Apparel Group
By Nazneen Malik
The Jones New York In The Classroom program, offers both monetary support and access to human resources to combat these problems. Jones Apparel Group employees are allotted up to three hours of paid time off each month to donate their time to communities and schools.

Environmental Education
An Interview with Jake Kheel
By Nazneen Malik
New York City is brimming with natural treasures, of which most people are simply unaware. READ MORE

A Celebration of Father’s Day
Remembering Fathers in Different Ways
By Richard Kagan
Fathers Day is just around the corner. For some families it will be a happy day. For some fathers it will be a lonely day. Dad may be paying child support because of a court order, unable to see his kids. Education Update’s Staff Shares Insights
Education Update’s Staff Shares Insights

Channel 13 Hosts 15th Annual Literacy Conference
By Gillian Granoff
The conference, with 148 participants, brought together adult literacy educators, computer and technology and community outreach professionals, and representatives from New York’s Department of Education. READ MORE

MAY 2005

From the Principal’s Desk
Corinne Rello-Anselmi, PS 108, Bronx
When I became the Principal of PS 108 Philip J. Abinanti School eight years ago, we were making only moderate gains in literacy and were struggling to meet the needs of all of our students. READ MORE
Rosa Arrendondo, PS 128, Manhattan
What does it take to improve academic achievement in New York City’s public schools? As more and more educators are learning, building effective private sector partnerships is key to helping students reach their full academic potential. READ MORE

The Center for Arts Education Showcases
Students’ Work
A gala benefit for the Center for Arts Education (CAE), a premiere public/private partnership founded to restore, stimulate and sustain quality arts programs in the New York City public schools was held recently at Christie’s. READ MORE

A Look at French Education:
Interview with Principal Kerloch
By Myriam Pinchon

Mr. Kerloch has a double responsibility because he is the head and three days a week he is their teacher too. READ MORE

The National Education Association Foundation’s Grants for Schools & Districts Nationwide
The NEA Foundation’s next round of Innovation Grants and Learning & Leadership Grants is right around the corner. READ MORE

Hunter HS Intel Winner Goes to CCNY
By Michelle Desarbo
David L.V. Bauer, a 17-year-old senior from Hunter College High School, recently won first place in the Intel Science Talent Search for his work on neurotoxins in humans. READ MORE

Schools Chancellor Joel Klein Delivers Rudin Lecture at CCNY
By Liza Young
Delivered by Schools Chancellor Joel Klein, the lecture addressed one of the most critical issues of the day, the reform of the New York City public schools. READ MORE

Olympics of the Mind: Engaging Young Black Youth
By Nazneen Malik
Recently, The NAACP New York City chapter of the Afro-Academic, Cultural, Technological and Scientific Olympics (ACT-SO) hosted its 18th annual awards ceremony marking the culmination of its local Olympics of the Mind. READ MORE

An Interview with Preston Robert Tisch
By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
In an extraordinary life of public service and philanthropy, including serving as Postmaster General of The United States, being the city’s Ambassador to Washington in the `90s... READ MORE

Trevor Day School Students’ Entrepreneurship Raises $8,500 for Tsunami Relief
The bazaar is the culmination of a unique 3-month entrepreneurship learning experience whose sophisticated concepts of cost margins, market pricing, sales and marketing the students applied to address a charitable need. READ MORE

APRIL 2005

Teachers Network Conference
An Interview with Dr. Charlotte Frank
By Jan Aaron
The conference succeeded in reaching teachers at all levels of experience and interests. There were workshops specifically for new teachers focused on basic needs from classroom management to teaching methods. READ MORE

Dr. Arthur Levine:
Passionate about The Need to Redirect Teacher Education
By Joan Baum Ph.D.
Although a new plan at Teachers College (TC) establishes “educational equity” as the major mission, a key word for the locus of related activities has already been changed. No longer an Institute, the new initiative is now the Campaign for Educational Equity... READ MORE

Profiles In Education:
Francie Alexander, Chief Academic Officer
of Scholastic

By Joan Baum, Ph.D.
Teaching reading should be approached in a “thoughtful” way that responds to scientific research. That means that Ms. Alexander will be focusing on Scholastic as “an educational think tank” and providing the nation’s political and educational leaders as well as parents with another level of resources. READ MORE

Manhattan Institute & Teachers College Argue
Pros & Cons of School Choice at Jewish
Theological Seminary

By Sybil Maimin
In hosting “Vouchers, Charters, Choice: A Conversation About Education Policy,” the Louis Finkelstein Institute at the Jewish Theological Seminary was fulfilling its mission, begun in 1938, of considering, from an interfaith perspective, public policy issues that have religious and moral dimensions. READ MORE

Interview with Dr. Kerby Alvy
By Nazneen Malik
Dr. Kerby Alvy, Founder and Executive Director of the Center for the Improvement of Child Caring (CICC), an organization dedicated to helping children through effective parenting, fell in love with children when he was just a child himself. READ MORE

New Math Standards Will Make A Difference
By Alfred S. Posamentier, Ph.D.
Although for years there was a modicum of unhappiness with the New York State mathematics curriculum—one which differs from the other 49 states—real anger did not emerge until the fiasco of the June 2003 Math-A Regents examination... READ MORE

Teachers Network Conference Features Mayoral Candidates & Workshops
By Jan Aaron
Three hundred of New York’s brightest (teachers) and other concerned citizens gathered recently at The Fourth Annual Curriculum, Community, Collaboration & Celebration Conference, hosted by Teachers Network, Deputy Chancellor Carmen Farina and the East Side Community High School. READ MORE

Teacher In Space Candidate Completes
Proficiency Flight

For pilot Bob Ray, it was a routine proficiency flight, but for teacher Pam Leestma, it was the flight of a lifetime and the first step toward realizing her lifelong dream of traveling into space. READ MORE

Testing Serves Students
By Margaret Spellings
To some students, “test” is a four-letter word. Given the choice, I’m sure many would welcome the chance to be tested only every other year. But the adults in charge of their education surely know better.

MARCH 2005

President Raab Establishes Center For Gifted
Studies at Hunter College
By Dorothy Davis
“Children need to know that it’s okay to be smart,” said Hunter President Jennifer J. Raab recently. “Special classes, schools and curricula are also required to meet the special needs of the gifted child, who is often bored and uninspired in a regularly paced classroom.” READ MORE

Jeremy Goes to Camp Good Grief
What the tragedy of The World Center brought to wide attention, what the tsunami disaster reemphasized, and what every household knows when a loved one dies, even from so-called natural or inevitable causes, is the unique effect of death on children. READ MORE


Awards Ceremony Honors Outstanding Civil Servants and Their Children
Education Update Gives Scholarship
By Michelle DeSarbo
The One Hundred Year Association of New York recently honored New York City civil service employees and their children for their accomplishments in both their careers and academics with the Isaac Liberman Public Service and E. Virgil Conway College Scholar Awards.

Profiles in Education: An Interview with Ramon Cortines: (Part II)
By Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
I was delighted to meet Ray at his home in Pasadena, CA recently. Against the background of classical music and a book-lined library,
we discussed various issues and trends in education over the years.

Caroline Kennedy Speaks at Mentoring
Program at Loews

By Sarah Ann Mockbee
In celebration of National Mentoring Month, the New York City Department of Education’s (DOE’s) Mentoring Program hosted over 600 mentors and mentees at the Loews Cineplex for an evening of awards, entertainment and networking. READ MORE

Bloomingdale’s Dedicates Window to National Mentoring Month
By Michelle DeSarbo
Teachers, mentors, and eager third graders crowded the sidewalk on 59th Street and Lexington Avenue recently for the unveiling of a new storefront window in honor of National Mentoring Month at Bloomingdale’s Department Store. READ MORE

Myth and Reality of the Teachers’ Contract
By Randi Weingarten
As the city and the teachers’ union have been trying to reach a new contract to replace the one that expired more than 1-1/2 years ago,
a number of myths about the current agreement are surfacing, distractions that make it difficult to resolve the real problems of
our schools.

New For Teachers! Fun Ways to Teach Math
By Alfred S. Posamentier, Ph.D.
Where in the World Are You?
This is a popular riddle that has some very interesting extensions, yet seldom considered. It requires some “out of the box” thinking that can have some favorable lasting effects on students. Let’s consider the question:
Where on earth can you be so that you can walk one mile south, then one mile east, and then one mile north and end up at the starting point? READ MORE


Guest Editorial
The Time is Here for True Fiscal Equity
By Regina M. Eaton
Governor George Pataki’s 2005 State of the State Address made it clear us that he does not intend to cede school funding reform to the courts. But the courts have spoken. Now it’s time to act. In the coming weeks, Judge DeGrasse, the trial judge that heard the Campaign for Fiscal Equity vs. New York State (CFE) case, is expected to hand down a final court order to resolve the lawsuit. READ MORE

Corporate Contributions to Education
Interview with Eugene Lang
By Nazneen Malik
“Everything that happens in life that is worth noting seems to be a coincidence,” muses Eugene Lang, prominent businessman, and founder of the I Have A Dream Foundation (IHAD). Indeed, fortune has favored the 85 year-old philanthropist but one must recognize that his choices, ambitions, and persistent dedication to education have played a significant role in shaping his life’s trajectory. READ MORE

Eugene Lang’s Vision Makes Dreams Come True
The Chairman of Newmark, a leading commercial real estate firm, Jeffrey Gural, recently offered to 40 first-graders who live in the
Elliott Houses, a public housing development in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood, the most incredible gift of their young lives at
P.S. 33 in Chelsea. READ MORE

Mercedes-Benz Launches First Lab at
Automotive High School

By Liza Young
The progress of the automotive industry depends on the developments and insights of major corporations, but to ensure continued success, the seeds of growth in the industry must be planted at the educational level, and as early as possible within the educational system.

Outstanding Teacher of the Year Shares Lesson Plan
Mrs. Sharon Weissbart, first grade teacher at PS 111 in the Bronx and 2004 Education Update Teacher of the Year, submitted a lesson plan that she and Ms. Masucci, also a first grade teacher at PS 111, created for their classes.

Profiles in Education:
An Interview With Ramon Cortines
By Pola Rosen, Ed.D.
I was delighted to meet Ray at his home in Pasadena, CA recently. Against the background of classical music and a book-lined library, we discussed various issues and trends in education over the years. Cortines was the Chancellor of New York City schools from 1993 to 1995.

Theodore Kheel Receives Chancellor’s Medal
By Nazneen Malik
At a recent gathering at the CUNY Graduate Center, prominent labor lawyer and mediator, Theodore Kheel, was awarded the prestigious Chancellor’s Medal for his outstanding public service and continued commitment to education. READ MORE

Wallace Foundation Funds New Report on
After-School Programs
By Sarah Ann Mockbee
After-school programs have long been a staple in our communities and experts agree that children who are engaged in meaningful activities outside of school will benefit more than those students who do not. But until recently, only the experts were weighing in on just what is best for a child’s out-of-school time, while the voices of students and parents were not properly considered. READ MORE


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