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Presidential Politics


President-Elect Donald J. Trump.

The President-Elect on the First Amendment:


Trump’s education platform promises to “make post-secondary options more affordable and accessible through technology enriched delivery models.” “Make MOOCs great again.”

Trump has threatened to close the Department of Education. Is that possible? It seems likely that the Trump Administration would target the Office for Civil Rights and challenge Title IX enforcement. Inside Higher Ed has more on the latter.

ESSA Would Handcuff a Trump Education Secretary on Common Core And More,” says Education Week, even though ditching Common Core was one of Trump’s campaign promises. More on the future of Common Core from NPR. Via The 74: “Trump’s Education Paradox: Return Schools to Local Control – By Expanding Federal Power?” Via The Atlantic: “Donald Trump and the Future of Education.”

Shares in for-profit higher education companies were up on news of Trump’s election. “Regulatory Relief Under Trump Could Favor Both For-Profit and Traditional Colleges,” says The Chronicle of Higher Education.

“What does Trump’s victory mean for higher education?” asks Bryan Alexander. “Higher Education Policy Under Trumpby Sara Goldrick-Rab. “Trump Victory Jolts Higher Ed,” says IHE. (And yes, I’m watching who is celebrating this victory and/or minimizing the potential devastation. ACE. AEI. Brookings. Looking at you.) Via The Chronicle of Higher Education: “AAUP Warns of Historic Threat to Academic Freedom Posed by Trump.”

Via The San Diego Union Tribune: “Trump University trial goes on despite presidential win.”

And despite all the promises to “drain the swamp,” it appears as though Trump is planning to fill cabinet seats and advisory roles with lobbyists and industry insiders. Via Politico: “Meet Trump’s Cabinet-in-waiting.” Via The New York Times: “Peter Thiel’s Bet on Donald Trump Pays Off.” Emphasis on “pays.” Via AFR: “Peter Thiel’s company Palantir Defense could win contracts under Donald Trump.”

Speaking of Peter Thiel, “Mark Zuckerberg: Facebook fake news didn’t sway election,” USA Today reports from the Techonomy conference.

The fallout of the election and Trump’s sanctioning of hate: Via The NYT: “Campuses Confront Hostile Acts Against Minorities After Donald Trump’s Election.” Via The Hechinger Report: “Schoolchildren ‘have a lot of questions and a lot of fear’ in aftermath of Trump victory.” Via Chalkbeat: “‘Will I be deported?’ Inside America’s classrooms in the wake of Trump’s win.”

Via NPR: “Here’s What Students Are Saying About The Election Results.” Via EdSource: “Undocumented students react with fear and anger to election results.” Students staged walk outs and protests at schools all over the country: Seattle, Santa Barbara, Eugene, Boston, Los Angeles, and elsewhere.

Via The Chronicle of Higher Education: “How Voters’ Education Levels Factored Into Trump’s Win.”

Education aside: “If he fulfills his campaign promises, President-Elect Donald J. Trump and his future administration could prove cataclysmic for the planet’s climate,” says The Atlantic’s Robinson Meyer.

Education Politics


“What Went Down in Massachusetts” – Edushyster on the failure of Question 2, which would have lifted the state’s cap on charter schools.

Via Education Week: “California Voters Repeal Ban on Bilingual Education.”

Georgia voters defeated a measure that would have put the state’s worst performing schools under state, not local, control.

Via News on 6: “Oklahomans Deny Sales Tax To Fund Education.”

Via Chalkbeat: “Jeffco voters rejecting tax measures to support schools and teacher pay.” (That’s Jefferson County, Colorado.)

Here’s a list of election outcomes pertaining to library-related measures, thanks to EveryLibrary.org.

Inside Higher Ed looks at various higher ed-related contests.

Via EdSource: “California leaders join GOP critics of draft federal school funding rules.” On the other side of the issue: “Civil rights group makes legal case for controversial Education Dept. regulation,” reports The Washington Post.

Via The Chicago Sun Times: “Standard & Poor’s drops Chicago Public Schools’ credit rating.”

Via Education Week: “Education Department Awards $103 Million in Investing in Innovation Projects.”

Education in the Courts


Via Education International: “Uganda’s High Court has ordered the immediate closure of more than 60 Bridge International Academies found operating in contravention of the law, a decision that backs the Ministry of Education’s clampdown on the global edu-business.”

Via NPR: “Jury Finds ‘Rolling Stone,’ Reporter Liable Over Rape Allegation Story.” Former UVA Associate Dean Nicole Eramo has been awarded $3 million in damages.

More on the Trump University court case in the presidential politics section above.

Testing, Testing…


Via Inside Higher Ed: “ACT is closing all of its 32 existing test centers in South Korea for the remainder of the academic year and shifting all testing in the country to a single site to be monitored directly by ACT staff from the U.S. in response to what the nonprofit college entrance test provider described as ‘repeated test material breaches’ in the country.”

Coding Bootcamps (The Once and Future “For-Profit Higher Ed”)

Politico looks at some of the data for-profit universities are disclosing about how they might fare under the “gainful employment” rules.

“U.S. Education Secretary John King Jr. last week affirmed an administrative judge’s March ruling that relieved now-defunct Decker College of a $31.6 million repayment the Education Department demanded the for-profit institution make in 2005,” reports Inside Higher Ed.

Via Inside Higher Ed: “Dubious Claim in WSJ Editorial About Laureate.” That WSJ piece suggests that Laureate Education has been spared the scrutiny other for-profit companies have faced under the Obama Administration because of the company’s ties to Bill Clinton.

Meanwhile on Campus


Via The Chronicle of Higher Education: “Her Students Asked About Police Shootings. So She Created a Guide for Them.” That’s Tricia Matthew, who also has a new book out, Written/Unwritten: Diversity and the Hidden Truths of Tenure.

Yale is rich as hell, and The New York Times is on it: “The Money Management Gospel of Yale’s Endowment Guru.”

Via NPR: “Out Of Options, This School Got Uber To Pick Up Its Students.”

More in the presidential politics section above about racist and sexist attacks on students following the election of Trump.

Accreditation and Certification


Open Badges, BlockCerts, and high-stakes credentialing” by Doug Belshaw.

Go, School Sports Team!


Via Inside Higher Ed: “The University of Wisconsin at Madison on Wednesday announced that it was banning fans from bringing nooses and ropes to its football stadium.”

This Week in Betteridge’s Law of Headlines


Via Education Dive: “ Is Snapchat the future of the virtual college tour?”

Via Edsurge: “Making Video Games for Higher Ed Requires Major Investment. Is It Worth It?”

(Reminder: according to Betteridge’s Law of Headlines, “Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no.”)

Upgrades and Downgrades


Inside Higher Ed profiles homework help company Course Hero. “Websites that offer students online study guides and tutoring services grow, but faculty members find they raise copyright and academic integrity issues – as case at U Illinois at Urbana-Champaign shows.” (The company has raised over $17 million in venture funding from investors including GSV.)

Inside Higher Ed also profiles The Affordable College Public Benefit Corporation, “a network, marketplace and app that helps students transfer from community colleges with more credits to the university that fits their career and degree goals.” (According to Crunchbase, at least, it has raised $18,000 in funding.)

“The Failure of the iPad Classroom” by David Sax.

Via EdWeek’s Market Brief: “Officials at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, one of the largest K–12 content providers, admitted on Nov. 3 that the company had lost 3 to 4 percent market share in the domestic education market, largely because of a failure to create new reading programs for California’s latest English/language arts adoption.”

From the press release: “Jisc Collections and Elsevier Sign Landmark UK Agreement, Securing Access to Research Publications and Initiating Open Science Collaboration.”

Facebook’s ‘Free’ Internet Will Harm Low-Income Consumers,” says Wired.

Funding and Acquisitions (The Business of Ed-Tech)


Via Edsurge: “New Markets Venture Partners Adds $30 Million, Former Gates Foundation Executive to Edtech Fund.” Some of New Markets Venture Partner’s investments include BetterLesson, Credly, Civitas Learning, and Mashable.

Smartstudy has raised $29.54 million from Golden Brick Capital, Haitong International Securities Group, and Nanfang Asset Management. The Chinese online learning company has raised $40.14 million total.

Indonesian online education company HarukaEdu has raised $2.2 million from Pearson Affordable Learning Fund (PALF), Samator Education, and CyberAgent Ventures.

The Jefferson Education Accelerator has invested $2 million in Formative, “a tool that lets teachers create, distribute and give feedback on assignments and exercises,” according to Edsurge.

Data, Privacy, and Surveillance


“Popular Discussion Platform Piazza Getting Pushback For Selling Student Data,” says Mindwire Consulting’s Phil Hill.

Via EdWeek’s Market Brief: “Calif. Attorney General Cautions Ed-Tech Companies on Data Privacy.”

Facebook Says it Will Stop Allowing Some Advertisers to Exclude Users by Race,” says ProPublica.

Via The Guardian: “The government’s controversial Prevent counter-radicalisation strategy is to be toughened rather than scaled back despite criticism that it is a toxic brand and a ‘big brother’ security operation among Britain’s Muslim communities.” This includes the surveillance of students.


Data and “Research”


Via Inside Higher Ed: “The U.S. Office of Management and Budget is considering revisions to its standards for collection of federal data on race and ethnicity – the first change those standards would see since 1997.”

Mindwire Consulting’s Phil Hill has data on what LMS is used by large online programs.

Via Tony Bates: “A survey of distance education in Brazil.”

Social media causes some users to rethink their views on an issue,” says Pew Research Center. Either way, I plan to be up in my friends’ grill on Facebook every time they share fake news on the site.

Via Times Higher Education: “Students on courses that combine online delivery with face-to-face interaction are the least satisfied in Times Higher Education’s US student survey.” Bravo, blended learning.

Edsurge is very interested in “what works” in ed-tech this week: Story 1: “Which Edtech Companies Are Producing the Best Research-Based Products?” Story 2: “What Data Will Show That Edtech ‘Works’?” (Note the ideological underpinnings here: “what works” is a product – it’s always a product – that has some of demonstrable impact through data, typically as a signal of “achievement.”)

Via NPR: “Middle School Suicides Reach An All-Time High.” Heckuva job, America. Heckuva job.

Icon credits: The Noun Project

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Audrey Watters


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