Each week, I gather a wide variety of links to education and education technology articles. All this feeds the review I write each December on the stories we are told about the future of education.

(National) Education Politics

Former Secretary of Education Arne Duncan is making the rounds to promote his new book. Via CBS News: “Former Education Secretary Arne Duncan says U.S. education system ‘not top 10 in anything’.” Via The Atlantic: “Arne Duncan: ’Everyone Says They Value Education, but Their Actions Don’t Follow’.”

In other Secretaries of Education News, Newsweek asks “Why Does Betsy DeVos’s Family Yacht Fly a Foreign Flag?” Spoiler alert: so she doesn’t have to pay taxes.

Updates on the Department of Education’s plans to scrap the “gainful employment rules” are down in the for-profit higher ed section.

Updates on the Trump Administration’s plans for accreditation in the accreditation section below.

Via Edsurge: “Why the FCC’s E-rate Makes Funding High-Speed Internet a Slow Crawl.”

Via Education Week: “Cyberattacks During FCC‘s ’Net Neutrality’ Fight? Didn’t Happen, Agency Now Says.”

(State and Local) Education Politics

Via Chalkbeat: “State investigation: Denver violated federal rules, delayed services to students with disabilities.”

The Huffington Post on vouchers in Florida: “A new program in Florida is supposed to help victims of bullying switch to private schools. But many of these private schools don’t accept LGBTQ kids, and use historically inaccurate, bigoted curricula.”

Via The Boston Globe: “Boston’s schools are becoming resegregated.”

The Atlantic’s Melinda D. Anderson interviews Vanessa Siddle Walker about her new book, The Lost Education of Horace Tate: Uncovering the Hidden Heroes Who Fought for Justice in Schools.

Via NPR: Illinois “Lawmakers Looking At How Public Schools Handle Private Data.”

Via The Dallas Morning News: “Dwaine Caraway resigns from Dallas City Council, pleads guilty to federal corruption charges.” More details: “The 66-year-old Caraway, who has also served as the city’s interim mayor, admitted to accepting $450,000 in bribes and kickbacks from two key figures in the scandal that last year brought down the school bus agency Dallas County Schools; Bob Leonard, who owned the stop-arm camera company that took millions from DCS; and Slater Swartwood Sr., an associate of Leonard’s.”

“The Wisconsin Governor’s Race Might Be Decided by Education,” says The Atlantic.

Via EdWeek’s Market Brief: “To Bolster K–3 Literacy, North Carolina Provides 24,000 iPads for Reading Teachers.”

There’s some Ohio and Indiana news in the online education section below.

Immigration and Education

Via Inside Higher Ed: “Judge Orders DACA Be Restored.” More via Slate.

Via Buzzfeed: “In A State That Voted For Trump, The Teachers Rallied When ICE Raided A Rural Nebraska Town.”

Inside Higher Ed writes about the claim, made by Politico, that “President Trump characterized the vast majority of Chinese students in the U.S. as spies during a dinner Tuesday night with CEOs at his private golf club in New Jersey.”

Education in the Courts

Via Education Week: “Students With Disabilities Sue ACT Over Release of Personal Information.”

Via Reuters: “EU’s top court backs copyright holder in landmark ruling.” The details: “The Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ) ruling came after a secondary school student in Germany downloaded a photograph of Cordoba from a travel website to illustrate a presentation which was then published on the school website.”

Via SFGate: “Brock Turner loses appeal of his conviction in Stanford sexual assault case.”

The Business of Financial Aid

Via The Third Way: “Want More Students To Pay Down Their Loans? Help Them Graduate.”

The “New” For-Profit Higher Ed

Via The Chronicle of Higher Education: “Education Dept. Proposes Tossing Gainful-Employment Rule, Which Took Aim at For-Profit Colleges.” More via Inside Higher Ed.

Online Education (and the Once and Future “MOOC”)

“The Saga of Ohio’s Embattled E-School Is Coming to an End,” writes Education Week’s Ben Herold.

Via Chalkbeat: “Hoosiers paid $1 million for a rural district to oversee online charter schools. Is it too much?”

IBM has joined edX.

Meanwhile on Campus…

Via The Outline: “Racism and the battle of free speech at Evergreen State College.”

Via The Chronicle of Higher Education: “BYU Is Under Fire, Again, for Punishing Sex-Assault Victims.”

Via The Hechinger Report: “Panicked universities in search of students are adding thousands of new majors.”

Yes, Guns Are Ed-Tech (and It’s So F*cked Up that I Had to Make This a Category)

Via The Atlantic: “School-Security Companies Are Thriving in the Era of Mass Shootings.”

Via The New York Times: “Secret Service Issues Guide to Help Prevent School Shootings.”

Via The AP: “Man at New Mexico Compound Accused of Training Kids for School Attacks.”

Accreditations and Certifications and Competencies

Via Inside Higher Ed: “Office led by President Trump’s son-in-law holds a series of meetings on higher education policy, signaling high-level attention from the administration.” His son-in-law is Jared Kushner, of course. (Related: the education investment portfolio of Kushner’s brother; the ed-tech connections of Kushner’s wife.)


There’s more testing-related news in the legal section above.

Go, School Sports Team!

Via The News & Observer: “‘Like you just have no brain after the game.’ Inside a UNC lineman’s concussion ordeal.”

Via Inside Higher Ed: “The NCAA plans new rules for the sport it says will minimize corruption – among them, allowing agents the association certifies to represent college players.”

Labor and Management

Via Inside Higher Ed: “Southern Cal President Steps Down, Immediately.” The university announced he would do so in May.

The Business of Job Training

Via Edsurge: “Amazon Pumps More Than a Half Million Dollars into Coding Education in Canada.”

Via Techcrunch: “Facebook launches Mentorships, matching people within Groups to help them guide each other.”

This Week in Betteridge’s Law of Headlines

Does the Magic Leap One, and the Promise AR, Matter to Higher Ed?asks IHE’s Joshua Kim.

Do Pre-Packaged Kits Belong in Makerspaces?asks Edsurge.

(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

Via Buzzfeed: “Internal Facebook Note: Here Is A ‘Psychological Trick’ To Target Teens.”

“The Common App Will Stop Asking About Students’ Criminal Histories,” writes The Atlantic.

Google has updated its pseudo-LMS, Classroom. Google blogs; tech publications help market the news.

More Google PR, this time from The Verge: “Google is adding ARCore support to the Chromebook Tab 10 with Classroom updates.”

More Google PR, this time from Edsurge: “What It’s Like to Be a Teacher Vlogger Star on YouTube.”

Mindwires Consulting’s Phil Hill onSchoology, NEO, Claroline, Chamilo: The beginning of the LMS long tail.”

And via Mindwires Consulting’s Michael Feldstein: “Instructure Enters those Awkward Teenage Years.” (Instructure is, in fact, 8.)

NPR on the latest show from Sesame Workshop.

Commentary via Education Week fights cliche with cliche: “No, Fortnite Isn’t Rotting Kids’ Brains. It May Even Be Good for Them.” This line though: “From purely a safety standpoint, playing digital laser tag is probably safer than having crabapple battles with garbage can lids as shields like we did.” I mean, I guess you’re safer if you never play outside.

Arguably, a much more interesting look at gaming and education is this, from Phil McAndrew, on D&D: “Critical Hits in the Classroom.”

Campus Technology makes the case for “Why Higher Ed Should Do More with Blockchain Tech” – that is, according to a conference held at (wait for it…) Oral Roberts University.

“Whatever Happened to Channel One?” asks Larry Cuban.

Robots and Other Education Science Fiction

“What if Your Favorite Teacher was a Robot?” asks the Kauffman Foundation.

Via Techcrunch: “Ibuki is the 10-year-old robot child that will haunt your dreams.”

(Venture) Philanthropy and the Business of Education Reform

Via The New York Times: “How Tech Billionaires Hack Their Taxes With a Philanthropic Loophole.” Related: “Why did Elon Musk stash a quarter-billion dollars of Tesla stock in a non-profit back in 2016?” asks The Outline.

The Clayton Christensen Institute’s Julia Freeland Fisher on how “LeBron James Is Schooling Us on What Education Reform Got Wrong.”

Venture Capital and the Business of Education

I am sensing a trend here… preschool management companies. Wonderschool has raised $20 million from Omidyar Network, Gary Community Investments, Round Capital, Andreessen Horowitz, Jeff Jordan, and Abstract Ventures. The company has raised $24.1 million total.

Edmit has raised $1.4 million in seed funding from Founder Collective. The college search engine has raised $2.3 million total.

“Career accelerator” Pathrise has raised $1.2 million in seed funding from Western Technology Investment, Quero Education, Long Venture Partners, LetsVenture, Kutlu Kazanci, and GoAhead Ventures.

Procare Software has raised an undisclosed amount of money from Warburg Pincus. The childcare management tech provider also acquired Cirrus Group, which also makes similar software.

Daekyo, a Korean tutoring center, has acquired the adaptive math company KnowRe.

Elsevier has acquired Aries Systems.

Data, Surveillance, and Information Security

There’s a data-related court case in the legal section above.

Via “Unixiz Agrees to Shutter ’i-Dressup’ Site and Pay Penalty to Settle Charges Under COPPA and the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act.”

Research, “Research,” and Reports

Via Chalkbeat: “Eight years ago, the L.A. Times published teachers’ ratings. New research tells us what happened next.”

There are more research/reports on student loans in “the business of financial aid” section above.

Via Chalkbeat: “Students’ math scores drop for years after using a private school voucher in country’s largest program.”

Via Inside Higher Ed: “Growth in several higher education revenue streams has been better than expected for 2018, Moody’s Investors Service says in a new report – but the ratings agency nonetheless maintained a negative outlook for the sector due to flat enrollment and limited expected growth in tuition and fees.”

Via The New York Times: “Workplace Wellness Programs Don’t Work Well. Why Some Studies Show Otherwise.” Good thing ed-tech isn’t promoting a whole “wellness” thing.

Via e-Literate: “Welcome Change: OpenStax using more accurate data on student textbook expenditures.”

Via Time: “How Your Brain Tricks You Into Believing Fake News.”

Via The Atlantic: “Student Journalism in the Age of Media Distrust.”

Icon credits: The Noun Project

Audrey Watters


Hack Education

The History of the Future of Education Technology

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