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

(National) Education Politics

Betsy DeVos Wants To Make It Easier For Religious Schools To Avoid Title IX,” says Buzzfeed.

Via The Verge: “CDC confirms that teens are vaping weed.” (Vaping is ed-tech IMO because Juul offers “mindset” curriculum.)

According to the EPA, one third of US schools are estimated to contain asbestos.

“Federal Education Spending Bill Would Boost Funding for Title IV, Career-Tech,” says EdWeek’s Market Brief.

“Ten years after the financial meltdown: what did it mean for education and the future?” asks Bryan Alexander.

(State and Local) Education Politics

Via The Dallas Morning News: “Texas board votes to eliminate Hillary Clinton, Helen Keller from history curriculum.”

Via the Phoenix New Times: “Meet the Creationist Helping to Change Arizona School Standards on Evolution.”

Via Edsurge: “Golden State GDPR: What the Edtech Industry Should Know About CA’s New Privacy Rules.”

“A government watchdog group called Florida’s growing system of privately-run public charter schools wasteful and said it sometimes gives rise to self-dealing and profiteering,” says The Florida Times-Union.

Via Chalkbeat: “Brooklyn middle schools eliminate ‘screening’ as New York City expands integration efforts.”

Immigration and Education

Via Chalkbeat: “How Chicago schools’ fingerprinting requirements are scaring away undocumented parents.”

“The Disappeared” – ProPublica’s Hannah Dreier on MS–13.

There’s some DACA-related news in the financial aid section below.

Education in the Courts

Via The Washington Post: “Political nonprofits must now name many of their donors under federal court ruling after Supreme Court declines to intervene.”

Via Techdirt: “Ninth Circuit Says No, You Fucking May Not Arrest A Bunch Of Middle School Students To ‘Prove A Point’.”

Via The Atlantic: “Brett Kavanaugh, Mark Judge, and the Romanticizing of Teenage Indiscretion.”

Via The Guardian: “‘No accident’ Brett Kavanaugh’s female law clerks ‘looked like models’, Yale professor told students.”

Puerto Rico Senator Abel Nazario-Quiñones (who among his roles in the Senate is the Chairman of the Commission on Education and University Reform of the Senate) “ was arrested and charged in a 39-count indictment alleging the making or use of false documents and wire fraud,” according to the Department of Justice press release.

“Free College”

Via NPR: “Rice University Says Middle-Class And Low-Income Students Won’t Have To Pay Tuition.”

The Business of Financial Aid

Via Inside Higher Ed: “The Education Department received about 28,000 applications for Public Service Loan Forgiveness as of June 30 of this year but so far has approved just under 300 applications for loan discharge, according to new federal data released Wednesday.”

There’s more data on student loans down in the research section below. There’s also an article on financial aid and cybersecurity in the data and surveillance section below.

Via Inside Higher Ed: “Colorado Mountain College today announced the creation of an income-share agreement fund aimed at undocumented students and others who are not eligible to receive federal financial aid, including Dreamers, or students who are eligible for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.” As I predicted, ISAs are going to be targeted towards the most vulnerable. No wonder venture capitalists love the idea.

The “New” For-Profit Higher Ed

There’s more data about student loan forgiveness for those defrauded by for-profits in the financial aid section above.

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

Via Class Central: “MOOCs May Still Be Reshaping Higher Education, Just Not In the Way That Was Initially Predicted.”

From the press release: “Colorado State University-Global Campus Partners with to Offer Adults Tuition-Free Courses Towards Their Degree.”

“Big Online Courses Have a Problem. Here’s How We Tried to Fix It” by Dan Meyer.

Wait, Sebastian Thrun has another new startup!? Focus! You’ll never dismantle higher education if you don’t focus!

There’s more MOOC news in the contests and competition section below.

Meanwhile on Campus…

Via The Intercept: “Koch-Funded Think Tank Linked to George Mason University Is Now Pretending It’s Not Part of George Mason University.”

Via The Chronicle of Higher Education: “Are Colleges Failing ‘Haidt’s Choice’? Betsy DeVos Says Yes. Jonathan Haidt Isn’t So Sure.” Related: John Warner has penned a great review of Haidt’s new book.

Harvard has apparently raised $9.62 billion over five years. Harvard should take that money and pay for a chunk of everyone not at Harvard to go to school for free.

Via Edsurge: “One HBCU Hopes Its ‘$10,000 Degree Pathway’ Will Win Over Students Considering For-Profit Alternatives.” The HBCU in question: Fayetteville State University.

Via The Post and Courier: “Charleston Mandarin language charter school faces closure 1 month after opening.”

Via The New York Times: “Rethinking What Gifted Education Means, and Whom It Should Serve.”

Via The Atlantic: “Why Schools Are Banning Yoga.”

Also via The Atlantic: “The Curse of America’s Illogical School-Day Schedule.”

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

Via Medium: “How Active Shooter Drills Became a Big (and Possibly Traumatizing) Business.”

Via The Washington Post: “ ‘You should feel unsettled when viewing these.’ Gun-control statues aim to evoke students’ terror during lockdowns.”

Accreditations and Certifications and Competencies

Shout out to everyone promoting Ethereum for education and blockchain-based transcripts! Via Buzzfeed: “A Cryptocurrency Pioneer Wrote About Sex With A Preteen Girl On His Blog. He Says It Was Fiction.” See also, via The Hechinger Report: “Blockchain arrives on college campuses.”


“After the SAT make-up test was given this weekend, reports again circulated on social media that the make-up test included many questions from an SAT widely available in Asia,” says Inside Higher Ed.

Go, School Sports Team!

Via WSUA9: “DCPS allows homeless student to play football after ‘residency concerns’.”

Labor and Management

Via the Columbia Spectator: “Columbia postdoctoral workers gain employee status, to hold vote to unionize following NLRB ruling.”

Via Buzzfeed: “Cornell Just Found Brian Wansink Guilty Of Scientific Misconduct And He Has Resigned.”

The Business of Job Training (and Educational Benefits for Employees)

Via the MIT Technology Review: “Walmart will use VR headsets to train all its US employees.”

Via Edsurge: “Google, Expanding on HBCU Pilot, Launches ‘Tech Exchange’ to Boost Diversity in Industry.”

University of Oregon to Launch Coding Bootcamp,” says the Campus Technology headline. Actually it’s Trilogy Education’s bootcamp, as the UO is outsourcing instruction to this company.

Contests and Awards

Via the edX blog: “EdX Wins Yidan Prize in Education Development.”

This Week in Betteridge’s Law of Headlines

Jeff Bezos is spending $2 billion to help the homeless and educate poor kids. Sounds good. Is it?asks The Washington Post.

Can Pearson Sell Efficacy?asks Michael Feldstein.

France Bans Smartphones in Schools Through 9th Grade. Will It Help Students?asks The New York Times.

(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 Futurism: People Are Zapping Their Brains to Boost Creativity. Experts Have Concerns." Phew. Good thing no ed-tech publication has promoted brain zapping!

Peter Thiel’s argument that Silicon Valley has been ‘brainwashed’ by higher education is tired,” says Techcrunch. No. It’s fucking ludicrous is what it is.

“A Short History of CRAAPby Mike Caulfield.

Via Verge: “Why it matters that Bert and Ernie are gay, which they are.” (More Bert and Ernie stories in the research section below.)

Via Edsurge: “Kahoot Launches First-Ever Premium Version for Schools.”

Also via Edsurge: “Conrad Wolfram: Let’s Build a New Math Curriculum That Assumes Computers Exist.”

“Here’s A Font That Lets You Cheat On Your Term Papers,” says Buzzfeed.

Blackboard is rebranding Moodlerooms as Blackboard Open LMS. Because “open.”

Via Edsurge: “What U.S. Companies Should Know About Asia’s Edtech Market.”

Robots and Other Education Science Fiction

Via the BBC: “IBM launches tool aimed at detecting AI bias.” LOL.

The Hechinger Report lists “Ten jobs that are safe from robots.” I’m gonna go out on a limb and say that if your job is detecting AI bias – despite IBM’s new tool – you are also safe.

Via Forbes: “Building Brains: How Pearson Plans To Automate Education With AI.”

(Venture) Philanthropy and the Business of Education Reform

Via Chalkbeat: “What’s next for the Laurene Powell Jobs-funded effort to rethink American high schools.” Clearly it involves subsidizing a bunch of education journalism.

Content on Edsurge, sponsored by the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, this week includes this story on LeBron James’ I Promise School ,and this story on the “Genius Hour”, and this story on one-on-one time with students.

Content on Edsurge, sponsored by the Gates Foundation, this week includes this story on computer science.

Via the AP: “Bill Gates calls for more global education assessments data.”

Via The New York Times: “Jeff Bezos Cites a Big Number, but Few Details, in Plan for Low-Income Montessori Preschools.”

Rachel Cohen says, “Don’t Trust Jeff Bezos’s Preschool Philanthropy Scheme.”

Via The Seattle Times: “Bezos family gifts $3 million to shape UW’s early education work.”

Venture Capital and the Business of Education

Higher Ground Education has acquired Montessorium.

Bertelsmann has acquired OnCourse Learning.

Data, Surveillance, and Information Security

This, on the Chinese “social credit” system and the potential for a “digital dictatorship” is pretty chilling.

Via The Washington Post: “Education Department warns that students on financial aid are being targeted in phishing attacks.”

Via The New York Times: “New Pressure on Google and YouTube Over Children’s Data.”

This is bad. Via the Insurance Journal: “John Hancock Will Only Sell Interactive Life Insurance with Fitness Data Tracking.”

This is also bad. Via The Verge: “Google’s Family Link can now turn off your teen’s phone during dinner.”

There’s another story on data and privacy up in the state and local politics section above.

Via EdWeek’s Market Brief: “Venture Capital Firm, Standards-Setting Group Forge Partnership Around Interoperability.” That is, New Markets Venture Partners and the IMS Global Learning Consortium.

Via Moodle News: “Amid Low Adoption, DoD R&D Will Keep xAPI Alive And That’s Good News.”

Research, “Research,” and Reports

Via Ars Technica: “Study: people tend to cluster into four distinct personality ‘types’.” So says an algorithm so it must be true.

Via the Shanker Institute blog: “The Teacher Diversity Data Landscape.”

Via The Hechinger Report: “Black students default on college loans at a higher rate than others, study finds.”

Via Inside Higher Ed: “The average student loan debt last year for graduates of four-year colleges who took out loans was $28,650, according to the latest version of an annual report from the Institute for College Access and Success (TICAS).” (About 65% of students graduate with debt.)

Via Education Week: “‘Homework Gap’ Hits Minority, Impoverished Students Hardest, Survey Finds.”

Also via Education Week: “Charter School 4th Graders: Less Access to Computers in School, More At Home.”

Via Inside Higher Ed: “National poll finds more appreciation of colleges than other surveys have. In some areas, including affirmative action, sexual assault and mental health, the public isn’t impressed. Public institutions earn more confidence than private ones.”

Are Bert and Ernie Gay? We Checked the Research,” says Pacific Standard.

From the Harvard press release about the research: “Substantial racial stereotyping toward young children of color found among white adults who work with them.”

Via The Hechinger Report: “Early evidence of a ‘Trump effect’ on bullying in schools.”

I’m not sure I understand the point of this study, but apparently students who have a job when they graduate earn more money than students who do not have a job.

Icon credits: The Noun Project

Audrey Watters


Hack Education

The History of the Future of Education Technology

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