Your West Valley News: Learning

Learning

  • Glendale Police on alert after stranger follows girl to school

    Glendale Police is increasing its presence at a local school after a girl reported someone following her on Thursday.A 12-year-old student was on her way to Sierra Verde Elementary School near 7200 W. Rose Garden Lane when she was followed by a male adult.The girl reported to the police that she saw the man while walking to school and believed he had followed her. Once she got near the school she reported he grabbed her by the backpack.The student was not physically harmed. The Glendale Police Department will be patrolling the area with heightened presence before and after school.This incident occurred Dec. 8 at about 8:40 a.m. and police officials are in the early stages of the investigation. The matter remains under investigation at this time.Incidents like this highlight the importance of parents maintaining open lines of communication with their children to ensure children are comfortable sharing information:

  • Peoria Traditional School hosts open house Dec. 13

    Peoria Traditional School will have an open house at 9 a.m., Tuesday, Dec. 13.Peoria Traditional School is on the Coyote Hills Elementary School campus, 21180 N. 87th Ave., Peoria.Families interested in learning more about traditional education are invited to the open house, which will give an overview and tour. The tour will highlight the Peoria Traditional School, a school of choice and one of Peoria Unified’s 11 Signature Programs.The tour is open to any parent of an elementary school student who is looking for a more traditional school setting with a strong focus on character, patriotism and high standards for academics and behavior, all while in the K-12 public education setting.Uniform attire is required of all students who attend this free traditional school. The tour will include an introduction to the school’s principal, Mr. Erik Stone, his staff and classroom observations in a smaller learning environment designed to challenge students.The Peoria Traditional School is a K-8 elementary school housed within existing classrooms on the Coyote Hills campus. As a school of choice, the Peoria Traditional School is not defined by geographical boundaries.

  • Math a concern for US teens; science, reading flat on test

    WASHINGTON (AP) — American students have a math problem.The latest global snapshot of student performance shows declining math scores in the U.S. and stagnant performance in science and reading."We're losing ground — a troubling prospect when, in today's knowledge-based economy, the best jobs can go anywhere in the world," said Education Secretary John B. King Jr. "Students in Massachusetts, Maryland, and Minnesota aren't just vying for great jobs along with their neighbors or across state lines, they must be competitive with peers in Finland, Germany, and Japan."Math was a stubborn concern. "This pattern that we're seeing in mathematics seems to be consistent with what we've seen in previous assessments ... everything is just going down," said Peggy Carr, acting commissioner at the National Center for Education Statistics.The 2015 Program for International Student Assessment, or PISA, study is the latest to document that American students are underperforming their peers in several Asian nations. The U.S. was below the international average in math and about average in science and reading. Singapore was the top performer in all three subjects on the PISA test.More than half a million 15-year-old students in about 70 nations and educational systems took part in the 2015 exam. The test is coordinated by the Paris-based Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, or OECD.Here are the main things to know about the PISA exams:___U.S. SCORES AND RANKINGSNot so encouraging.The test is based on a 1,000-point scale. Among the findings:-In math, the U.S. average score was 470, below the international average of 490. Average scores ranged from 564 in Singapore to 328 in the Dominican Republic.-In science, the U.S. average score was 496, about the same as the international average of 493. Average scores ranged from 556 in Singapore to 332 in the Dominican Republic.-In reading, the U.S. average score was 497, around the same as the international average of 493. Average scores ranged from 535 in Singapore to 347 in Lebanon.Average scores in math have been on the decline since 2009, and scores in reading and science have been flat during that same time period.Across the globe, American students were outperformed by their counterparts in 36 countries in math; 18 countries in science and 14 countries in reading._____SO, WHAT IS GOING ON WITH MATH?Andreas Schleicher, director of education and skills at OECD, says high-performing countries do really well in math in three things: rigor, focus, and coherence.For example, he says, many high-performing countries will teach a lot less but focus at much greater depths, particularly when you look at East Asia, Japan and Singapore."Students are often good at answering the first layer of a problem in the United States," said Schleicher. "But as soon as students have to go deeper and answer the more complex part of a problem, they have difficulties."_____WHAT PEOPLE ARE SAYING ABOUT HOW THE U.S. STACKS UP—"The latest U.S. PISA achievement results are disappointing but not surprising," said Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers. "They were predictable given the impact of the last 15 years of U.S. education policies combined with continuing state disinvestment following the 2008 recession. Thirty-one states still spend less per pupil than before the recession."— "This stagnant performance on PISA by U.S. students in the last four years once again affirms our belief that the U.S. would be well served to take a hard look at the strategies used by the top-performing education systems and adapt lessons learned from them to fit the U.S. context and needs," said Marc Tucker, president of the National Center on Education and the Economy. "It is critical to look not only at their average high performance, but also at the strategies they use to achieve much greater equity across and within schools compared to the United States."____OTHER FINDINGSGlobally, gender differences in science tended to be smaller than in reading and math. But, on average, in 33 countries and economies, the share of top performers in science is larger among boys than among girls. Finland was the only country where girls were more likely to be top performers than boys.Across OECD countries, on average, the gender gap in reading in favor of girls narrowed by 12 points between 2009 and 2015.Massachusetts, North Carolina, and Puerto Rico participated as international benchmarking systems and received separate scores from the United States. Massachusetts's average scores were higher than the U.S. and the international average scores in science, math and reading. North Carolina's average scores were not statistically different from the U.S. average scores for all three subjects. And Puerto Rico's average scores were lower than both the average U.S. scores and the international average scores for all three subjects.____ABOUT THE TEST AND COMPARISONSThe PISA test is conducted every three years. Schools in each country are randomly selected, and OECD says the selection of schools and students is kept as inclusive as possible so that student samples are drawn from a broad range of backgrounds and abilities.Another international test, known as the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study, or TIMSS, had similar international comparisons with Asian countries solidly outperforming American students. That test, though, administered every four years to a random sampling of younger students in dozens of countries, had eighth graders in the U.S. improving their scores in math, up nine points. Scores for science, however, were flat. In fourth grade, scores were unchanged in math and science.

  • PUSD accepts enrollment for 2017-18

    Peoria Unified School District is accepting enrollment applications for the 2017-18 school year.Enrollment applications can be picked up in the front offices of all Peoria Unified schools or online at www.peoriaunified.org.Peoria Unified offers free full-day kindergarten and has a wide variety of opportunities available for every child, including athletics, arts education, special needs, gifted education, language immersion and more.Studentsc urrently enrolled in their neighborhood school in Peoria Unified will not need to reapply. Parents whose students wish to change schools or who are new to the district will need to complete an open enrollment packet and return it to the school that they wish to attend in the 2017-18 school year.Families whose students are currently on open enrollment will receive a new open enrollment application shortly after Winter Break. Open enrollment applications are ongoing and will be reviewed in the order that they are received for the 2017-18 school year.Open enrollment also provides an opportunity for parents to request that their child attend a school that is outside of their residential boundary area. Parents may consider this option if their child is interested in becoming a part of a specific Signature Program.

  • Five Dysart USD schools go on modified lockdown early Wednesday, no threats

    The Dysart Unified School District lifted its modified lockdown on five of its schools after police investigated an incident in the area Wednesday morning. There were no threats or concerns to the schools, but the lockdown was conducted out of an abundance of caution, the district had tweeted.Surprise Police concluded its investigation and there is no longer a threat in the neighborhood.Cimarron Springs, Sunset Hills and Western Peaks elementary schools, Canyon Ridge School and Willow Canyon High School were under a modified lockdown as Surprise Police investigated a possible suicidal subject in the area, according to a police spokesperson.Under a modified lockdown, students and staff are moved to or remain in the classrooms and perimeter doors are locked, including the front office. Classroom instruction continues as normal until law enforcement can give an 'All Clear.'

  • Diane Douglas proposes $680 million plan for schools

    PHOENIX -- State schools chief Diane Douglas wants an immediate boost in state aid to schools plus additional dollars to attract and retain teachers. In a plan unveiled Tuesday, Douglas also wants the state to live up to its obligation to pay for new schools rather than once again putting the burden on local taxpayers. And she said lawmakers and the governor should boost the money they are giving schools for maintenance. The $680 million price tag for what she wants would be above and beyond the $3.5 billion voters approved earlier this year in Proposition 123 for schools in the coming decade -- about $350 million a year or about $300 per student. Douglas defended the expensive proposal. "As a state, do we want Arizona to have the best education system in the nation and in the world for our children, or simply the cheapest system we can get by with politically?'' she asked. And she said there is money out there. pointing out the state has about $450 million in it's "rainy day'' fund. 

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The Closed Mind of Mitch

by Mitch McConnell Sentinel, 278 pp., $28.00 by Alec MacGillis Simon and Schuster, 141 pp., $14.00 (paper) In 1977, a bored Republican lawyer …

Published: December 10, 2016 - 10:43 am @ http://www.nybooks.com/articles/2016/11/10/closed-…

Breaking News: Climate Scare Is Over!

Infowars speaks with Lord Christopher Monckton at the Freedom Force International conference in Phoenix, Arizona, who says he’s pinpointed the…

Published: December 10, 2016 - 10:41 am @ http://www.infowars.com/breaking-news-climate-scar…

Trump gloats over Blacks who did not turn out to vote

On a “thank you” victory tour across the country Friday, President-elect Donald Trump claimed that low voter turnout among African Americans h…

Published: December 10, 2016 - 10:13 am @ https://thinkprogress.org/trump-black-voters-didnt…

Advocates Call Alabama Execution an 'Avoidable Disaster'

Defenders of a condemned inmate in Alabama are calling his execution an "avoidable disaster," but the state prison commissioner says there was…

Published: December 10, 2016 - 10:12 am @ http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/advocates-call-…

Earthquake registered north of Phoenix area Friday night

The United States Geological Survey reported an earthquake with an epicenter north of the Valley just before 8 p.m.

Published: December 10, 2016 - 10:09 am @ http://www.12news.com/news/local/valley/earthquake…

Flames engulf Phoenix hoarder house; firefighters can't make access

PHOENIX (KPHO/KTVK) - A passerby noticed a house filled with smoke Saturday morning and notified the fire department. It turned out the fire i…

Published: December 10, 2016 - 10:02 am @ http://www.cbs5az.com/story/34021630/hoarder-house…

What if the internet could make Casey Affleck the last Casey Affleck?

If you buy into the current hype around this year’s Academy Awards, Casey Affleck is the current front-runner for Best Actor. He’s already won…

Published: December 10, 2016 - 9:43 am @ http://www.theverge.com/2016/12/8/13836786/casey-a…

Phoenix fire crews battling 1st-alarm fire at confirmed hoarder home

PHOENIX - The Phoenix Fire Department was called out to a house fire near 19th Avenue and Bell Road early Saturday morning. After arriving on …

Published: December 10, 2016 - 9:31 am @ http://www.abc15.com/news/region-phoenix-metro/nor…

California judge rejects pimping charges against website heads, citing free speech

A California judge rejected pimping charges on Friday against the operators of a major international website advertising escort services that …

Published: December 10, 2016 - 9:31 am @ https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/dec/10/ba…

Portland slaps stiffer taxes on companies where CEO earns 100 times what workers do

Portland, Ore., city council passed a law Wednesday that will charge businesses a higher tax rate if their chief executive officer gets paid m…

Published: December 10, 2016 - 9:01 am @ http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/portland-ceo-pay-1.3886955

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