Wednesday, June 11th, 2014
A teacher’s aide in a rural Pennsylvania elementary school has allegedly fed fourth grade students pet treats the kids were told were cookies or crackers. Reuters has more:
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It was unclear how many children ate the pet treats, but the part-time worker at Upper Frederick elementary school in New Hanover gave them to about 75 students on Thursday, Richard Faidley, the Boyerton Area School District superintendent, said in a statement seen by Reuters.
It was unclear what might have motivated the aide to hand out the pet treats to students. The worker at the school, which is about 30 miles (48 km) northwest of Philadelphia, has been placed on leave pending the results of an investigation, the statement said.
“The treats may have been misrepresented as cookies or crackers,” Faidley said in the statement released on Friday.
Faidley could not be reached for comment on Saturday.
“Our research on the product indicates that the treat ingredients would not be harmful to people, with the exception for those individuals with specific food allergies,” Faidley’s statement said.
One student at the school, Gabriel Moore, told local television station WFMZ that he ate three of the treats.
“She made it look like it was a joke that they were dog treats and then she came around and said, ‘No they are cookies. They are fine,’” Gabriel told the station.
Friday, January 31st, 2014
As many as 40 children at a Salt Lake City elementary school had their school lunches taken away after the school discovered the children had outstanding balances on their lunch accounts, as The Salt Lake Tribune reports:
“It was pretty traumatic and humiliating,” said Erica Lukes, whose 11-year-old daughter had her cafeteria lunch taken from her as she stood in line Tuesday at Uintah Elementary School, 1571 E. 1300 South.
Lukes said as far as she knew, she was all paid up. “I think it’s despicable,” she said. “These are young children that shouldn’t be punished or humiliated for something the parents obviously need to clear up.”
Jason Olsen, a Salt Lake City District spokesman, said the district’s child-nutrition department became aware that Uintah had a large number of students who owed money for lunches.
As a result, the child-nutrition manager visited the school and decided to withhold lunches to deal with the issue, he said.
But cafeteria workers weren’t able to see which children owed money until they had already received lunches, Olsen explained.
The workers then took those lunches from the students and threw them away, he said, because once food is served to one student it can’t be served to another.
Children whose lunches were taken were given milk and fruit instead.
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Image: School lunch, via Shutterstock
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Wednesday, January 29th, 2014
An anti-bullying curriculum that was tested at three elementary and middle schools in Illinois has shown promising results, including reported improvements in key areas including respect, positive communication and social behaviors, awareness and understanding of bullying, school climate, and self-esteem. More from ScienceDaily.com:
“It’s just as important to teach empathy to students as it is to teach them science,” says Jennifer E. Beebe, assistant professor of counseling and human services at Canisius College. “We can increase consciousness of positive behaviors by incorporating those ideals into the educational system. Many students may not learn them otherwise.”
Beebe completed a study which involved disrespect, bullying behaviors and physical aggression with 300 elementary and middle school students in three schools in Illinois. The behaviors were negatively impacting students’ academic achievement and school attendance. In many cases, these behaviors crossed over into the cyber world. Beebe’s research was sponsored by a grant from The Canisius College School of Education and Human Services.
Students learned several tenets from martial arts during a 12-week long mentoring program which was integrated into students’ regular classroom lessons for approximately one hour. “Students were taught such concepts as loyalty, obedience and respect.” Beebe adds.
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Image: Classroom, via Shutterstock
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anti-bullying, bullying, curriculum, Education, elementary school, middle school, respect, schools, self-esteem | Categories:
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Tuesday, June 25th, 2013
Coy Mathis, a transgender 6-year-old who identifies as a female but was born a male, has won a decision by the Colorado Civil Rights Division that will enable her to use the girls’ bathroom at school. Mathis’ parents filed their complaint in February after Eagleside Elementary School rescinded the child’s permission to use the girls’ bathroom. More from NBC News:
By not allowing Coy to use the girls’ restroom, the school “creates an environment rife with harassment,” Steven Chavez, the division director, wrote in the decision.
The school district, about 15 miles south of Colorado Springs, Colo., also showed “a lack of understanding of the complexity of transgender issues” by referring to Coy as a male or using quotes around “her” throughout the litigation, Chavez wrote.
The school district could not be reached for comment on the ruling Sunday.
Coy was born a male, but began at an early age to identify as a girl through toys and dress and started calling herself a girl between the ages of 4 and 6, according to the summary of the division’s ruling.
Image: Girls’ bathroom, via Shutterstock
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Tuesday, June 11th, 2013
A growing number of elementary schools across the country are returning to “ability grouping,” a practice that groups students not by age, but by school level. The practice was popular in the 1980s and 90s, but fell out of favor amid discomfort from parents who feared the policy was unequal and placed poor and minority students at a disadvantage. More from The New York Times:
A new analysis from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, a Census-like agency for school statistics, shows that of the fourth-grade teachers surveyed, 71 percent said they had grouped students by reading ability in 2009, up from 28 percent in 1998. In math, 61 percent of fourth-grade teachers reported ability grouping in 2011, up from 40 percent in 1996.
“These practices were essentially stigmatized,” said Tom Loveless, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who first noted the returning trend in a March report, and who has studied the grouping debate. “It’s kind of gone underground, it’s become less controversial.”
The resurgence of ability grouping comes as New York City grapples with the state of its gifted and talented programs — a form of tracking in some public schools in which certain students, selected through testing, take accelerated classes together.
These programs, which serve about 3 percent of the elementary school population, are dominated by white and Asian students.
Christine C. Quinn, the City Council speaker who is running for mayor, has proposed expanding the number of gifted classes while broadening the criteria for admission in hopes of increasing diversity. (The city’s Education Department has opposed the proposal, saying that using criteria other than tests would dilute the classes.)
Teachers and principals who use grouping say that the practice has become indispensable, helping them cope with widely varying levels of ability and achievement.
Image: School children, via Shutterstock
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