Every week, The Next America produces a collection of education articles that catch our eye. These date from Oct. 21 to Oct. 28.
Is P-Tech Really The Answer? President Obama can’t get enough of the Pathways in Technology Early College High School, a Brooklyn public school operated in partnership with IBM and the New York City College of Technology. There’s a lot to like about the school, which trains low-income students for technology careers, provides them with no-cost associates degrees, and promises to connect them with entry-level jobs at IBM. But earlier this year, Next City pointed out some less-likable aspects of the corporate partnership: IBM is cutting the very positions the students are training for, and it’s looking to use the information it collects on student learning at P-TECH to develop and sell data-driven educational products to other schools. Next City
The Right Way to Bring iPads Into Schools. The Los Angeles Unified School District has halted its plan to put a laptop in the hands of every child after high school students hacked the locked devices and started using Facebook and streaming music. iPad programs have been less problematic in districts where the devices aren’t locked in the first place. The best strategy may be to use an iPad as, well, an iPad and not try to turn a tablet into a textbook. Bloomberg Businessweek
Colleges Are Micro-Targeting Students. It’s now easier than ever for colleges to target specific demographics. Thanks largely to data collected and sold by the College Board, ACT and National Research Center for College and University Admissions, colleges can search among millions of students to find students with desired test scores or from desired ZIP codes. RightStudent, a consulting firm that sells student data, says a big need on college campuses is finding families who can pay full tuition. InsideHigherEd
Charter Schools Really Are Hurting School Districts. The rise of charter schools is causing some public school districts financial stress, analysts at Moody’s report. Increased charter enrollment isn’t a big deal in the South and West, where overall enrollment is rising, but it can have a devastating impact on shrinking districts in the Midwest and Northeast, such as in Philadelphia and Detroit. Lost funding thanks to lower enrollment can lead to decisions to close public schools and cut academic programs, spurring more students to leave for charters. “It’s sort of a negative feedback loop,” Moody’s analyst Michael D’Arcy says. Quartz
Good News on STEM Scores. Eighth-graders in 36 states are outperforming the international average in math, while eighth-graders in 47 states are outperforming the international average in science, according to a National Center for Education Statistics report. Exams were given to public school students in 2011 by the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study. That said, even the highest-performing states don’t have as many top test takers as do South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan. New York Times
Iowa Regent Universities See Most Diverse Enrollment Ever. Almost 12 percent of students enrolling in Iowa’s public universities this fall are from racial or ethnic minorities. It’s not a high percentage, but the combined 8.2 percent rise in minority students this year means that the University of Iowa, Iowa State University, and the University of Northern Iowa are educating their most diverse student body ever. More than half of the new minority students were Iowa residents. The Gazette