What We're Reading: Google Giving, Computer Literacy, and Why Black Teachers Matter

posted Mar 4, 2016, 9:09 AM by Robin Dutton-Cookston
Here are the latest stories that we are sharing with each other in the PPS-SF office.

Pictured left to right: David Drummond, Senior Vice President, Corporate Development, Alphabet, with grantees: Bryan Stevenson, Founder and CEO, Equal Justice Initiative, Dr. Jeff Duncan-Andrade, Founder, Roses in Concrete Community School, Oakland, Landon Dickey, Special Assistant for African American Achievement & Leadership, San Francisco Unified School District, Alexandra Bernadotte, Founder and CEO, Beyond 12, Richard Carranza, Superintendent, San Francisco Unified School District, and Justin Steele, Principal, has awarded a total of $3 million in grants to San Francisco Unified School District’s My Brother and Sister’s Keeper program (MBSK), Oakland’s Roses in Concrete Community School, Beyond 12 and Equal Justice Initiative, all of which are local organizations working to eliminate racial bias either in the education system or in local communities. read more 

The computer programming class at Presidio Middle School in San Francisco is humming with excitement as the teacher, Grey Todd, explains the day’s assignment to a group of eager sixth-graders. They’ll be programming a ball to bounce around a computer screen as part of a semester-long class that teaches them the basics of computer programming. It’s part of a district pilot in 12 middle schools so far, and also one of the first in the country to be teaching students so young to program. read more 

From the Council for Accreditation of Educator Preparation
There has been much attention drawn to the Black Lives Matter movement in the past year. From Ferguson to Baltimore, the challenges of urban youth have appropriately been front page news. The stories I focus on daily haven’t been front page news but they affect all minority children: Why is there a dramatic achievement gap in schools across the country? How can minority students be given a fair chance to achieve to the best of their ability? What can be done to manage these critical life-altering challenges that incorporate vast societal questions of socioeconomic disparity, multiculturalism and the essence of family? read more 

From The Washington Post
It’s called “competency-based learning” and its the newest thing in education. What is it? Who likes it? Who doesn’t and why? On its face, competency-based learning sounds good. Students learn material and move on when they have mastered the material, going at their own pace. But how exactly do students get this sort of education and what are the consequences? read more