First Bell 6-21-13

A first look at the most important education news from this weekend and today:

Fordham's latest

"Dropout recovery charter schools: Dayton’s needles in a very messy haystack," by Aaron Churchill, Ohio Gadfly Daily

"Teacher Prep Review: A Review of the Nation’s Teacher Preparation Programs, 2013," by Pamela Tatz, Education Gadfly Weekly

Justice Sonia Sotomayor visited with fourth graders at the Bronx's Blessed Sacrament School, her alma mater, for the last time, as the school—like so many other Catholic schools—is closing its doors. (New York Times)

South Carolina lawmakers have passed a bill to establish a tax-credit-scholarship program for special-education students. (Charters & Choice and On Special Education)

The Wisconsin Senate has passed its state budget; included is an amendment allowing private school vouchers to expand statewide—a provision that Senate Democrats had tried unsuccessfully to exclude. (Associated Press and Huffington Post)

The Dallas Independent School District is developing a plan to allow students to graduate high school within three years, starting in 2014–15; the cost savings will go to finance pre-Kindergarten. (New York Times)

The Huffington Post reports that Joanne Weiss, Arne Duncan’s longtime chief of staff, will likely leave the Education Department this summer—and her former position will likely go to Emma Vadehra of Uncommon Schools.

The board of the Miami-Dade County school district approved a $63 million plan to give all students digital devices. (Digital Education)

Staff at Rock Terrace School for students with developmental disabilities, located in Rockville, Maryland, are alleged to have improperly used funds that students earned through a work-study program. (Washington Post)

According to an online salary tracker, graduates of California community colleges often earn more than their peers with bachelor’s and master’s degrees. (Hechinger Report)

Shantelle Wright, the leader of the high-performing Achievement Prep Public Charter School, has been surprised with a $25,000 award for her efforts to close the achievement gap. (Washington Post)

A study finds that the benefits of online teacher professional development are similar to those of face-to-face professional development. (Digital Education)

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