• Think your college student is holed up in the library, studying away for dozens of hours? Think again. According to a recent policy brief by AEI there has been a dramatic decrease in student study time since the 1960s. In 1961 the average student at a four-year university studied about twenty hours a week. Fast forward fifty years and students are studying only fourteen hours a week! To check out the complete report, possible explanations for the decline in study time, and what this means for our students, click here.
  • The National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) recently released its second analysis of states’ Race to the Top applications. Ohio is among 19 finalists in round two (and in fact presented to reviewers just yesterday) and has $400 million at stake in the competition. NCTQ ranks Ohio poorly, however, because the state is “non-committal” when it comes to denoting how much student performance will weigh into revamped teacher evaluations, and because the state made several components of its application optional for districts. Find out more about Ohio and how other states stack up in the competition here.
  • Parents might want to double check their children’s school supply list before heading out to the store. According to an article in the Columbus Dispatch many schools are becoming very specific not just when it comes to what students need to bring to class, but also in the brands of supplies. When all is said and done, parents of elementary school children can expect to pay around $110 on supplies.
  • For many children summer means going to camp and hanging out at the pool. But does this have an impact on their reading skills? A recent study by researchers at the University of Tennessee examined the impact of reading during the summer months and found that children who had access to books and read them during the summer scored significantly higher than their counterparts who didn’t open a book during the summer. Perhaps surprising is the fact that it didn’t matter what type of book these students read, just that they were reading. Researchers found that a majority of these students were reading non-education related materials such as the biography of Britney Spears. Gadfly’s not a fan, but hey -- if it raises reading tests scores -- we’ll excuse it.
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