The future of social relations: The social benefits of Internet use will far outweigh the negatives over the next decade, according to experts who responded to a survey about the future of the Internet. These experts say this is because email, social networks, and other online tools offer ‘low-friction’ opportunities to create, enhance, and rediscover social ties that make a difference in people’s lives. The Internet lowers traditional communications constraints of cost, geography, and time; and it supports the type of open information sharing that brings people together. http://pewinternet.org/~/media//Files/Reports/2010/PIP_Future_of_Internet_%202010_social_relations.pdf
Richard Byrne has created a simple and illustrated guide to various Google Apps that provides a valuable introduction to the basic tools needed to operate both in the coud and in a Web 2.0 environment at http://www.docstoc.com/docs/46159537/Google-for-Teachers-II
Here is information about the award winners of the Department of Education grant—Race to the Top. It is important to know about this initiative as it speaks to what the federal government is suggesting will make measurable plans for implementing coherent, compelling, and comprehensive education reform. Race to the Top winners will help trail-blaze effective reforms and provide examples for States and local school districts throughout the country to follow as they too are hard at work on reforms that can transform our schools for decades to come. http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop/index.html
Blueprint for Reform document that is the reauthorization of the ESEA: http://www2.ed.gov/policy/elsec/leg/blueprint/blueprint.pdf .
http://www2.ed.gov/programs/racetothetop/index.html - all 36 submitted documents for this funding can be seen here as well as the actual language of the competitive grant about education reform. Information for the two winners (Delaware and Tennessee) can be found at http://www2.ed.gov/news/pressreleases/2010/03/03292010.html.
The new national Common Core Standards were published in their final version, June 2, 2010. Access them at http://www.corestandards.org, and if you are interested in reading or printing them, they are in a number of sections rather than in one full document.
The English Language and Mathematics standards are included with implications for history/social studies and science.
Two major reports have emerged recently that take a look at the literacy challenges facing children of the United States and really, any of the world’s children who do not read well:
1. Early Warning! Why Reading by the End of Third Grade Matters http://datacenter.kidscount.org/reports/readingmatters.aspx by Kids Count from the Annie E. Casey Foundation (2010).
2. Early Reading Proficiency: A Companion Series to Beyond Test Scores: Leading Indicators for Education http://www.annenberginstitute.org/Products/LeadingIndicatorsSeries.php by the Annenberg Institute for School Reform.