Weekly News Round-Up for June 1st
posted by: Melissa | June 01, 2018, 06:12 PM   

Each week, ASTA brings its members a round-up of what’s happening in education. From big, eye-catching headlines to the stories most papers overlook, we find the news our members really want to see. This week, governments scramble to make schools safer, some districts tout higher pay, an imminent Supreme Court ruling, and more!

Federal & State Governments Respond to Shootings: Following the school shooting in Santa Fe, TX, the state’s governor has unveiled a school safety plan. The plan is a mix of school hardening with modest changes to gun laws, and while it provides more armed guards, it doesn’t arm teachers, a measure which 54 percent of Texas parents support. It’s also an idea that President Trump seems to support. In Alabama, they plan to allow administrators to carry guns at schools. Both plans come at a time when there’s greater pressure than ever to increase school safety. Parents and students say that they are waiting out the end of the school year hoping that the violence is over while Press Secretary Sarah Sanders got choked after a student journalist admitted that he worried over getting shot. Many are urging Betsy DeVos to work quickly with her school safety commission, which recently held its first meeting.

In Wake of Protests, District Advertises Better Pay: A Texas district has purchased billboards in Arizona to advertise its high starting salary to lure teachers from that state. It’s a ploy that they recently tried in Oklahoma as well. Both Arizona and Oklahoma were states where low teacher pay had led to strikes and protests, although the outcomes of those protests were mixed. Low teacher pay continues to be a focus across the country and a debate is occurring on how much, if at all, to raise salaries. In at least one state this week, the decision was made to raise salaries. Illinois has pre-emptively passed union-drafted legislation that would raise starting salaries to $40,000 within five years.

Ruling in Janus v. AFSCME Imminent: This past spring, the Supreme Court heard arguments in Janus v. AFSCME and court watchers expect a ruling could come at any time now. The case arose when 2016’s Friedrichs v. CTA resulted in a deadlock and is expected to have wide-ranging consequences for teachers’ unions, especially since many expect the ruling will favor the plaintiff Mark Janus. In advance of the ruling, the unions are taking steps to try to mitigate the potential loss of members.

Happening Elsewhere:

ACLU Sues Shawnee Mission Schools, Alleges District Violated Students' Free Speech Rights

Roblox follows Minecraft into the education market

Civil rights groups sue Education Dept over provision on dismissing civil rights complaints

'Active Shooter' video game simulating school shootings developed by 'a troll,' pulled from platform

Teacher who stopped Indiana shooting: 'I had to save students'

Parkland Drama Teacher Will Receive Tonys’ Education Award

Parkland Shooter Recorded Himself Plotting School Massacre

Santa Fe ISD awarded $1M grant from education department

Fix school funding or I'll shut down state government, N.J.'s top lawmaker says

N.J. lawmakers question teachers union on undercover videos

Bill requiring display of 'In God We Trust' at public schools becomes law

Tennessee lawmaker says pornography is a 'root cause' of school shootings

Teachers union presses NY Senate to vote on evaluation reform

Some Arizona teachers are starting to run for public office

Dallas ISD gets creative to bring back charter school students

Hillsboro's Liberty High School must allow student to wear pro-Trump T-shirt, judge rules

Jury convicts Boston high school dean who led secret life, shot student in the head

A Florida teacher drowned wild raccoons with his students’ help. Here’s why he won’t be charged

R.I. Teacher of the Year finds the fun in science

What’s going on where you are?

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