Category Archives: Education

Bill would require teaching that abortion causes preterm births

Filed yesterday by Senators Daniel, Tillman, and Randleman
S132 Main Page

Short Title:        Health Curriculum/Preterm Birth. (Public)
Sponsors: Senators Daniel, Tillman, and Randleman (Primary Sponsors).
Referred to:  

 

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT TO include instruction in the school health education program on the preventable causes of preterm birth, including induced abortion as a cause of preterm birth in subsequent pregnancies, AS RECOMMENDED BY THE NORTH CAROLINA CHILD FATALITY TASK FORCE.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1. G.S. 115C‑81(e1)(1) reads as rewritten:

“(e1)     School Health Education Program to Be Developed and Administered.

(1)        A comprehensive school health education program shall be developed and taught to pupils of the public schools of this State from kindergarten through ninth grade. This program includes age‑appropriate instruction in the following subject areas, regardless of whether this instruction is described as, or incorporated into a description of, “family life education”, “family health education”, “health education”, “family living”, “health”, “healthful living curriculum”, or “self‑esteem”:

a.         Mental and emotional health.

b.         Drug and alcohol abuse prevention.

c.         Nutrition.

d.         Dental health.

e.         Environmental health.

f.          Family living.

g.         Consumer health.

h.         Disease control.

i.          Growth and development.

j.          First aid and emergency care, including the teaching of cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the Heimlich maneuver by using hands‑on training with mannequins so that students pass a test approved by the American Heart Association, or American Red Cross. Schools shall use for this purpose an instructional program developed by the American Heart Association, the American Red Cross, or other nationally recognized programs that is based on the most current national evidence‑based emergency cardiovascular care guidelines for CPR. Schools shall maintain documentation in an electronic database that students have successfully completed CPR instruction to meet Healthy Living Essential Standards. Successful completion of instruction in CPR shall be a requirement for high school graduation by the 2014‑2015 school year.

k.         Preventing sexually transmitted diseases, including HIV/AIDS, and other communicable diseases.

l.          Reproductive health and safety education. The instruction program shall include information about the preventable causes of preterm birth, including induced abortion as a cause of preterm birth in subsequent pregnancies.

m.        Bicycle safety.

As used in this subsection, “HIV/AIDS” means Human Immunodeficiency Virus/Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.”

SECTION 2. To facilitate the implementation of this act, within 60 days of this act becoming effective and annually thereafter, the Department of Health and Human Services, Division of Public Health, shall provide to the Department of Public Instruction sample educational materials with the most current information available about the preventable causes of preterm birth, including induced abortion as a cause of preterm birth in subsequent pregnancies.

SECTION 3. This act is effective when it becomes law and applies beginning with the 2013‑2014 school year.

Bill would require cursive by 5th grade and memorization of multiplication tables

I kid you not.

H146 Main Page

Short Title:        Back to Basics. (Public)
Sponsors: Representatives Hurley and Warren (Primary Sponsors).
Referred to:  

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT to require the state board of education to ensure instruction in cursive writing and memorization of multiplication tables as a part of the basic education program.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

SECTION 1. G.S. 115C‑81 is amended by adding new subsections to read:

(k) Cursive Writing. — The standard course of study shall include the requirement that the public schools provide instruction in cursive writing so that students create readable documents through legible cursive handwriting by the end of fifth grade.

(l) Multiplication Tables. — The standard course of study shall include the requirement that students enrolled in public schools memorize multiplication tables to demonstrate competency in efficiently multiplying numbers.

SECTION 2. This act is effective when it becomes law and applies beginning with the 2013‑2014 school year.

Fascinating choice to head NC pre-k program

WRAL astutely points out that Dianna Lightfoot, the new state director of Child Development and Early Education in the Department of Health and Human Services runs an organization that is opposed to some of the fundamentals of early education, especially the state’s role in it.

The National Physicians Center, where Lightfoot is currently president, advocates against “institutional” preschool programs.

“In the case of early childhood education programs, available research suggests they may actually be inferior to early learning opportunities at home. In addition, it appears the demand for out of home childcare is not as prevalent as many advocates claim,” says an open letter signed by Lightfoot on the group’s website.

Other interesting items from the NPCFR site:
- The full name of the organization is The National Physicians Center for Family Resources Inc.;
- The chair of its board of directors also chairs the board of a very conservative, anti-gay organization in California;
- The person listed as the Government Affairs adviser for the organization keeps busy as the Senior Director of Policy at American Legislative Exchange Council and Vice President of Government Relations at Family Research Council among other duties.

More later as this snowballs . . .

WRAL – State’s new Pre-K chief opposes pre-K

Text of S795 Senate education plan

Here’s the link and here’s the text:

Short Title: Excellent Public Schools Act.

Sponsors: Senators Apodaca, P. Berger, and Tillman (Primary Sponsors).

Referred to:

A BILL TO BE ENTITLED

AN ACT to make changes to improve K‑3 literacy; provide literacy volunteer leave time; assign school performance grades; MAXIMIZE INSTRUCTIONAL TIME; adjust school calendar START and end dates; fund five additional INSTRUCTIONAL days within the EXISTING school calendar; establish an NC teacher corps; strengthen teacher licensure requirements; PROVIDE PROOF OF STATE-FUNDED LIABILITY INSURANCE; establish plans for pay FOR EXCELLENCE; END TENURE; AND eliminate public FINANCING for the office of superintendent of public instruction.

The General Assembly of North Carolina enacts:

PART I. IMPROVE K‑3 LITERACY

SECTION 1.(a) G.S. 115C‑81.2 is repealed.

SECTION 1.(b) Article 8 of Chapter 115C of the General Statutes is amended by adding a new Part to read:

“Part 1A. North Carolina Read to Achieve Program.

“§ 115C‑83.1A. State goal.

The goal of the State is to ensure that every student read at or above grade level by the end of third grade and continue to progress in reading proficiency so that he or she can read, comprehend, integrate, and apply complex texts needed for secondary education and career success.

“§ 115C‑83.1B. Purposes.

(a) The purposes of this Part are to ensure that (i) difficulty with reading development is identified as early as possible; (ii) students receive appropriate instructional and support services to address difficulty with reading development and to remediate reading deficiencies; and (iii) each student and his or her parent or guardian be continuously informed of the student’s academic needs and progress.

(b) In addition to the purposes listed in subsection (a) of this section, the purpose of this Part is to determine that progression from one grade to another be based, in part, upon proficiency in reading.

Several dozen pages after the jump

Continue reading

NC State Senate plan would end teacher tenure, social promotion

North Carolina Senate leader Phil Berger announced a sweeping education plan introduced in the Senate today. Berger said the plan closely mirrors programs in Florida. The bill will be taken up in the legislature’s short session which starts on May 16.

The bill includes additional funds for reading programs in Grades 1-3. It would end teacher tenure and institute a merit pay system. It would also put an end to social promotion, Berger said.

Berger said he did not talk with teacher groups but did talk with individual teachers, superintendents and legislators in other states.

Naturally, the move has political implications. Teacher organizations are likely to fight the bill, but some aspects of it resonate strongly with independent voters and Democrats so it could turn into a wedge issue. President Obama is known to advocate positions that give the NEA heartburn.

The A-F grading system was a pretty smart move IMHO. As a former K-12 reporter who had to cover the implementation of the current School of Excellence/ School of Distinction system, it all seemed a bit too too. Most people probably have no idea what they mean. The A-F system is understandable.

It would be terrific if this thing could be a true starting point for reforming the state’s education system, but right now it looks like a purely partisan move. It’ll be interesting if some of the reporters covering this can get into who all Berger has been talking to about the bill. House Speaker, Thom Tillis for instance, wasn’t even in town. Neither was Pat McCrory.

Fascinating.

Links to follow.

WRAL – NC Senate wants merit pay, end to teacher tenure

Center for Civil Rights releases report on Halifax schools

The UNC Center for Civil Rights just released a report on segregation in schools (and more) in Halifax County, one of the state’s poorer places.

From the exec summary:

The county’s three districts — Halifax County Public Schools (HCPS), Weldon City Schools (WCS) and Roanoke Rapids Graded School District (RRGSD) — remain among the most segregated in the state and are tainted by the ongoing impacts of the legacy of Jim Crow segregation. By maintaining this tripartite system, Halifax County and the state more deeply entrench racial segregation in the community, limit the educational resources available to students based on their race, cause irreparable harm to the academic opportunities for all children in the county, and stunt the economic viability of the region.

How segregated?
The center’s Mark Dorosin, in a recent N&O op-ed, lays out these numbers:

In a county that is 39 percent white, Halifax County and Weldon City schools are both almost 100 percent nonwhite, while the Roanoke Rapids school district is 73 percent white. The school districts’ poverty levels are similarly disparate: 89 percent free or reduced-price lunch eligibility in Halifax County and 95 percent in Weldon City, but only 51 percent in Roanoke Rapids.

The report is clear evidence not only of the legacy of Jim Crow but of the resurgence of segregation in the state’s schools.

Links (all pdf):
Executive Summary
Full Report