Contrary to popular perception, however, the IPCC won't release the actual report until May. Friday's the day the IPCC releases its Summary for Policymakers. Not only does the IPCC plan to give policy meddlers three months' lead time without fear of challenge from what's in the report (a problem previous summaries have suffered) — they're also prepared to edit the report after the fact. The IPCC procedures document says that "Changes (other than grammatical or minor editorial changes) made after acceptance by the Working Group or the Panel shall be those necessary to ensure consistency with the Summary for Policymakers or the Overview Chapter."
Not sure you can link to Education Week without a subscription, but article entitled “’What Works’ Reviewers Find No Learning Edge for Leading Math Texts” states:
“As the federal What Works Clearinghouse rolls out long-awaited ratings on the effectiveness of math programs for the elementary grades, one trend is becoming clear: Most major commercial textbooks can’t yet muster the proof that they are any better than their competitors at improving student achievement.
Of four reviews published by the online clearinghouse since September, only one elementary school math program has received even a qualified nod from evaluators for its research record.
Yet while publishers and textbook evaluators are concerned about the message those lukewarm effectiveness ratings may send, they also say the ratings may have more to do with the clearinghouse’s strict reporting system than with the programs themselves.
The What Works site says a handful of rigorously conducted experiments show that Everyday Mathematics, published by Wright Group/McGraw-Hill of DeSoto, Texas, has “potentially positive effects” on achievement compared with more traditional math programs.”
According to the article, 19.2 percent of the U.S. market share for math textbooks goes to Everyday Mathematics. Remember the video I posted last week? After reviewing this video, a lot of folks may question the ratings of this report, but not for the same reasons as the textbook publishers. Some children might learn with Everyday Mathematics, I just would not want my child to be taught with this book.
Homeland Security officials say it will cost more than $2 million to fill a tunnel that was dug by drug dealers under the U.S.-Mexican border between San Diego and Tijuana. As a stopgap they are plugging it with $15,000 worth of concrete at the point it crosses the border.
I recently re-read The Great Escape by Paul Brickhill, the book on which the movie of the same name was based. I read the book as a kid and saw it on sale at Barnes & Noble a few weeks ago for about $4. If you read it you'll realize how, with the proper motivation, people can achieve what seems impossible with almost nothing.
Three tunnels were underway in their prison camp. They named them Tom, Dick and Harry. Trolleys and rails were designed to haul sand, air pumps were devised to ventilate the ever-lengthening tunnels, and ingenious methods were concocted to shore up the tunnels and get rid of the sand that resulted from the excavations. Eventually they filled in one tunnel with the sand they were digging from another. And they did all this without any funding.
If any of these guys is still alive, I suggest that Homeland Security consult with them about how to fill in a tunnel for a lot less than $2 million.
The media will report that the dropout rate increased from 4.74 percent in 04-05 to 5.04 percent in 05-06. This is true, and it represents a loss of nearly 23,000 students from our public schools last year.
But there is a problem. The number of students who dropped out to attend a community college is responsible for much (38 percent) of the increase. Moreover, in 2003 the number of students in this category unexpectedly skyrocketed, while other categories, namely students with academic problems, began to decline. To complicate matters, the governor's Learn and Earn program, which put high school students on community college campuses, began in 2003. Is there a connection? I will find out.
While I am on the subject, DPI staff (3 people) did not have a clue about any of this. It is good to know that they are not willing to go the extra mile and ask obvious questions. Geez.
Here are dropout rates (percentage of students who dropped out of grades 9-12) from notable counties:
Wake County: 3.88 (3.66 last year)
Charlotte-Mecklenburg: 4.61 (3.14 last year)
Guilford: 3.41 (2.98 last year)
W-S/Forsyth: 5.74 (5.00 last year)
Lee County: 7.8 (7.20 last year)
P.S. This is not related to the cohort (4 year) graduation rate that the SBE planned to release today. As usual, the release of those figures has been delayed.
Jon, also worth mentioning about the company (now known as
Springs Industries) is the role played by Elliott Springs, son of one
of the founders, who was also a World War I flying ace, among many impressive accomplishments. Springs Industries is now run by Elliott's granddaughter, Crandall Bowles, wife of UNC president Erskine.
although Springs has unions at some plants, it clearly does not allow
them to steamroll the company, as exemplified by the Pillowtex saga a few years ago.
I was trying to find out what textile company did the famous "a buck well spent" ads in the 1940s and discovered it was Springs Cotton Mills, which has North and South Carolina connections. I ran across this in their company history:
In 1934 the United Textile Workers of America attempted to organize
workers at the Springs mills. Elliott Springs allowed the union to
address the workers at a company-owned baseball field in Chester. After
the organizers had spoken, Springs mounted the platform and told the
workers that if they went on strike, he would close the plants and take
his family to Europe. The workers later voted unanimously against union
This is why I (and I'm sure a lot of Americans) were rooting against the New Orleans Saints in their conference championship game. My compassion fatigue for New Orleans set in pretty early, thanks to NO Mayor Ray Nagin and LA Gov. Kathleen Blanco. Now U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu has joined the ranks of ungrateful and inept Louisiana politicians seeking to blame anyone but their own wretched selves. Go Colts.
There's a lot of rhetoric about the horrid conditions of the manufacturing base being diminished in the U.S. Most of this comes from the left. And while manufacturing is changing, the state of the economy is a far cry from the rhetoric.
A great anti-free market quote was uttered by Rep. Sander M. Levin (D-Mich), "We have had trade policies in this administration that assume that
trade is an end in itself, that market forces will work themselves out,
that there isn't really an active role for government." The truth is Congressman, market forces do just that.
What creates a great deal of angst and confusion is that consumers are pretty happy right now. In fact, consumer confidence is at a five-year high in spite of the trade agreements. The "sky is falling" crowd is probably also dismayed by the fact that the U.S. economy continues to grow EXCEEDING forecasts to the contrary.
While politicians meander about in the wilderness of economic misrepresentation, the rest of the country is getting on with the business of creating jobs and living. The only good news for the left is that consumers are giving zero credibility to the Bush administration for any of the current market conditions. In a twist of irony, that's probably the way it should be. Otherwise, we'd have to believe that Clinton was responsible for the dot-com boom of the nineties.
The San Francisco Chronicle has interviewed a number of analysts who believe that among the consequences of the military campaign in Iraq could be to destroy the Republican Party’s decades-long electoral advantage over Democrats on issues of war and foreign policy. Columnist Jim Pinkerton offered a funny line in this regard: “In times of war, the instinct is to trust dad more than mom, and the Republicans have benefited from that. But if dad keeps wrecking the car, then there may be reason to change.”
Two thoughts occur to me on this point. First, in a way, it is both unexceptional and praiseworthy. In a republican form of government, politicians and parties should in the long run be accountable to the voters for delivering effective public policies. If invading Iraq proves in the end to be a colossal blunder, it is a blunder not only initiated by President Bush but actively supported by most Republican officeholders (as well as many others, of course). The assumptions or principles used to justify and carry out the military campaign would deserve rethinking and possibly abandonment by the GOP — the kind of reconsideration for which electoral losses are a likely motivation. It’s a feedback loop.
The other thought, though, is that the political futures of the Democratic and Republican parties should be nowhere near the top of the list of priorities for public servants. They run as partisans but their job is to take actions, often risky ones, to protect and serve the American people. History has shown that such decisions can be unpopular in the short run but wise in the long run. Harry Truman left the presidency unpopular and at a time of Republican ascendancy. But his foreign-policy choices proved, for the most part, to be the correct ones. Arguably, the Democratic Party never benefited electorally from this. So what?
It's still10 years? Seems like it's been 10 years till we reach that "tipping point" for at least two years.
Gosh, I'd hate to think this is empty rhetoric, a date that's just out far enough not to lend itself to data testing but immediate enough to scare folks to "take action." And that's because I can't wait to reach this tipping point when it'll be "too late" for us to do anything, because at that point surely all the paranoiacs will stop trying to slam the brakes on our economy and way of life and just strap on hip waders and flotation devices and head for the hills.
Now why would the state want to take over a failed project? Board members representing the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston-Salem hope that it will. An unfounded dream? It's already happened at least once.