Curriculum, Opinion, School Community

Canadian Education Wire – As summer sizzles, so do ongoing secular schooling debates

The difficult issues that play out for muslim prayer space in Toronto and for religious education in Morinville Alberta are balanced by inspiring stories of parental and community engagement.

Photo by: amrufm (flickr)

Protesters oppose Muslim prayer in public schools – Toronto Star

Photo by: amrufm (flickr)

Protesters oppose Muslim prayer in public schools – Toronto Star

Divide over ‘portable’ prayer places in U.S. schools – Vancouver Sun
Many churches, synagogues and mosques convert public school spaces into prayer places, but critics, including some courts, are concerned that these arrangements are an unconstitutional entanglement or church and state. 

Children seeking secular education in Morinville may have to be temporarily bused elsewhere – Edmonton Journal

Canadian Civil Liberties Association joins secular education debate – Edmonton Journal

English-language schools reinvented – Montreal Gazette
Community learning centres have the ability to transform a school and the place where it is located. Often the only place in a small town where English is spoken, they stay open longer and focus on offering a variety of services.

Giving time for better schools – Winnipeg Free Press
Parents help councils tackle challenges

Most schools struggle to engage parents – Montreal Gazette

Ontario forges stimulus plan to boost financial literacy in teens – Globe and Mail

Debunking Fraser Institute’s Latest Crusade: Teacher Merit Pay – The Tyee
Most studies show scant link between student achievement and financial rewards for instructors

What news am I missing? Can you recommend some education blogs for me to follow? Please tweet me at @max_cooke, e-mail me at mcooke@cea-ace.ca or better yet, use the comment box below to suggest additional articles happening in your region so that others can check it out. 


Building a better math teacher – University of Calgary Faculty of Education
For years, it has been assumed that teachers—specifically math teachers—need to master the content they intend to teach. And the best way to do this is to take courses beyond that content. Yet in a recent paper published in the Education Forum of the journal Science, Dr. Brent Davis of the education faculty says research does not support this common belief. There is little evidence that advanced courses in mathematics contribute to more effective teaching.

The Summer Issue of Education Watch from the Canadian Association for Community Living is now available

New Leadership at the Canadian School Board Association


School colour-codes pupils by ability – The Guardian UK
A secondary school has divided its students by ability, complete with different uniforms. Innovative way to lure the middle classes, or worrying segregation?

High School Graduation Rates To Fall, States Prepare For Calculation Changes – Huffington Post (USA)

Pupils ‘shoe-horned’ into EBacc subjects, say MPs – BBC

MPs, teachers and academics criticise education reform plan – Guardian UK

Educators Worry Teachers Are Not Getting Adequate Training, Evaluation – Huffington Post

What Einstein, Twain, and Forty Eight Other Creative People Had to Say About Schooling – Psychology Today


If you build a system around test results, your kids become expert test takers – Etc.: Education, Technology and Culture (David Price)
The issue of accountability, and how much store we place in exam results, as a measure of school effectiveness, is one of the hottest potatoes in global education right now. My, perhaps over-simplistic, observation is this: when teachers are freed from the pressures of exam results as prime (and some would say sole) indicator of a school’s effectiveness, then they take a broader, and longer, view of what their students should be capable of achieving: knowledge, yes, but also skills, learning dispositions and cultivating the desire to become a lifelong learner. 

Transformation of education through communication – 21st Century Educator (David Wees)
What is strange about education is that by and large we know an awful lot as a profession, but the rate of change is glacial. We actually know a tremendous about how kids learn best, but schools keep re-inventing the wheel every time they encounter a new problem. Why is this? My thought is that while there are lots of great ideas out there in education, they are not generally communicated well….

I Wish “Real” Science Was Like this – Webb of Thoughts (Kyle Webb)
Why aren’t real science and the science we teach (and learn) in school the same thing? Science classes should easily be the most hands-on and practical classes students ever take.

Unplug’d Approaches – The Clever Sheep (Rodd Lucier)
In recent weeks and months, I’ve been thinking and creating with a terrific group of Canadian collaborators who are breathing life into a first-of-its-kind event. Very soon, we will be taking a collective pause from our virtual learning networks, in order to connect face-to-face, and to think deeply about what it means to be a teacher; learner; and change agent.
“If a teacher thinks in the forest, does he/she make a sound?”


Meet the Expert(s)

Max Cooke


Max Cooke is the CEO of the EdCan Network.

Max Cooke est le directeur général du Réseau ÉdCan.

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