There's a new movement occurring in schools across the US, "opting out" of annual assessments in local schools.
As the Executive Director of the Faith and Education Coalition of the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, and a Christian parent of two girls, I spend a great deal of time encouraging parents to "opt in" all year long. I invite parents to get involved, to support teachers, volunteer in classrooms, and to get to know school administrators so they can voice concerns in person.
So my concern was evoked this spring as well-meaning organizations began urging parents to "opt out" during annual assessments in local schools. As background, every state plans its own annual testing window, usually in the spring, to shed light on the progress students have made since the previous school year. As parents ask me about opting out of assessments, I ask them to consider the implications of such a choice. more >>
Parts of the Bible from the Old Testament could have been written earlier than scholars previously thought, a discovery relating to a handwriting analysis of a text on pottery shards has suggested.
Researchers from Israel's Tel Aviv University posted their findings Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, where they revealed that 600 BCE pottery from the Arad citadel suggested that not only the elites in society were able to read.
Israel Finkelstein, an archaeologist and biblical scholar at Tel Aviv University in Israel, said the handwritten analysis represents new information about the people in the ancient kingdom of Judah. more >>
The Pascack Valley Regional School District in northern New Jersey voted Monday to adopt a policy allowing students who identify as transgender to use restrooms and locker rooms based on their gender identity instead of their sex.
The district voted 6-1 to pass the policy they say is designed to protect transgender students' rights and comply with anti-discrimination laws, according to NBC New York.
Before the vote took place, however, more than two dozen people spent some three hours debating the policy and what it means for them. more >>
Pope Francis issued a subtle jab at the transgender movement in his apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia, where he asserted that schools need to teach children to "accept" their natural bodies as they were "created," and to appreciate their bodies as "male and female."
As the fight to allow self-identifying transgender students into bathrooms and changing areas of the opposite sex spreads to school districts across the U.K. and the United States, the pontiff spoke out against encouraging students' who choose to identify with the opposite biological gender.
In some form or another, "Is your Christian school worth attending?" is being asked by parents. A second question, "Are you hiring the best?" is also being asked and should be a focus of your school leadership's inquiry.
Similarly two other questions immediately spring to mind, "Do your students require the best?" which directly influences hiring and "Do parents expect the best?" which also becomes a "pressure point."
Of course the over-arching question is "What does God expect of us?" "This is good enough" is never and adequate or acceptable response at any level! more >>
The American Library Association has revealed that the Bible is among the books most often challenged and called to be banned in libraries.
"You have people who feel that if a school library buys a copy of the Bible, it's a violation of church and state," said James LaRue, who directs the Office for Intellectual Freedom for the American Library Association, according to The Associated Press.
"And sometimes there's a retaliatory action, where a religious group has objected to a book and a parent might respond by objecting to the Bible." more >>