Los Angeles Seminars

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Overview

Teaching and Testing in the Common Core Era
February 25 & 26 • Los Angeles

Despite persistent political debates, the Common Core State Standards are now a classroom reality in public schools across the country. Yet much is in flux as educators wrestle with how best to teach the Common Core — or their own state’s version of it — and some states rethink the tests tied to the new K-12 standards.

Despite persistent political debates, the Common Core State Standards are now a classroom reality in public schools across the country. Yet much is in flux as educators wrestle with how best to teach the Common Core — or their own state’s version of it — and some states rethink the tests tied to the new K-12 standards.

Join EWA on Feb. 25-26 in Los Angeles for an intensive seminar to make sense of the fast-evolving landscape for teaching and testing in the Common Core era. The stakes are high as many states embark on Year Two of Common Core testing, making year-over-year comparisons possible for the first time.

This two-day event will equip busy reporters with fresh ideas, new tools, and concrete plans to step up their game in covering this major, unfolding change in American education. Journalists will learn from educators, researchers, policy experts and one another about such topics as the nuances of observing classroom instruction and what to expect from the next, crucial round of test results.

Survey data released at the event will provide fresh insights into the experiences and views of teachers and administrators who are putting the standards into practice. In addition, new research findings will reveal where districts and states are turning for new textbooks and other curricular materials pegged to the math and English/language arts standards — often big-ticket spending items with major consequences for the classroom.

The seminar will also raise key questions around assessments. Why have so many states reversed course on common testing? How can reporters explore the quality of the competing assessments states are using? What do we know about the economics of testing and the fierce competition among testing companies? How are revisions in widely used college-entrance exams changing the game?

Blog: The Educated Reporter

Testing and Test Prep: How Much Is Too Much?

Flickr/Jirka Matousek

It’s not hard to find a teacher willing to bend your ear about the volume of standardized testing in schools today, and the pressure for “test prep.” But how widespread are such concerns among educators? And what’s the on-the-ground reality they experience?

New survey data suggest these impressions about over-testing and test prep are more than just anecdotal: They are the norm for the majority of public school teachers.

Blog: Higher Ed Beat

How Colleges Can Help Students Who Are First in Their Families to Attend College

Reina Olivas, right, speaks to reporters at an EWA journalism seminar in Los Angeles, February 27, 2016. (Photo credit: EWA/Mikhail Zinshteyn)

A few weeks ago Reina Olivas got on the phone with a freshman college student. “She was having a hard time with the cultural experience, the college experience,” said Olivas, a college mentor who’s in her third year at the University of Texas at Austin. “So I asked her this initial question – ‘Have you gone to office hours?’”

Olivas is part of an eight-person crew at the Dell Scholars Program that connects with 1,500 college students across the country who could use a helpful hint from other students who also are wending their way through higher learning.

Information

Scholarship Steps for the L.A. Seminars

EWA is able to provided limited travel scholarships to qualified members. Scholarships may be able to cover or reimburse your costs to attend the seminar. Scholarships are granted first come, first served.