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24th Annual National Dropout Prevention Network Conference

October 14-17, 2012, Rosen Plaza Hotel in Orlando, Florida.  Please mark your calendars! The National Dropout Prevention Network, in partnership with The Florida Department of Education, invites you to the 24th Annual National Dropout Prevention Network Conference, Ignite the Potential Within; Connect, Inspire, Graduate!

Conference Information and Registration

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Designed to help the reader understand the implications of truancy; learn about best practices in the field; and develop, implement, and evaluate an effective program.
  • Best Practices and Model Truancy Programs
         by Reimer & Dimock
  • Guidelines for Evaluating Truancy Programs
         by Wesley & Duttweiler
  • Legal and Economic Implications of Truancy
         by Smink & Heilbrunn
  • Planning, Collaboration, and Implementation Strategies for Truancy Programs
         by Cash & Duttweiler

  • Regularly $9.50 each, NDPC is offering a limited quantity of all four books for only $25.
    Top Stories
    Annual Study Finds Child Education, Health Improving. According to the Annie E. Casey Foundation's 2012 Kids Count Data Book, children's health and education are showing positive signs even in the midst of a dismal economic environment.

    High School Dropout Potential Could Be Determined in Middle School. A report by PBS's Frontline examines the work of Johns Hopkins researcher Robert Balfanz, who suggests there is a key period in middle school that determines whether a student will eventually drop out. According to this report, if a sixth grader in a high poverty school attends school less than 80% of the time, fails math or English, or receives an unsatisfactory behavior grade, there is a 75% chance he or she will drop out of high school. (Education Commission of the States)

    Sound Connections
    Attend this webinar and discover how many schools and districts are successfully using iPads and Kineos in their classrooms to improve student performance and increase learning time. All attendees receive a free Mobile Learning Checklist to help plan an implementation. (eSchool News) Wednesday, August 29, 2:00 pm – 3:00 pm ET

    President Obama unveils new education initiative for African Americans in opening speech to National Urban League.

    Policy Updates
    Zero Tolerance: A Pathway from School to Prison? A critical examination of how such policies are applied and what happens to the young people who all too often find themselves victimized by them. "In essence, we are witnessing students who misbehave in school, doing things that are not a threat to public safety, being arrested and punished in the same way as those students who constitute actual safety threats." (The Boys Initiative)

    Maryland Board of Education moves to end zero tolerance. The Maryland State Board of Education voted to give preliminary approval to changes to the state's discipline policy that will replace zero-tolerance consequences with a rehabilitative approach to discipline. It will make suspensions and expulsions last-resort disciplinary measures and require the state education department to track data to find and eliminate punishment disparities affecting students who are minorities or in special education. (ASCD SmartBrief)

    Shanghai's Improvement Plan for Schools–a video explains how teams from stronger schools work to improve programs in underperforming schools.

    U.S. Students Still Lag Behind Foreign Peers, Schools Make Little Progress in Improving Achievement. A recent report by Harvard University found although American students are not losing ground, students in Latvia, Chile, and Brazil are making gains in academics three times faster than American students, while those in several other countries are improving at twice the rate. (Huffington Post, 07/23/12)

    Effective Strategies
    Safe Learning Environments
    Research Points to Health Care Improving School Outcomes. "Health can be integrally related to many of the complex reasons for students dropping out of school," including barriers to learning such as hunger and poor nutrition and even fear for safety at school. (Ed Week)

    Preventing Suicide: A Free Toolkit for High Schools provides guidelines for school personnel to identify teenagers at risk and resources for taking appropriate actions to provide help. (SAMHSS)

    Family Engagement
    Getting parents involved is no easy task. But Education World's "Principal Files" team offers some ideas for school wide events to draw parents in large numbers. Included: More than 30 events to add to your school calendar! (Education World)

    Engaging and Re-engaging Students and Families. This self-paced, professional development program approaches the subject in four units which address: introduction and school climate, strategic approaches to engaging and re-engaging students, applications designed to engage and re-engage families, and use of a systemic approach. (Center for Mental Health in Schools at UCLA)

    Early Literacy Development
    How to incorporate reading instruction into content-area classrooms. A group of middle and high school teachers in St. Louis formed a "best-practices reading cadre." They share their six literacy strategies. (MiddleWeb SmartBrief)

    The Ontario Ministry of Education has identified boys’ literacy and learning as a priority. They have published a brochure about boys and reading.

    What can you do, as a teacher, to develop lifelong readers? Donna Miller offers some examples. (Scholastic)

    A successful mentoring program is making a difference for African-American male high school students in New Jersey. (The Boys’ Initiative)

    Students with Disabilities
    A new report finds that children with disabilities are at about four times the risk of becoming victims of violence compared with children who don't have disabilities.

    Students who are autistic make music together using iPads. Students with special needs at a New York school are performing in a band, using iPads as instruments. Music teacher Adam Goldberg says the technology helps eliminate barriers for the students. (MiddleWeb SmartBrief)

    Funding sources are available on the NDPC/N Web site.

    Resources & Tools
    Using hexagons to explore and connect themes. Great teaching tool! It’s free!
    National Night Out is August 7th.
    International Day of World's Indigenous Peoples is August 9th.
    International Youth Day is August 12th.
    Embracing Discomfort: Speaking Out for Cultural Relevance
    "Share My Lesson," a free online portal for teachers, will debut this summer with more than 100,000 user-generated lessons. (eClasssroom News)
    App matches books to students' reading levels. (SmartBrief on EdTech)
    Back-to-School Lesson: Learning Strengths Inventory (Education World)
    Bullying Prevention Lesson: Needs and Feelings (Education World)
    Fun Activities for the First Days of School (Education World)

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