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Gleanings New Poll Reveals Budget Woes District technology budgets have taken big hits, according to a report released this summer by CoSN and Grunwald Associates. The Digital Leadership Divide survey found that while 38 percent of district tech budgets have increased in the past three years, 62 percent have
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New Poll Reveals Budget Woes
District technology budgets have taken big hits, according to a report released this summer by CoSN and Grunwald Associates. The Digital Leadership Divide survey found that while 38 percent of district tech budgets have increased in the past three years, 62 percent have decreased or remained flat, with the greatest impact felt on supplies and equipment, proposed laptop initiatives, and staffing. Those fortunate districts that reported dollar increases cited visionary leadership and strong community support as key factors.

And Speaking of Money...
Superintendent pay has risen by more than 12 percent in the past 10 years, with average salaries ranging from $96,387 to $174,805, depending on district enrollment. This according to Education Week, who got wind of the National Survey of Salaries and Wages in Public Schools stats thanks to a partnership with Education Research Service. Other data points from the report: over the last decade principal pay has increased by about 4 percent; teacher salaries, however, have dropped 2 percent when adjusted for inflation.

Camera Craze
Market research firm IDC predicts explosive growth in camera phones in the next few years, leaping from 19 million users in 2003 to 298 million in 2007. In fact, IDC analysts expect that by 2006, nearly 80 percent of all cell phones will include cameras. If their forecast proves correct, this could complicate the already sticky issue of mobile phones in schools, in particular when it comes to classroom cheating — for example, students surreptitiously photographing exams and then e-mailing them to their associates.

Hit List

Hot off the press this month is The Superintendent as CEO, a textbook-like tome written by Texas A&M professors John R. Hoyle and Virginia Collier, and University of Kentucky's Lars G. Bjork. With the exception of the first and last chapters, the book is structured around the American Association of School Administrators' Professional Standards for the Superintendency (also penned by Hoyle), with compelling case studies, theoretical frameworks, research, and discussion questions backing up each of the eight standards. Virtually every aspect of the role of the superintendent is explored here, from policy and governance to values and ethics. While the authors cover all of this ground quite competently, with an impressive amount of insights rooted in research, don't expect any lengthy how-tos. Corwin Press,

Educators who enjoy dabbling with blogs will find much to like about Rich Site Summary, an XML-based format for aggregating content from various Web sites (RSS is also sometimes called Really Simple Syndication). RSS apps such as the cross-platform Radio UserLand or the Mac-only NetNewsWire allow users to grab headlines and story descriptions from Wired, The New York Times, and countless other news blogs that have set up RSS feeds. And if they want to get particular, they can pull Election 2004 headlines from Time's Web site, for instance, rather than the magazine's world stories. The upshot for those in charge of posting news on their school sites, or who simply want to catch up on the events of the day, is they don't have to scour their favorite sites for updates. Instead, the news gets pushed to them. For a list of RSS readers, see



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Gleanings The Skinny on School Choice Only a small fraction of kids are transferring out of schools that have failed to make Adequate Yearly Progress for two straight years under NCLB, according to a new study from the Center on Education Policy. The report, which revealed 2 percent of eligible students have opted

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Gleanings Teachers Speak Out A recent survey from Public Agenda revealed many of the nation's teachers feel that the expectations placed on them for raising student achievement are not only unrealistic, but unjust. The report found that 59 percent of the 1,345 public school teachers polled believe "it's unfair to be

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Gleanings Surf Report A new survey from Web filtering company St. Bernard Software and JAS Market Research found inappropriate Net use is alive and kicking in K-12 schools, with 59 percent of the 200 technology decision-makers polled reporting incidents ranging from students accessing games (the number one

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Gleanings Girls Building a Home on the Web Countering conventional notions about gender and technology, a new survey reveals that girls are in fact more likely than boys to have personal Web sites. "Children, Families, and the Internet," the latest study from research firm Grunwald Associates, found 12.2 percent of

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Gleanings The Young and the Wired A surprising percentage of kids use e-mail as early as kindergarten, according to NetDay. The nonprofit, which recently released the results of its Speak Up Day 2003 study, found 29 percent of grade K-3 students have their own e-mail accounts, compared to 45 percent for grades 4-6

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Gleanings Teen Net Use Overshadows Television A report commissioned by Yahoo! and Carat Interactive found the Internet has surpassed television and other traditional media as the "hub" of choice for today's youth. The study, which combined online surveys and focus groups, revealed that kids ages 13-18 spend an

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Gleanings The Age of IM Over 53 million American adults swap instant messages on a regular basis, with Generation Y predictably leading the way, reports the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Researchers found 62 percent of Internet users aged 18-27 use instant messaging, with some 35 percent logged on an hour

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Gleanings Laptop Lessons Some heartening news for proponents of 1-to-1 computing in schools: a recent study out of Canada links wireless laptop use with improved English skills. Conducted by the Peace River North School District in British Columbia, whose Wireless Writing Project puts notebook computers in the hands

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Gleanings The Internet Hits Home The Net has increasingly become a conduit for fostering school-to-home relations, according to CDW-G's 2003 Teachers Talk Tech survey. The study, carried out by InfoTek Research and based on phone interviews of 606 K-12 teachers, found that 63 percent of classroom teachers believe