SmartBrief education writers and editors read hundreds of articles, studies and press releases each week – too many to summarize and fit neatly into the sections of our newsletters. Our weekly roundup, Education Extra Credit, shares some additional topics of note from the past week or so, as well as occasional highlights from a couple of our education newsletters.
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Intermittent school closures will require some “shock absorbers.” While many schools were officially open for in-person learning in January, COVID-19’s Omicron surge resulted in several intermittent closures. People looking from the outside in often don’t understand that being “open” is not as simple as it sounds.
Teens are getting less sex education than 25 years ago. A new study shows that half of US students aren’t receiving adequate sex education, especially about birth control, no matter the source. Black and Hispanic youths end up being less informed than their counterparts. A quick reminder: Sex education isn’t about having sex but about understanding its implications so young people can learn how to respect consent, reduce abuse, prevent sexually transmitted diseases and avoid unwanted pregnancy.
Why one Black educator continues to teach in heated times. Black Canadian middle-grades teacher Stephanie Bass is uncomfortable with the rising opposition some people have to a culturally well-rounded education. She explains why she isn’t deterred from sharing the cultural riches of Nubia and Timbuktu, the travesty of enslaved people in Canada and so much more that produces thoughtful, civic-minded students.
Study: Gay male students academically outperform straight counterparts. University of Notre Dame sociologist Joel Mittleman has uncovered some interesting research points: “Gay male high school students are more likely than their heterosexual counterparts to earn better grades in more advanced classes and maintain better study habits,” and “gay men consistently outpace straight men in college completion regardless of racial or ethnic background.”
- How students, educators will be affected by the digital SAT. (Education Week)
- Study: Ward off dementia with higher ed, advanced language skills. (News Medical)
- Have President Joe Biden’s views on higher ed changed? (The Chronicle of Higher Education)
- High-school choir to warm up audience at Foreigner concert. (WPTV-TV/West Palm Beach, Fla.)
- Township police officers interact with students during reading, lunch, recess and more. (WXIN-TV /Indianapolis)
Some handy US Education Department resources:
- 2021 State of Our Schools Report on infrastructure.
- An array of water education links: Minnesota Sea Grant: The Watershed Game, US Geological Survey Interactive Water Cycle Diagrams for Schools and Kids, Water Footprint Calculator and Trout in the Classroom.
- National Wildlife Federation’s “Read Along With Ricky and Pals” video.
- Outdoor classroom challenge: Applications for Project Green School due April 8.
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