Today In School Closures... Detroit is slated to close even more schools, reports CBS. Enrollment in the Motor City has dwindled from 150,000 to a projected 40,000. "A deficit elimination plan obtained by The Detroit News says the district will close 28 schools [by 2016]," CBS reports. "The closures are expected to save DPS about $13.4 million in operating expenses, but hundreds of district employees will be out of a job." The Free Press has a letter from emergency manager Roy Roberts to the district's employees: DPS has "accelerated the time line for its return to complete fiscal stability," he wrote. But Roberts hasn't said which schools will be shuttered.
Kristof, Fan Of Pre-K? In his latest piece, New York Times columnist argues for the importance of early childhood education. "Something is profoundly wrong when we can point to 2-year-olds in this country and make a plausible bet about their long-term outcomes -- not based on their brains and capabilities, but on their ZIP codes," Kristof writes. "President Obama spoke movingly in his second Inaugural Address of making equality a practice as well as a principle. So, Mr. President, how about using your second term to tackle this most fundamental inequality?" Good question.
Sports For All? Apparently, schools needed a reminder that students with disabilities have a right to equal participation in sports during and after school hours -- and a reminder is exactly what the White House is giving them. Tomorrow, as we report, the U.S. Education Department's Office of Civil Rights will send guidance to the country's schools spelling out what, exactly, school districts have to do to comply with the Rehabilitation Act in order to serve these kids.
Hellacious High School? New York Magazine has a feature this week on why high school is so traumatizing for years after graduation. It might help explain your lingering case of FOMO, if you will. "And maybe the way life is, still, sometimes," one character says. "About wanting to be invited to things." (H/t GothamSchools.)
And What Do 'Insiders' Say? Whiteboard Advisors has released its monthly "insiders" survey. They continue to disapprove of Congress and think the Hill won't reauthorize No Child Left Behind until after the beginning of 2015. Most don't think the administration can make headway on teacher preparation this year. And they think it will be difficult for the White House to move any ambitious legislation on school safety in the wake of the Newtown, Conn. elementary school shooting.