SONY Ericsson WTA 2009 hero

Think of other educators who can be similarly nominated…….Suniti Marathe is from way around the world;  a local hero who has garnered international attention. 

From the official website

Name: Suniti Marathe

Residence: Goa, India

Why is the nominee a hero?: My mother has been a high school teacher for 20 years now. She teaches kids at schools in villages. She has pursued the idea of education via examples and innovative thinking. She even spends her spare time thinking about how to teach the next lesson better and preparing for it.

She runs a library at home. The books are mostly for kids. She has gotten many kids in our area to read good books. If books are not available in her library, she personally takes the kids to bigger libraries.

Every person in our area recognizes her not only as a good teacher but as a good person and a good human being.

How has the nominee made a difference in your life as well as in the lives of young women in your community?: My mother enforces that there is nothing better than reading good books. Reading not only improves knowledge, but helps improves diction and awareness.

My mom runs valuable education classes at home. She teaches kids simple values of our society through stories and prayers.

Since she teaches at schools in villages, there are often kids from poor families. She provides uniforms and books to them.

What is an example or anecdote that best shows the nominee’s commitment to supporting gender equality?: Whenever my mom has financially helped kids, she visits the families to see if the kids would need anything else to continue their education.

Which Sony Ericsson WTA Tour player do you consider a hero? Why?: Steffi Graf

11 year old public speaker giving lessons to a NBC correspondent

A public school teacher encouraged this 11 year old to unleash his talent – speaking to 17,000 teachers.   Hear commentary from Maya Angelou, US poet.  Despite this talent he is a very average student.“:

Drop out rate for students with disabilities – the case of New York

Thanks to Michelle Boutwell, SETRC trainer at Erie 2 CC BOCES who compiled the piece below. 

State Performance Plan Indicator #2 addresses the drop out rate for students with disabilities.  At the end of the first phase of our SPP, the expectation is that no more than 19.9% of SWDs will drop out (the bar will only get higher).  When a district is targeted as being at risk or in need of intervention for SPP #1(graduation) and SPP#2, we focus our attention at all three levels of students’ school careers.  We look for early warning signs at the elementary and middle school levels and target groups of students at the high school level who fall into the “at risk” category and see if we can keep them from jumping ship.

Here are some signs that you can look for in building risk profiles for your students: (2 or more research studies have supported these findings)

• Low achievement (use universal screening data)
• Retention (student is older than his peers)
• Poor attendance
• Low socioeconomic status  

Middle School

• High-risk peer group
• High-risk behavior
• Low achievement
• Retention (older than his peers)
• Poor attendance
• Low educational expectations from school personnel
• Low socioeconomic status
• High family mobility
• Low family expectations
• Low family contact with the school
• Low number of family centered conversations about school

High School

• High number of work hours
• Parenthood
• Low achievement
• Retention (older than his peers)  1 grade of retention increases the risk by 40%; 2 grades of retention increases the risk by 90%
• Attendance  (Does your attendance policy contribute to low attendance?)
• Low educational expectations from the school
• Low commitment to school
• No extracurricular activity participation
• Misbehavior
• Low socioeconomic status
• Low education of parents
• Not living with both parents
• The top 5 reasons that students from ages 16-25 give for dropping out: (Rotermund, California Dropout Research Project, Statistical Brief #2, May 2007)
        1. Classes not interesting  47%
        2. Missed too many days of school  43%
        3. Friends are not interested in school  42%
        4. Excess freedom/too few life rules  38%
        5. Failing school  35%

Once we identify the students who are at high risk of dropping out of school, our collective challenge is trying to prevent it.  Between October 2005 and October 2006 enough students dropped out of US schools to fill 9, 690 school buses!  Think about what that does to our country’s economic and health care challenges.

Check out the National Dropout Prevention Center Network at Clemson University for more information.