Digital Learning Leader
Calif. educator Kerry Muse will lead Venture Academy, Minnesota’s first personalized, blended digital learning school. He will coach a team of educators to reinvent traditional education to help students become innovators and entrepreneurial leaders.
Science and Hip-Hop
Columbia University professor Christopher Emdin is working with the rapper GZA and the website Rap Genius on a pilot program to use hip-hop to teach science in 10 New York City schools, to engage minority students and increase science proficiency levels.
Superintendent George Griffith of WaKeeney USD 208 in Kansas conducted a 900-school survey and found that elementary schools in Kansas and four surrounding states have drastically reduced or eliminated science classes because of NCLB pressure to improve math and reading.
Powerful Woman Award
Janet Barresi, Oklahoma State Superintendent of Public Instruction, was named one of Oklahoma City’s 50 Most Powerful Women in November. She has established two successful charter schools, and is working to increase STEM education in the state.
Superintendent Alex Apostle of Missoula County Public Schools in Montana bolstered the district’s Indian Education Department. Since he came on the job in 2008, the Native American student graduation rate went up from 56 percent in 2007 to 75 percent last year.