Cooke Chronicle: Feb. 10, 2017


Feb. 10, 2017 – Here’s our weekly roundup of education news you may have missed. Higher ed advocates explain why tuition-free programs don’t solve all college access issues. New and anticipated changes to K-12 priorities are also discussed.

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Elementary & Secondary Education:

  • In an opinion piece for The New York Times, Thomas B. Edsall pulls evidence from recent education research that demonstrates the benefits of desegregation on student achievement. Edsall is concerned that “polarized belief systems” may prevent best practices from being considered by the new administration.
  • The Washington Post describes concerns over new cuts to the Federal Communications Commission’s Lifeline program, which many low-income students rely on for affordable broadband access. In-home internet access is increasingly expected for completing homework assignments.
  • Now that Betsy DeVos has been confirmed as Secretary of Education, several bills related to school choice are moving through Congress, reports The 74 Million. For a refresher on the differences between magnet schools, charter schools and voucher programs, the Education Commission of the States offers a glossary of school choice terminology.


Higher Education:

  • The Urban Institute speculates on how Pell Grants, student debt, and other higher education issues will be handled under new leadership at the Department of Education.
  • NPR notes that as college costs continue to rise, so do the numbers of students suffering from homelessness and food insecurity. Chalkbeat and The Associated Press run similar stories that highlight how high living costs have made even free-tuition programs prohibitive to many students.
  • Many college access programs for first-generation students are expanding their focus to include helping parents and families understand the procedures of the college application process, says The Chronicle of Higher Education.


Cooke Foundation Highlights:

  • The Cooke Young Scholars Program is now seeking applications from high-potential 7th grade students with financial need. Students selected to be Young Scholars will receive comprehensive academic and college counseling, funding for extracurricular enrichments, and access to a community of ambitious peers. Tell a talented student you know to apply before our deadline on April 5, 2017.
  • Cooke Scholars Santiago Tobar Potes and David Guirgis both serve on the Better Make Room Student Advisory Board. In separate pieces published this week, they express concerns for continued dedication to college access. In CNN, Santiago asks President Trump not to deport undocumented students like himself, and David shares his reflections on the Better Make Room blog about being part of the initiative.
  • Getting Smart includes the Cooke Foundation in its list of top organizations for college access and success.


Social Media Spotlight:

Last weekend’s cover story in The Washington Post Magazine profiled John Kent Cooke and the work of the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation. Also in the article, Cooke Scholars Larry Thi and Raul Mateo Magdaleno share their experiences as alumni of our scholarship programs.