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Washington State University
College of Education

February 2009

Hot off the e-press…

Newsletter news: You’ve probably heard that one of our college cost-cutting moves will be elimination of the annual print newsletter.  As a longtime ink-on-paper person, I hope we’ll be able to bring it back when the fiscal sun shines again.  Meanwhile, I’m gratified by the quick delivery of our bi-monthly e-mail version of Education News.   Check out the latest edition, which features an easier-to-read format thanks to our Web developer, Geoff Jensen.   Subscribe! Forward the link to friends and alumni!

Speaking of alums, please encourage them to share their career news with us so we can post it here. A special thanks to Pullman faculty member Jim Williamson for putting me in touch with Daniel Allbery (M.Ed. ’08) … I was able to persuade Dan to write from Japan about his experience teaching in Nishinomiya.

Making news: Research Professor Bruce Becker of our ELCP faculty is quoted in the Nebraska news feature So you can’t run in winter? Swimming might be better.  …. Closer to home, the award-winning Superintendent Certification Program is highlighted in President Floyd’s “Campus developments” section.

Links of interest:
Top 100 education blogs

Key Provisions for Higher Education in the Economic Stimulus Plan
Rename Law? No Wisecrack Is Left Behind

Flicks: Even folks who aren’t registered for this week’s Globalization, Education and Diversity Conference can take advantage of the occasion to see two intriguing documentaries, and meet the filmmakers.  Alan Ereira will give a free presentation of “From the Heart of the World, the Elder Brothers’ Warning” to the public at 3 p.m. Thursday in Kimbrough Hall 101 on the Pullman campus, before going to Spokane and giving a presentation at 6:45 p.m.  Friday at the conference venue, the Red Lion Hotel at the Park. The film is about Colombia’s Kogi people, who for 400 years have tried to remain isolated in the mountains in order to preserve their way of life, culture and philosophy.  Another film, Lee Boot’s “Euphoria,” will be shown at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at the Red Lion. It begins by asking: In a country built for the pursuit of happiness, are people happy? Admission to the Spokane showings is $5.

Speaking to Congress, speaking of awards

Stephen Kucer
Stephen Kucer

Remember last October’s article on Associate Professor Stephen Kucer and his colleagues, Authors of New Book Will Brief Congress on Complex Nature of Reading? Well, Stephen reported in an e-mail that the Feb. 3 briefing, which came as Congress is delving into No Child Left Behind Act reauthorization, was “an incredible experience.  We had standing-room only, with about 50 seats filled.  The audience was largely congressional and senatorial aides.  Patty Murray sent an aide to talk with me before and after the presentation.  She asked about my thoughts concerning NCLB and Reading First and said she would relay these to the senator.  My impression was that NCLB would be reauthorized in a radically different form and a different name.  I also e-mailed the aide and gave her some suggestions for the reauthorization.  Rep. Patrick Kennedy, whose office extended the invitation, sent his aide as well and she gave a short speech supporting the work of the authors.  I’ve also received a receipt from NCTE—the publisher of the book—who said that the sales are quite strong given that the book has only been available for two months.”

By the way, all of the profits for the book, What Research REALLY Says about Teaching and Learning to Read, are being returned to the National Council of Teachers of English to support its literacy initiatives.

Great program, twice noted: Phi Delta Kappa, the Professional Association in Education, has given its PDK-Washington “Great Teacher” award in the university category to the WSU Superintendent Certification. This is the second recent recognition of the quality of the program, which is directed by Gene Sharratt of WSU Spokane. It also won the 2008 Program Award from the Washington State Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Great advisor: Lindsay Lightner, academic coordinator for Teaching & Learning at WSU Tri-Cities, won the New Advisor — Primary Role Award, one of the first-ever Outstanding Advisor Awards presented by the WSU Academic Advising Association. Read Lindsay’s comments in the Daily Evergreen. WSU’s four winners will be among competitors for the national awards.

Great grad student news: WSU’s new director of Professional Education is Kelly Newell, who will receive her Ed.M. in higher education leadership from our college in May.  Kelly told me: “I am really excited to finally have my degree done as I’ve been working on it since 2004!” She can be forgiven if it’s taken her a few years. Besides the full-time job, she’s become the mother of twins and kept up her participation in triathlons.

Final word…  here’s a NYT opinion piece that is likely to get our researchers nodding in agreement:  Education is All in Your Mind.