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.