Survey Examines Use of Internet to Cheat, Bully

In a survey conducted by the McAfee security firm of 3,902 high school students internationally—including 1,201 in the United States—30 percent of American students reported being cyberbullied, compared to about 22 percent overall.

One-third of American students also admitted to bypassing school safeguards to access prohibited online content, such as social media networks, and almost 30 percent said they used tech devices to cheat.

Only 44 percent of American students said their school provided regular online guidance, and 46 percent said they discussed online safety with their parents. Seventy percent said they would be comfortable approaching an adult in school if cyberbullied.

ESSA Plans Include Vectors for STEM Improvement

An analysis of state ESSA plans submitted to date by The Education Trust found policies by which states could “use their ESSA plans to formulate innovative ways to advance STEM in their schools.”

The researchers identified “four ‘high-impact policies’ that surfaced throughout many of the plans,” including ones related to career and technical education (CTE) programs, science assessments, AP and International Baccalaureate indicators, and efforts “to require or encourage STEM elements in 21st Century Community Learning Center grants.”

For further information on ESSA, see our roundtable discussion in the September 2017 issue of Principal Leadership.  

Chicago Public Schools’ Loan Bears Heavy Cost

Chicago Public Schools recently borrowed $500 million, saying the loan “will buy the district a bit of financial breathing room through 2019.”

However, the 20-year loan will cost $85 million in interest.

In addition, only a small fraction of the money from the long-term bonds issued in July will be used for school construction or classroom improvements, which some budget experts say should be the primary use for long-term debt.

Court Remands Transgender Bathroom Case

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit sent back to a lower court a lawsuit involving a transgender teen’s demand to use the boys’ bathroom at his high school.

The court had scheduled oral arguments for September in Gavin Grimm’s case against the Gloucester County School Board, but later said it would delay those arguments and send the case back to the district court, reasoning that the case may now be moot because Grimm recently graduated.