KidWind Educator Named Wisconsin 2020 Energy Educator of the Year

The Wisconsin K–12 Energy Education Program named Dick Anderson the 2020 Energy Educator of the Year for his dedication to the Wisconsin KidWind Challenge. The challenge is a hands-on competition that engages middle level and high school students in wind energy science and design. Anderson helps organize the annual Wisconsin KidWind Challenge, which grew 300 percent from 2019 to 2020 due, in large part, to his efforts to train and equip teachers with the skills and resources needed to participate in the challenge.

NASRO Position Statement

Mo Canady, executive director of the National Association of School Resource Officers, abridged the organization’s position statement: “The National Association of School Resource Officers (NASRO) abhors racism of all forms and believes that all people deserve the same fairness, respect, dignity, security, and justice. NASRO puts that position into action by teaching school resource officers (SROs) about implicit bias, how to recognize it in themselves and how to overcome it, in a module that has been part of our basic school resource officer course for many years. … NASRO also believes that generalization is unfair to any segment of our population, including members of organizations or professions. We do not believe in forming opinions about any large group based on the behavior of a few members. We are dismayed to learn that some school systems have recently discontinued or considered discontinuing their SRO programs. Our experience shows that using the best practices NASRO pioneered—including selecting SROs carefully and providing them effective, specialized training—leads to community satisfaction with SRO programs. Such well-implemented programs can help communities bridge the gap between law enforcement and youth, building positive relationships that can last lifetimes, while helping to protect schools from a wide variety of threats. … NASRO stands ready, as always, to provide assistance to any community that desires it.”

Seattle School Supports Their LGBTQ+ Students

The Seattle Public Schools Board of Directors unanimously passed a new resolution to support queer youth identity. The state’s largest school district will consider several measures: creating a new LGBTQ+ culture and identity curriculum, including all-genders bathrooms in new school construction projects; offering LGBTQ+ sensitivity training to staff; and renaming one school. The district will survey all schools to report on how many have gender-inclusive bathrooms and brainstorm possibilities to create new inclusive restrooms in existing buildings.

Colleges Drop SAT and ACT Requirements

A record number of colleges and universities have dropped the requirement that students applying to enter as freshmen in fall 2021 submit an SAT or ACT test, and some schools may eliminate the requirement altogether. Dozens of schools have announced new test-optional policies for high school juniors as a response to the COVID-19 shutdown. The test-flexible movement has grown exponentially this year because of the pandemic, with concerns mounting about the value of a single test score and the fairness of using that score in admissions when all students do not have the same access to great teachers and test preparation. FairTest, which has been keeping records for years of standardized testing requirements at colleges and universities, says there are now more than 1,100 four-year colleges and universities that do not use the SAT or ACT to admit large numbers of bachelor degree applicants.

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