Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Grant Your Self A Better Education For Less


Grant Your Self A Better Education For Less

Author: Carl Hampton

"I'm not going to college because I just can't afford it." How many times do we hear those words form worried high school juniors and seniors. It's no wonder they think like that when tuition fees have been rising anywhere between 2% to as much as 26%. Before we all get lost in the Doom and Gloom there is a lot of GOOD news out there, you just have to know where to find it.

There really is an endless amounts of grants, scholarships and loans (those should be your last avenue), there really is no way a student cannot afford to attend college. Most students will be able to meet the following qualifications for a Pell Grant, (financial need), you must be attending a 4-year university you cannot be an inmate at a federal prison. That may well sound crazy but if your child is in a local penal facilities, they can still receive a Pell Grant. Nonetheless, if you meet those requirements, you are also eligible for the Academic Competitiveness Grants and the National Science and Mathematics Access to Retain Talent (SMART) Grants.

You must as a high school student, actively participate in math, science, or a language. You can see the curriculum criteria by states at http://www.federalstudentaid.ed.gov. Margaret Spellings, the U.S. Department of Education Secretary, says that the purpose of this program is to involve students in what she calls the "global economy" of today's world. "Math, science and critical foreign language skills are the new currencies."

More than 500,000 students will be receiving these grants throughout the nation which amounts to more than $790 million dollars. The grant payments can be an additional $750 during freshman year; $1,300 during sophomore year; and up to $4,000 during junior and senior year. So lets do some math on the subject, if a student attends a public California university (say UCLA), the tuition fees would be somewhere around $7,000 for an in state student. If that student is granted the $4,000 by their last year, just from the SMART Grant, that leaves $3,000. Now subtract another $1,000 from the Pell Grant itself, and we are left with $2,000 left outstanding to be paid, thats $38.46 per week, not too much for an education.

For those students who have yet to apply for financial aid, visit http://www.federalstudentaid.ed.gov or call for information on eligibility. And don't worry, these grants are not temporary. The grant amount is said to increase over the next five years.

About the Author:

http://www.CarlHampton.com http://www.fcdtcm.com

Educational Leadership and the Entrepreneurial Spirit


Educational Leadership and the Entrepreneurial Spirit

Author: Luis Valentino

In the annals of leadership history, one of the standouts will undoubtedly be Steve Jobs, CEO and Co-Founder of Apple Computers, and now a force to be reckoned with at Disney, Inc.. His influence has been felt not only in the computer industry, but the entertainment industry has become the recipient of his need to affect technology forever.

There are numerous descriptors for Jobs which give insight into his philosophy of leadership. One of the key features of his leadership is his entrepreneurial spirit. In this spirit is his need to fully understand, and engage in, all aspects of his creations. He has grown most of his endeavors from seedlings. Apple Computers, NEXT, and to some degree even Pixar, have been built from nothing, with most becoming successful ventures. In a BusinessWeek interview in 2004, Jobs shared, "I did everything coming up – shipping, sales, supply chain, sweeping the floors, buying chips, you name it. I put computers together with my own two hands. As the industry grew up, I kept on doing it." In spite of the numerous projects or activities that tug at his time, and the numerous distractions that could interfere with his ability to meet his primary goals, he refuses to be removed from each component of the work. Educational leaders must develop the same entrepreneurial spirit. They must understand each component of the work at a deep level. It means applying this understanding in creating and developing an educational institution that addresses the needs of all students, staff, and school community. It also means not allowing themselves to get distracted.

But how can educational leaders, who spend the majority of their time implementing the laws, policies, and compliance driven mandates, find the time and space to become more independent and refocused? Applying the entrepreneurial spirit the way Jobs has applied it to his work means becoming clear on the creation. Educational leaders must be clear on what it is they wish to create. If in a school, what kind of school community does the leader wish to create? If in an office, what kind of division, program, or district does the educational leader wish to create? Once it has been identified, the rest of the work is about building it with the same intensity Jobs built Apple Computers.

A good start is for educational leaders to get up off their chairs and leave their offices. They must start spending time with those doing the work. Visit classrooms, walk around the campus and the school community. Speak with the students, the faculty, and the staff. Attend faculty meetings. Department and grade-level meetings are great settings to participate in meaningful conversation about the work. Get out into the community, speak with the shop owners. Meet with members of the school community through community meetings. Attend events sponsored by organizations in the community. Use the information gleaned to learn about the school, division, or district – it also has the nurturant effect of helping leaders build stronger relationships.

But to fully understand what, in fact, the school, division, or district, is about, collect data and study it closely. The data collected includes test scores, performance evaluations, work samples and other artifacts, observations, communiques, etc. How are students and teachers performing? How is the staff producing? How is the community contributing? The results of this assessment dictates how the leaders' time should be spent, and how their role will be applied. More importantly, it can serve as validation for developing a stronger spirit of entrepreneurship; it is a belief that it is up to the leader to create the future he/she wishes to see in the school, division, district.

ฉ 2006. Luis R. Valentino

Luis Valentino, Ed.D. is a school administrator in Los Angeles, and a university instructor. Dr. Valentino serves as a mentor for both aspiring and experienced teachers and administrators. His work on the California Standards for the Teaching Profession, was instrumental in bringing about a more comprehensive process for teacher induction. He is the publisher of the iCollegion website, an online community for educators. Dr. Valentino received is B.S. in Film from the University of Texas. He received his M.A. in Education Technology from Cal State, Los Angles, and his M.S. in Educational Leadership from Pepperdine University. He received his doctorate in Education Leadership from UCLA. Dr. Valentinocan be reached at (213) 241-9094, and can be emailed at luis@icollegium.com

Friday, November 21, 2008

Home Education Disadvantages

Regardless of the face that homeschooling has gained popularity in the last 10 years, there are still very many of backers for community school ready and willing to provide their arguments and reasons to their neighborhood mom that has established to homeschool. As with any basis, there are two sides. I'm not here to charm you in one direction or another, in any case I would like to educate you with some of the arguments and let you choose for yourself.

It's not so hard to sort out some of the apprehension that could come with homeschooling.

Here are some of the top reasons against homeschooling:

1. Lack of Social Interaction: This is the largest disagreement when talking to the public about home schooling. We live in a social world and social skills are hugely eminent in being able to successfully go through living. Kids who are isolated all week in their homes with little social contact risk not understanding how to deal with surplus communities that have different views than them or even be acquainted with a agreeable conversation.

2. Lack of Records: All the same most of us wouldn't got back to grade junior high school if someone paid us, anyhow, it was these records out on the playground during recess, middle school dances, and even the canned food drives that were vital materials of what shapes children in their developmental years. Homeschooled youngsters are stripped of these historic events and it can negatively impact their developmental years.

3. Lack of Curriculum: Regardless there are very acceptable homeschool elements, there's no way a parent can forge a entire schooling year that is at all similar to the value a schoolteacher can in a kindergarten class with a vide range of resources and their fingertips.

When trying to opt whether or not homeschooling is direct for you, its good to take account of both sides of the fence. These are just a few of the motives against homeschooling. These are some very relevant concerns, mull over them, analysis them, and assemble the commitment that's promptly for you and the rest of your family.