Girl dies after playground fight

Update 2: More details.


More details emerge in the death of Joanna Ramos. According to the latest news report, the fight was over a boy, and it was planned between the two girls in advance.

From AP, via ABC News:

LONG BEACH, Calif. — An 11-year-old girl is dead following an after school fight at a Long Beach elementary school, but authorities say they have no immediate plans for arrests.

Police said Saturday night that the girl died at a hospital hours after the fight with another 11-year-old girl outside the school.

Authorities say Friday’s fight didn’t appear to be especially serious or violent, no weapons were used and neither girl was knocked to the ground.

Read more.

My 200th fan

I just got my 200th fan on Chain Gang Elementary’s facebook page.  They say the first 200 are the hardest, although I found that Nos. 38-52 were the most difficult. (Feel free to click the link and pile on.) Chain Gang Elementary has gotten great reviews and won “Book of the Month” honors at Indie Books List. It’s also advancing in’s Breakthrough Novel Contest. Plus, the Kindle version is only 99 cents at due to a pricing glitch. Take advantage!


Higher Education: We get what we don’t pay for

For-profit colleges are cleaning up, thanks to slumping government support for public schools. Is that what we want?

From Inside Higher Ed:.

For-profit colleges will grow as they continue to fill a gap left by public higher education, which cannot keep pace with demand thanks to slumping government support, according to a new study by John Aubrey Douglass, a senior research fellow at the Center for Studies in Higher Education at the University of California at Berkeley. That growth will not be due to well-thought-out policy, and will happen despite concerns about the performance of for-profits, Douglass writes. This “policy default” in the United States follows a pattern in Brazil, South Korea and Poland — dubbed “the Brazilian Effect” — that will encourage lower-quality institutions and fail to meet national educational goals, the study predicts.

In another article, a Senate study reports that for-profit colleges are getting half the money the Department of Defense spends on tuition assistance for active-duty military personnel. For military spouses, the percentage is even higher, “with $12 million going to for-profits that are not eligible to participate in federal financial aid programs. As the report noted, those institutions operate outside of the government’s ‘regulatory regime set up to ensure minimal levels of program integrity.'”

By the way, Inside Higher Ed is a great online magazine delivered daily (M-F) to your computer’s doorstep. Maybe you should subsribe. It’s free.

Are we smart yet?

From Inside Higher Ed:

For the first time ever, just over 30 percent of adults in the United States, aged 25 or older, have at least a bachelor’s degree, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released Thursday. In 1998, not even 25 percent of the comparable population had a bachelor’s degree. The data show numerous gaps among members of various groups:

  • Fifty percent of Asian Americans 25 years and over reported having a bachelor’s degree or higher in 2011. This level of education was reported by 34 percent of white people, 20 percent of black people and 14 percent of Hispanic people.
  • Of the 61 million people 25 and over with bachelor’s degrees, 30 million were men and 31 million were women. The number of women with bachelor’s degrees increased 37 percent in the last decade, while the increase for men was 23 percent.
  • The number of men 25 years old and over with doctorate degrees increased 24 percent in the last decade, from 1.5 million to 1.9 million. The increase for women was 90 percent, from 0.6 million to 1.2 million.

Reality (show) intrudes on elementary school

Meet the family

I’m not a big fan of reality TV, and I look forward to not seeing this show, but “Sister Wives” has sparked a controversy after its producer filmed Mormon serial husband Cody Brown and his wives along with their kids at a Law Vegas-area elementary school.

Even though parents protested that the filming at a Valentine’s Day party at Sheila Tarr Elementary School’s was a violation of their privacy, the show’s producers and school officials worked out a deal because, well, you know, the cameras must roll.

Read more.





Girl in critical condition after boy brings gun to school

Officials call it an accident, but the 9-year-old boy is wearing an orange jumpsuit and bond has been set at $50,000. The .45-caliber pistol was in his backpack at Armin Jahr Elementary School in Bremerton, Washington, when it discharged, hitting 8-year-old Amina Kocer-Bowman in the abdomen and critically injuring her.

Police report that both the boy’s parents have “extensive” criminal records. His uncle is his legal guardian.

Read more.