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Message from the Editor-In-Chief

Get Involved!

From Xbox and Playstation, to apps and Netflix, today’s students have many options when it comes to deciding how to spend their free time. But guess what? An overwhelming number of students choose to read a book. They’re realizing what we’ve known all along: Reading is fun!

Our cover story, “Good News! They Are Reading!” shows that students are still reading when they are able to find the right book. In “People & Places,” we will take you to a Jackson, Miss., barbershop that works to improve the city’s literacy rate, and you’ll hear from Judy Newman, Scholastic Book Club president. We’ve even included a “Best Books” list that is suitable for various grade levels.

Did you know some schools don’t have principals? Does the idea of a teacher-led school—where the teachers make the rules—sound too good and too crazy to be true? Well, it’s happening. Find out how this model works at Reiche Community School in Portland, Maine.

This issue also tackles the topic of racism. In “You Know How Those People Are”, we address implicit bias toward students of all backgrounds, cultures, and ethnicities. We also explore ways to create an open dialogue about this issue so that all students will feel safe and welcome.

Finally, we are excited to see what lies ahead for public education in 2016. As I wrote this column, President Barack Obama signed into law the new Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), which replaces the old No Child Left Behind. Just as we did in the ramp up to the new law, NEA will have a strong voice in ESSA’s implementation. And as we prepare for the upcoming presidential election, we urge all educators to speak up through NEA’s nationwide movement, The future of public education is up to each of us. Let’s all get involved!

Steven Grant

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