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Education Desk
The Education Desk is our education blog focusing on key areas of news coverage important to the state and its improvement. Evidence of public policy performance and impact will be reported and analyzed. We encourage you to engage in commenting and discussing the coverage of education from pre-natal to Higher Ed.Dusty Rhodes curates this blog that will provide follow-up to full-length stories, links to other reports of interest, statistics, and conversations with you about the issues and stories.About - Additional Education Coverage00000179-2419-d250-a579-e41d385d0000

Go Ahead Of The Class

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Flickr user: dcJohn www.flickr.com/photos/dcjohn/

A new Illinois law will give gifted children the chance to move ahead in public schools.

The Illinois Accelerated Placement Act, just signed into law, requires all districts to let students take the classes that suit their abilities. That includes early entry into kindergarten or first grade, access to certain courses above grade level, or entirely skipping grades.

Joshua Dwyer, policy director for Empower Illinois, helped write the legislation.

"This is the way for students to get access to a learning environment that works for them. A learning environment that doesn't work for them is a 6th grader who already understands all the content for 6th grade math being forced to sit in that classroom,” he says. "It makes a lot more sense for that kid to be in a level where they're challenged and they're really going to get something out of it, and for society's sake, it's good for them to be at that level too, because it means they'll just be able to progress so much further."

This law takes effect immediately.
Dwyer says 17 other states already have similar laws.

After a long career in newspapers (Dallas Observer, The Dallas Morning News, Anchorage Daily News, Illinois Times), Dusty returned to school to get a master's degree in multimedia journalism. She began work as Education Desk reporter at NPR Illinois in September 2014.
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