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From the Editor

Anne Wujcik, EditorThe President launched the next phase of his plan to expand access to high-speed Internet. Building on ConnectED, with its goal of connecting 99% of K-12 students to high-speed Internet in their classrooms over the next five years, ConnectHome aims to ensure that students also have high-speed access from their homes.

This is a relatively small effort. ConnectHome is focused on increasing Internet access for low-income families in 28 communities, including the Choctaw Nation. The Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), in collaboration with EveryoneOn and US Ignite, is working with private- and public-sector leaders to build local partnerships that will bring broadband, technical assistance, and digital literacy training to students living in public and assisted housing. Mayors in the identified communities have committed to reallocate local funds, leverage local programming, and use regulatory tools to support this initiative and the expansion of broadband access in low-income communities.

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Voice from the Industry

Brian Taylor, CEO & Co-Founder, Scenario Learning, LLCSPED Training: Pay a Little Now or a Lot Later

Teacher training is a quagmire these days. Less funding. Increasing mandates. Fewer hours and bigger workloads. Not surprisingly, there’s higher turnover too. All of this presents major challenges for school administrators. One notable challenge that bubbles to the top is how to train our nation’s 3.5 million+ teachers on all relevant matters of special education.

Now more than ever, schools and districts should take a more systematic, strategic approach to professional development, especially as it relates to special education.

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She Snoops for Scoops: The Personal Side of the EdNET Community

Vicki Smith BighamIt's been a long week here, and the Snoop is ready for the weekend! How about you? Make your weekly stop first to catch up on this week's scoops!

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Employers and College Faculty Report Gaps in Recent Graduates' Preparedness in New National Survey

The second phase of a new national survey released by Achieve - Rising to the Challenge: Views on High School Graduates' Preparedness for College and Careers - shows that 78% of college faculty and 62% of employers believe that public high schools are not doing enough to prepare students for the expectations they will face in college and the working world. This survey builds upon Achieve's 2014 survey of recent high school graduates about their preparedness for life after high school, which was released in December.

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State Homeschool Policies: A Patchwork of Provisions

Knowing that states regulate homeschooling in a wide variety of ways, policymakers can better inform their decisions by understanding what others around the country are doing or have done to address the topic. Homeschool policies are equally varied from one state to the next and the homeschooling experience will differ depending on where a student lives. In a new report, Education Commission of the States reviewed state homeschooling policies for all 50 states plus the District of Columbia in seven areas:

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