In Delaware, all public school students are back in school. This will be a very interesting year ahead for all of us. The invasion of corporate education reform will be felt the strongest this year. The Smarter Balanced Assessment results will be released on a statewide level in a couple days and the results will go to parents in a few weeks. Priority and focus schools will feel the pain of submitting plans to the Delaware Department of Education. Opt-out will become bigger and more complicated. Schools will lose essential funding due to budget issues in our state government that will continue to go unaddressed. Reports will come out showing how some charters in this state should practice certain application tactics. Parents and teachers will complain about things. The DOE will make it look like everything is awesome when they come out with press releases. Governor Markell will most likely have about 20 weekly messages and 30 public comments about how great education is but how much we need to do to make Delaware the best state in the country for education. A new Secretary of Education will decide if the DOE should stay on course or course-correct. The 148th General Assembly will debate education issues for our children and the DOE and their reform buddies will lobby the legislators for their own agendas. Parents will become increasingly vocal about hotbed education issues in our state. Common Core will be a common pain for students and parents. Wilmington schools will be the front page headline for most schools in the state. Vouchers won’t go anywhere. Most of the people in the state will still have no clue who Rodel is. I will keep blogging about all of this. But at the end of the day, it’s about our children. We all need to keep them safe and keep them learning. The rest is just detail. Best of luck to all involved in any way with education this year!