Have you heard the news? Three hot topics have been circulating around the Web this week on the subjects of kids and schools. Here's a roundup of the latest posts:

Coal curriculumScholastic publishing company got smacked down this week when three watchdog groups, Rethinking Schools , theCampaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood and Friends of the Earth, reported that Scholastic’s “United States of Energy” curriculum package gives children a one-sided view of  coal , failing to mention its negative effects on the environment and human health. It's no surprise that the coal curriculum was produced in partnership with the coal foundation, but what is surprising is that according to Scholastic's website, curriculum programs are “designed to promote client objectives and meet the needs of target teachers, students, and parents” and “make a difference by influencing attitudes and behaviors.” So our kids' education is now open to the highest bidder? Not cool.


E readers to replace text books. I suppose I should have seen the writing on the wall with this one, but for some reason it still came as a bit of a surprise to me that classrooms around the country are considering replacing text books with e-readers. It makes sense, but I'll tell you right now: the day my second-grader comes home with an e-reader instead of books in her backpack, I'm going to feel like I'm about 100 years old.

Getting kids into college. If you've got kids in school ,then you are probably sweating the details about how to get your child into college. It turns out there's one new trick that may up your child's odds: Researchers have discovered that kids with their own savings account are six times more likely to attend college than those without an account. SIX TIMES! Of course, this still doesn't help you actually pay for that sweet education, but it at least it gets you going down the right path.

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