Straight A Fund: more than 300 applications submitted as competition begins for second round (Ohio Department of Education) The $250 million Straight A Fund was created to promote innovative local ideas and programs to help transform and modernize Ohio’s education system.

Common Core: showdown looms in Alabama as anti-Core PAC collects $700,000 from mystery donor (Anniston Star)

College: business leaders unimpressed with college grads’ skills (Hechinger Report) Related: career-tech policies gaining ground in many states (EdWeek)

Competency-based learning: new networks taking shape in higher education (CompetencyWorks) glad to see alma mater (The University of Toledo) on board.

Welcome back:  Talisa Dixon, one of the architects of the small schools at Brookhaven which KnowledgeWorks helped implement during my early days there, has gone on to bigger and better and is now the new superintendent in Cleveland Heights- University Heights. (Plain Dealer) Heights High has modified but still kept the small schools concept. (CH-UH website)

BONUS LINK:  according to Wikipedia’s listing of key events, on this date 30 years apart, the US liberated Dachau and evacuated South Vietnam, the latter event now almost 40 years in our rearview mirror