ENGAGING IDEAS - 11/30/2018

Every week we curate stories and reports on complex issues. This week: A look at what new leadership in the Democratic Party means for you. A new bill that seeks to remedy decades of injustice for domestic workers. How tech advancements can impact inequality. The digital gap in classrooms between poor and rich students.


Will the Left Go Too Far? (The Atlantic)
For the third time in a century, leftists are driving the Democratic Party's agenda. Will they succeed in making America more equitable, or overplay their hand? Continue Reading

How local journalism can upend the "fake news" narrative (Salon.com)
A recent survey found that Americans trust local media outlets far more than national ones. Continue Reading

The Democratic Caucus Nominated Its Leadership. Here's What It Means. (New York Times)
For the third time in a century, leftists are driving the Democratic Party's agenda.
Democrats ushered in their leadership on Wednesday for the 116th Congress, including more than 200 returning and incoming members signaling that come January, they want Representative Nancy Pelosi of California to reclaim the speaker's gavel. Here are some of the takeaways from the caucus's votes.
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The New Federal Domestic Workers Bill of Rights Would Remedy Decades of Injustice (The Nation)
America's 2 million domestic workers have minimal protections on the job. The bill announced today would fundamentally change their industry. Continue Reading

NYC's affordable housing agenda isn't doing enough for the city's neediest: report (Curbed New York)
Comptroller Scott Stringer's office says the current plan doesn't address the housing needs hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers.
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How technological innovation could amplify income inequality (PBS NewsHour)
Technological advancement often brings the promise of increased efficiency in the workplace. But it also means apprehension about humans potentially being replaced by automation and artificial intelligence. In a new series, "The Future of Work," Paul Solman explores the concept of "creative destruction" and how innovation is poised to affect jobs, income inequality, mental health and more.
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Are Civics Lessons a Constitutional Right? This Student Is Suing for Them (New York Times)
Many see the lack of civics in schools as a national crisis. A federal lawsuit says it also violates the law. Continue Reading

Newark launches campaign to bolster civic engagement (NJTV Online)
The model has four components: civics in the schools; civics in the universities and online for all residents; associations of interested residents called civic trusts; and an embrace by City Hall of the concept of empowerment.
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What's New in Civic Tech: Ash Carter Calls for Tech to Align with 'Public Purpose' (Government Technology)
Former U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter called upon America's innovators and technologists - in both the public and private sectors - to use their work "with a public purpose," in a written piece published by The Atlantic last week.
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The Digital Gap Between Rich and Poor Kids Is Not What We Expected (New York Times)
America's public schools are still promoting devices with screens - even offering digital-only preschools. The rich are banning screens from class altogether. Continue Reading

'If we don't learn from this one, shame on us': Lessons from a Detroit charter school that was set up to fail (Chalkbeat)
A review of hundreds of pages of documents, and interviews with key leaders involved in the school since its creation, show that the forces arrayed against every school in Detroit had pushed Delta Prep's chances of survival to nothing within a year of its opening, if not before. Continue Reading

When doctors say 'Read,' new parents listen (Hechinger Report)
A campaign to get parents talking, reading and singing to their infants and toddlers by sending the message through pediatricians is working, new report shows. Continue Reading

Higher Ed/Workforce

US manufacturing has a huge image problem (Quartz)
The way Americans look at manufacturing might help explain why 2.4 million jobs could go unfilled between this year and 2028. Continue Reading

PA Mention - Google retraining college-educated moms for tech jobs (Education Dive)
Just as MotherCoders participants want to improve their career prospects by re-skilling, so do most prospective college students over the age of 25 when weighing whether to pursue a degree or certificate, according to a May 2018 report from the nonprofit Public Agenda research group. Because they often balance commitments such as families, jobs and expenses in addition to their education, features such as childcare and financial aid programs are draws for them. Continue Reading

New Film 'Unlikely' Shows How Higher Ed Sets Up Low-Income Students for Failure - and How Some Educators Are Helping Them Succeed (The 74)
As an admissions officer at her alma mater, Columbia University, Jaye Fenderson used to spend every day deciding whether high school applicants were likely to be admitted to the prestigious Ivy League school, with its 7 percent acceptance rate. More often than not, Fenderson would mark applications with a large "U" - "Unlikely." Continue Reading

Health Care

Rate of children without insurance rises for first time since 2008 (Modern Healthcare)
For the first time since 2008, the number of uninsured children has increased, according to the report issued Tuesday by Georgetown University's Center for Children and Families. The number of uninsured children under the age of 19 nationwide increased by an estimated 276,000 to about 3.9 million in 2017. The rate of uninsured children ticked upward from a historic low of 4.7% in 2016 to 5% in 2017.
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People with limited health insurance literacy more likely to avoid care (Healthcare Dive)
A new JAMA Network study found that lower health insurance literacy could be connected to people avoiding healthcare services, including preventive care.
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CVS closes $69B acquisition of Aetna in a 'transformative moment' for the industry (Fierce Healthcare)
The two companies closed the $69 billion deal on Wednesday, finishing off a vertical merger that makes one of the largest healthcare giants even larger.
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