UP: Housing Market. Housing and condo sales were up 16.7% in April, compared with April 2011, marking 10 straight months of improved sales. Average sales prices increased 5% from last April. The figures give officials hope that the housing market, a key driver of the recession, has finally turned around.
DOWN: Wisconsin schools. The state's request to get more flexibility under the federal No Child Left Behind law receives a bad review from the federal government for being short on details. Doug Harris, a UW-Madison associate professor of education and public policy, tells the Wisconsin State Journal that Wisconsin needs "to make major changes of the sort the state has never been willing to make. Given that, I think it's fair to say [the proposal] is in jeopardy."