Education

Higher Education
9:50 am
Thu May 1, 2014

Yale Graduate Assistants Call For Process to Decide On Unionization

Members of Yale's Graduate Employees and Students Organization marched on Wednesday to the office of Yale President Peter Salovey.
Diane Orson WNPR

More than 1,000 graduate assistants at Yale University are calling for a process to decide on unionization.

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Public Schools
10:41 am
Wed April 30, 2014

Proposal Voted Down to Merge Elementary Schools

Credit FrankJuarez / Creative Commons

According to unofficial tallies, a proposal to consolidate elementary schools among the three Connecticut towns that make up the Region 12 school district has been voted down, according to the Waterbury Republican American.

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Sexual Violence
3:31 am
Wed April 30, 2014

Training Men And Women On Campus To 'Speak Up' To Prevent Rape

Vice President Joe Biden on Tuesday announced the release of the first report of the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. The report calls the intervention of bystanders one of the "most promising prevention strategies."
Win McNamee Getty Images

Originally published on Wed April 30, 2014 9:53 am

A White House task force on Tuesday recommended ways to reduce rape and relationship violence on college campuses, pointing to, among other things, programs designed to teach students to intervene before an assault happens.

One of the programs, known as "bystander intervention," is based on the idea that both men and women can interrupt behaviors to prevent sexual violence.

The training is designed to change social norms and encourage people to find ways to intervene.

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Inequality
1:26 pm
Mon April 28, 2014

Achievement Gap Persists in Connecticut

mygueart/iStock Thinkstock

A national report on high school graduation rates shows an achievement gap continues to exist in Connecticut between poor students and those who are more affluent. 

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Teacher Evaluations
10:42 am
Fri April 25, 2014

Connecticut Educators May No Longer Be Judged Based On One Test Score

Alberto G. Creative Commons

The advisory council responsible for developing Connecticut's evaluation system for teachers and principals is recommending changes to the guidelines. If the changes are adopted, educators may no longer be judged based on just one test score.

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UConn Union
1:21 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Labor Leader Cites Lawmakers, School in Helping Grad Employee Union Form

Julie Kushner, director of the UAW Region 9A.
Credit uaw.org

A long-time organizer with the United Auto Workers said University of Connecticut graduate employees won union recognition last week in what she called "the fastest-moving campaign ever." That’s due, in part, to the support of state lawmakers, and the school’s decision not to interfere.

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Labor
3:15 pm
Fri April 18, 2014

UConn Recognizes New Graduate Assistants Union

Credit University of Connecticut

The University of Connecticut is officially recognizing the new union that will represent more than 2,100 graduate assistants working throughout the UConn campuses. 

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Learning
11:36 am
Tue April 15, 2014

Ken Burns Tackles Lincoln, Education And Money In 'The Address'

Cooper and Ned are two of the boys working on learning the Gettysburg Address in Ken Burns' latest documentary.
Lindsay Taylor Jackson/Florentine Films PBS

Originally published on Tue April 15, 2014 7:07 pm

The Ken Burns documentary The Address, premiering on most PBS stations Tuesday night, opens at the Greenwood School in Vermont, where students are being introduced to a longstanding tradition: studying the Gettysburg Address until they can recite it from memory in front of a large audience of students, staff and parents. If they succeed, they receive a special commemorative coin that is only given for this achievement. A first, second and third prize will be awarded — one for middle school, one for high school — for these performances.

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Early Childhood
11:22 am
Mon April 14, 2014

Boston Finds That Quality Preschool Is Worth The Effort

Using a projector, Jodi Doyle points out shadows on the ceiling to students in her preschool class at the Eliot School in Boston. Boston has become a beacon for the universal preschool movement, but so far it can only provide seats for about half the interested families.
Jesse Costa WBUR

Originally published on Sun April 13, 2014 12:32 pm

It's a Wednesday morning at the Eliot K-8 Innovation School. Teacher Jodi Doyle is working with a small group of preschool students interested in domes.

"What do you think the difference is between a dome and an arch?" she asks.

The lesson doesn't go exactly as planned. Doyle wants the kids to build their domes with wire, but she wants the children to come up with that idea themselves. The kids used wire several months ago for a related project, and she hopes they'll remember.

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School Integration
4:35 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

Most Charter Schools in Connecticut Are "Hyper-Segregated"

Credit jnaas/iStock / Thinkstock

In most charter schools in Connecticut, more than 90 percent of students are racial and ethnic minorities. This is despite a state goal to provide an integrated learning environment, and let students and teachers interact with people of other racial, ethnic and economic backgrounds.

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Testing
7:34 am
Wed April 9, 2014

An Education Reporter Puts Himself To The (Standardized) Test

New standardized tests put more emphasis on using evidence to support arguments.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 1:14 pm

What are the two most feared — most reviled — words in the English language?

"Tax day," maybe? Or "traffic jam"?

"Pink slip" still connotes an awful brand of helplessness, even though, I assume, most Americans who get pink-slipped these days never see a pink slip.

No, my vote is for "standardized test."

That's right. You felt it, didn't you? Shivers up the spine. The stab of a No. 2 pencil. And oh! Those monstrous, monotonous bubbles. They may as well be a legion of eyes staring back at your inadequacy.

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Earning a Degree
8:57 am
Fri April 4, 2014

Connecticut to Open First P-TECH School in Norwalk

Graduates will earn a high school diploma and an associates degree in applied science.
Credit Vancouver Film School / Creative Commons

State officials are to announce today that Connecticut’s first P-TECH model school will open in September.

P-TECH stands for Pathways in Technology Early College High School, and by the start of the next academic year there will be about 27 of these schools across the country.

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Charter Schools
11:24 am
Thu April 3, 2014

Connecticut State Board of Education Approves Four New Charter Schools

Credit Karen Apricot / Creative Commons

The Connecticut State Board of Education has approved four new charter schools, including two in Bridgeport. 

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Higher Education
9:05 am
Thu April 3, 2014

Undocumented Students Are Denied Access to Institutional Aid

Credit zimmytws/iStock / Thinkstock

A group of undocumented students in Connecticut is urging state higher education agencies to allow them access to a state financial aid program, known as institutional aid. But higher education officials said their hands are tied.

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Science Education
8:55 am
Wed April 2, 2014

Changing The Face Of Astronomy Research

Students from CUNY's AstroCom NYC program meet for a weekly class at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. Dennis Robbins, an associate professor of science education at CUNY's Hunter College, teaches Betsy Hernandez (from left), Jaquelin Erazo, Ariel Diaz and Mario Martin.
Beth Fertig WNYC

Originally published on Wed April 2, 2014 1:04 pm

Shooting for the stars is expensive.

Advanced sciences like astronomy require years of study and graduate degrees. And the soaring cost of college can be a heavy obstacle for low-income and minority students hoping to break into those fields.

A program at the City University of New York hopes to lift that burden by providing scholarships and one-on-one mentoring to underrepresented students.

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Admissions
11:17 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

New York Student Is Accepted To All 8 Ivy League Schools

Commencement on campus of Yale University in New Haven, Conn.
Jessica Hill AP

Originally published on Tue April 1, 2014 7:09 pm

The odds of getting into any of the eight Ivy League schools in the country are against even the brightest students in the country.

Imagine getting a yes from all of them. That's what happened to 17-year-old Kwasi Enin of Shirley, N.Y.

Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, Princeton, the University of Pennsylvania and Yale have all asked Kwasi to be part of their class of 2018.

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WAMC News
8:30 am
Tue April 1, 2014

UMass Opens Springfield Center Campus Office

The welcome center at the UMass satellite campus in Springfield is now open to help enroll students for classes that start at the new campus in September

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 6:12 pm

The University of Massachusetts opened its first satellite campus today.  The university is inviting people to sign up for classes that  start later this year in downtown Springfield.

University and city officials took part in a ribbon-cutting ceremony Monday -- with about 200 people looking on -- to mark the formal opening of the UMass Center at Springfield. 

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Law School Transparency
3:26 am
Fri March 28, 2014

Comparing Law School Rankings? Read The Fine Print

Originally published on Mon March 31, 2014 12:12 pm

When students go to law school, they make a bunch of calculations. A big one is cost: top schools charge more than $50,000 a year, and graduate-student debt is on the rise. Another key calculation: The likelihood of getting a good job after graduation.

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Higher Education
11:32 am
Thu March 27, 2014

Neuroscientist From Tufts Named Trinity College President

Joanne Berger-Sweeney, Trinity College's next president.
Trinity College

Hartford's Trinity College has announced its next president. Joanne Berger-Sweeney is a neuroscientist who will be the college's first woman and first African American to lead the school. 

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Education Reform
9:03 am
Thu March 27, 2014

Indiana Repeals Common Core, Connecticut Charges Ahead

Now that Common Core is repealed in Indiana, teachers who spent several years preparing for the standards don't know what to do next.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

This week, the governor of Indiana signed a bill that would repeal the implementation of the Common Core educational standards. Although there are widespread concerns about Common Core in Connecticut, state officials continue to move ahead, but at a slower pace than originally intended.

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Higher Education
8:34 am
Tue March 25, 2014

Community Colleges in Connecticut Experiment With Remedial Classes

About two-thirds of students at community colleges in Connecticut are not prepared for college-level work.
Credit Gloda/iStock / Thinkstock

This fall, community college students in Connecticut who take remedial classes will be part of a large and, some say, much-needed experiment.

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Higher Education
1:44 pm
Wed March 19, 2014

How The Cost Of College Went From Affordable To Sky-High

World War II veterans and other students at the University of Iowa in 1947. That year, due to federal assistance from the GI Bill, 60 percent of the school's enrollment was made up of veterans.
Margaret Bourke-White Time Life Pictures/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue March 18, 2014 1:59 pm

If you want to get an earful about paying for college, listen to parents from states where tuition and fees have skyrocketed in the last five years. In Arizona, for example, parents have seen a 77 percent increase in costs. In Georgia, it's 75 percent, and in Washington state, 70 percent.

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Failure IS an Option
5:07 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Does Teaching Kids To Get 'Gritty' Help Them Get Ahead?

At the Lenox Academy in Brooklyn, N.Y., educators try to teach kids to see struggle as a normal part of learning.
Tovia Smith/NPR

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 10:17 am

It's become the new buzz phrase in education: "Got grit?"

Around the nation, schools are beginning to see grit as key to students' success — and just as important to teach as reading and math.

Experts define grit as persistence, determination and resilience; it's that je ne sais quoi that drives one kid to practice trumpet or study Spanish for hours — or years — on end, while another quits after the first setback.

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Common Core
9:37 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Education Officials Urge State Lawmakers to Roll Out Common Core Standards

Credit Noah Strycker/iStock / Thinkstock

Despite complaints from teachers across Connecticut about the rollout of new education standards and guidelines, education officials are urging state lawmakers to oppose efforts to stop it.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Thu March 13, 2014

Higher Learning, Higher Crime: A Look at Campus Assault and Violence

Credit Lisa Norwood / Creative Commons

It’s been estimated that roughly one in five female students experiences some form of sexual assault during the course of her college education. It’s a staggering figure that has caught the attention of activists and politicians across the United States.

Earlier this year, the Obama administration announced that it would begin efforts to stop sexual assault on campuses, creating a task force designed to improve the handling and awareness of sexual crimes at colleges and universities.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Tue March 11, 2014

School Resource Officers and the Safety of Our Students

School resource officers have long been a fixture in many urban schools.
Credit rob.wall / Creative Commons

After the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary School, something changed at many schools in Connecticut. Armed guards started appearing in places they hadn’t before: in elementary and middle schools. Districts have struggled with the questions of whether this kind of increased security is worth the cost, and whether it provides the kind of school environment they want.

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Higher Education
8:21 am
Tue March 11, 2014

N.Y. Governor Says College For Inmates Will Pay Off For Taxpayers

Inmates at New York's Coxsackie Correctional Facility. Gov. Andrew Cuomo says reinstating state-funded prison college programs will ultimately save taxpayers money.
Mike Groll AP

Originally published on Tue March 11, 2014 10:28 am

America used to have a robust college education system for prison inmates. It was seen as a way to rehabilitate men and women behind bars by helping them go straight when they got out.

Those taxpayer-funded college classes were defunded in the 1990s. But New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo would like to bring them back in the state, prompting a fierce new debate over higher education in state prisons.

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Where We Teach
2:42 pm
Tue March 4, 2014

What It's Like to Be a Teacher in Connecticut Today

WNPR hosted approximately 70 teachers in the CPBN Learning Lab to talk about what it's like to teach today.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Why do teachers want to teach? In the era of education reform, teacher evaluations, and standardized testing, it's a question that some teachers are asking themselves.

Last week, WNPR's Where We Live hosted an evening panel discussion with teachers from across the state in order to accommodate their schedules which don't line up with a live morning call-in show. 

We invited educators to join us in the audience and there was a general sentiment of openness to new evaluation methods and ways of measuring performance. But they also expressed a desire to balance it with support from administrators. The teachers on the panel said they are interested in getting better at teaching, and so they want feedback and support, not a stern visit that comes with a score and an up or down vote.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Tue March 4, 2014

Where We Teach: A Conversation With Connecticut's Teachers

WNPR's John Dankosky moderates a discussion with teachers Liz Natale, David Bosso, Ebony Murphy-Root, and David Low.
Chion Wolf WNPR

Our teacher panel welcomed educators from across the state. We broadcasted live from the CPBN Learning Lab, the home of the Journalism and Media Academy Magnet High School Satellite Campus and the Institute for Advanced Media.

Are you a teacher? Why did you decide to enter this profession and what keeps you going back to school every day? Find our tweets from the discussion at #WhereWeTeach, and watch our video of the event below.

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Common Core
3:03 pm
Fri February 28, 2014

Education Committee Holds Forum on Implementing Common Core Standards

State Sen. Andrea Stillman.
Credit CT-N

An informational forum took place on Friday at the State Capitol focusing on Connecticut's controversial Common Core standards. Introducing the event, State Sen. Andrea Stillman described the forum as "a chance to see, hear, and digest information."

Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor told lawmakers that the state wants to be flexible with its approach to reform, knowing that local districts are struggling to make sweeping changes while also revising the way teachers are evaluated. 

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