schools

Music Education
2:05 pm
Thu April 17, 2014

Members of Sweet Honey in the Rock Conduct Dynamic Workshops at Wesleyan University

Sweet Honey in the Rock performing in 2007.
Sharon Farmer/sfphotoworks sweethoneyintherock.org

Three members of the legendary a cappella group Sweet Honey in the Rock are finishing up a unique residency at Wesleyan University.

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Allergy Medications
11:33 am
Thu April 17, 2014

Proposal Would Allow Schools to Stock Epinephrine

An epinephrine autoinjector, or EpiPen.
Vu Nguyen Creative Commons

A bill that would allow schools in Connecticut to stock emergency medication for severe allergic reactions has been referred to the Appropriations Committee. 

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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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Autism Spectrum Disorders
10:02 am
Mon April 14, 2014

Early Childhood Autism Treatment Is Key, But Diagnosis Is Difficult

A young boy with autism with a line of toys he sorted before falling asleep.
Credit Andwhatsnext / Creative Commons

Most children with autism are well past their fourth birthday by the time they’re diagnosed with the condition, according to new government data.

Their parents and teachers may have raised red flags earlier, but it takes months or years to confirm suspicions with a formal diagnosis. And therapy rarely starts without one.

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Connecticut First
6:14 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Malloy Announces Funding for Farms; Lawmakers Present Pre-K Proposal

Governor Malloy announced this week that the U.S. Department of Agriculture will allow Connecticut to use more than $8 million of federal funding to preserve and protect the state's farms. He says Connecticut has already preserved more than 300 farms and 13,000 acres of farmland and hopes to use the extended funding to protect not only farms, but also jobs.

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Children's Yoga
12:52 pm
Wed April 9, 2014

The Benefits of Children's Yoga Only Beginning to Be Understood

Students and parents practice yoga before class at West Hartford's Webster Hill Elementary School
Ray Hardman

There are many studies out there touting the benefits of yoga, from increasing flexibility and strength, to helping with more debilitating conditions like chronic headaches and pain. More and more children are practicing yoga, and researchers are just beginning to understand how kids can benefit from the ancient discipline. 

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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 Wed April 9, 2014 1:51 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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Taxes
10:14 am
Mon April 7, 2014

Reverse PILOT Proposal Considered Unfair By Some Connecticut Institutions

Connecticut's state capitol building with the Bushnell Park Corning Fountain in the foreground.
Credit Helder Mira / Creative Commons

Some municipal and state leaders would like to see non-profit colleges and hospitals pay taxes to the towns where they reside. One higher education official said the particular idea currently being floated is unfair. 

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Connecticut First
6:00 pm
Fri April 4, 2014

Malloy Announces P-Tech School; Two Charter Schools Approved

Governor DannelTech stands for Pathways in Technology Early College High School. The new school will be located at Norwalk High School. By the start of the next academic year there will be about 27 of these schools across the country. The schools integrate high school and college curricula for grades nine through 14. Students who complete the program graduate with both a high school diploma and an associates degree in applied science at no cost.

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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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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.

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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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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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Where We Live
9:00 am
Thu March 27, 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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African Orphanage
10:42 am
Wed March 26, 2014

Connecticut-Based Non-Profit to Build a Children's Village in Tanzania

Bekka Ross Russsell of The Small Things with children.
Credit The Small Things

A Connecticut-based non-profit has received a major grant to start construction on a village for orphaned children in Tanzania. The Small Things, based in East Haven and Africa, partners with the Nkoaranga Orphanage, which cares for youngsters from birth to five years old.

When they age out of the orphanage, some kids are able to move in with family members or live in foster homes, but most are sent away to boarding schools.

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Where We Live
9:00 am
Wed March 26, 2014

The Wheelhouse: Legislative Deadlines, Money In Politics, and Common Core

There are six weeks left in the legislative session.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

Key deadlines are coming up for some proposed legislation at the state capitol and some have already passed. On our weekly news roundtable The Wheelhouse, we talk about what bills may or may not make it out of committee.

We also discuss the role of money in this year’s statewide elections. Common Core remains in the national headlines, with Indiana actually dropping the standards.

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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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Connecticut First
5:44 pm
Mon March 24, 2014

Metro-North Braking Upgrade Complete; Bill Considered to Address Absenteeism

Metro-North has finished upgrading its signal system. That means trains approaching five moveable bridges and two critical curves on the New Haven Line will automatically stop when engineers fail to slow down. The emergency stop provisions were put in place at two curves-- one in Bridgeport, the other in Port Chester, New York. The Federal Railroad Administration issued the order in December after a deadly train derailment in The Bronx.

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WAMC News
11:51 am
Thu March 20, 2014

President Obama To Speak At Worcester Tech Graduation

Originally published on Thu March 20, 2014 11:18 am

President Barack Obama will deliver the commencement address at a Massachusetts high school in June.

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Sandy Ground Project
6:02 am
Tue March 18, 2014

Volunteer-Built Playground in Hartford Celebrates Sandy Hook Shooting Victim

The Sandy Playground Project has built playgrounds in New Jersey and Connecticut to remember the victims of the shooting at Sandy Hook and restore the east coast after Hurricane Sandy.
Credit Alan Yu / WNPR

A corner of a Hartford's Elizabeth Park became a construction site last weekend, but this wasn't just any ordinary project.

Even on a chilly day in March, hundreds of people came to watch. The organizers hope the community will continue to feel a strong connection to the playground that was built.

A group called the Sandy Ground Project is building 26 playgrounds as living memorials to the children who died in the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012. 

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The Colin McEnroe Show
10:44 am
Mon March 17, 2014

The Scramble on Agunuah, Vaccinations, and More

Credit Alex Proimos / Wikimedia Commons

Mark Oppenheimer writes about religion and a whole bunch of other things. Today, he'll be talking about the difficulty Orthodox Jewish women face in obtaining a certain form of cooperation from their husbands and how that difficulty spawned a black market in coercion and violence.

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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 Thu March 27, 2014 6:00 pm

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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Campus Sexual Assault
4:45 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Sexual Assault at Colleges Gets Local and National Attention

Claire Capozzi, a University of Hartford student, said that Greek groups at her school could do more to prevent sexual assault.
Credit Chion Wolf/WNPR

On Thursday morning, the Board of Regents governing Connecticut state colleges unanimously passed a sexual assault policy which would, among other things, require campuses to give victims detailed descriptions of what they can do. 

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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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Connecticut First
6:06 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Manhattan Building Collapses; Law Proposes Shrinking Drug-Free Zones

An explosion tore through an area of Manhattan's East Harlem neighborhood early on Wednesday, collapsing two buildings. There were fatalities reported and dozens injured. All Metro-North service was suspended as all Metro-North trains in and out of New York City use the rail lines adjacent to the blast zone.

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Drug Free Schools
11:40 am
Wed March 12, 2014

Around Schools, a Potential Drawback for "Drug Enforcement" Zones

A new proposal aims to draw back the drug enforcement zones around schools from 1500 to 200 feet.
Credit Chion Wolf / WNPR

A new law proposes making drug enforcement zones around schools smaller. It's a measure aimed at giving teeth to a law that's been on the books since 1987.

Currently, if you're convicted of possessing or selling drugs within 1500 feet of a school, you're subject to mandatory jail terms. But in urban areas, especially, that 1500-foot area encompasses vast areas of residential space.

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Where We Live
8:38 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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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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