Thousands of public school students in Connecticut don’t get their diplomas each year, but only some are called “dropouts.” So what happens to the others? This is the first of a three-part series on how kids leave the school system without officially “dropping out.”
A spokesman for the New Haven Public Schools is leaving his post following an incident in which he grabbed a reporter’s camera while she was on assignment and insisted that she stop filming. More and more school districts are employing public relations professionals. We take a look at the field, at a time when people want more information about what’s going on in their local schools.
Parents packed into an elementary school gymnasium in Middletown last night to hear from local education officials, and to voice their concerns over so-called “scream rooms.” Teachers at the school use a time-out room to discipline disruptive students.
Connecticut’s largest teachers union added its voice on Tuesday to a growing chorus of proposals for school reform. The union’s plan addresses the controversial issue of teacher tenure.
Connecticut Education Association Executive Director Mary Loftus Levine says teachers are proposing to replace tenure with a streamlined dismissal process, "...to remove underperforming teachers and also allow for due process. We want teachers to be evaluated."
But she says, a teacher’s performance should not be judged solely by test scores.
David Weinberger, our guest today, argues that our reservoir of information has become so huge and complicated that one of the standard activities of knowledge-making -- shaping facts into testable theories and equations -- doesn't really work any more. Scientists take data and build models. Then they watch the models to see what happens.
Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor describes new figures on high school graduation rates in Connecticut as “unacceptable”. Students in poverty and students are color are far less likely to finish high school in four years.
Overall, nearly one in five Connecticut students fails to graduate high school in four years according to new data from the State Department of Education. But for kids who live at or below the poverty level, are Hispanic or black, in special ed or are English language learners - it's one in three.
Bridgeport’s Board of Education has appointed Paul Vallas, interim superintendent, part of the state’s takeover of the struggling school system. Vallas is a nationally recognized education reformer who’s spearheaded turnaround efforts in Chicago, Philadelphia and New Orleans.
Departing Bridgeport superintendent John Ramos joined a panel of school leaders earlier this month to talk about the effect of inadequate education funding on disadvantaged students.
A new report calls for a closer look at the role of race in Connecticut’s persistent achievement gap. The study finds that male students of color do not have the same educational opportunities as their white counterparts.
Many male students of color are struggling in school for reasons that have nothing to do with their socio-economic status, family background or perceived level of ability or motivation, says Jeremy Bond, spokesperson for the State Education Resource Center or SERC, which released the new report.
As a fifth grader at a New Haven magnet school in 2009, Jacob was watching a lot of “Ed, Edd n Eddy” shows on TV—a slapstick cartoon that features adolescent equivalents of the Three Stooges. Maybe too many shows, his mother now says.
The state’s school superintendents have cooked up the latest in a series of high-profile plans to reform education in the state.
Their plan is ambitious and far reaching, including changes to testing, teaching and teacher tenure. Most importantly, perhaps are goals to offer more flexibility for both school districts and individual student learning plans.
Among the other recommendations? Universal Preschool and development of new relationships between superintendents and school boards.
Governor Malloy’s “E-C-S Task Force” meets today. The panel will hear testimony from a researcher at Connecticut Voices for Children on how to improve state financing of local public schools.
The Education Cost Sharing, or ECS, grant is the single most important source of funding for education from the state to local towns. The amount that a town receives is determined by a complex formula, which most educators and legislators agree needs to be reformed. Earlier this year, Governor Malloy established a task force to look into the formula.
School superintendents say the public education system in Connecticut needs an overhaul. The superintendents have unveiled a bold plan to transform schooling in the state.
It's not enough anymore to give kids an opportunity to learn, says Joseph Cirasuolo, executive director of the CT Association of Public School Superintendents. He says schools have to insure that all kids achieve at high levels.
School closures due last weekend’s snowstorm have created a scheduling headache for education leaders. We visited the town of Cheshire on Thursday, where students have already missed five days of classes, and winter hasn’t even begun.
"Grades were supposed to close this week, so this is one of the critical weeks in school."
The Connecticut Supreme Court heard arguments on Thursday challenging the state’s takeover of Bridgeport’s troubled public schools. Much of the debate centered on whether officials followed proper steps before replacing local school board members with state appointees.
The Connecticut Supreme Court will hear arguments on Thursday challenging the state’s takeover of the Bridgeport Board of Education. The plaintiffs argue that the state cannot deny residents the right to vote for their local school board.
Last summer, most of the members of Bridgeport’s Board of Ed, along with the city’s superintendent and mayor asked the State Board to intervene in the city’s schools. Within weeks, Connecticut’s Acting Education Commissioner had replaced Bridgeport’s elected school board with a state-appointed panel.
Lawmakers in Washington are considering a bill to reauthorize the No Child Left Behind Act. Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal plans to introduce an amendment that raises similar concerns as his 2005 lawsuit over the education reform law.
Connecticut submits its third bid for Race to the Top federal education grants on Wednesday. The focus this time around is early learning.
Race to the Top - Early Learning Challenge Grants are targeted to states that want to better coordinate their early care and education systems. Right now, Connecticut has a patchwork of programs for young children overseen by five different state agencies.
First Niagara Bank has announced a $1.3 million donation to Manchester Community College and the town of Manchester. The funds will be used to support the college’s expansion into downtown.
A merger between New Alliance and First Niagara Banks led to the layoff of more than 90 workers in downtown Manchester earlier this year. At the same time, Manchester Community College needed to expand. First Niagara’s $1.3 million donation includes the value of a downtown building for the college, and a cash donation to the foundation that will operate the facility.
Hartford Public Schools have been the subject of books, documentaries and national news stories...and not always cast in the most positive light.
Hartford’s has long had status as one of the poorest cities in the country - and with that has come trouble in its education system: A state takeover, an attempt at privatization, a civil-rights lawsuit, and a series of “reformers” who left the city too quick to make any real changes.
Bridgeport officials will conduct a national search for the city’s next school superintendent. A state-appointed Board of Education has fired Bridgeport’s current superintendent as part of its takeover of the troubled school system.
Bridgeport’s state-appointed board of education will part ways with Superintendent John Ramos at the end of December. An interim superintendent will come in to serve while education officials conduct a national search for the city’s next school leader.
Eleven teachers involved in a cheating scandal at a Waterbury elementary school returned to work on Tuesday. The teachers will lose 20 days of pay and must perform community service as after-school tutors.
Many schools in Connecticut delayed opening their doors last week thanks to Tropical Storm Irene. But students at Capital Preparatory Magnet School in Hartford have been in school since last July. And the school’s principal says he’ll be working harder to improve academic outcomes.
He’s had success in keeping kids in school in a city that’s struggled with dropout rates for decades. He preaches strict discipline and no excuses. He greets kids every morning at a school right downtown - in a famous former department store. The students wear uniforms - and he says all of them go to college.
You've probably heard of New Haven Promise by now. It's a scholarship program funded by Yale University and community partners which awards New Haven public school students who show academic potential.
But the Promise program isn't just about paying tuition for some.
WNPR's Lucy Nalpathanchil spoke with New Haven Promise Executive Director Emily Brynes about the program's community outreach.
When the space shuttle Atlantis lifted off on its final mission earlier this month, it brought along a little bit of Hartford with it. A group of eighth graders from the Annie Fisher STEM Magnet School in Hartford's North End wanted to measure the effect of microgravity on Tomato growth, so they wrote a proposal and it was accepted.
We talk to principal Melony Brady about her students' project.
More than 100 students were honored on Thursday as the first class of New Haven Promise. That’s the new scholarship program that provides college tuition for city students.
Wearing caps and gowns, New Haven public high school graduates filed into Sprague Hall on the Yale University campus. Parents beamed. City and state officials told the students that the Promise scholarship program was an expression of confidence in their promise for a brighter future.
The National School Boards Association represents state boards of education across the country, and their 90 thousand members. The Association’s new president is a school board member from Connecticut.