Aaron didn't intend to tell his classmates that he was homeless. But when he recorded his own story with StoryCorpsU — a project designed to help kids in high-needs schools build stronger relationships with their teachers — he says, it just came out.
"I felt ... like a big load was let off," Aaron explains. (NPR has withheld Aaron's last name, at the request of his foster care agency, to protect his privacy.) "I don't know what made me say it, but I'm like, 'Let me just be honest and just get it out.' "
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.
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.
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.
A local superintendent's recent letter to Governor Dannel Malloy laid out concerns about changes to Connecticut's educational system. East Lyme Public Schools Superintendent James Lombardo, a long-time veteran of Connecticut's public schools, wrote a letter to Malloy and Education Commissioner Stefan Pryor saying education reforms are pointing the state and the country in the wrong direction.
Here's the problem with covering education issues on Where We Live: We broadcast live at 9:00 am on weekdays. If you're a middle school or high school teacher, you might know that time as second or third period.
Our discussions on education frequently lack one key voice: teachers. On February 25, we fix that. Join us for an evening panel discussion in WNPR's building.
Jean Leising admits she's no expert on brain development, but she still hopes to do something about the way kids learn.
Leising serves in the Indiana state Senate. Last month, she convinced her Senate colleagues to pass a bill that would restore instruction of cursive writing to the state's educational standards — the set of skills and knowledge kids are expected to master in each grade level.
Even in the email age, teaching cursive might be a great thing. But when legislatures impose mandates on instruction, professional educators get nervous.
Federal education officials have granted Connecticut’s request to delay standardized testing requirements connected to the Common Core State Standards. That will allow some breathing room for teachers before new evaluations connected to the tests begin.
After mounting complaints from teachers, officials recently announced the state plans to delay the implementation of teacher evaluations. Meanwhile, other lawmakers are calling for a re-examination of the Common Core standards. Two years after Connecticut approved sweeping education legislation, we'll check-in on the implementation and receive an update on Common Core in the state.
Imagine a day without adjunct faculty. Many colleges and universities would effectively shut down. Somewhere between 70-75% of the academic workforce in higher education is not tenured or on track for tenure. Most of those people fall into the category of adjunct.
In addition to leading his own quartet and a 16-piece jazz orchestra, Connecticut saxophonist John Mastroianni is a music teacher, and the director of bands at Hall High School in West Hartford. He’s also Connecticut’s 2014 Teacher of the Year. I visited him recently at the school to talk about his work.
From Faith Middleton: What was it about good teachers, the ones we'll never forget, that made them good at what they did? We ask this in the interest of understanding what qualities and judgments are necessary to make a great teacher.
Thomas Edison said, “If we all did the things we are really capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves....” For kids in the Connecticut Invention Convention program, now poised to expand through corporate grants, becoming inventors and entrepreneurs seems to be all in a day’s work.
Now that we're reeling at the prospect of life after "Breaking Bad," let's find out about the real lives of chemistry teachers! Hear from Dr. Donna Nelson, the consultant "Breaking Bad" creator Vince Gilligan hired to make sure the on-screen science was correct, and then go beyond the test tubes, and meet some chemistry teachers to hear about what actually goes on in the classroom.
Diane Ravitch, a former assistant secretary of education, spent years advocating for an overhaul of the American education system. She supported the No Child Left Behind Act, the charter school movement and standardized testing.
But Ravitch recently — and very publicly — changed her mind. She looked at the data and decided that the kinds of changes she'd supported weren't working. Now she's a prominent critic of things like charter schools and school choice — and she's particularly opposed to privatizing schools.
Happy New Year! It's Rosh Hashanah. The new television season is upon us. And… school's back in session.
Students, teachers, parents: How was your first day of school? What qualities and experiences made the start of school feel like the year might be exciting? What are your best tips and tricks for navigating that transition from the freedom of summer to the day-in-day-out of school?
Students across the state are heading back to school this week – and they’ll be seeing a lot of changes. The common core state standards are taking effect and changing the way teachers teach and students take tests.
Schools are struggling to find the best way to teach ESL kids English. New Britain school system was recently featured on PBS Newshour for changing all their bilingual classes to English only.
There is a lot happening in Connecticut education.
Public school districts are busy preparing for the new Common Core State Standards that promise more rigor, a different kind of high-stakes testing, and a teacher and Principal evaluation system that could lead to job loss if students don’t make the grade.
Is the common core the key to closing the achievement gap? To preparing students for a career? Or are these big changes a grand, untested...and expensive experiment? We’ll find out more from a panel of experts.
Connecticut’s largest teachers’ union filed a complaint Tuesday against Bridgeport School Superintendent Paul Vallas. The dispute centers on the city’s school governance councils, whose members say they’re being shut out.
School governance councils were established by law in Connecticut in 2010. Parents, teachers and community members have a chance to serve as advisors, and collaborate with school administrators to improve student achievement.
Good teaching is the single biggest indicator for student success, and while we spend more money to teach our students than in any other country, we achieve at lower levels than our foreign counterparts.
So, what makes for a good teacher, and how do we know it when we see it?
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation asked that question of 3,000 students and their teachers in a recently released study that took 3 years and cost $45 million dollars to complete.
What they learned is what most kids already know, students are the best judge of what works.
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.
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.
As the nation prepares to commemorate the tenth anniversary of September 11th, Connecticut schools are holding special assemblies and classroom discussions. We report on some of the challenges facing educators who teach students about 9/11, and the larger issues that surround the historic event.
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.
Governor Malloy addressed the state’s school superintendents on Wednesday and presented his vision for a state education system that better prepares students for the kinds of jobs Connecticut employers can offer.
Governor Malloy began an impassioned 20-minute speech on education by describing why as a kid, he loathed school. "..because I had a very different experience than a lot of my peers, having grown up with learning disabilities and not having reached any great level of achievement until late in high school."
An investigator for the State Department of Education has begun to question teachers and staff at a Waterbury elementary school about suspected cheating on the 2011 Connecticut Mastery Tests. This is the latest in a string of cheating scandals nationwide.
17 teachers and other employees at Hopeville School in Waterbury have been placed on leave as an investigator looks into possible test tampering. A preliminary review showed many wrong answers on this year’s CMTS had been erased and corrected.