Education Desk

NPR Ed
3:08 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Why Working With Young Children Is (Still) A Dead-End Job

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 2:54 pm

Right now, at preschool programs around the country, teachers are tapping infinite reserves of patience to keep the peace among children at various stages of development and need. They're also providing meals, wiping noses and delivering a curriculum in math and reading that will get the kids ready for school.

And there are hugs. Lots of hugs.

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It's All Politics
12:18 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Jeb Bush Stands Firm On Common Core But Softens Tone

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush addresses an education conference Thursday sponsored by the Foundation for Excellence in Education, a nonprofit he created as he left office.
Susan Walsh AP

Originally published on Thu November 20, 2014 2:06 pm

Former Florida GOP Gov. Jeb Bush defended the Common Core education standards Thursday, but offered an olive branch to Republican activists who oppose them and are making them a litmus test for potential 2016 presidential candidates.

Bush's longtime support has put him crosswise with part of the Republican base. He said that he finds the new angst over Common Core "troubling," but that there is room for disagreement among those who more generally support school reform.

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Education Desk
11:52 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Incoming U of I President Speaks To Springfield Audience

Timothy Killeen
Credit WUIS/Bill Wheelhouse

Timothy Killeen, who has been selected as the next president of the University of Illinois travelled to the university's three campuses. Killeen who will be the 20th U of I President has been the vice chancellor for research at the State University of New York.   A researcher in geophysics and space sciences, he will start his new job in July.  He spoke about his goals and what he sees for the University's Springfield campus.

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NPR Ed
2:46 am
Thu November 20, 2014

Are NOLA Schools Failing Students With Disabilities?

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Thu November 20, 2014 8:28 am

In New Orleans, schools have long struggled to provide for students with physical, emotional and mental disabilities. Even before Hurricane Katrina, many parents had to fight for extra help. But many say things have only gotten harder since the city's public school district shifted almost entirely to charter schools.

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New Boom
3:37 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

For Millions Of Millennials: Some College, No Degree, Lots Of Debt

Noelle Johnson has a lengthy commute via bus and train to her job near Washington, D.C. She's been working toward her B.A. for nine years, and when she finally finishes, she says, she'll be able to afford to live closer to work.
James Clark NPR

Originally published on Sun November 30, 2014 4:38 pm

This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.

If Noelle Johnson had a bachelor's degree, she'd be able to live closer to work, she says. She wouldn't have to spend so much of her free time hustling for baby-sitting gigs. She'd shop at the farmers market. She'd be able to treat her sister to dinner for once. She and her husband could go on trips together — they'd be able to afford two tickets instead of one.

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Education
3:27 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

No Child Left Behind, Pre-K Programs Could Be On New Congress' Agenda

Originally published on Thu November 20, 2014 10:38 pm

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

We've been exploring the post-election landscape, what Republican control of Congress means for several big issues. Today, education.

NPR's Claudio Sanchez reports on one of the major players and his ideas.

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NPR Ed
6:18 am
Wed November 19, 2014

One Gamer's Take On 'Gamergate'

Under the #Gamergate hashtag, a debate has flared surrounding ethics in video game journalism and the role and treatment of women in the video game industry.
LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Fri December 5, 2014 11:11 am

A very public controversy has engulfed the world of video games, centered around the treatment of women and minorities in the gaming culture.

The debate has ramifications for educators, as schools ponder the educational potential of online games and the need to protect young people who play them. For some perspective on this issue we turned to Rafael Johns, a reporter for Youth Radio. Here's his commentary:

I enjoy video games.

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Education Desk
4:57 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

U Of I To Name Next President On Wednesday

Credit UIS.edu

The next president of the University of Illinois will be announced Wednesday.   The announcement will be made on all three campuses.  

Board chair Christopher Kennedy and other university officials will introduce the schools' choice to head the U of I.  A news release did not mention the choice.

President Robert Easter will retire next summer.  He has served in that role for 3 years after being on the faculty and serving as an administrator at the Urbana Champaign campus.   

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New Boom
4:23 pm
Tue November 18, 2014

Amid The Stereotypes, Some Facts About Millennials

Chart: U.S. Estimated Population, By Age
NPR

Originally published on Thu November 20, 2014 8:33 am

This story is part of the New Boom series on millennials in America.

"Millennial" is the buzzword of the moment — with much of the national conversation focused on stereotypes and anecdotes. But are young adults today really all that different from those of previous generations?

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NPR Ed
6:03 am
Tue November 18, 2014

Secret Lives Of Teachers: 'Bored Of Education'

"Bored of Education" music video

Originally published on Thu November 20, 2014 10:09 am

You're a sixth-grader in New York City. Your principal gives you a choice: Get free tickets to a Columbia University football game, or participate in a music video in which your assistant principal is the lead singer.

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NPR Ed
4:06 pm
Mon November 17, 2014

Channeling Springsteen: Teachers As Performers

Second-grade teacher Amanda Siepiola reads with Cornelia Blixt and Isabelle Posner-Brown.
Gabrielle Emanuel/NPR

Originally published on Mon December 1, 2014 12:05 pm

This fall the NPR Ed team is celebrating great teachers and examining what makes great teaching.

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NPR Ed
7:03 am
Mon November 17, 2014

Testing: How Much Is Too Much?

LA Johnson NPR

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 12:23 pm

"In some places, tests — and preparation for them — are dominating the calendar and culture of schools and causing undue stress for students and educators."

The quote comes not from an angry parent or firebrand school leader but from Education Secretary Arne Duncan. Of course, he's the guy currently in charge of a big chunk of those tests: the No Child Left Behind requirement of annual standardized testing in grades 3-8, plus once during grades 10-12.

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NPR Ed
4:18 am
Sat November 15, 2014

Common Core Reading: Difficult, Dahl, Repeat

These books for daily, independent reading have been sorted by difficulty and labeled with letters. Popular writers, including Dahl and Rowling, get their own bins.
LA Johnson NPR

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 12:20 pm

The last in our four-part series on reading in the Common Core era.

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Education
5:34 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Board Decision Revives Discussion About Religion In Public Schools

One of the largest public school systems in the United States is dropping all mention of religious affiliations for days off on its official calendar.

That means students in Montgomery County, Md., in suburban Washington, D.C., will still be getting Christmas, Easter and Jewish holidays off, but officially the ones in December will now be called winter break and time off around Easter will be spring break. Other holidays will just be days off.

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Illinois Issues - Education Desk
4:06 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Springfield School Officials Prepare For Ferguson Decision

District 186 administrators received this memo to prepare teachers to handle any reaction to the decision of the grand jury regarding the Ferguson police officer who killed Michael Brown

The grand jury decision is expected any day now in the shooting death of Michael Brown, an unarmed black teenager in Ferguson, Missouri. In anticipation of that announcement, Springfield school officials have issued instructions on how to handle students' reactions.

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NPR Ed
3:28 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Why These Kids Love Kale

Cory Turner NPR

Originally published on Mon November 24, 2014 4:25 pm

A question for all you parents out there: Are your kids still working their way through a pile of Halloween candy?

Maybe you've even confiscated some, to give back as a reward for eating the healthy, green things they don't like. Things like ... kale.

Well, imagine an alternate universe, where kids talk about kale as if it is candy.

Welcome to Watkins Elementary in Washington, D.C.

"All I know is that I like to eat kale," says 9-year-old Alex Edwards. "I like it, I like it, I like it!"

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TED Radio Hour
8:45 am
Fri November 14, 2014

What Does It Mean To Be 'Articulate'?

"I think that we think that language is something neutral and not at all political" — Jamila Lyiscott
courtesy of TED

Part 4 of the TED Radio Hour episode Playing With Perceptions.

About Jamila Lyiscott's TED Talk

Educator and poet Jamila Lyiscott is a "tri-tongued orator." She unpacks the three distinct flavors of English she speaks with her friends, family, and colleagues.

About Jamila Lyiscott

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NPR Ed
6:03 am
Fri November 14, 2014

A Botched Study Raises Bigger Questions

John Ayers, executive director of the Cowen Institute for Public Education Initiatives at Tulane University, will resign at the end of November.
Paula Burch-Celentano Tulane University

New Orleans, where nine of 10 children attend charter schools, has perhaps the most scrutinized public school system in the country.

And since Hurricane Katrina, a major source of information about the city's schools has been the Cowen Institute for Public Education Initiatives, a research group connected with Tulane University. The institute has been widely cited by political leaders and in the news media, including our reporting.

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NPR Ed
3:16 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Common Core Reading: The Struggle Over Struggle

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Tue December 2, 2014 7:16 pm

The third in our four-part series on reading in the Common Core era.

Every set of academic standards has a soul.

Yes, a soul. It's made of varied stuff: part research, part practice, part conviction of its authors.

To find the soul, follow the words that turn up again and again in the winding backwaters and byways of the standards themselves.

A search of the Common Core English Language Arts Standards turns up one remarkable word 105 times. It is "complex" (or "complexity").

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Higher Ed
2:22 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

U Of I President Gets Raise, Bonus In Final Year

Robert Easter
Credit uillinois.edu

University of Illinois trustees have voted to give President
Robert Easter a raise and a $180,000 bonus as he works his last year before
retirement.
 
The bonus and 3.5 percent pay raise were approved by trustees on Thursday at
their regular quarterly meeting in Chicago. The university says the bonus was
based on performance targets set by trustees in education, research and other
areas.
 
The raise will increase Easter's base pay from $462,375 a year to $478,558. His

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Education Desk
5:55 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Pleasant Plains Teachers Picket Amid Negotiations

Teachers in a central Illinois school district are picketing in an effort to gain parents' support as contract negotiations stall.  
 The State Journal-Register reports  teachers in Pleasant Plains held signs Wednesday that read ``Let's work together for kids'' and ``Make it better.'' The teachers have been working under an expired contract for nearly three months and negotiations over a new contract began in April. The district had 1,300 students and 88 teachers last year.  

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NPR Ed
2:46 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Common Core Reading: The High Achievers

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 12:29 pm

Part 2 in a four-part series on reading in the Common Core era.

Linnea Wolters was prepared to hate the Common Core State Standards.

She taught fifth grade at a low-income school in Reno, Nev., where, she says, there was always some new plan to improve things. And none of it added up to good education. But, after leading her class through a Core-aligned lesson — a close reading of Emma Lazarus' sonnet "The New Colossus" — she was intrigued, especially by the way different students reacted to the process.

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The Two-Way
10:50 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

John Doar Remembered As A Civil Rights Pioneer

John Doar in Oxford, Miss., in 1966.
AP

Originally published on Wed November 12, 2014 9:59 am

The news of attorney John Doar's death at 92 on Tuesday sent a wave of solemnity through the country, prompting multiple obituaries detailing his extensive work fighting discrimination and working for racial equality during the 1960s and '70s.

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Around the Nation
4:46 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

Communities Struggle To Reach Homeless Students Living In The Shadows

Originally published on Tue December 2, 2014 7:24 pm

It's late afternoon and the day has just ended at a Los Angeles school. Students are making their way toward the parking lot, where a dusty 2001 Ford Taurus stands out among the shiny SUVs filled with waiting parents.

Kids walk by and stare. In the back seat of the Taurus, James, a tall 14-year-old in a checkered shirt, smiles. He is familiar with the stares.

He never told anyone that he was once homeless, but they knew. It's hard to hide homelessness from other kids, he says. They want to know why you're wearing the same shirt and why you look tired.

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NPR Ed
3:17 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

Common Core Reading: 'The New Colossus'

Fourth-grader Isiah Soto digests some history during independent reading time.
Emily Hanford American Public Media

Originally published on Thu November 13, 2014 9:48 am

Part 1 in a four-part series on reading in the Common Core era.

The Common Core State Standards are changing what many kids read in school. They're standards, sure — not curriculum. Teachers and districts still have great latitude when it comes to the "how" of reading instruction, but...

The Core standards explicitly require students to read "complex" material, and the fact is, many kids simply weren't doing that before the Core. What were they doing?

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The Two-Way
1:11 pm
Tue November 11, 2014

Asked To Stop Praying, Alaska School Won't Host State Tournament

Originally published on Tue November 11, 2014 2:28 pm

Alaska's wrestling tournament for small schools will be held next month — but it won't be at the private Anchorage Christian Schools, the host for the past seven years. A complaint about the tournament's introductory prayer led to a request to stop the practice, and the school refused.

The anonymous complaint came after last year's event. It prompted the national group Americans United for Separation of Church and State to complain to the Alaska School Activities Association that it was giving the state's sanction to the prayer.

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NPR Ed
6:18 am
Tue November 11, 2014

Q&A: Lamar Alexander On Education In The New Congress

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., waves after speaking to supporters on Nov. 4 in Knoxville.
Wade Payne AP

Originally published on Tue November 11, 2014 1:45 pm

Higher education, preschool funding, the Common Core and the future of No Child Left Behind are just a few of the education policies that will be in play under the new Republican-controlled Congress. How will these things change? We called Sen. Lamar Alexander to ask.

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NPR Ed
7:04 am
Mon November 10, 2014

Tools Of The Trade: The Abacus

"A" is for Abacus
LA Johnson NPR

Originally published on Fri November 21, 2014 12:30 pm

For this series, we've been thinking a lot about some of the iconic objects that some of us remember using — if only for a short period of time — in our early schooling. Slide rules, the recorder, protractors and Bunsen burners.

But when the abacus came up, we were a bit stumped.

"Does anyone still use this thing?" we wondered. "And how the heck does it work?"

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NPR Ed
8:03 am
Sat November 8, 2014

5 Great Teachers On What Makes A Great Teacher

LA Johnson NPR

Originally published on Mon December 1, 2014 12:47 pm

When we began our 50 Great Teachers series, we set out to find great teachers and tell their stories. But we'll also be exploring over the coming year questions about what it means for a teacher to be great, and how he or she gets that way.

To get us started, we gathered an expert round table of educators who've also done a lot of thinking about teaching. Combined, these teachers are drawing on over 150 years of classroom experience:

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NPR Ed
9:38 am
Fri November 7, 2014

For-Profit Colleges Sue The Federal Government Over Student Loan Rules

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan
Jacquelyn Martin AP

Originally published on Fri November 7, 2014 10:10 am

A trade group representing more than 1,400 for-profit colleges has filed a lawsuit against the federal government over regulations aimed at curbing industry abuses.

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