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Latest Education News

A collection of the most recent education journalism, curated by EWA staff. 

A collection of the most recent education journalism, curated by EWA staff. 

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (September 17-23)
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LAist compiles a survival guide with resources and helpful tips for California students considering higher education, including public and private colleges, trade schools and online institutions. 

Jessica Votipka of The Grand Island Independent reports on a Nebraska-based school-to-work program that helps students with disabilities explore various careers and transition into the workforce.

Latest News

Colleyville, Texas Principal Put on Leave Amid Critical Race Theory Debate

Last summer, protest after protest made waves across the nation. It was no different in Texas, and Whitfield, who had weeks earlier been named the first Black principal at Colleyville Heritage High School, couldn’t just sit back. He said he felt like he had a platform that other Black Americans didn’t have and he wouldn’t let that go to waste.

At 4:30 a.m., he wrote a letter to the school community declaring that systemic racism is “alive and well” and that they needed to work together to achieve “conciliation for our nation.”

Latest News

Child-Care Workers are Quitting Rapidly, a Red Flag for the Economy

Hiring and retaining good workers has been tough in the child-care industry for years, but it is escalating into a crisis. Pandemic-fueled staffing challenges threaten to hold back the recovery, as the staffing problems at day cares have a ripple effect across the economy. Without enough employees, day cares are turning away children, leaving parents — especially mothers — unable to return to work.

Read and listen to the full story here. 

Latest News

State Finds Half Of Bridgeport Schools Don’t Have Enough Special Education Teachers; We Found Other Districts With The Same Issue

Staff shortages have perplexed high-poverty districts throughout Connecticut for years. That’s because districts like Bridgeport struggle to keep their teachers from leaving for suburban districts, where the pay is often higher and class sizes smaller.

Almost a month into this school year, Bridgeport still has 16 special education teaching positions it needs to fill. Statewide, between 95 and 250 teaching positions go unfilled each year. Most are in high-poverty districts.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (September 10-16)
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An Education Week team presents the Big Ideas report, composed of 10 essays focusing on education during the pandemic, challenges, and tough questions.

As Tennessee schools battle over whether parents can opt their children out of mask mandates, Memphis reached a grim milestone – 20,000 students tested positive for COVID-19 since March 2020, reports Samantha West for Chalkbeat Tennessee.

Latest News

Big Ideas for Education’s Urgent Challenges

Welcome to the start of a new school year and the 2021 edition of our Big Ideas report.

While returning children to school buildings safely and making the year as normal as possible is driving you and your work, we understand how much more complex your job has become.

The cover of this year’s report and the 10 essays inside reflect this complicated moment and the constellation of emotions we know you’re experiencing: hope, excitement, grief, urgency, trepidation, and determination.

Key Coverage

The Tragedy of America’s Rural Schools

Harvey Ellington was 7 the first time someone told him the state of Mississippi considered Holmes County Consolidated School District a failing district. Holmes had earned a D or an F almost every year since then, and Ellington felt hollowed out with embarrassment every time someone rattled off the ranking. Technically, the grade measured how well, or how poorly, Ellington and his classmates performed on the state’s standardized tests, but he knew it could have applied to any number of assessments.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (September 3-9)
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A little-known New York law has allowed the state to sue nearly 16,000 students who owe college tuition, library fines and unpaid parking tickets. Many cases end in default because of a requirement that defendants appear for a hearing in only one location – Albany, reports The Hechinger Report’s Meredith Kolodner.

Damage from Hurricane Ida caused school closures across Louisiana, affecting 250,000 students who haven’t attended class in more than a week, Marta Jewson writes for The Lens. 

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (August 27-September 2)
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An Oregon school board is facing backlash from some parents and students for firing a superintendent who followed a state-required mask mandate for K-12 schools, though he personally opposed the mandate, Liliana Frankel reports for the Malheur Enterprise.

Latest News

Education Department Investigating Mask Mandate Bans in Five States

The Education Department on Monday announced investigations into five states that have imposed policies prohibiting schools from imposing mask mandates.

The Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights said Monday it sent letters to the chief state school officers of Iowa, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennesse and Utah informing them of the investigation into whether the policies discriminate against students with disabilities and health vulnerabilities who face a heightened risk of COVID-19 infection.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (August 20-26)
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Six newsrooms across the country produced an eight-part solutions-focused series that explores practices schools are employing for getting students back on track.

After two dozen school districts defied a soon-to-be in effect Arizona law banning mask mandates in K-12 public schools, the governor launched an incentive program to get districts to comply, offering additional funding per student, writes Rocio Hernandez for KJZZ.

Latest News

For Some College Students, Remote Learning Is a Game Changer

Although many college students have struggled with remote learning over the last year, some with disabilities found it to be a lifeline. As the fall semester approaches, those students are pushing for remote accommodations to continue, even as in-person classes resume.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (August 13-19)
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Schools nationwide are struggling with staff and supply shortages, which are affecting the start of the new school year, reports Abha Bhattarai for The Washington Post.

A California school district became one of the first in the state to require COVID-19 vaccines and weekly testing for students in addition to staff, Diana Lambert and Ali Tadayon report for EdSource.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (August 6-12)
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After hearing 70 people speak during an eight-hour period, the Virginia Beach school board voted to require masks for students and staff, reports Sara Gregory for The Virginian-Pilot.

California State University adopted a vaccination mandate for students, but the deadline comes long after the start of fall classes, Mikhail Zinshteyn reports for CalMatters.

Latest News

Leaping Medical Education Barriers: Alumna Founds Alternative to Pricey Tutoring

Prep course costs are just one layer of the much larger financial obligation that comes with becoming a doctor, including attending college, paying MCAT registration fees, medical school application fees and traveling to interviews, to name a few. According to a 2020 analysis conducted by the Association of American Medical Colleges, only 38.1% of MCAT examinees from lower-income backgrounds completed test preparation courses, compared to 50% of examinees coming from higher-income backgrounds.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (July 30- August 5)
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Colleges lost millions in revenue after international student enrollment dropped 72% due to the pandemic, visa restrictions and more, reports Karin Fischer and Sasha Aslanian for The Chronicle of Higher Education and APM Reports.

Rather than implement a mandate, several California community colleges are offering money and free textbooks to students who get vaccinated for COVID-19, reports Emma Hall and Matthew Reagan for Cal Matters.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (July 23-29)
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After the pandemic reduced college enrollment in 2020, New Jersey colleges and universities hope in-person classes and activities will increase student enrollment this year, reports Claire Lowe for The Press of Atlantic City.

Because a governor’s order prohibits vaccine mandates at Idaho colleges, education leaders are encouraging students to get vaccinated, appealing to their sense of community, Kevin Richert writes for Idaho Education News.

Latest News

Search for Remains at Colorado’s Native American Boarding Schools to Proceed Slowly, Respectfully

Today, Fort Lewis’ student population is more than 40% Native American or Alaska Native. The institution prides itself on its diversity, inclusivity and a waiver covering the cost of tuition of any students from federally recognized Native American tribes or Alaska Native villages.

But the college originated more than a century ago as one of the country’s Native American boarding schools — institutions the federal government used to recruit Indigenous children from across the nation in an effort to strip them of their culture and force assimilation.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (July 16-22)
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Colorado educators reflected on challenges they faced during the past school year, with the goal of helping improve K-12 education, reports Jenny Brundin for Colorado Public Radio.

Texas school leaders are seeking ways to support first-year educators who lost student-teaching opportunities and other training due to the pandemic, reports Silas Allen for Fort-Worth Star-Telegram.

Latest News

Helping Students Learn at Their Own Pace: Why Some Ohio Schools Are Adopting a ‘Mastery’ Approach in Hopes of Closing COVID Learning Gaps

With many students needing academic intervention after the pandemic, school district officials in Columbus and Cleveland, are turning to “mastery” learning as a strategy to catch them up.

The mastery, or “competency” approach lets students learn at their own pace, making sure they fully understand key skills before moving on.

That could be a good fit when students return to school in the fall after making drastically different progress online or in very limited in-person classes.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (July 9-15)
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A records request showed only two people emailed the Alabama superintendent about critical race theory, yet he drafted a resolution targeting the teachings of the academic framework in K-12 schools, Trisha Powell Crain reports for AL.com.

Talia Richman of The Dallas Morning News covers Texas educators’ concerns about a new bill that would require them to disclose their lessons and activities online.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (July 2-8)
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Two Boston Globe reporters separately highlighted the lack of educators of color in leadership and Boston Public Schools’ alleged coverup of racially charged text messages from former employees.

California colleges intend to address learning loss by offering tutoring and academic counseling for incoming freshmen this fall, Larry Gordon reports for EdSource.

Latest News

‘Financially Hobbled for Life’: The Elite Master’s Degrees That Don’t Pay Off

Lured by the aura of degrees from top-flight institutions, many master’s students at universities across the U.S. took on debt beyond what their pay would support, the Journal analysis of federal data on borrowers found. 

Undergraduate students for years have faced ballooning loan balances. But now it is graduate students who are accruing the most onerous debt loads. Unlike undergraduate loans, the federal Grad Plus loan program has no fixed limit on how much grad students can borrow—money that can be used for tuition, fees and living expenses.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (June 25-July 1)
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Michigan health officials recommended continued mask-wearing and other COVID-19 safety measures for the upcoming school year, reports Jennifer Chambers and Craig Mauger for the Detroit News.

The pandemic’s effects highlighted inequities for migrant students who were already prone to learning loss, explains Janine Zeitlin for USA TODAY Network-Florida.

Latest News

COVID At School: Boys Fell Behind More Than Girls. Can They Catch Up?

In Chicago and across the country, there is growing evidence that this year has hit Black and Latino boys harder than other students. Amid rising gun violence, a national reckoning over race, bitter school reopening battles and a deadly virus that took the heaviest toll on Black and Latino communities, the year has tested not only these teens, but also the school systems that have historically failed many of them. 

It has severed precarious ties to school, derailed college plans and pried gaping academic disparities even wider. 

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (June 18-24)
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A high schooler was vindicated after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling on a student’s right to free speech, explains Emily Tate of Ed Surge.

Olivia Krauth live-tweeted the first protest against critical race theory at Kentucky’s largest school district for the Courier Journal, showing how misinformation was widespread among the crowd.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (June 11-17)
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Special education services slowed or stopped after the pandemic began, “devastating” families who watched their children’s skills backslide, reports Cory Turner and Rebecca Klein for NPR.

After nearly 100 anti-maskers packed a school board meeting, forcing the meeting to shut down, a Georgia school district is bringing in more security, writes Alia Malik for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (June 4-10)
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A plan to give California’s community college system $170 million for faculty is dividing finance officials and professors, explains Mikhail Zinshteyn for Cal Matters.

Education leaders are scrambling to recruit teachers after North Carolina lawmakers required districts to offer summer school, reports Ann Doss Helms of WFAE.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (May 28-June 3)
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The New York TimesEliza Shapiro tells the stories of essential school staffers who worked in NYC school buildings throughout the pandemic. 

Teaching students about the Tulsa Race Massacre and other unpleasant aspects of history could be derailed because of a new Oklahoma law, reports Tawnell D. Hobbs of The Wall Street Journal

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (May 21-27)
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Meghan Mangrum of The Tennessean covers a historic $1 billion “continuity of operations” budget request from Metro Nashville Public Schools.

USA Today’s Lindsay Schnell tells the story of a first-generation college student’s struggle to stay in school throughout the pandemic. 

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (May 14-20)
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Nada Atieh and Kristan Obeng spent four months tracking hundreds of students who dropped contact with schools in three California counties for USA Today Network-California.

Chris Quintana of USA TODAY chronicles a veteran’s experience with a for-profit college and examines what critics call a breakdown in the rules intended to protect students from predatory for-profit schools. 

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (May 7-13)
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U.S. News & World Report’s Lauren Camera covers the uptick in wealthy parents pulling their kids from public schools, which is further exacerbating the inequities plaguing urban public school systems. 

Temporarily suspending the admissions exam at some Boston schools increased the diversity of accepted applicants, new data shows, reports James Vaznis of The Boston Globe

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Apr. 30 – May 6)
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Marta W. Aldrich of Chalkbeat Tennessee covers a legislative measure that would ban classroom discussions about systemic racism.

Texas college officials are cautiously planning a return to normal campus life this fall, reports Brayden Garcia and Valeria Olivares for The Dallas Morning News

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Apr. 23-29)
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A USA TODAY NETWORK reporting team in Wisconsin covers all the ways high schools are adapting their plans for pandemic-era proms.

Trisha Powell Crain of AL.com reports on a summer learning program that is focused on the individual needs of English learners.

The Christian Science Monitor’s Chelsea Sheasley gathers perspectives on the shift from school resource officers to safety specialists in Minneapolis Public Schools.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Apr. 16-22)
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Authorities restraining children using techniques like those used against George Floyd is commonplace in Minnesota schools, the 74’s Mark Keierleber reports.

Faculty members at a private Oregon university call for the university president and board chair to resign after the latter two allegedly made anti-Semitic comments, reports Meerah Powell of OPB.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Apr. 9-15)
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The 74’s Asher Lehrer-Small dives deep into a fellowship that helps Rhode Island paraprofessionals transform their experiences into teaching certifications and diversifies the teacher workforce.

In a weeklong Idaho Education News series, Sami Edge explores youth access to mental health services in Idaho schools and the challenges that COVID-19 poses for school-based mental health efforts. 

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Apr. 2-8)
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More school districts are turning to digital surveillance to keep tabs on students during remote learning. That has some families, educators, and privacy experts concerned, reports Education Week’s Stephen Sawchuk. 

Emily Tate of EdSurge explains why some guidance counselors are taking steps to address their implicit biases, and how that could improve services for students going forward. 

Key Coverage

Out of School, Out of Work

In 2017, as many as 4.5 million young people—or 11.5 percent of young adults ages 16 to 24—were neither in school nor working, according to the nonprofit Measure of America. By the summer of 2020, the organization estimated, the ranks of these “disconnected” young adults had swelled to 6 million.

Read the full story here

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Mar. 26 – Apr. 1)
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Education NC’s Liz Bell shares the struggles of the child care industry that have been brought to light amid the pandemic. 

Ann Doss Helms of WFAE public radio in Charlotte covers an analysis of how funds generated from the North Carolina Education Lottery are actually spent.

Key Coverage

District Savings Are Running Dry Amid COVID-19, Putting Some Schools in Dire Straits

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, districts have been bombarded with unexpected costs: iPads for remote learning, jugs of bleach to disinfect classrooms, Plexiglas for safety dividers, hazard pay for janitors, and PD for remote teaching.

But the public school system’s fiscal infrastructure is infamously rigid, making it almost impossible for administrators to pivot suddenly and spend large chunks of money on anything other than big-ticket items such as teachers, administrators, and curriculum.

Latest News

How Germany Avoided A ‘Lost’ School Year

“Every day is new, and every day is different,” the children sing. But one thing that’s changed little for them this year - their daily presence in a classroom. Germany’s quick response to the pandemic in the spring allowed it to get some children back in schools after just a few weeks. And schools have remained open this fall, even as the country shut restaurants and gyms back down.

Member Stories

#tellEWA Member Stories (Nov. 27-Dec. 3)
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With an in-depth portrait of one second grader, The Washington Post’s Perry Stein looks at the high toll the pandemic is taking on students’ basic literacy skills in D.C. 

Writing for Chalkbeat, Jason Gonzales digs into whether the University of Colorado Boulder is meeting its mission to serve students from low-income families.  

Key Coverage

What Missouri Schools Can Learn From How Germany Has Handled School Reopenings

In St. Louis, many public school districts are just beginning to bring students back for in-person instruction. Saying it’s still not safe, other districts continue to offer only a virtual model. But in Germany, things look much different. School was in session last spring, and it resumed in person again in August — and not just for little kids, either.

Key Coverage

How German Students Have Been Back At School Since Spring, While Missourians Are Just Returning

It’s halfway through the fall semester, and many students in the St. Louis and Kansas City areas are just now trickling back into classrooms. Thousands are still learning from home. Meanwhile, in most of Europe, schools have been open since August with students attending in person daily.

A robust public health system, hygiene measures and targeted quarantines of students and staff exposed to the coronavirus get the credit. But that early success could soon be put to the test as cold weather arrives along with a resurgence of cases of the coronavirus.

Key Coverage

‘A Battle for the Souls of Black Girls’

Zulayka McKinstry’s once silly, sociable daughter has stopped seeing friends, talking to siblings and trusting anyone — changes Ms. McKinstry dates to the day in January 2019 when her daughter’s school principal decided that “hyper and giddy” were suspicious behaviors in a 12-year-old girl.

Ms. McKinstry’s daughter was sent to the nurse’s office and forced to undress so that she could be searched for contraband that did not exist.