Ann Dornfeld

Reporter

Ann Dornfeld is a reporter at KUOW. She should have realized radio was in her future when, growing up in Seattle, she went to KUBE 93 after school one day to interview DJ Chet Buchanan. She claimed it was for a school assignment. She was actually just curious.

Ann went on to spin hip-hop records and host a public affairs show at her college radio station. On a month-long trip to Anchorage, she volunteered at Alaska Public Radio Network. She expected to be put to work filing papers. Instead, APRN gave her a mic and told her to file stories. She stayed all summer and learned the art of radio reporting. An official internship at APRN followed, and another at KUOW. She then worked at KLCC Public Radio in Eugene, Oregon as the Morning Edition host and reporter.

Ann returned to Seattle and worked as a roving freelance reporter, focusing on environmental issues for KUOW and national shows including Morning Edition, All Things Considered, The Environment Report and Marketplace. She has reported on a rare bioluminescent bay in Puerto Rico, penguin habitat loss in South Africa, mangrove destruction in the US Virgin Islands, coral reef conservation in Bonaire and invasive lionfish in the Bahamas. She covered a major earthquake in Sumatra, Indonesia, for NPR News and The World.

Ann has won awards for her reporting from the Associated Press and Public Radio News Directors Incorporated. She received an Investigative Reporting award from the Education Writers Association for her 2010 KUOW story about recess inequalities for poor children in Seattle Public Schools.

In her spare time, Ann enjoys underwater photography while diving balmy Puget Sound. Her favorite marine invertebrate is a nudibranch. Her favorite nudibranch is a Cockerell's dorid (Laila cockerelli).

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Education Reform
9:17 am
Thu January 30, 2014

Charter Commission Advised To Approve Only Six Schools Thursday

Flickr Photo/www.audio-luci-store.it

The Washington State Charter School Commission is scheduled to vote Thursday on the 19 charter applications it received.

The commission hired outside evaluators, who advised that only six out of the 19 applications be approved.

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Youth Unemployment
7:45 am
Wed January 22, 2014

'Year Up' Program Gives Young Adults A Leg Up On Job Market

Washington Federal technical support supervisor Pat Harding trains Year Up interns Freda Crichton and Fadumo Ali to remotely log in to bank branch computers.
Credit KUOW Photo/Ann Dornfeld

The only thing motivating Freda Crichton to finish high school was the prospect of joining the Marines with her twin sister after graduation.

Her twin got in. But Crichton didn’t.

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Education Reform
5:00 am
Tue January 21, 2014

Parents Pack Meetings With Charter School Hopefuls

Parents in a packed room listen to public testimony regarding proposed charter schools in the Seattle area at South Seattle Community College on Monday.
Ann Dornfeld KUOW

The Washington State Charter School Commission is wrapping up three weeks of public hearings for 19 proposed schools.

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Education
4:52 pm
Thu January 16, 2014

New Bill Would Examine Student Privacy In Washington State

A bill introduced in the state Legislature this week calls for a study into how much student data is being released without families’ knowledge or consent.

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K-12 Funding
9:01 am
Mon January 13, 2014

Supreme Court To State: Figure Out Education Funding By April

The Washington state Supreme Court has found that state lawmakers have once again failed to make significant progress toward fully funding basic education, and ordered the Legislature to submit a K-12 funding plan by April 30.

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Education
3:23 pm
Wed January 8, 2014

New Federal Classroom Discipline Guidelines

Ross Reynolds talks to KUOW education reporter Ann Dornfeld about the federal government's new recommendations for classroom discipline.

Education Reform
1:27 pm
Mon January 6, 2014

Public Hearings On Charter School Proposals Begin Today

The Washington State Charter School Commission will host nine public forums around the state this month regarding the 19 charter school proposals it is considering. The first one is  Monday afternoon in Spokane.

Each forum will focus on up to three proposals, and begin with a presentation from the charter applicants.

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Postscripts
5:18 pm
Tue December 31, 2013

Six Months Later, Girl With Autism Thrives With Trained Teachers

This is how Chloe Burton draws herself today, complete with freckles and a wide smile.
Chloe Burton

Chloe Burton had a great year in kindergarten.

Although she has autism, she had no problem learning in a general education classroom alongside her peers.

But in first grade, things went downhill. Chloe wandered the classroom instead of finishing her work.

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Postscripts
8:10 am
Fri December 27, 2013

A Welder Reflects: 'I’m A Different Person Than I Was. I Have A Trade.'

Welding is in demand in industries from construction to aerospace. The pay is good for that reason – and also because it’s dangerous work.
Credit KUOW Photo/Jake Warga

When Shannon Kelley started a free worker retraining program last summer, he was 43 years old and had been laid off for five years.

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Watchdog
1:09 pm
Thu December 19, 2013

State Deal To Give Media Organizations Student Data Alarms Privacy Experts

Students in a PE class at Salmon Bay K-8 School in Seattle. KUOW has learned that the Washington state schools office in Olympia has signed agreements to share non-public student data with media organizations.
AP Photo/Ted S. Warren

Editor’s Note: This story has been changed to strengthen its focus on student data privacy. The original version, which contained more specifics from an agreement between the state schools office and The Seattle Times, left some of our readers mistakenly believing that their children’s names and Social Security numbers had been released to the Times. While the story did not say that, we want to remove any doubts. The agreement can be viewed below.

KUOW has learned that the Washington state education department has signed agreements to share non-public student data with media organizations including The Seattle Times and The Associated Press.

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Charter School Law
7:04 pm
Thu December 12, 2013

Ruling Allows Charter Schools To Move Forward In Washington

King County Judge Jean Rietschel found charter schools ineligible for some state funds.
Flickr Photo/everyday Zoid

A King County Superior Court ruling Thursday will allow the introduction of charter schools in Washington, but struck down part of the law as unconstitutional.    

In her ruling, Judge Jean Rietschel upheld much of the charter school law, and the state attorney general said the state will continue to implement it.

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Education Reform
7:59 am
Wed December 11, 2013

Charter Schools' Volunteer Demands Could Deter Poor Families, Critics Say

Charter schools are not legally allowed to discriminate against children, but many are setting high expectations of volunteer time from family members as part of their enrollment standards.
Flickr Photo/WarzauWynn

Proposals for Washington state's first-ever charter schools include a wide range of educational models, from a focus on team sports to a military school.

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Education Reform
5:13 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

22 Contenders Vie To Become State's First Charter Schools

Thirty-one schools, as shown above, filed a notice of intent with the state to establish a charter school, over half of which would be in either King or Pierce county. Twenty-two schools completed applications by Friday's deadline.
Credit Kara McDermott

A military school for at-risk youth.

A high school that uses sports to teach life lessons.

A school focused on special education.

These are three of the 22 proposals for Washington state’s first charter schools that made it in by last Friday’s deadline.

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School Blues
11:43 am
Thu November 21, 2013

Seattle School Board Approves New Boundaries At Seven Hour Meeting

Terri Green, president of the Wedgwood Elementary Parent Teacher Association, addresses the Seattle School Board at Wednesday night's meeting.
Credit Courtesy of Rebecca Nelson, RavennaBlog.com

At a seven-hour meeting on Wednesday night, the Seattle School Board approved controversial new boundaries – to the chagrin of parents, teachers and students who packed the room to beg the board to reconsider.

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School Rules
9:33 am
Wed November 20, 2013

Seattle Parents Rankled By School District's Proposed Boundaries

Arlo Jackson and Nico Binuya say it's important to them to be able to walk from their Beacon Hill homes to Mercer Middle School.
Tom Jackson

At 6:55 a.m. last Friday, wearing a red backpack and holding an apple fritter, 11-year-old Arlo Jackson trudged out the door to Mercer Middle School.

"The cold air kinda wakes you up," Arlo said as he walked to his first stop, his friend Nico Binuya’s house. After Nico got a kiss from his mom, the two friends were on their way, chatting about “school, sports and, like, girls.”

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