Originally published on Mon February 25, 2013 4:59 pm
The Northwest's public universities pull in massive amounts of federal research dollars. It totaled $1 billion last year at the University of Washington. Oregon State University won close to $200 million in federal research funds. The University of Idaho is counting on $100 million this year. So it's no surprise that university administrators are hanging on every scrap of news about imminent automatic federal budget cuts.
Parents give many different reasons for homeschooling their children: religious or moral convictions, for instance, or concerns about safety in the public school environment. Dissatisfaction with the academic standards of public schools is another reason cited by some parents.
High school Advanced Placement (AP) classes have traditionally been the domain of academically strong students who want an extra challenge. Now Washington state lawmakers are considering legislation based on a policy in the Federal Way school district that puts all kids who meet basic standards into AP and other advanced classes. The goal is to make more low-income kids of color ready for college.
Michelle Rhee says our education system is failing. The founder and CEO of StudentsFirst and former chancellor of Washington, DC, public schools says she would rigorously evaluate teachers, end tenure and boost pay for high-performing teachers while firing the least effective. Her critics say her reliance on test scores and support for school vouchers would destroy the public education system. Michelle Rhee joins us for a conversation about students, standardized tests, teachers unions, charter schools and her new book, "Radical: Fighting to Put Students First."
The president’s proposal to improve quality and accessibility of preschools includes a cost-sharing partnership with all 50 states. Federal funds would go to expand high-quality public preschools, open to low- and moderate-income four-year-olds from families at or below 200 percent the poverty level.
Recent debate over the future of the state's pre-paid tuition program and the continually rising cost of college raises a larger question: Who is going to pay for a college education? It used to be that Washington state paid most of the cost of a public university degree. Today, students must find most of the funds. As costs rise, how will society keep higher education affordable? William Zumeta heads the graduate program at the Evans School of Public Affairs and has written about the costs of college. He joins us to talk about how we can make sure people in Washington state can pursue higher education without having to go into crushing debt.
This week we’ve been taking a closer look at the battle over how to improve state education. Today we get another perspective from Mary Lindquist, president of the state’s largest teachers' union, the Washington Education Association.
Former gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna supported charter schools, and some are arguing that his grand old party is leading the way on education reform while democrats in Olympia simply tout old policy. Ross Reynolds talks with Tacoma News Tribune columnist Peter Callaghan.
Seattle Public Schools Superintendent José Banda directed administrators at Garfield High School to give the Measures of Academic Progress (MAP) test Tuesday despite a mass boycott by the school’s teachers.
On Wednesday, hundreds of immigrants and advocates plan to gather in Olympia to lay out their priorities for lawmakers. One top issue is called the Washington Dream Act, which state Senator Ed Murray, D-Seattle, introduced today. Under the measure, undocumented college students would become eligible for state financial aid.
Yesterday Ross talked to the Republican Senate chair of the Early Learning and K-12 Education committee. Today he follows up with Democratic State Senator Rosemary McAuliffe. How do Republicans and Democrats differ in their goals and strategies for improving state education?
Despite a state Supreme Court ruling that Washington is underfunding public education to the tune of $1 billion, state legislators so far seem to be talking more about policy changes than new dollars. Highline School District Superintendent Susan Enfield sat on the state's Joint Task Force on Education Funding. Their report is in. What now? Susan Enfield joins us with her thoughts about how the state should move forward.
Washington state is under a state Supreme Court mandate to adequately fund K-12 education. But Democrats and Republican disagree over increasing funding versus guaranteeing the money is used well. Ross Reynolds talks with Republican State Senator Steve Litzow who chairs the Early Learning and K-12 Education committee about what is being done to fund K-12 education.