Education

Education
6:20 am
Fri November 14, 2014

School in Voucher Program Misses the Mark, Presses On

Headmaster Josh LaSage in Hosanna Christian Academy's in 2012 in "war room" where the student progress is tracked.
Credit Sue Lincoln

In 2012, when Louisiana’s taxpayer funded scholarship program was expanded statewide, Hosanna Christian Academy in Baton Rouge went all in.

In that first year, the school took on almost 300 voucher students, nearly doubling its enrollment. By the start of this school year, Hosanna had more voucher students than any other school in the state -- about 85 percent of its student are enrolled with a voucher. 

Hosanna's students didn't score well enough on state tests, and it won't be allowed to enroll more voucher students next year. Still, headmaster Josh LaSage says the school isn't giving up. 


Education
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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Education
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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Education
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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Education
6:51 am
Fri October 31, 2014

Election of New Smaller School Board Could Result in Old Gridlock

Members of the existing East Baton Rouge Parish School Board.

Tuesday marks the first East Baton Rouge Parish school board election since a redistricting plan was passed this summer, shrinking the board from 11 members to 9.

Charles Lussier is a reporter for The Advocate and has been following the races for the six contested seats.


Education
4:17 am
Sun October 26, 2014

A New Orleans Family's Lives Changed In An Instant

Five-year-old Kyle Romain sits on the lap of his grandmother, Barbara Romain, at a football game. Kyle lost his sight when he was hit by a stray bullet two months ago.
Eric Westervelt/NPR

Originally published on Sun October 26, 2014 3:38 pm

NPR Ed is reporting this year on the extraordinary changes in the New Orleans schools.

I was in New Orleans to report on how the city's nearly all-charter school system is handling children with disabilities and special needs.

An old friend, a veteran New Orleans reporter, told me about a family — a mother and her two youngest sons — who'd been badly wounded in a drive-by shooting just days into the new school year.

I met up with Alanna Romain at a recreation league football game at City Park. She has five children. Her oldest boy plays football.

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Education
4:15 am
Tue October 21, 2014

The Short Shelf Life Of Urban School Superintendents

Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent John Deasy, seen in a photo taken last year, says his resignation Thursday was "by mutual agreement.
Damian Dovarganes AP

Originally published on Tue October 21, 2014 7:16 am

If you're a 12th-grader right now in the Los Angeles schools, that means you probably started kindergarten back in 2001. It also means that, as of this week, you've seen four superintendents come and go.

As we discussed today on Morning Edition, the ouster of John Deasy last week as the head of the nation's second-largest district has renewed a long-running debate about leadership of big-city schools, and particularly the challenges of raising achievement in such a politically charged environment.

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Education
12:32 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

The New Vocabulary Of Urban Education

LA Johnson/NPR

Originally published on Fri October 31, 2014 9:32 am

Once upon a time, most kids attended things called schools to get an education. And, in those schools, these kids were called students.

Well, times are changing — especially in urban areas with lots of charter schools. In New Orleans, where just about every school receiving public funding is now a charter, we asked a bunch of adults where they had gone to school.

Their answers: Newton Elementary and Newton High School, Warren Easton High School, Epiphany School, Folsom Elementary School, Valena C. Jones School and the Moses Brown School.

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Education
6:22 am
Thu October 16, 2014

Magnet, Gifted and Talented Programs at the Core of St. George Fight

Dufrocq Elementary students performing at the East Baton Rouge Parish School System's recruitment fair showcasing magnet and gifted and talented programs.
Amy Jeffries WRKF

The latest applications for annexation into Baton Rouge by LSU and L’Auberge casino could cut further into the tax base for the proposed city of St. George and undermine the incorporation petition.

But supporters of the breakaway aren’t giving up.

They still want their new city, and even more so, a new school district.

Meanwhile, it’s recruitment season for the parish school district and it’s been holding open houses this week for its magnet and gifted and talented programs.

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Education
2:23 am
Mon October 13, 2014

A New Orleans Charter School Marches To Its Own Tune

Art projects like these anatomy murals are woven into the curriculum at the Homer Plessy Community Charter school in New Orleans.
Eric Westervelt/NPR

Originally published on Mon October 13, 2014 8:42 am

This year, NPR Ed is reporting on the dramatic changes in the New Orleans school system.

All startups face big hurdles. But when you're a startup school in one of America's poorest cities, without deep-pocket backers, the challenges are daunting.

Oscar Brown is a New Orleans native. He grew up in the Desire housing project, a little over a mile west of his current home in a neighborhood ravaged by the storm that struck nearly a decade ago.

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