State education officials plan to announce results from the latest round of state-wide standardized testing, unless a blizzard gets in the way. The Department of Education says Governor Lincoln Chafee and Education Commissioner Deborah Gist will release the numbers at the statehouse on Friday morning.
If the weather cooperates, we will soon know just how many high school juniors are at risk for not graduating, under a new state rule that requires a score of two or better on the New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP) exam.
The Senate Education Committee holds hearings today on nominees for a new State Board of Education. The picks from Governor Lincoln Chafee include teachers' union president Larry Purtill and Colleen Callahan, also a teachers’ union leader, and a member of the former Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Education.
State lawmakers dissolved the Board of Regents along with the board overseeing colleges and universities to create a new combined board of education. The move was aimed at improving coordination between higher education and K-12 schools.
Students protest high stakes testing in Rhode Island and Providence puts a history teacher in a physics classroom. These are some of the most heated controversies recently on the education beat. But there’s a little known force behind both of these stories. It’s a student group called the Providence Student Union. Co-founder Aaron Regunberg is a recent Brown graduate. Elisabeth Harrison asked him how he became an activist in the public schools.
Relations appear tense between the Rhode Island Federation of Teachers, one of two teachers’ unions in Rhode Island, and State Education Commissioner Deborah Gist.
Gist sent a letter to Superintendents at the end of January reminding them that state regulations require staffing decisions to be based on performance, rather than the number of years a teacher has been on the job, a practice common in many schools.
Schools close as budgets stretch and buildings age
East Providence is closing Oldham Elementary School citing the high cost of upgrading the building. The district has faced serious deficits in the past, contributing to municipal financial woes. The Providence Journal reports that district officials Oldham would have needed an estimated $2 million in renovations to stay open. As a result of the closure, some students will be shifted to other schools.
State education officials are defending standardized testing as a graduation requirement starting with the class of 2014. Students opposing so-called "high stakes testing" staged a protest yesterday at the Statehouse.
State Education Commissioner Deborah Gist responded by saying her goal is to make sure students finish high school with the right skills for college or a career. If the testing rule took effect this year, 44 percent of seniors would be at risk for not graduating.
Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressman Jim Langevin are asking the Federal Labor Department to reverse an enrollment freeze at Job Corps, a technical training and GED program with sites around the country, including Exeter, Rhode Island.
In a letter, a group of 17 senators say the freeze will have an adverse effect on thousands of young people.
Harvard University is partnering with the National Football League on a $100 million research project looking into serious health problems among NFL players. The initiative announced in today's BostonGlobe will focus on 1,000 retired NFL players to better understand and potentially treat a wide range of physical ailments.
A group calling itself the Providence Student Union will ask for an end to high stakes testing this week. Starting with the class of 2014, Rhode Island students will not be allowed to graduate unless they get a score of "partially procficent" on the standardized test known as the New England Common Assessment Program (NECAP).