Teachers across the country are under fire to increase student test scores and start using tougher standards in their classrooms. They’re also about to start using new tests to find out how their students are doing. So what is it like to be a teacher right now, and what concerns do teachers have about the changes in their classrooms?
Rhode Island Public Radio's education reporter Elisabeth Harrison spoke with Newport Middle School Science Teacher Barbara Walton-Faria to find out. Walton-Faria is the chair of RI Teacher Advisory Council.
On of the state's two teachers' unions is calling for parents to get better information about how to opt out of standardized tests.
In a resolution, the executive committee of the National Education Association Rhode Island says the state and local districts should provide written information to parents about their right to remove children from testing.
The resolution stresses that teachers have a free speech right to talk to parents about opting out of testing, including the new multi-state test known as PARCC.
A series of education bills on the agenda at the Senate Finance Committee Tuesday range from a tax credit for college graduates to funding for charter schools.
One bill would give recent college graduates a break on their state income taxes. The idea is to stem the so-called “brain drain,” when local graduates put their newly-minted degrees to work in other states.
The measure would give a maximum $5,000 credit for a worker who received a bachelor’s degree from a local college or university within the last 10 years.