Elisabeth Harrison

Morning Edition Host, Education Reporter

Elisabeth Harrison's journalism background includes everything from behind-the-scenes work with the CBS Evening News to freelance documentary production.

She joined the WRNI team in 2007 as a Morning Edition producer and freelance journalist. In 2009, she became a full-time reporter, and became the Morning Edition host in 2011.

Harrison's education is as wide ranging as her work at Rhode Island Public Radio. She has a B.A. in English and French from Wellesley College, and a joint M.A. in Journalism and French Studies from NYU.

A native of Los Angeles, Harrison loves good food and good movies.

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The Education Blog
9:31 am
Tue June 24, 2014

High Stakes Testing Bill Awaits Governor’s Signature

School officials say they plan to keep up their efforts to help high school students improve their test scores, even if the test scores won’t count towards a high school diploma.

A signature from Governor Lincoln Chafee is the last thing standing between students and a bill that would delay the use of high school exit exams until at least 2017.

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The Education Blog
9:14 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Lawmakers Halt High Stakes Testing, Alter Teacher Evaluations

In a move that seemed almost unthinkable before a change in leadership at the House of Representatives, Rhode Island lawmakers have suspended the use of standardized test scores as part of a high school diploma until at least 2017. Lawmakers have also approved legislation that limits the frequency of teacher evaluations for most teachers.

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The Education Blog
9:06 am
Fri June 20, 2014

High Stakes Testing, Teacher Evaluations Remain in the Mix

The General Assembly is expected to wrap up the session today, with two key education issues still under discussion.

House Speaker Nicholas Mattiello has indicated he may bring a vote on a move to stop the use of standardized testing as a requirement for high school graduation. The measure was considered dead in the water under former House Speaker Gordon Fox, but Mattiello says he is concerned about the impact of the testing requirement on students with special needs. One compromise could involve suspending the testing rule for students with special needs.

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The Education Blog
6:58 am
Wed June 18, 2014

RIDE: Most Students Meet Graduation Requirements

The State Department of Education says roughly 95 percent of this year's high school seniors have met a controversial new graduation requirement involving test scores. Nearly 500 students met the requirement by getting a waiver from their school districts.

Most high schools have already held graduations, but RIDE says it does not have a final number for how many students were prevented from receiving diplomas because of the testing requirement. Education Commissioner Deborah Gist told RIPR students can still appeal graduation decisions.

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The Education Blog
9:16 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Board Appoints New Commissioner of Higher Education

Rhode Island's Board of Education has selected former Louisiana Commissioner of Higher Education Jim Purcell to lead the state's college system.

The board voted unanimously at its Monday meeting to appoint Purcell as the new commissioner of higher education. Details of his contract remain under negotiation, but Purcell is expected to earn between $135,000 and $175,000, which is considerably less than his $275,000 contract in Louisiana.

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Education
8:59 am
Tue June 17, 2014

Special Education Program Brings Kids Back To Their Classrooms

Special education teacher Brenda Pacheco reads to students in a Bradley classroom in Middletown
Credit Elisabeth Harrison

Schools in Rhode Island spend hundreds of millions of dollars every year on special education, a broad category that includes physical and learning disabilities, emotional problems and autism.

Right now, the students needing the most attention are often sent to special schools, but a growing program from Bradley Hospital shows promise in reducing the cost of special education by keeping more students in their own school districts, in their own schools.

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Higher Education
9:05 am
Mon June 16, 2014

Former Brown Student Denies Rape Allegations

A male student who left Brown University after he was thrust into a public discussion about sexual assault  has written to the U.S. Department of Education to give his side of the story.

The Chronicle of Higher Education reports that the student, Daniel Kopin, through his attorneys, has sent a letter to education officials, who are investigating a civil rights complaint against Brown, filed by Kopin's alleged victim, Lena Sclove.

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Higher Education
8:45 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Brown Athletes Named in Sexual Assault Investigation

Brown University gates
Credit RIPR FILE

Officials at Brown University tell The Providence Journal they have ordered two football players to leave campus amid allegations of sexual assault.

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The Education Blog
7:28 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Warwick Mayor Puts the Brakes on New Mayoral Academy

Warwick Mayor Scott Avedisian has halted public hearings on a proposed Mayoral Academy Charter School.

Avedisian, who is the mayor sponsoring the proposal, says numerous issues including West Warwick's potential to pull out of the proposal,  preceded the request.

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The Education Blog
9:27 am
Thu June 12, 2014

Bill Seeks Relief From GED Cost Increase

The Rhode Island Senate has passed a measure aimed at easing the cost of the high school equivalency test known as the G.E.D.

The bill directs the State Board of Education to consider alternatives to the G.E.D. for students looking to earn a high school equivalency. It also calls for the reinstatement of a fee waiver for low income residents taking the G.E.D.

The testing company that administers the G.E.D. recently introduced a more difficult test and raised its rates to $120.

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