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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Education
9:09 am
Fri January 11, 2013

Class notes: A quick look at the stories that made news this week in education

  • Sawyer probe continues

State and federal law enforcement agencies are checking the books at the Sawyer School for criminal activity following its abrupt closure just after Christmas. State education officials have recovered student records from the school and are planning to hold an event at CCRI next week to provide transcripts and counseling for students wondering how to proceed with their degrees.

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Education
1:38 pm
Thu January 10, 2013

Why Sawyer School lost students, federal dollars before closure

The Sawyer School was apparently bleeding federal aid prior to its abrupt closure on New Year's Day. The Federal Department of Education says the for-profit school had gone from nearly $7.5 million in federal tuition dollars for the 2011-2012 academic year down to $2 million this year.

What happened? Well, one answer is declining enrollment. Sawyer reported 796 students in Rhode Island in the fall of 2011, but only 302 students when it shut down earlier this month.

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Education
4:53 am
Thu January 10, 2013

URI students' trip does double duty: learning and helping

Elizabeth Dore with Hernando at Batey Libertad
Mat Rosa

(PROVIDENCE, RI) A group of URI students is spending their winter vacation in the Dominican Republic studying politics and health care.  The trip is part of a semester long class on political and social change in the Caribbean.  URI Political Science Professor Maureen Moakley and nursing student Alexa Wilson talk about the trip and what it means to both students and the people they visit.

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Education
10:31 am
Wed January 9, 2013

Governor announces nominations for Ed Board

(PROVIDENCE, RI) Governor Lincoln Chafee has announced his nominees for a new Board of Education, replacing the boards of higher education and K-12 public schools. The nine nominations include two teachers union officials, an emergency room physician and several attorneys.

Most are former members of the recently dissolved board of elementary and secondary schools and the board that oversaw higher education.

Just before Christmas, Chafee announced his selection of attorney Eva Marie Mancuso to chair the Board of Education.

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Education
8:47 am
Wed January 9, 2013

Finally, nominations for the board of ed

Governor Lincoln Chafee has announced his picks for the new 11-member board of education, which replaces two former boards overseeing K-12 schools and colleges and universities.

The selections are mostly alums of the two boards that lawmakers dissolved in a June vote. As of December, Chafee had named only his choice to chair the board, leaving Rhode Island with no board in charge of education on January 1st.

Here are bios for the education board picks from a statehouse communiqué:

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Education
12:13 pm
Tue January 8, 2013

FBI joins Sawyer probe, plus the latest from the Office of Higher Ed

The Sawyer School's Hartford Avenue branch in Providence. Photo by Elisabeth Harrison

The FBI has joined the investigation of the now-defunct Sawyer School, a for-profit technical college that closed its doors on the first of the year.

State police say they're seeking to determine whether there was any criminal wrongdoing, or whether this is simply a case of a business going under.

Either way, Sawyer's closure left roughly 300 Rhode Island students and 1,200 students in Connecticut with partially completed certificates to become medical office assistants and other office administrators.

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Education
11:37 am
Tue January 8, 2013

The world didn't come to an end in 2012, but the board of education did

Rhode Island Public Radio's Political Analyst Scott MacKay answers my questions about the political machinations that left Rhode Island with no board for either K-12 public schools or colleges and universities at the start of 2013.

Education
5:00 am
Tue January 8, 2013

How did Sawyer School close with no notice?

Sawyer School in Pawtucket, RI
Credit Elisabeth Harrison

Special Assistant to the Commissioner of the RI Board of Governors for Higher Education, Michael Trainor, talks with RIPR Morning Edition Host Elisabeth Harrison about the Sawyer School which abruptly closed this month.  Trainor discusses what safeguards are in place to protect students enrolled in for-profit schools, the status of the school at its last audit, and what RI is doing for students left stranded.

The hotline is staffed daily 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at 401-277-5282.

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Education
10:48 am
Fri January 4, 2013

Class notes: A quick look at stories that made news this week in education

  • Who’s overseeing the state’s public schools, colleges and universities? The answer… it’s not clear, and it’s complicated.

The State Senate voted unanimously on Thursday to delay creation of a State Board of Education to replace the Board of Regents for Elementary and Secondary Schools and the Board of Governors for Higher Education. The vote comes after those two boards dissolved on January 1st, leaving a question mark about who is in charge of the state’s K-12 public schools and three institutions of higher education.

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Education
11:23 am
Tue January 1, 2013

Who's in charge at Board of Ed?

(PROVIDENCE, RI) Rhode Island starts the New Year with uncertainty about who is overseeing public education. A state law dissolved the boards of higher education and k-12 public schools as of December 31st, and a new board was supposed to takeover on January 1st.

But Governor Lincoln Chafee has named only the chair of the new board. His pick was attorney and former higher education board member Eva Marie Mancuso.

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