A Harvard researcher, a former Massachusetts education official and a testing company founder are among the experts slated to address high-stakes testing at the Rhode Island Board of Education this weekend. The board is holding a two-day retreat as it faces calls to reconsider a controversial policy linking test scores to a high school diploma.
Governor Lincoln Chafee joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss whether RI Democrats are doing enough to move the economy forward; tolls on the Sakonnet River Bridge; NSA surveillaince; education policy; and why his poll ratings are so low.
Achievement First, a big box charter operator from Connecticut, opens its first school in Rhode Island this month. Plans for Achievement First in Rhode Island originally called for a network of public charter schools serving students in Kindergarten through the end of high school, but the proposal almost immediately ran into opposition from parents and teachers.
The Rhode Island Department of Education is looking for more applicants for a lottery to fill state-funded pre-kindergarten programs. RIDE has extended the deadline for the lottery until August 22nd, as it looks to fill 234 seats in seven local cities.
State lawmakers increased funding this year for pre-kindergarten programs, which education advocates see as an important step toward improving public schools. The theory is that if more students are ready when they arrive in elementary school, then fewer students will fall behind at an early age.
The Rhode Island Board of Education will address two recent controversies in a special meeting scheduled for Wednesday afternoon.
The board is planning to vote on Governor Lincoln Chafee’s pick for a new Interim Higher Education Commissioner. The candidate, Department of Education Chief of Staff Clark Greene, was named only after Education Board Chair Eva-Marie Mancuso stepped aside as a candidate herself, because of ethics questions.
Woonsocket and Pawtucket are asking the Rhode Island Supreme Court to intervene in their effort to get more funding from the state. The districts filed briefs late last week, arguing they do not receive enough state aid to meet the state’s basic education requirements. The districts claim their students are being denied equal access to an education, in violation of their rights under the state constitution.
Brown University Medical School professor and doctor at Rhode Island hospital is expected in court Wednesday on charges he violated Rhode Island’s social host law. Bruce Becker is accused of allowing alcohol at a birthday party for his 18-year-old son at their home in Barrington.
A documentary about the fight to create Pell Grants will screen Wednesday evening as part of the Rhode Island International Film Festival.
The film is called "Pell Grants: A Passion for Education." It details the events in Washington leading up the the creation of the federal student loan program named for the late Rhode Island Senator Claiborne Pell.
As part of the screening at the Veteran's Memorial Auditorium in Providence, Pell’s widow Nuala Pell and his grandson Clay Pell will take part in a question and answer session.
Lawyers from the Rhode Island Chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union will be in court Tuesday for a hearing as they try to block the State Board of Education from holding a retreat that’s closed to the public.
The ACLU claims the retreat violates the state’s open meetings act. The group has asked a judge for a temporary restraining order to stop the two-day retreat, scheduled for August 25th and 26th.