education

Newscast
7:18 am
Mon February 23, 2015

February 23, 2015: Miami Lawmaker Wants To Rank Florida's Public Schools

Today on WLRN-Miami Herald News, you heard...

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Testing
6:59 pm
Wed February 18, 2015

Florida Education Commissioner Recommends Eliminating Some Tests

Education Commissioner Pam Stewart.
Credit Florida Department of Education / Flickr

Education Commissioner Pam Stewart has recommended eliminating a high school exam, making another optional and asking state lawmakers and local school districts to cut back on the amount of testing.

Stewart's recommendations are the conclusion of a statewide review of standardized testing requested by Gov. Rick Scott.

"There is, without a doubt, an excess of testing in Florida schools," Stewart said in a statement, saying she'll work with Scott, lawmakers and school districts to "strike the appropriate balance between accountability and instruction."

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StateImpact Florida
2:00 am
Mon February 16, 2015

Why Elementary Math Lessons Are Changing In Florida Schools

Frances S. Tucker fifth grade math teacher Yaliesperanza Salazar leads her class through an exercise to group data on a line graph.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

At dinner tables across Florida, parents and their elementary school children are trying to solve a math problem: What’s going on with my kid’s homework?

Florida is one of dozens of states that has switched to new math standards based on Common Core. The standards outline what students should know in every grade.

Experts say it means big changes to how math is taught. More focus on understanding concepts and solving problems multiple ways. Less memorization of formulas and grinding out worksheets full of similar problems.

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Education
5:59 pm
Wed February 11, 2015

Proposed Testing-Time Limit Might Not Reduce Testing Time

Florida lawmakers want to limit the amount of time students spend testing.
Credit StephenMitchell / Flickr

A proposal to limit students to 45 hours of testing a year is unlikely to reduce the amount of time spent on exams, according to a survey of Florida's largest school districts.

Districts say they don't currently track the time individual students spend on testing.

Calculating the number is complicated. The amount of testing varies by a student's grade, the classes he or she is taking and other factors, such as whether the student is learning English or receives extra time to accommodate a disability.

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Jeb
6:01 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

Jeb Bush Defends Education Record At Tallahassee Summit

Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush answered questions at a Tallahassee education summit Tuesday.
Credit Miami Herald

Former Gov. Jeb Bush defended his record on education at a Tallahassee education summit Tuesday, taking on testing, unions and school choice.

But Bush didn't mention Common Core -- the politically caustic multi-state math and language arts standards for which he has been a chief cheerleader. Bush is a possible 2016 Republican presidential candidate, and many conservatives worry the standards will mean a loss of local control over what's taught in schools.

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Education
1:09 am
Mon February 9, 2015

Study: Performance Funding Doesn't Improve Outcomes In Higher Ed

President Obama wants to make two years of public community college free for many students. But institutions like Miami Dade College, pictured here, could only participate if they also have a performance funding program.
Credit mcd.edu

Performance funding in public higher education is a way for states to hold institutions accountable for certain outcomes. But new research shows it doesn’t do much to keep students enrolled or boost graduation rates.

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Education
5:08 pm
Fri February 6, 2015

Bill Could Give Out-Of-State Charter Schools A Florida Foothold

A Rocketship Education advertisement, posted on Twitter, for a Washington, D.C. school choice event.
Credit Rocketship Education

Florida charter schools that consistently earn good grades on the state’s public school report card get special privileges.

Soon, out-of-state charter schools could, too.

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Measles
3:19 pm
Wed February 4, 2015

Miami-Dade Superintendent: Get Your Shots (Even Flu)

Superintedent Alberto Carvalho says he's concerned about measles cases spreading across the country and is tracking vaccination rates.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Miami-Dade County school leaders say they are concerned about a measles outbreak spreading across the country, and they urge parents to vaccinate their children.

Superintendent Alberto Carvalho says vaccinations work, and the district is tracking whether students get their required shots. Carvalho says 98 percent of Miami-Dade students have been vaccinated or are getting the shots now.

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Education
6:51 pm
Tue February 3, 2015

Bill Would Limit Testing Time in Fl Schools

Originally published on Tue February 3, 2015 10:36 am

The chairman of a Senate committee that oversees public education filed legislation Monday aimed at cutting back on testing time in Florida schools, opening a debate about how to limit the scope and importance of state assessments.

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StateImpact Florida
5:26 pm
Sun February 1, 2015

Why Paperwork Is Worth Millions To Florida College Students

Miami Beach Senior High college adviser Maria Sahwell helps Anahi Hurtado, left, and her mother fill out the FAFSA.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

It’s a midweek school night at Miami Beach Senior High School.

Students, their parents and siblings -- roughly 80 people in all -- are waiting in the school’s library to get on a computer and answer a lot of questions.

Miami Beach Senior High college adviser Maria Sahwell and experienced counselors will walk families through filling out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, or FAFSA.

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Testing
8:58 pm
Tue January 27, 2015

Opting Out Of State Tests Isn't An Option, Education Commissioner Tells Lawmakers

Education Commissioner Pam Stewart told lawmakers that nothing in state law allows students to refuse state-required exams.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Education Commissioner Pam Stewart says students cannot skip state-required tests, and teachers and schools can be punished for refusing to administer required exams.

Stewart’s letter is a response to questions from senators as they prepare for the upcoming legislative session. Senators wanted to know if students could opt out of state-required exams and how doing so might affect their progress in school.

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Education
9:31 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Study: Florida Schools Should End Corporal Punishment

A paddle used to spank students at a Florida school.
Credit Sarah Gonzalez / StateImpact Florida
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StateImpact Florida
1:31 am
Mon January 26, 2015

New Book Looks At The History And Future Of Testing In U.S. Schools

Anya Kamenetz is an education reporter for NPR and author of a new book on testing in U.S. schools.
Credit Anya Kamenetz

Lots of people think there’s too much testing going on in schools right now. It’s one of the most contentious issues in education.

Lawmakers want to scale back the amount of time Florida students spend taking tests.

But at the same time, Florida is rolling out a new test tied to new math and language arts standards -- known as Common Core.

NPR education reporter Anya Kamenetz researched the history and use of standardized exams for her book, “The Test.”

Read an edited version of our interview with Kamenetz below.

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Environment
12:46 am
Mon January 26, 2015

Keys College, Mote Marine Lab Form New Partnership

Jonathan Gueverra, left, president of Florida Keys Community College, and Michael Crosby, CEO of Mote Marine Laboratory, recently made the partnership of the two institutions official.
Credit Amber Ernst-Leonard / Florida Keys Community College

Florida Keys Community College, the state’s southernmost institution of higher education, has recently formed a new partnership with Mote Marine Laboratory. Mote is headquartered in Sarasota and has six facilities throughout the state, including one on Summerland Key.

Mote scientists will teach courses at the college, and FKCC students will apprentice at the marine lab, giving them real world experience.

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Food
6:18 pm
Tue January 20, 2015

Would Kids Eat More Veggies If They Had Recess Before Lunch?

A baked potato with toppings on a lunch tray at a school in Wisconsin. Students are less likely to eat fruits and vegetables if they're rushing to get to recess, researchers say.
Micheal Sears MCT/Landov

Schools are offering more and more healthy foods for lunch. And schools that participate in the National School Lunch program require students to choose a fruit and a vegetable side. Yet plate waste is a big problem in schools; as The Salt has reported, kids throw away anywhere from 24 to 35 percent of what's on their trays.

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