Education

StateImpact Florida puts education policy to the test.
StateImpact Florida puts education policy to the test.
Credit StateImpact Florida

WLRN is proud to partner with WUSF in Tampa, WJCT in Jacksonville and NPR to bring you StateImpact Florida, a project that provides deep, multimedia coverage how education issues affect people’s lives here in the Sunshine State.

Recent topics on StateImpact Florida include:

For daily coverage of education in the Sunshine State, visit StateImpact Florida.

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StateImpact Florida
6:01 pm
Fri December 12, 2014

Why Miami-Dade High School Students Are Teaching Their Classmates About Health

HIP founder Risa Berrin says the program always provides food during after school training sessions because some students don't get regular meals at home.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Abuse. Drugs. Mental health issues.

It’s tough enough for anyone to talk about those problems. It can be even harder for teens facing them for the first time.

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StateImpact Florida
11:56 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Why First-Generation Students Find It Tougher To Earn A College Degree

Cecilia, one of the students featured in "First Generation," will be in Miami for a screening Tuesday. This is a still from the documentary.
Credit Courtesy of "First Generation."

Students who are the first in their family to attend college often have a more difficult time finishing their degree.

Research shows those students know less about how to get into and pay for college. They're also less likely to take tough high school courses needed to prepare for college.

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StateImpact Florida
12:08 am
Mon November 24, 2014

Meet Florida's New Statewide Test

Credit freedigitalphotos.net

This spring, Florida students will take a brand new test tied to the state’s new math, reading and writing standards.

This is the test that replaces the FCAT. It's known as the Florida Standards Assessment, and it’ll be online.

What’s on the test won’t be the only thing different about the exam. Students will also find new types of questions.

We gathered your questions about the new exam from our Public Insight Network. Here’s what you you wanted to know -- and what it’ll mean for students and schools.

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StateImpact Florida
11:17 pm
Sun November 16, 2014

Florida Teachers Consider 'Civil Disobedience' To Say No To Testing

Miramar High School teacher David Ross says testing has taken more and more time away from teaching. He refused to administer an FCAT make-up exam in protest.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

In September, Alachua County kindergarten teacher Susan Bowles refused to give a state reading test.

She told the parents of her students it was an act of civil disobedience.  The Florida Department of Education later suspended the exam for this year.

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StateImpact Florida
12:19 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

"Ballin' On A Budget": How A Miami Teacher Keeps His Library Stocked

Some of the books in Daniel Dickey's classroom library.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Miami Northwestern High School teacher Daniel Dickey says there's no silver bullet or secret book which will spark a student's interest in reading.

Instead, he says he asks questions and listens.

"I sit down with that student and really figure out what is it that drives you?" Dickey says. "Why do you come to school? Why are you here every day?"

He asks them about their plans, their dreams.

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StateImpact Florida
9:19 pm
Sun November 9, 2014

To Make High Schoolers Want To Read, Miami Teacher Makes It A Competition

Miami Northwestern Senior High writing teacher Daniel Dickey says you have to be a good reader to be a good writer. He's challenged his student to read one million words this year.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Miami Northwestern High School English teacher Daniel Dickey has found a way to make his tenth graders brag about their reading skills.

Mischael Saint-Sume and Ciji Wright tease each other about who's going to read one million words first -- a contest Dickey created.

“Did you put him in his place?" Dickey asked Wright. "Because Mischael, he’s popping in my classroom every day with a new book."

“Oh don’t worry about it because I’ve got plenty of books for him,” Wright replied.

“But it ends today, by the way," Saint-Sume said. “I’m going to hit a million.”

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Education Essay
7:01 am
Mon August 25, 2014

Essay: What A Teacher Score Doesn't Tell Us

Teachers get a number score with the state's value-added model.
Credit vd1966 / flickr

I finally know my worth as a teacher—and now that the “value-added model” scores mandated by our state legislature are public, everyone else knows, too.  

I’m a 37.5.

But, I have no idea what that number means. 

Along with my 37.5, I was told I’m “highly effective” and given a $230 bonus. In case you’re wondering, that’s about half what the average teacher spends of his or her own money on school supplies per year.  

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StateImpact Florida
5:15 pm
Fri August 1, 2014

How Miami Coding Camps Are Teaching Students Old-School Logic

CodeNow's Kareem Grant works with students during a June coding camp in Miami. Grant likes that coding requires disciplined thinking.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Ryan Seashore starts off every CodeNow workshop with a simple request: Write out step-by-step instructions for making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

Then a CodeNow teacher pretends to be a robot, and follows the students’ orders exactly as they’re written.

Students quickly find that asking a computer to perform an everyday task isn’t so easy.

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StateImpact Florida
9:00 am
Thu July 31, 2014

Trouble With Algebra Problems? A Solution In Miami Classrooms

Teacher Sara Weinberg talks Miami Northwestern High School students through an Algebra Project assignment.
Credit John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Math is a language. And like any language, teachers need to help students translate the language into terms they understand.

“This idea is to learn a language you have to talk it... you have to engage in it,” says Algebra Project founder Bob Moses.

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StateImpact Florida
5:53 pm
Mon July 28, 2014

Algebra Project Teaches Miami Kids To Write Better Math Problems

Algebra Project founder Bob Moses.
Credit miller_center / Flickr

Fifty years ago Bob Moses organized volunteers to register voters in Mississippi during the Freedom Summer.

And for decades, Moses has been fighting for civil rights as an educator.

He won a MacArthur Genius Grant to develop a new way to teach algebra in largely low-income and minority schools.

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StateImpact Florida
10:35 pm
Sun July 20, 2014

What We Learned From A Year Watching Schools Prepare For Florida's New Standards

Darlene Paul, principal of West Defuniak Elementary, speaks to a student during a visit to a third-grade classroom. Paul says she has been impressed with the academic success of young students who have been taught only using the new Florida Standards.
Credit Jackie Mader / The Hechinger Report

For the past year the Hechinger Report and StateImpact Florida have taken you into two schools to hear what preparations for Florida’s new Common Core-based standards sound like. The standards outline what students should know in math and language arts. When classes start this fall every grade in every Florida public school will use them. But are schools ready?

Now, we share with you what we've learned along with the Hechinger Report's Jackie Mader.

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StateImpact Florida
6:21 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Students React To The Closure Of A Giant For-Profit College

An Everest Institute campus in Boston. Parent company Corinthian Colleges is closing Massachusetts campuses, but selling Florida campuses.
Credit Kirk Carapezza / WGBH

After a long reign as the fastest-growing and most problematic sector in higher education, for-profit colleges are on the ropes.

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StateImpact Florida
9:11 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Florida Students Talk About The State's Race-Based Education Standards

We spoke with a panel of students about Florida's race-based education goals.

Originally published on Mon July 14, 2014 7:15 am

Students and civil rights activists are still asking Florida to hold black and Hispanic students to a higher standard.

It’s been a little more than a year since the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County filed a federal civil rights complaint against the state’s race-based academic goals.

There have since been a number of protests by activists who oppose lower expectations for minorities.

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StateImpact Florida
9:11 am
Mon July 14, 2014

More Schools Earn Failing Grades As Florida Prepares For Common Core Switch

The Florida Department of Education has released 2014 school grades for Florida elementary and middle schools.

Originally published on Fri July 11, 2014 2:04 pm

The Florida Department of Education has released 2014 school grades for Florida elementary and middle schools.

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StateImpact Florida
5:47 pm
Thu July 10, 2014

Former Florida Education Commissioner Settles Indiana Ethics Charges

Former Florida Education Commissioner Tony Bennett has settled Indiana ethics charges that he used state computers for campaign reasons.
Credit Tony Bennett / StateImpact Indiana

Former Florida Education Commissioner Tony Bennett will pay a $5,000 fine as part of a proposed deal with Indiana ethics investigators, according to a copy of the agreement obtained by the Associated Press.

Bennett admits using state resources for his 2012 reelection campaign. But Bennett was also cleared of any ethics violations related to changes he sought to Indiana’s school grading formula in 2012.

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