Education

Ways to Connect

Copyright 2019 KPCC. To see more, visit KPCC.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

As parents across Los Angeles dropped their kids off at school Monday morning, they were greeted by picket lines of teachers, many dressed in red ponchos and holding red umbrellas.

For the first time in nearly 30 years, educators in LA are on strike.

"Teachers want what students need," a crowd outside Theodore Roosevelt Senior High School in Boyle Heights chanted in the pouring rain.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

(SOUNDBITE OF PROTEST)

UNIDENTIFIED PROTESTERS: (Chanting) UTLA, UTLA.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

DAVID GREENE, HOST:

So there is new reporting suggesting that the FBI was concerned about President Trump's possible ties to Russia going back to early 2016.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

At 10 o'clock in the morning, Austin Lanham should be working at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center routing satellite communication.

But with the partial federal government shutdown, he's not working, deadlines are slipping, he's not getting paid and the preschool his two sons go to is shut down because it's on NASA's property. "Now I'm just a full-time stay at home dad," he says.

Updated Monday at 10:16 a.m.ET.

Los Angeles public school teachers went on strike Monday morning, a result of failed negotiations between the teachers union and the school district.

The strike has looked inevitable since Friday, when United Teachers Los Angeles rejected another offer from district leaders.

"We are more convinced than ever that the district won't move without a strike," declared union President Alex Caputo-Pearl at a Sunday press conference.

Teachers in Los Angeles are set to strike tomorrow after the teachers' union and the district failed to negotiate a new contract. The strike would impact about half a million students in the nation's second-largest school district. It would be the city's first teachers' strike in nearly 30 years.

The field of economics has a problem. At a time when more women than men are graduating from college and earning doctorates, just a third of Ph.D.s in economics go to women. That statistic has hardly budged in decades.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SARAH MCCAMMON, HOST:

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Updated Saturday at 1:14 p.m. ET.

You're reading NPR's weekly roundup of education news.

'On Monday we will be ready to strike'

Los Angeles is bracing for a teacher strike, which could affect roughly 480,000 public school students.

On one side is the LA Unified School District; on the other, United Teachers Los Angeles, a union of more than 30,000 members who have been working without a contract for over a year.

Updated Saturday at 1:08 p.m. ET.

On Friday, Los Angeles teacher Rosa Jimenez started her U.S. History class with a question for her students:

"What does a labor union do?"

The juniors inside the library at Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools flip through their notes. From the back of the room, a student named Ingrid shoots up her hand:

"A labor union is an organization of workers that's formed for the purpose of benefiting the workers," she explains. They deal with "wages and benefits and working conditions."

Public education has a persistent and well-documented issue: the achievement gap between white students and students of color.

Researchers have studied disparities in areas such as test scores and discipline rates to identify ways to close the gap. But what if matching the race of a student and their teacher could contribute to a solution?

Bernice Sandler, the "godmother of Title IX" who died Saturday at the age of 90, is being remembered this week for her lifelong fight to reverse decades of institutional bias in U.S. schools and open new paths for women and girls.

It all started in an elementary school in Brooklyn, N.Y., when Sandler was a determined little girl nicknamed Bunny. She was offended by the way the boys got to do all the classroom activities.

"For example, running a slide projector," says Marty Langelan, who was Sandler's friend and colleague for nearly 50 years.

College students across the country struggle with food insecurity.

Tuition and books, plus many hours away from a job, can be a huge financial burden on students — and for many, skipping meals can be a last-minute solution to a bad financial situation.

A new government report finds that millions of college students are very likely struggling. And the report — which is from the Government Accountability Office — concludes that the federal systems in place could do a better job of helping them.

Youths sporting peach fuzz sway as they chant parts of the Quran. They sit in the courtyard of a sprawling Islamic seminary, or madrassa, on the outskirts of the village of Meer Muhammad, in Pakistan's rural heartland in Punjab.

By graduation, these students should have memorized Islam's holiest book and finer points of Islamic law. They will have mastered little else.

"Alexa, what's 5 minus 3?"

A 6-year-old boy recently asked that question in a video, which went viral on Twitter with more than 8.5 million views. He leaned over his homework as his mother hovered in the doorway. Alexa, Amazon's voice-activated assistant, delivered a quick answer: 2.

"Booooy," the mother chastised her son.

After the 2016 presidential election, teachers across the country reported they were seeing increased name-calling and bullying in their classrooms. Now, research shows that those stories — at least in one state — are confirmed by student surveys.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Why Los Angeles Teachers Are Striking

Jan 8, 2019

Updated Monday, Jan. 14, at 10:31 a.m. ET.

Teachers in Los Angeles, the nation's second largest school district, began a strike on Monday. It's the first time the city has seen a teacher strike in nearly 30 years, and roughly 480,000 public school students will be affected.

Copyright 2019 WABE 90.1. To see more, visit WABE 90.1.

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

A blistering report released on Wednesday by an investigative panel looking into the Valentine's Day massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida last year, exposes a litany of school security breaches and chaotic protocol leading to the deaths of 17 students and faculty, and it recommends arming teachers to prevent or slow future on-campus attacks.

A for-profit higher education company will no longer collect nearly a half-billion dollars in student debt, now that the firm has reached settlements with 48 states and the District of Columbia.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

NOEL KING, HOST:

Jack Silva didn't know anything about how children learn to read. What he did know is that a lot of students in his district were struggling.

Silva is the chief academic officer for Bethlehem, Pa., public schools. In 2015, only 56 percent of third-graders were scoring proficient on the state reading test. That year, he set out to do something about that.

"It was really looking yourself in the mirror and saying, 'Which 4 in 10 students don't deserve to learn to read?' " he recalls.

Whether you're a Gryffindor, a Hufflepuff, a Ravenclaw, a Slytherin or a muggle still hoping your Hogwarts letter will arrive by owl, it is undeniable that the Harry Potter fandom has had a lasting impact throughout the world.

Copyright 2019 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

NOEL KING, HOST:

This story is part of our ongoing "Missed Connections" series, and it begins at Southridge High School in Beaverton, Ore.

Greg McKelvey says the day he crossed paths with police officer Andrew Halbert eight years ago left him deeply affected. This month, McKelvey reflected on the incident in a Twitter thread that went viral.

Pages