Education

Rural schools caught in`death spiral’

Rural schools caught in`death spiral’

Enrollment changes can have big impact in sparsely populated districts

ON A SUNNY October day, students play at recess outside Hawlemont Elementary School tucked into the wooded hills of Charlemont, which are electric with fall color. As they head back to class, Wayne Kermenski, the principal, calls them over to visit the animals behind the school’s newly constructed post-and-beam barn. They jump at the opportunity.(...)

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Contributing to debate

Contributing to debate

Public school debate teams give students more than just a good argument

Microphilanthropy is an occasional feature that calls attention to small acts of generosity that people do for the benefit of others and highlights little-known needs that could benefit from generosity, even on a small scale. IF YOU WENT to a high school with reasonable resources, there was almost certainly a debate team. It’s possible the(...)

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Lessons from Singapore 

Known for its high-achieving schools, the nation offers Massachusetts a vision for 21st century teaching and learning

ON DECEMBER 6, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released the results of the 2015 Program for International Student Assessment (PISA), an assessment administered in 72 nations every three years that measures 15-year-old students’ skills in reading, mathematics, and science literacy. Massachusetts students did very well and placed toward the top of the(...)

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Charter question defeat presents new challenge

Charter question defeat presents new challenge

Are Question 2 foes ready to embrace needed district schools reforms?

IT’S A NEW YEAR and the people of Massachusetts have spoken. On Question 2, a ballot initiative which would have given urban students more charter public school options, the electorate said no.  Emphatically. But now that the teachers unions won the debate, they need to show the public that they can adopt the policies and practices that(...)

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Suffolk U. is stronger than you think

Suffolk U. is stronger than you think

Boston location gives students access to opportunity

FROM A DISTANCE, Suffolk University appears to be an institution in disarray. Six presidents in as many years. Enrollment is down, especially at the law school. It is reeling from a public spat between the board of trustees and its former president, who was removed in July after a contentious war of words. A hangdog(...)

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State must signal arts education matters

State must signal arts education matters

Should be an indicator in school accountability system

ARTS EDUCATION PROVIDES vital learning benefits, helping students develop 21st Century skills such as problem solving, critical and creative thinking, collaboration, and teamwork. Research has also shown us for years that an education program that prominently features arts can lead to improved attendance, persistence, focused attention, and intellectual risk taking—all of which correlates strongly with(...)

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Time for school accountability reset

Time for school accountability reset

With so much change in state tests, a fresh start is needed in 2017

NOW THAT THE question of raising the charter school cap in Massachusetts has been resolved, at least for now, I am hopeful that we can begin to examine and discuss other necessary changes to our educational system here in the Commonwealth. I say this with a certain amount of trepidation, as it seems that every time those discussions arise the(...)

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Teachers union president decries Trump and testing

Teachers union president decries Trump and testing

MTA head urges teachers to stand up to hate -- and state assessments

BARBARA MADELONI, the president of the Massachusetts Teachers Association, had a message last week for her union’s members in the wake of the presidential election: “let all of our students and their families — but especially those who were targeted by the president-elect in his campaign — know that we will provide safe spaces, defend(...)

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Students push for ‘sanctuary campuses’

Students push for ‘sanctuary campuses’

UMass officials sympathetic to demands

UMASS AMHERST OFFICIALS, under pressure from students, said on Friday they were committed to making the campus a safe haven for undocumented students, faculty, and staff. But they stopped short of meeting the students’ demand that the school be declared a sanctuary campus. The notion of a sanctuary campus popped up over the last week in(...)

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