Education

What Level 3 schools need from the state

What Level 3 schools need from the state

The right approach could help struggling schools gain traction

THIS MONTH, families across Massachusetts got their children’s MCAS 2.0 scores in their mailboxes. According to Secretary of Education James Peyser this new, more difficult test was necessary because nearly one third of Massachusetts students need remedial classes once they enter college. In our state, all public schools are rated and assigned a level based(...)

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Oversight of Lawrence schools shifting to state-appointed board

Oversight of Lawrence schools shifting to state-appointed board

Riley leaving after six years, may seek state education commissioner’s post

EDUCATION OFFICIALS UNVEILED the next chapter in state oversight of the Lawrence schools on Wednesday with the announcement that the state receiver, Jeff Riley, will be stepping down at the end of the school year in June and new state-appointed board will oversee the district. The state took control of the city’s struggling school system(...)

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Boston teachers union attack fires blanks

Boston teachers union attack fires blanks

Tying DFER to Trump is lame substitute for actually addressing excess pool issue

LAST NOVEMBER, Democrats for Education Reform held our election night party at the same Boston hotel as the state Democratic Party and the anti-charter ballot campaign. I was one of the last to exit, and happened to leave at the same time as Jessica Tang, the incoming president of the Boston Teachers Union. With the(...)

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Boston teachers deserve to be respected, not disparaged

Boston teachers deserve to be respected, not disparaged

Democrats for Education Reform distorts facts on 'excess pool'

RECENTLY, BOSTON EDUCATORS ratified a new contract with the Boston Public School administration. Our schools are already reaping the rewards of that contract, which went into effect at the start of the school year. Boston Teachers Union members are proud of the significant improvements for Boston students and families that we’ve helped to usher in,(...)

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A disability shouldn’t be a handicap

A disability shouldn’t be a handicap

We need to ensure special needs students have a chance to succeed

“EXCUSE ME, DO you need that parking space? Because my 85-year-old mother does.” My sister, Maria, and I turned our heads to see a middle-aged woman scowling at us moments after we pulled into a handicapped parking space, at the front entrance of our local mall. Outraged, I said, “As a matter of fact, we(...)

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Scores drop on new, more rigorous MCAS

Scores drop on new, more rigorous MCAS

State officials say results highlight need to raise expectations

SCORES ON THE state’s revamped MCAS test took a big dip, but state officials say that’s because the test got harder, not because student performance got worse. About half of students statewide in 3rd through 8th grade were “meeting expectations” or “exceeding expectations,” the top two categories out of four used in the new English(...)

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The hard choice in fighting racism

The hard choice in fighting racism

Westfield State will confront head-on campus intolerance

WE HAD A CHOICE at Westfield State University. After two students of color were targeted with hateful messages on their dorm room door, we could have simply sought to support and comfort the affected students and issue a statement about the abhorrent nature of these actions, while calling on our campus community for greater civility.(...)

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First lesson this school year must be civility

First lesson this school year must be civility

As educators, we must teach respect for all

THIS IS A busy time in public education as schools open their doors to once again be filled with energy and life after the annual summer hiatus. This is the time to leverage that energy while school staff are still fresh and invigorated. As a result, administrators are sometimes reluctant to address big, difficult or(...)

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Colleges can’t be bystanders on opioids

Colleges can’t be bystanders on opioids

Campuses need to step up to avoid overdose tragedies 

THE OPIOID CRISIS, rooted in the overprescribing of painkillers, has seized the attention of public officials from Beacon Hill to Capitol Hill. So, too, has the inadequacy of mental health services on college campuses become well documented. But so far, neither policymakers nor college administrators have connected the dots between the painkiller epidemic and the(...)

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Flying without a PILOT

Flying without a PILOT

Don't call UMass Lowell's groundbreaking pact with the city a PILOT

Photo by Frank Curran Lowell and UMass Lowell signed a master agreement in August, committing the university to providing nearly $8 million in cash and in-kind contributions for the community over the next 20 years. The agreement includes new funds for repair and upkeep of the city-owned minor league baseball field and a commitment to(...)

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