Education

Over the past few years, schools across the country have been opening up food pantries for students who may be struggling with food insecurity.

Here in New Hampshire, teachers at Rundlett Middle School in Concord have opened up their own. Biz Logan is one of the teachers responsible for the creation that is known as the “Blue Duke Care Closet,” named for the school’s mascot. He spoke to NHPR’s Peter Biello.

What made you decide to start this at Rundlett?

NHPR Staff

Students applying to community colleges in New Hampshire will no longer have to pay an application fee.

The Community College System of N.H. says it is eliminating the $20 fee in an effort to remove barriers for students interested in attending college.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

The Senate has rejected a bill that would have rolled back the requirements needed to be a school nurse.

The bill would have repealed requirements added a few years ago that school nurses have specific skills in public health and at least three years’ experience in pediatric medicine.

Some school districts have argued the added requirements have made it hard to fill school nurse positions.

National student test scores released today show New Hampshire 4th graders declining in reading and math scores since 2015.

The new scores in reading and math for 4th and 8th graders come from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, also known as the Nation’s Report Card.

The report shows scores for the state’s 8th graders in reading and math were unchanged.

New Hampshire students in both grades scored above the national average.

Over the long term New Hampshire's scores are up, particularly in math.

James Sarmiento / Flickr

New Hampshire is seeking more flexibility in how it assesses student performance.

The state has applied to participate in the U.S. Department of Education's Innovative Assessment Demonstration Authority, which would allow different assessment approaches to be used in some school districts rather than having all students complete statewide standardized tests.

New Hampshire already has taken steps toward changing its assessment approach.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

State Senators heard testimony Wednesday on a bill that would expand the state’s only existing school choice program.

Under the existing system, businesses in New Hampshire can get a tax break when they make donations to scholarships which can be used on a number of educational purposes, including private school tuition, college courses, and homeschool expenses.

A new national study finds high school graduation requirements in New Hampshire don’t align with criteria for college admissions.

The research from the Center for American Progress finds that in many states, including New Hampshire, there’s a gap between what is required to graduate from high school and what is required to start at the local public university.

Johannes Thiel via Flickr cc

More than 50 teachers and support staff at the Timberlane School District are in danger of losing their jobs due to funding.

 

The problem, school administrators say, is that because a higher proposed budget failed with voters, an almost $72 million default budget will go into effect. And that default budget doesn’t allow staffing numbers to stay where they are.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

New Hampshire lawmakers in the House held a hearing today for a bill that would restrict access to adult education programs in the state. Senate Bill 525 narrowly cleared the Senate.

 

A crowd of dozens showed up in opposition to the bill and a larger hearing room was needed to accommodate them.

 

Robert Garrova for NHPR

Students across the country are marking one month since the Parkland, Florida, school shooting left 17 dead. Today, more than a thousand Concord High students stood outside at 10 a.m., the morning after a snowstorm hit the northeast. It was still snowing lightly as students held 17 minutes of silence to commemorate the 17 killed in Parkland and read the names of those lost.

 

Senior Jonathan Weinberg was one of the organizers. He says they purposely chose to hold 17 minutes of silence instead of a focusing on a walkout.

 

Jason Moon for NHPR

On Town Meeting day tomorrow, several communities across New Hampshire will vote on whether to offer full-day kindergarten in their local school districts.

It will be the first time towns vote on the issue since lawmakers in Concord approved a program that provides state money for full-day kindergarten.


Flikr Creative Commons/ evmaiden

For over a year now, education policy watchers in Concord have focused their attention on a controversial bill that would create Education Savings Accounts.

But meanwhile, another bill popular with the school choice proponents has been making its way through the legislature, largely unnoticed.

Reuters

The National Education Association New Hampshire has formed a coalition to look at school gun violence.

 

The union of educators, which has 17,000 members, says the coalition will be made up of educators, first responders, and mental health experts. The plan is to also have input on possible changes to legislation.

 

How School Shootings Are Changing Education

Feb 23, 2018

We look at how school shootings is impacting students, teachers, and school communities, after the shooting in Parkland, FL.

If you're looking for a slice in New Hampshire, you can find a House of Pizza in just about every town in the state. These pies are pan baked, with a hard crust that works like a retaining wall for an even layer of sauce and cheese. This is Greek pizza. And if New Hampshire's got a signature 'za, this is it.

But why are all of these Greek pizza joints called "House of Pizza"? And how did Greek pizza come to corner the market in the Granite State?

Robert Garrova for NHPR

The New Hampshire Senate Education Committee heard testimony on a bill today that would make certain adult education programs available only to legal residents of the state.

 

Republican Senator Andy Sanborn is the primary sponsor of the measure, which he said will direct funds toward students who can legally work in the state.

 

NHPR Staff

Voters approved an additional $307,153 to the proposed budget for Claremont schools Thursday night.

The amendment will offset a large part of cuts made to the proposed budget in January. Now the operating budget for the schools will be cut by only $22,000 compared to almost $340,000.

The budget will now go to the annual school district vote in March.

Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with Stevens High School Principal Pat Barry who attended the deliberative session.

NHPR File Photo

  The principal at a New Hampshire prep school who helped respond to allegations of sexual abuse against former staff and students is leaving at the end of the year.

In a letter sent to the school community on Friday, Phillips Exeter Academy Principal Lisa MacFarlane says she will be returning to the University of New Hampshire where she worked for 28 years before taking over at Exeter in 2015.

MacFarlane was hired in the midst of accusations of past sexual misconduct and the mishandling of those cases at the school.

Britta Greene / New Hampshire Public Radio

As part of our series “The Balance," we’re asking for your input on the costs and benefits of living in New Hampshire. One issue we’re hearing a lot about is property taxes, which provide the bulk of money for public schools. The city of Claremont has the highest property tax rate in the state. This year, some residents there are saying ‘enough is enough," and the school board is taking a hard look at its budget. It’s also raised a conversation about the role schools should play in students' lives.

New Hampshire’s plan to comply with the Every Student Succeeds Act has been approved by the federal government.

The Every Student Succeeds Act is the federal law that replaced No Child Left Behind in 2015.

ESSA gives states more flexibility to define their own goals and add their own metrics beyond standardized testing.

New Hampshire’s plan, developed by the state Department of Education under Commissioner Frank Edelblut, looks to take advantage of that flexibility.

Jason Moon for NHPR

It's been nearly five months since a racist bullying incident shocked the Oyster River School District community.

Parents and school administrators met Wednesday to talk about what's been done in response, and priorities going forward.

It was this past September when a 7-year old black student was bullied with racist language while riding the school bus home. The incident shocked many, including Oyster River Superintendent Jim Morse.

Courtesy of St. Paul's School's Website

Long before the #MeToo movement took down politicians, movie moguls and powerful media personalities, St. Paul’s School in Concord was grappling with its own history of sexual misconduct.

Casey McDermott / NHPR

Bhagirath Khatiwada is the new Cultural and Linguistic Competence Coordinator for the New Hampshire Department of Education. That means he's in charge of helping school leadership and teachers engage all students in the classroom, including children of immigrant parents.

Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with Khatiwada, who himself immigrated to New Hampshire in 2008 from Bhutan.

Lebanon became the second New Hampshire city Wednesday to categorically say no to Keno, without putting the issue in front of voters.

State lawmakers allowed cities and towns to authorize the gambling game last year as a way to raise money for all-day kindergarten statewide. Districts are eligible for the kindergarten funding, though, whether or not they approve the game.

Photo Credit woodleywonderworks via Flickr Creative Commons

A new bill would increase the level of oversight over homeschool students in the state.

Each year, homeschool students in New Hampshire are required to demonstrate their educational progress. They can do that in a lot of different ways, including with a standardized test or an evaluation by a teacher.

www.visitnhcolleges.com

Keene State College Interim President Melinda Treadwell will host a live video conference for admitted students and their parents next week.  This comes as Keene State looks to improve its enrollment numbers while navigating significant budget cuts.

Treadwell says the live chat she's planned will be a first for prospective families. “I'd rather be very direct with parents about where we are and the bright future than to wait for folks to fill in the blanks,” she said, pointing to recent news headlines.

401(K) 2012 / Flickr Creative Commons

A school district says its business administrator has resigned over an accounting error that kept millions of dollars from going toward property tax relief.

Goffstown and New Boston school officials in a press release said that an auditor found that since 2011 more than $10 million that could have been used to reduce property taxes was overlooked.

A group of education and economic development officials are discussing how to meet New Hampshire's workforce demands.

The group met in Bedford on Wednesday at a forum on the future of the state’s workforce. Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley spoke with Taylor Caswell, the commissioner of the Department of Business and Economic Affairs who attended the forum.

(Editor's note: this transcript has been edited lightly for clarity.)

NHPR Staff

Claremont Schools Superintendent Middleton McGoodwin presented what he described as a compromise budget to the city’s school board Wednesday.

His plan would cut the district’s budget for the coming fiscal year, but less drastically than the board has requested.

The school board is looking to budget cuts as a mechanism to keep Claremont’s property taxes in check. The city has the highest tax rate in the state, while about one in seven Claremont residents live in poverty.

Residents packed the school board’s meeting Wednesday, speaking on both sides of the issue.

Reaching Higher NH

A new analysis of a controversial school voucher bill says it could cost the state millions of dollars over the next several years.

The bill in question would allow parents to take the state money that normally follows a child to public school, and spend it on other forms of education -- including private schools or home schooling.

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