Education

Alexis Brophy is a college student, and already working in real estate. But she struggled to finish high school because of health issues, due to an auto-immune disease. Her disease “made it very hard to get through the traditional high school day. I have extreme fatigue, joint-swelling and pain. Everyday I wake up different.”

An Update on No Child Left Behind

Jul 24, 2015
butterflymosaics / Flickr CC

Fourteen years after the implementation of the education program, the federal government attempts to rework education standards from this controversial act. We'll look at how Common Core standards and NCLB overlap, or differ, and what changes this could bring to our school systems.

Hannah McCarthy/NHPR

Monday afternoon, high school students in a program with University of New Hampshire launched a weather balloon they designed and assembled themselves.

biologycorner / Flickr Creative Commons

Governor Hassan signed House Bill 323 into law Wednesday, giving schools the choice to give the SAT or ACT to high school juniors in order to meet federal testing requirements.

Previously, all students in the state were required to take the Smarter Balanced Assessment to meet the requirements of No Child Left Behind. 

The Hechinger Report

Here at State of Democracy, we love a good graphic. Maps, charts, tables -- any illustration that displays lots of data in a clear, informative manner earns a gold star from us. Here's one recent example that caught our eye: a map showing the graduation rate for nearly every school district in the United States in 2013.

dcJohn / Flickr / Creative Commons

Physically restraining or secluding children at school is generally considered a last resort for educators, to keep the classroom safe. But recent reporting has revealed that these techniques are used more frequently than you might expect, and kids with disabilities are disproportionately affected. We dive into the discussion on when it is and isn’t appropriate to restrain kids in school.

Higher Ed In Crisis? What You Need To Know

Jul 6, 2015
saintvincentcollege / Flickr/CC

We’re talking with author Goldie Blumenstyk about her new book on the so-called “crisis” in American Higher Education. Blumenstyk  says given rising costs, student debt, and doubts about the value of a degree, crisis is a fair description -- but she also sees some exciting examples of campus innovations that may get us out of our College conundrum.

The SEE Science Center offers scientific explorations for all ages. Barnstead teacher Annie Bourque makes an annual trip with her 6th grade class to take advantage of the chemistry lab there. 

Two proposed changes to the the state's education funding formula have been passed by the two chambers of the New Hampshire Legislature. Both seek to increase or lift altogether the state's cap on growth in per-pupil spending. And both would pay for such it by reducing so-called "stabilization grants," created in 2011 to keep certain school districts from losing huge amounts of funding after the last round of changes to the base aid formula.

Sam Evans-Brown / NHPR

With lawmakers now in the final phase of crafting the state budget for the next two years, schools around the state are watching the process uneasily. The Legislature is looking, once again, to tweak the formula it uses to send money to local districts. 

flickr/bsabarnowl

A New Hampshire-based web application that aims to simplify the school dismissal process is getting a lot of attention.

PickUp Patrol, a student and parent-run startup company, was recently named the winner of the Ultimate New Hampshire Connection Tech Startup Competition.

The company’s founders spent Tuesday at the Statehouse, where they met with the governor and talked with industry experts about ways to grow the business.

Seacoast Charter School

An Arts and Music Charter School on the Seacoast that had faced closure is now likely to stay open.

The Seacoast Charter School has been trying to raise money to stay open since it learned its current lease from Sanborn Regional School District in Kingston wouldn’t be renewed.  The school needed to raise $125,000 by the end of May to lease a new space in Stratham. 

Seacoast Charter School Principal Peter Durso says the school met that goal through the efforts of teachers, parents, and some deep pocketed youngsters.

change.org

A battle is brewing at Pembroke Academy, and it’s all over a name.

Hundreds of people, including many staff and students, have signed a petition opposing the local school board’s decision to switch the title of the school’s top job from headmaster to principal.

Leveling The Playing Field: Digital Games & Children

May 21, 2015
amanda tipton via flickr Creative Commons / flic.kr/p/c8fYHA

In 1983 Ronald Reagan gave a speech at Disney’s Epcot Center in Orlando, Florida extolling his new found understanding of the virtues of video games: “I recently learned something quite interesting about video games.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

As part of our series, "The First Decade," Gov. Maggie Hassan sat down with NHPR's Morning Edition host Rick Ganley to talk about what role she sees state government playing in helping to close the opportunity gap.

Davide Zanchettin via flickr Creatiev Commons / flic.kr/p/h261VQ

We’ve heard the claim before – low-income urban kids aren’t getting to spend enough time in the woods.  But what if outdoor education isn’t just about where you live – but how you’re being raised?

On today’s show, our station wide series The First Decade continues, with a look at environmental education. Plus, a bee researcher explains two new studies that offer increasing evidence that a common form of pesticide is harmful to wild bees. And, Dr. Kanye West?  We discuss the function and failures of honorary degrees.  

The First Decade: Early Education in N.H.

May 20, 2015
Jason Moon / NHPR

We continue our series The First Decade with early education.  Research shows that a child’s foundation for success in school is established at a very young age, through high-quality care at home or at pre-school - and in New Hampshire, moving from half to full-day kindergarten.  Yet, some also caution that how we teach our youngest kids is just as important as where.

Sara Plourde | Data: NH Dept. of Education, NH School Administrators Association

The number of New Hampshire public school districts offering full day kindergarten has been on the rise since 1999, when there were fewer than a dozen.
 

Opera North brings classical music theatre to school groups and local theaters. Its summer festival has a wide following, and its outreach program brings free live opera to school groups. Lindsey Anderson sang the role of the Julia Child in Bon Appetit! which the company brought to Upper Valley schools. 

Flikr Creative Commons/ evmaiden

 

New Hampshire's Senate is set to take up a bill giving parents at least two weeks' notice if a teacher plans to use material related to human sexuality or sexual education that some could consider objectionable.

The bill follows a controversy last year when a man complained that his daughter, a student at Gilford High School, had read a novel about bullying that contained a sexually explicit passage. William Baer said the book "Nineteen Minutes" by New Hampshire author Jodi Picoult read like "the transcript for a triple-X-rated movie."

BES Photos / Flickr/cc

Audio for the full program:

In New Hampshire, Pittsfield schools have recently adopted an approach that flips the traditional model of teaching through student-led discussion and independent projects. We’re looking into how this working for Pittsfield.

Sex Ed By The Dashboard Light

Apr 12, 2015
Ben Miller via flickr Creative Commons

The talk” is a rite of passage for many young Americans. It often happens either too soon, too late and usually leads to hilarious tales of awkwardness between parent and child. But when it comes to the real nitty-gritty of sex education - that’s when the classroom takes over, for better or worse. For Word of Mouth senior producer Maureen McMurray, it was probably for worse.

Listen to what just might be the most awkward talk about the birds and the bees ever told.


Megan Lynnette via flickr Creative Commons / flic.kr/p/8UsssG

Today’s classrooms may come outfitted with iPads and gadgets, but the textbook industry has weathered the digital storm surprisingly well. On today’s show we’ll look at an unexpected threat to the textbook industry:  the rollout of the Common Core standards.

Then, between jam packed schedules and lengthy to-do lists, it’s little wonder that so many people claim they hate surprises. But what can we gain from embracing the unexpected?  A self-described 'surprisologist' makes the case for being caught off guard.

Listen to the full show or click read more for individual segments.

 

Three New Hampshire schools are taking part in a regional partnership to develop personalized learning experiences.

The Great Bay Charter School, the Pittsfield Middle and High School and the Manchester School of Technology are among 20 New England schools taking part in the initiative coordinated by the Great Schools Partnership and New England Secondary Schools Consortium.

timlewisnm / Flickr/cc

Last week four New Hampshire districts received federal approval to reduce the number of required standardized tests. This pilot program, the first-of-its-kind in the country, will replace most ‘Smarter Balanced’ tests with assessments written by local teachers. In doing so, the hope is to make testing more representative of what students know, and less of a disruption to day-to-day learning.

Guests:

Jesús Perera Aracil via flickr Creative Commons / flic.kr/p/49YiYx

Across the world more than 750 million people lack access to safe drinking water, and at least two billion don’t have proper sanitation. On today’s show, we’ll look at a project aiming to solve both problems by turning waste into drinkable water. And why disgust may prevent it from becoming a reality.

Then, we investigate a problem facing many American workers: food theft. We’ll find out why some people feel it’s ok to steal treats from the office fridge. 

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

Allegra Boverman for NHPR

New Hampshire's Republican-led House is considering bills to gut parts of the Common Core education standards.

The House will debate several measures Wednesday aimed at the standards and tests associated with them. Most have a positive endorsement from the House Education Committee, signaling a strong chance of passage.

One bill says schools don't have to adopt the standards. Opponents of the bill say it's redundant because the state board of education does not force schools to use the standards. Passing the bill will make clear the House's skepticism of the standards.

Mary Jill LaRocca is an elementary school health teacher in Manchester. She helps students navigate the barrage of unhealthy messages that kids are exposed to. She turns to Media Power Youth’s Media Smart curriculum to help her students think critically about messages that promote violence, alcohol use, junk food and more, so they can be wise media consumers. 

Brother magneto via Flickr CC

Senators have passed a bill requiring public schools to continue teaching cursive and multiplication tables. The bill is aimed at making sure schools maintain those skills as schools adopt new standards and incorporate more technology in the classroom.

The Senate passed the bill on a voice vote Thursday and it will now be sent to the Senate Finance Committee.

Peter Dutton via flickr Creative Commons / flic.kr/p/pEWwCa

To protect children from predators, some schools have rules against physical contact so strict that students can be sent to the principal’s office for holding hands or high-fiving. On today’s show – are schools being too touchy about physical contact?

And a reporter profiles the inaugural class of Thiel fellows – twenty teenagers who were given one-hundred thousand dollars to drop out of higher education and pursue success as young entrepreneurs.

Plus a columnist and comedian argues college kids today can’t take a joke. 

Listen to the full show and click Read more for individual segments.

Pages