Education

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As a new school year gets underway, more New Hampshire high schools are looking for ways to help students dealing with mental health issues.

Exeter High School is introducing new mental health services this year, in response to a rise in students dealing with issues such as depression and anxiety.

Jim Tremblay, principal of Exeter High School, joined NHPR’s Morning Edition to talk about the program.

When did you realize this was something the school needed to do?

Students are about to return to their classrooms after a long summer break. One thing their teachers are all wondering: how much did they forget over the vacation?

Joel Telling via Flickr CC / flic.kr/p/7ewB15

Katrina was one of the deadliest hurricanes in American history, but hardly one of the strongest to hit the Gulf Coast or the city of New Orleans. Today, a look at the geography of poverty and how societal factors turn natural disasters into disproportionate catastrophes. Plus, a primer on gifted kids. Many parents try to nurture their child to bring out the very best, but some may be looking over signs that their child is truly exceptional. And, new research on an old question: do babies make new parents unhappy?

The conversation around early childhood education in New Hampshire today is often focused on the availability of half-day versus full-day kindergarten programs.

Governor Maggie Hassan weighed in when she spoke to NHPR in May:

"Full-day kindergarten would be a very important next step in making sure our young people have the kind of education that really prepares them for the 21st century global economy."

However, kindergarten here was not guaranteed until a 2007 law mandating public programs state-wide – making New Hampshire the last state in the nation to fully adopt public kindergarten.

Jason Moon / NHPR

Six GOP presidential candidates visited Londonderry High School Wednesday for a forum on K-12 education. The Republicans largely agreed that federal bureaucracy is behind many of the problems in public education and that more school choice is the solution.

NHPR staff photos

Six Republican presidential hopefuls are taking part in an education summit at Londonderry High School on Wednesday.

The summit is being put on by American Federation for Children, a conservative school choice advocacy group.

Lauren Camera, a reporter for Education Week, joined NHPR’s Morning Edition to help sort out where the candidates stand on K-12 education policy.

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The Manchester Board of School Committee took a vote of 'no confidence' in Mayor Ted Gatsas at a meeting Monday night, according to the New Hampshire Union Leader.

The 10-2 vote comes after Gatsas vetoed a three-year contract with city teachers.

School board members also asked aldermen to reconsider their vote on the agreement, and urged Gatsas, who chairs the school board, to recuse himself from a reconsideration vote.

School is still out for the summer, but at Eastern Senior High School in Washington, D.C., students are hard at work — outdoors.

In a garden filled with flowers and beds bursting with vegetables and herbs, nearly a dozen teenagers are harvesting vegetables for the weekend's farmers market.

ep_jhu

The North Country Health Consortium’s offers a Youth Leadership Through Adventure program, serving kids in Coos and Grafton County. The program helps middle and high schools to create a healthy culture, develop leadership skills and avoid alcohol and other drugs. Tony Bolash is a student at Gorham High School, where students named the group “Inspire.”

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.

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