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Education Featured Articles

Accountability for NC virtual charter operators back in the spotlight after California forces K12 Inc. to pay $168.5 million settlement

Bill Cobey, chairman of North Carolina’s State Board of Education, has heard all about K12 Inc.’s California settlement, a purported $168.5 million pact with the state’s attorney general amid long-running allegations that the for-profit virtual charter school operator inflated student test scores and attendance to drain more cash from public coffers.

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Education Featured Articles

Making the grade

Which education bills passed, which got held back in the short session

Asked to sum up the 2016 short session of the N.C. General Assembly, Mark Jewell, president of the N.C. Association of Educators, takes very little time.

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Education Featured Articles

Stalled: NC school districts avoid immediate changes to policies for transgender students

Seeking to avoid political spotlight , many address transgender students on a “case by case” basis

When leaders in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) issued new rules on transgender students last week, advocates say the system installed the broadest set of school protections yet for North Carolina students, including guarantees that children would be able to use the names, restrooms and locker rooms matching their gender identity.

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Education Featured Articles

Could proposed teacher background check bill silence protesting educators?

Supporters say bill is about student safety; others worry activists arrested during protests could lose licensure

For the better part of 24 hours, Anca Stefan’s phone has been humming. Messages, calls, social media notifications are pouring in from her now viral, diaristic account of her arrest, along with 13 other protesters, last week for demonstrating against state education policies near the state capitol in Raleigh.

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Education Featured Articles

Federal complaint says new N.C. policy harms poor children with special needs

To JoAnna Barnes, it’s the biggest education story you’ve never heard of in North Carolina. Barnes, a Triangle attorney and president of the Learning Disabilities Association (LDA) of N.C., says the state’s education leaders have, for about a ...
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Education

As legislative leaders tout teacher raises, educators highlight major shortcomings in the House and Senate budgets

Partway through last week’s unveiling of the state Senate budget, Sen. Phil Berger was asked by reporters if there were any major cuts to speak of in the $22.2 billion spending plan. Berger, a Republican from Rockingham County ...
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Education Featured Articles

Tempers flare as controversial Achievement School District bill clears House

Unproven model allows for charter takeover of state's lowest-performing schools

Rep. Cecil Brockman is admitting he could have been more eloquent.

The first-term High Point Democrat, co-sponsor of House Bill 1080, perhaps the most controversial K-12 education bill in the legislature thus far this year, was bristling when he rebuffed a fellow Democrat’s calls for teacher appreciation moments ago.

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Education Featured Articles

State lawmakers poised to loosen rules for virtual charter schools

In the space of one day last week, North Carolina’s virtual charter schools saw their controversial plans for overhauling attendance requirements axed, and then, mostly, restored. Such is the often rapid-fire speed of amendments lobbed in state House and Senate committees as North Carolina lawmakers wrangle over their budget plan this month. But as House leaders approved their spending plan last week and Senate budget chiefs prepared to unveil their proposals this week, one thing is clear, according to the state’s public school advocates: The virtual charters, besieged by high dropout rates and nationwide concerns about poor academic performance, are bound for relaxed regulations in North Carolina anyway.

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Education Featured Articles

ECU chancellor-elect brings complicated, political past to new role

Critics question whether ideology trumps academics in Staton's hiring

Late last month, when Cecil Staton—Republican politician, religious scholar, businessman and right-wing book publisher—was named the future chancellor of East Carolina University, the news came and went with little reaction from most North Carolinians.

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Education Featured Articles

Is it time to scrap the state’s salary schedule for teachers?

Key budget writer ponders better approach to compensate and retain educators

N.C. Rep. Craig Horn, an influential budget writer from Union County who chairs the House education appropriations committee, isn't sure he likes the current salary scale for teachers, the one adopted by lawmakers two years ago that nixes annual raises for teachers in favor of a multi-tiered approach with bigger pay bumps every five years.

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Education Featured Articles

Unvalued and unprotected

How HB2 increases the pressure on North Carolina's LGBTQ students

“We all know this. It’s intuitive, but the data is there to support it.”

Emily Greytak, research director at the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN), one of the nation’s leading advocacy and policy organizations for LGBTQ students in K-12 schools, is assessing the startling data about school experience. Greytak’s able to reel off one number after another reflecting, in stark detail, the stunning disparities between LGBTQ youth and their peers when it comes to their school experience.

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Education Featured Articles

NCPW Q&A: Meet the trans youth taking a stand against Gov. Pat McCrory and House Bill 2

Freshman year of high school is, for some people, already an uphill climb.

It was a different challenge altogether for Hunter Schafer, a Raleigh teenager who says she came out just before ninth grade and immediately began transitioning. By her sophomore year, Schafer had adopted female pronouns and began using the women’s restroom at school.

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Education Featured Articles

As lawmakers square off over teacher raises, an $8 billion problem looms

Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools may be shrinking—at the startling rate of about 250 students per year since 2011—but the myriad concerns about failing heating and air conditioning systems and ventilation have gone nowhere. In Johnston County, a suburban ...
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Education Featured Articles

NCPW exclusive: Lawyer for transgender Virginia teen discusses federal case that could blow up HB2

When North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory signed the highly controversial House Bill 2 in late March, Joshua Block was doing the same thing he’s been doing most days since January: waiting for a potentially seismic court decision from ...
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Education Featured Articles

Legislators advance controversial Achievement School District proposal

Plan could give for-profit charter operators control over low-performing public schools

A controversial reform method that turns over management of low-performing schools to charter operators met with a speedy, unanimous approval in a legislative study committee Wednesday morning, but not without some reservations from one of the N.C. General Assembly’s most powerful budget writers.

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Education Featured Articles

McCrory’s teacher pay proposal draws skepticism, cautious optimism

State’s education leaders await specifics in governor’s budget Many of North Carolina’s political leaders may still be roiling over the backlash to the state’s broad anti-LGBT law this week, but Gov. Pat McCrory wants to talk about public ...
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