Education

This page contains KLCC stories about Education. 
Also visit KLCC's 12-part series on The Future of Public Education in Oregon

Recorded on: May 8th, 2015

Air Date: May 11th, 2015

Ten candidates for contested elections to Eugene school board positions will tell City Club members about the skills and experiences they can offer their districts. They are also invited to describe the issues they see as most significant and how they would seek to resolve them.

Of the three Bethel School Board positions up for election this year, only one is contested. Blake Holton is running for Position 6 against Ginger Poage, who has served since 1983.

Civic Education In Oregon: Youth Voices

May 4, 2015

Recorded on: May 1st, 2015

Air Date: May 4th, 2015

Guest Speakers include Harley Emery from Thurston, Sydney Baker from Springfield, Alya Bussel from Teen Court/Sheldon, Yessenia Carlos from LULAC/UO, Vincent Lanier from South Eugene, and Christian Mora from Willamette High School.

Wednesday the Register-Guard published a front page story headlined "Secret school emails released." The article outlined the contents of personal emails and text messages between individual Eugene 4-J school board members concerning Superintendent Sheldon Berman. (see statements below)

The documents were accidentally sent to the newspaper by the law firm representing the Eugene school district.

Wendy Baker is Chief Council with the Register Guard. She describes receiving the box of 500 documents. earlier this week.

Betsy Miller Jones, executive director of the Oregon School Boards Association, presses the need for more -- and more racially diverse -- school board candidates.  She also offers her views on the Common Core curriculum and Smarter Balanced test.

The Springfield School Board Monday night decided it will not suspend administration of Smarter Balanced tests.

Board member Jonathan Light had proposed a moratorium, saying the new requirements are not good for kids. But the rest of the board felt it was too risky for the district to refuse to give the tests since they're required by law.
Springfield students have already started taking Smarter Balanced exams.

Board Chair Nancy Bigley says the district will continue looking at testing.

Recorded on: April 24th, 2015

Air Date: April 27th, 2015

Educators, administrators, policy makers, researchers, and parents in Eugene and across the nation are engaged in a lively debate about the Common Core State Standards and testing. The two separate but related issues include the Smarter Balanced tests now used in Oregon. In February, City Club members heard UO Professor Jerry Rosiek critique these initiatives, particularly noting the danger of relying too heavily on any system of testing to assess school productivity.

Karen Richards

Construction trucks are at work on the site of the new Roosevelt Middle School in South Eugene. Current sixth graders should be able to start eighth grade on the new campus.

Bonds approved in 2013 funded the rebuilding of four aging Eugene schools. Superintendent Shelley Berman says the recent groundbreaking is an exciting moment:

Berman: “We’re moving ahead in a very rapid way around Roosevelt. We hope that we’ll get it open in fall of 2016. I know that they’re beginning to move dirt and will be setting the foundation fairly soon.”

www.georgefox.edu

At a special meeting Thursday night the Springfield School Board formally selected Assistant Superintendent Sue Reike-Smith to be the district's Acting Superintendent. She will take over for Hertica Martin who announced her resignation Monday.

Reike-Smith says besides the contractual duties of a superintendent, she plans to keep doing what she always does, visit schools and interface with teachers and students. The focus of her new role is on the last ten weeks of school.

Tiffany Eckert

The search is over. The board of trustees voted today to name the 18th President of the University of Oregon.

Michael H. Schill has been chosen as the next U of O President. Schill is currently Dean at the University of Chicago-Law School.

Schill is a first generation college graduate--he attended Princeton.  Calling public universities “gems,” Schill says he’s proud and excited to be a Duck.

“This is an opportunity to take a great school, a proud school, an exciting school and move it forward. This is an absolutely pivotal moment for this university.”

Rob Manning / OPB

We continue "Testing 1-2-3" today - OPB's occasional series on standardized testing in Oregon. Some younger students are already taking new the new federally-mandated tests. High schoolers will take them soon. There are questions about the time these Common Core tests will take.

An American flag, a University of Oregon banner, and posters with literary terms hang in the front of David Wilkinson's room at Beaverton's Westview High.... a typical English class. Wilkinson is leading his 11th graders through a college admissions essay.

City of Redmond

The University of Oregon's Sustainable City Year Program is moving east of the Cascades for the first time in its six year history.

The program brings together UO students and faculty with members of a different Oregon city each year. Redmond has been selected and will benefit from more than 40,000 hours of student work aimed at improving sustainability, infrastructure and livability. Redmond's Community Development Director Heather Richards says they're getting started April 8 with a bicycle tour of existing infrastructure.

Tiffany Eckert

About forty percent of the children eligible for head start programs in Lane County can’t get in. Today (Tuesday), Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley visited a head start center in Eugene. While there, he criticized cuts to early childhood education in a recent U.S. senate budget.

At the Whiteaker Head Start Center a classroom of pre-kindergarteners welcome Senator Merkley with a song.

(kids and teacher sing:”Mr. Merkley’s here today! We’ll all clap our hands because Mr. Merkley’s here today!”)

Then, he sits in a little chair with a classic children’s book.

eduventurist.org

Anya Kamenetz, who writes about education for NPR and is the author of several books on education, says parents are losing patience with standardized testing.

She'll present April 1st at 7 p.m. at Tsunami Books in Eugene on this and other educational topic.

More about Anya Kamenetz

Bethel School District

In a letter to state legislators from Lane County, local school superintendents say the K-12 budget proposed for the next two years is "woefully inadequate".  The $7.3 billion spending plan is headed for votes in the full House and Senate, likely next week.

Colt Gill is superintendent of Bethel School District in Eugene. He says the district is preparing to offer state-mandated full-day kindergarten in September. It's also trying to keep up with rising costs of maintaining the district's services.

Two of the University of Oregon’s six library archivists are without their jobs following the release of thousands of presidential documents to a professor.

James Fox and Kira Homo were put on paid administrative leave in January. According to the administration they were responsible for the un-processed handoff of over 20,000 pages of correspondence.

In a statement, spokesman Tobin Klinger says Homo resigned her position and Fox will not return to his job, nor will his contract be renewed.

Rachael McDonald

Oregon’s Farm to School and School Garden programs may get a boost next school year. A bill to increase funding by over four million dollars passed through a legislative committee last week.

Lawmakers heard from 12 stakeholders of farm to school programs. They passed the bill unanimously to the Ways and Means committee, which will now decide the level of funding. Megan Kemple is with the Farm to School Network. She says the bill will allow all school districts in Oregon to participate through a non-competitive process:

Eugene 4J School District

Eugene 4J has a new superintendent… almost. Now that the school board has formally offered Dr. Gustavo Balderas the job-- all they’re waiting for is his signature. And that is expected soon.

Eugene school board chair Jim Torrey says Balderas is a genuine and accessible manager. And he comes with a compelling life story.

Torrey: “His parents were migrant workers. He was actually born in the state of Washington, lived there a couple months, then his family moved over to Nyssa, Oregon. And he didn’t speak English until he started grade school.”

Eugene 4J

The Eugene 4J School Board voted unanimously Wednesday to hire Doctor Gustavo Balderas as new superintendent.

Rachael McDonald

The University of Oregon's possible violation of a student's privacy when it accessed her therapy records has garnered national attention. This week Oregon's Congressional Delegation got involved.

An education administrator with strong Oregon ties is the top choice to become Eugene's next school superintendent. The Eugene School Board Thursday named Dr. Gustavo Balderas as the person they want to lead the district after Superintendent Shelly Berman leaves at the end of the academic year.

Recorded on: March 6th, 2015

Air Date: March 9th, 2015

The City Club of Eugene has long recognized the important function of debate in our community. The vigorous clash of ideas is central to our cultural identity. Our great local hero Wayne Morse was a renowned debater.

www.flickr.com

Nuclear Forensics can be described as the investigation of materials to find evidence of the source, trafficking, and enrichment of nuclear material. Oregon State University is now offering a new graduate student training initiative as an expanded part of its Nuclear Engineering and Radiation Health Physics Department. OSU Assistant Professor of Research Camille Palmer says the Introduction to Nuclear Forensics course will allow students to actually test samples of material.

Chalkbeat Colorado

This is "National School Breakfast Week." In Oregon, advocates are using it to urge lawmakers to let more schools serve breakfast after the morning bell rings.

The Eugene 4J School Board has chosen three finalists to be the next superintendent. [includes photos]

School board members had a busy weekend, interviewing seven candidates. They selected three finalists, all of whom have ties to Oregon and currently hold superintendent positions. Jennifer Geller is the school board member chairing the search:

Corvallis Schools

Oregon spends Cadillac prices to teach English Language Learners in its public schools, but only gets Chevy results.  That's because the formula for spending more than 200-million-dollars a year on tens of thousands of students provides an incentive to keep kids in E.L.L. as long as possible. E.L.L. was formerly known as E.S.L.  The Oregon Department of Education is now proposing to make some major reforms. 

When she was in elementary school, this was about the extent of Stephanie Castañeda's Spanish:

"Hola...adios."

Recorded on: February 20, 2015

Air Date: February 23, 2015

About 500 students, alumni and faculty rallied on the capitol steps in Salem today (Thursday). They're calling for higher education funding.

Representatives from Oregon's 17 community colleges and seven public universities want legislators to hear their plea for greater investments in tuition funding.

Lane community college student leader Tyler Dorris spoke with KLCC's Tiffany Eckert from the rally in Salem.

KLCC

The search for a new University of Oregon president has collected 250 nominations so far. The deadline for applicants is March 9th.

OSU And Intel Collaborate On Cyber Security Course

Feb 6, 2015
securityaffairs.co

As more information is being transferred and stored on the Internet, cybersecurity is emerging as a highly sought after employment field. The demand has led to collaboration between Oregon State University and Intel Security through a course that trains cyber security professionals. The class titled, "Defense Against the Dark Art" offers hands-on experience on topics such as malware, software vulnerabilities, and mobile device security. OSU Professor Terri Feiz says in a short time, cyber attacks have grown from a few hundred, to millions worldwide.

Oregon's public high school on-time graduation rates went up 3.3 percent in 2014 from the previous year. Eugene's 4J school district reports an 8 percent boost in the statewide survey released Thursday.

The state has changed the way it calculates graduation rates which may account for some of the improvement. Kerry Delf with Eugene 4J says the district also made progress in closing the achievement gap:

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