Rob Manning

Rob Manning has been both a reporter and an on-air host at Oregon Public Broadcasting. Before that, he filled both roles with local community station KBOO and nationally with Free Speech Radio News. He's also published freelance print stories with Portland's alternative weekly newspaper Willamette Week and Planning Magazine. In 2007, Rob received two awards for investigative reporting from the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists, and he was part of the award-winning team responsible for OPB's "Hunger Series." His current beats range from education to the environment, sports to land-use planning, politics to housing.

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All this week, NPR is digging into high school graduation rates. Oregon has the lowest grad rate of any state - of less than 69 percent in 2013. Oregon's long-term plan to improve graduation rates starts really early - with preschoolers.

With the help of a family in OPB's "Class of 2025" project, Rob Manning looks at the difference preschool can make.

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.

Rob Manning / OPB News

This summer in Oregon, education leaders brought together teaching professors and school officials to improve teacher training. The June institute followed a national report, critical of training programs. And new teachers will soon be asked to pass a new standardized test. Think of it as a Common Core for teachers in training.

The National Council on Teacher Quality recently blasted teacher preparation programs across the country - including those in Oregon.

Amanda Preacher / OPB News

A shooting incident at Oregon’s second largest high school Tuesday left two young people dead - a teenaged victim, and the shooter. Police have identified a 14-year-old freshman at Reynolds High School - Emilio Hoffman - as the victim.

Authorities say they have tentatively identified the shooter, but they weren’t confident enough to publicize details late Tuesday.  A teacher also sustained injuries that did not threaten his life.
 

When students first heard the shots at the Reynolds High School gymnasium, they thought they were firecrackers.

Transcript

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

President Obama often talks about making sure American students graduate high school ready for college. But one program in Oregon is reaching out to the shop class crowd of students who would rather learn a paying trade right away than stay in a classroom. Manufacturers there are using a new internship program to recruit and train teenagers straight out of high school to be machinists, welders and painters. Oregon Public Broadcasting's Rob Manning reports.