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Education Lab is a yearlong project to spark meaningful conversations about education solutions in the Pacific Northwest.

Topic: round-up

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July 28, 2014 at 11:45 AM

Round-up: Assessing the need for a WSU med school, class-size initiative makes ballot

Assessing the need for a WSU med school: Some local and regional higher education experts are questioning whether there is enough demand to warrant a second medical school in Washington state. WSU wants to open a school in Spokane, but some say the shortage of hospital residency spots is a more pressing issue.

Class-size initiative will appear on November ballot (AP): A state initiative that would require smaller class sizes at all levels will appear on the general-election ballot this fall. A similar measure was passed in 2000, but the Legislature has suspended it several times because of budget concerns.

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July 25, 2014 at 1:13 PM

Round-up: Seattle students talk about school stereotypes, Texas college moves into old J.C. Penney

Rainier Beach, University Prep students discuss stereotypes (KUOW): Two students from south Seattle’s public Rainier Beach High School and north Seattle’s private University Prep took to KUOW’s RadioActive youth program to talk about stereotypes and interview their peers about what it’s like to attend each school. For more on what Rainier Beach is doing to defy stereotypes of the school, check out this guest opinion column by teacher Colin Pierce.

Austin Community College settles into former J.C. Penney store (KUT): A community college in Texas has found an unlikely building for its next campus: a former J.C. Penney department store. Students say they like that the revamped building offers ample room for informal study groups.

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July 24, 2014 at 12:01 PM

Round-up: Tacoma district eyes downtown building, Sequim grapples with transgender policies

Tacoma district considers buying downtown building for school (The News Tribune): Seattle isn’t the only local school district contemplating major real estate acquisitions. The Tacoma School Board plans to vote Friday on whether to pay $7.6 million for a downtown building and parking garage that would allow for an expansion of the popular Tacoma School of the Arts.

Judge rules against public disclosure of LA teacher performance (Los Angeles Times): Three California appellate judges have ruled the public does not have a right to know the names of teachers in relation to their job performance ratings. The decision overturns an earlier ruling ordering disclosure.

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July 22, 2014 at 1:38 PM

Round-up: WWU reports more grads finding jobs, men credited with saving school from wildfire

WWU reports more grads finding jobs (Skagit Valley Herald): A survey compiled by Western Washington University finds 82 percent of graduates who earned degrees in 2012-13 found employment within six months, up from a low of 68.7 percent during the recession. The average starting salary for respondents was down about 4 percent from last year, however.

Men credited with saving Pateros school from wildfire (NBC News): Augustine Morales and a friend used a hose system on their truck to fight back flames approaching the Pateros K-12 school. The building has been used as a relief center after the massive blaze destroyed more than 150 of the town’s homes.

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July 21, 2014 at 1:51 PM

Round-up: Seattle selects interim schools chief, Obama expands program for black and Latino boys

Seattle board names Larry Nyland as interim superintendent: Nyland, a longtime local educator who retired as superintendent of the Marysville School District last year, is set to take over as chief of Seattle Public Schools on Aug. 1. The Seattle School Board is expected to begin searching for a permanent superintendent in September and make a decision next spring.

Obama to expand initiative for black and Latino boys (The New York Times): Sixty of the country’s largest school districts will join an education initiative called My Brother’s Keeper, the White House will announce today. The effort targets black and Latino boys and calls for expanded preschool access, data-based interventions and better representation in AP and other advanced programs.

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July 18, 2014 at 11:39 AM

Round-up: Banda’s replacement will be named today, UW draws women into computer science

Announcement expected today on interim Seattle superintendent: The Seattle School Board will meet this afternoon to select a temporary replacement for outgoing chief José Banda. The Sacramento City Unified School District officially hired Banda as its new superintendent during a Thursday board meeting. Seattle’s interim superintendent will start work immediately and continue through at least June 2015.

UW finds success drawing women into computer science (The New York Times): The University of Washington is one of a few colleges leading the way in an effort to get more female students interested in studying computer science. Along with programs aimed at high-school students, a revamped introductory course is causing women who had not planned on being computer science majors to switch to the field.

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July 17, 2014 at 2:21 PM

Round-up: Schools start cooking from scratch, community-college students struggle to get loans

Spokane-area schools adapt to new food regulations (The Spokesman-Review): Since the 2010 Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act went into effect, school districts around the country have had to re-examine the way they purchase and prepare food. In Cheney, school chefs switched to preparing meals from scratch, a move the district says has helped it save money and get kids to eat healthier.

Community-college students struggle to secure federal loans (NPR): Getting a federal loan to pay for school can be especially tough for community-college students. Many two-year schools opt not to participate in federal lending programs because high student default rates could cause them to lose other forms of federal aid, such as Pell grants and work-study funding.

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July 16, 2014 at 12:37 PM

Round-up: Seven groups file charter-school proposals, judges uphold affirmative-action ruling

Seven groups file charter-school proposals (AP): Tuesday was the deadline for the second round of charter-school applications in Washington state, and seven groups filed proposals for new schools. The state’s first charter school, approved along with six others in January, is expected to open this fall in Seattle.

Judges uphold U. of Texas affirmative-action ruling (The New York Times): A panel of federal appeals judges has upheld an earlier ruling allowing the University of Texas at Austin to use race as a factor in admissions decisions. The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that public universities could consider race under certain conditions but sent the University of Texas case to the appeals court to ensure the school was using race narrowly enough.

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July 15, 2014 at 3:33 PM

Round-up: UW study finds babies practice speech at 7 months, schools brace for immigrant influx

UW study finds babies practice speech before they can talk: Researchers at the University of Washington’s Institute for Learning & Brain Sciences are continuing to uncover new information about how babies’ brains work. Their latest finding: Children begin mentally working out the mechanics of how to speak starting at around 7 months old.

Urban schools brace for influx of unaccompanied minors (AP): Schools in metropolitan areas across the country are bracing for an increase in unaccompanied children immigrating to the U.S. The federal government estimates about 90,000 children from El Salvador, Honduras, Guatemala and other countries could make the journey this fall.

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July 14, 2014 at 11:04 AM

Round-up: AG Ferguson defends lawmakers on McCleary, teacher-tenure fight gains momentum

WA attorney general defends Legislature on McCleary (AP): Washington Attorney General Bob Ferguson filed a brief on Friday arguing the Legislature should not be held in contempt of the state Supreme Court regarding its response to the McCleary decision. “The Court should not treat a legitimate policy disagreement in the legislative branch as disrespectful conduct worthy of contempt,” the brief said.

Teacher-tenure fight gains momentum (AP): A California judge’s June ruling on teacher-tenure laws in that state is already having a ripple effect elsewhere in the country. A lawsuit that also claims teacher job protections violate children’s civil rights has been filed in New York, and parent activists in Pennsylvania and Connecticut say they are preparing similar suits.

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