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Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

When it comes to the future of Connecticut's 12 community colleges, a great deal of uncertainty remains, especially on the issue of consolidation.

Something certain, however, is the nearly $1.3 billion operating budget that was approved by the Board of Regents for the state's college and university system last month.

This hour, the president of that system, Mark Ojakian, joins us in-studio to talk more about the budget and what it means for community colleges specifically. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

With Connecticut's legislative session now over, there were a few bills passed that impact education issues in the state, and some that didn’t make it through.

David DesRoches / Connecticut Public Radio

A textbook being used in Hartford middle schools gives equal weight to an argument against climate change, despite the vast majority of scientists who say the planet is warming and human activity is a contributing factor.

Elise Amendola / Associated Press

Four years ago, Hartford school officials decided to try to reduce the numbers of students being suspended. So they implemented what's known as a "restorative justice" model for discipline, but many teachers report that they haven't been trained on the new practice, and now many students are acting out, with no consequences.

Ryan Caron King / Connecticut Public Radio

The state's new assessment for future teachers is biased against people of color and low-income students, according to a group of UConn professors, who said they want the state to stop using it and come up with something better.

Starting this fall, students who go through teacher preparation programs in Connecticut must pass a new testing protocol called edTPA, developed by Stanford University and Pearson, which is the largest education publisher in the world. The state's been piloting the test for a few years.

Young people and their supporters gather in Hartford to protest climate change and ask for the Green New Deal.
David DesRoches / Connecticut Public Radio

A large majority of teachers say that climate change should be taught in schools, according to a new NPR - Ipsos poll. But the same poll that found that most teachers don't teach climate change to their students. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

Governor Ned Lamont discussed with national members of the American Federation of Teachers ways to target – and then retain – teachers.

Creative Commons

What happens when a community comes together to talk about issues of race and racism? This hour, we find out how one Southington, Connecticut group is helping facilitate conversations between residents and town officials.

Erica Roggeveen Byrne, founder of Southington Women for Progress, joins us. We also sit down with Oliver Scholes of the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center in Hartford, Connecticut. And we want to hear from you. 

Elias Baker / John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation

Nicholson Baker once spent a portion of his retirement savings to rescue first edition newspapers from being destroyed. He also fought to save card catalogues and to prevent library managers from sending thousands of books to landfills in their rush to microfilm. 

He fought on behalf of all of us who think about what is lost when the specifics of a particular moment are worn away or forgotten or altered in the subsequent retellings of the original observations. It's kind of like a childhood game of telephone where the original message is passed from child to child until the last person relays a message with little resemblance to the original. 

Robert Couse-Baker / Creative Commons

Being a high school student isn't easy. There's pressure to get the grade, pile on the extracurriculars, and sleep enough to function. It's rare young people can do all three.

This hour, we talk with child psychologists and counselors about adolescent stress and anxiety.

Robert Couse-Baker / Creative Commons

Being a high school student isn't easy. There's pressure to get the grade, participate in extracurriculars, and sleep enough to function. It's rare young people can do all three. 

David DesRoches / WNPR

Schools throughout rural Connecticut have been shrinking or closing for years. Many districts have consolidated with neighboring towns to pool resources, in a process called regionalization.

And some schools – like Burnham School in Bridgewater – have taken a more creative approach.

Matthew / Flickr Creative Commons

Over 2,000 students have come to Connecticut from Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria. Many of them have settled in Connecticut's biggest cities, and their arrival has highlighted the need for more teachers who speak Spanish and who are certified to teach English language learners, or ELLs.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

An investigation has found that seven former faculty members at the Hotchkiss School in Lakeville sexually abused students over a 23-year period.

Connecticut teachers are among the most prepared in the country to teach children how to read, according to a new report by the National Council on Teacher Quality.

Reading is considered the foundation of all other learning, so it stands to reason that teaching children how to read is also a big deal.

CHION WOLF / CONNECTICUT PUBLIC RADIO

Layoff notices went out Wednesday to 37 New Haven school staff members in the face of a budget deficit.

Most of the pink slips went to guidance counselors. Also laid off were several classroom teachers, library media specialists, and physical education teachers.

The New Haven Board of Education says it will direct the superintendent to reverse the layoff of hundreds of part-time employees, which was announced last week in an effort to cover a budget deficit.

WNPR/David DesRoches

The state Department of Education has voted to consider closing a charter school in Willimantic, after the department found several problems with how the school has been managed. 

"I'm 54 years old and my paycheck is $1,980 [a month]. I can't afford f****** health insurance."

jasastyle/iStock / Thinkstock

Teachers from across Connecticut convened at the state Capitol on Friday, asking lawmakers to not increase their pension obligations. Teachers call it the "teacher tax,” and they said it’s asking them to fix a system broken by years of under-funding by the state.

"Why have you become, people say, the most hated Cabinet secretary?" Lesley Stahl asked Education Secretary Betsy DeVos in a 60 Minutes interview that is drawing lots of attention.

"I'm not so sure how exactly that happened," DeVos responded in the interview, which aired Sunday night on CBS.

Pixabay / Creative Commons

Connecticut has spent over $50 million helping schools beef up security since 2013. Some of that money -- $3.2 million -- has gone to private schools, which are reimbursed at a higher rate than many public schools.

It’s a simple plan: Run. Hide. Fight.

That's what the Department of Homeland Security advises people to do when there’s an active shooter. Police departments also use this method when training school employees, students, and increasingly, aspiring teachers.

Alberto G./flickr creative commons

Connecticut schools performed about the same as they did last year on the state's accountability system. 

Jim Finley - Principal consultant to the Connecticut Coalition for Justice in Education Funding (CCJEF).
Chion Wolf / WNPR

A recent Connecticut Supreme Court decision found that the legislature, not the court, is responsible for decisions around funding the state's public schools. But that sparked a debate between an advocate and a lawmaker over where the responsibility actually lays.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Brian Dunnigan is a web designer and co-founder of the Hawthorn Watch Co. in Vernon, Connecticut.

Coming up, we discuss the inspiration behind his business and talk about Connecticut’s role in manufacturing the hands of time.

But first: mastering the skills of traditional craftsmen.

We hear how an exhibit at the Connecticut Historical Society celebrates the bond between artists and their apprentices.

Justin Brockie / Creative Commons

Across New England, freezing temps and blizzard conditions marked an unforgiving start to 2018.

This hour, we consider the factors underlying this extreme winter weather -- including the role of global climate change. 

Creative Commons

Connecticut is among the worst states in the country when it comes to being financially literate, according to a recent report by Champlain College.

WNPR/David DesRoches

Justin Rosa wasn't doing so great when he first moved to Connecticut from Florida in eighth grade.

"That process alone was very difficult, losing all my friends, having to start over, it was such a hard time for me,” he said. “I was very depressed." 

The once-outgoing kid began to retreat into his own head. And that's when the thoughts began.

"To be alone was such a…  a scary point in my life,” he said. “I thought that I would have committed suicide. And it wasn't until the Choose Love Foundation that everything changed."

David DesRoches / WNPR


On a cold December morning, fifth-grade teams at Simpson-Waverly School in Hartford are making skyscrapers.

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