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Students and Schools

Updated March 23, 2021 at 10:51 AM ET

In a year when so much about schooling has changed, add this to the list: A significant increase in the number of households where students were homeschooled.

That's according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau's Household Pulse Survey, an online survey that asks questions about how the pandemic is changing life in U.S. homes.

Sheree Baldwin Muhammad, teacher at New Beginnings Family Academy

Starting this week, teachers and child care providers are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. 

This hour, we talk with three Connecticut teachers and hear about what this past year has looked like for them and their students. 

By Amherst2005 (www.creativecommons.org)

Over 40 million Americans have student loan debt owing an average of $36,520 alone, for federal loans. Connecticut Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona, and President Joe Biden's nominee to lead the Department of Education, says student debt relief would be a priority. 

Seth Sawyers / Creative Commons

We’re one semester into the 2020-2021 academic year. This hour, how are faculty at our Connecticut colleges and universities holding up? 

Coming up, we'll talk about faculty burnout, the impending end of tenure, and what universities will invest in, in the future. 

SCSU student Asma Rahimyar stands on the university campus
Southern Connecticut State University

Asma Rahimyar was the first person in her family to be born in the U.S. after her parents left Afghanistan fleeing conflict. This hour, the 20 year old Connecticut resident joins us to talk about another first. She’s Southern Connecticut State University’s first-ever Rhodes Scholar.

Students get off a bus on the first day of school in Connecticut. The first few days will be about setting expectations for mask wearing and social distancing according to superindendents.
Ali Oshinskie / Connecticut Public Radio

The academic year is well on it’s way. How are students and teachers in Connecticut adapting to their second semester of online learning? 

This hour, Connecticut Department of Education Commissioner Miguel A. Cardona joins us to answer our questions and yours on the state of Connecticut’s schools. 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public

After a protracted back-and-forth with state health officials, Connecticut’s governing body of high school sports will go ahead with a fall season.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public

A viral video of UConn students at a recent campus dorm party brought a swift rebuke from the university. But both the party itself and the school’s official response are raising more questions about whether students should be back at school.

IowaPolitics.com / Flickr

Some Connecticut school districts across the state are getting ready to reopen their doors, but with coronavirus cases rising across the country, more parents are considering keeping children at home, 

Updated at 7:50 p.m. ET

President Trump spoke in the White House Rose Garden on a broad range of topics on Tuesday, pitching himself as the stronger competitor over rival Joe Biden to manage the deadly coronavirus pandemic and steer the U.S. economy to prosperity.

His remarks come amid mounting concerns raised by public health officials about his administration's aggressive pitch to return the United States to normalcy, including pushing guidance for schools to reopen for in-person classes this fall.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public

The federal government has sided with a group of Connecticut athletes who have sued the state’s governing body of high school sports over the inclusion of transgender athletes in girls events.

Russ / CreativeCommons.org

Standardized tests, application forms, campus visits. The path to college can be a daunting one, especially when you add tuition to the mix. Then, of course, there is the cost of room and board, meal plans, textbooks...feeling stressed yet?

This hour, we tackle the realities of affording a college education, and we also hear from you. Are you the parent of a college-age student? Are you, yourself, working toward a college degree? How has this impacted you financially...emotionally? 

Nicole Leonard / Connecticut Public Radio

On a typical day at East Shore Middle School in Milford, the library is where students spend time using the computers, working on projects and checking out books.

But on a recent Monday morning, about a dozen students sat at tables, each with a virtual reality headset strapped onto their faces and a controller in one hand. Instead of seeing each other, Tino Pavlat and his friends interacted with people at a virtual high school and played Space Cats, a shooter minigame.

Phil Roeder / Creative Commons

Defense Secretary Mark Esper demanded the resignation of Navy Secretary Richard Spencer on Sunday. Esper said he had lost confidence in Spencer. Esper's action follows Spencer publicly disagreeing with President Trump over the military's decision to demote one of three war criminals the president pardoned against military advice. What are the consequences of presidential interference in the military code of justice?

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

The University of Connecticut is moving forward with a series of initiatives to help the Storrs campus heal after a racist incident that drew outrage from many students.

Earlier this week, two white UConn students were arrested after they were identified on a viral video shouting racial slurs as they walked through the parking lot of Charter Oak apartments, an on-campus residence hall.

During a meeting of the UConn Board of Trustees Wednesday, University President Thomas Katsouleas said the incident has affected the student body.

Miguel Cardona
Courtesy: NEAG School of Education, UConn

At 27, he was a Connecticut school principal. At 44, he is the state’s commissioner of education.

This hour, Dr. Miguel Cardona joins us to talk about his vision for Connecticut's education future. 

Milestone C Stem / YouTube

The superintendent of schools in Shelton is speaking out days after a white student in the district spit on a black patron at a Washington, D.C. museum.

John Brighenti / Flickr

A Connecticut town is dealing with another incident in which a student in the district is being accused of committing an alleged racist act.

Sandy Hook Promise (screengrab) / YouTube

A nonprofit formed in response to the Sandy Hook school shooting has released a new public service announcement.

Can We Get Some Volunteers?

Sep 17, 2019
rawpixel.com / Pexels

Whether through religious groups or school-organized activities, Americans have long sought ways to give back to their communities. But has this spirit of altruism faded in recent years?

This hour, we check on the state of volunteering in the U.S. and ask what is being done to motivate more Americans to do good in their spare time. Do you remember the last time you volunteered? We want to hear from you. 

Russ / Creative Commons

Standardized tests, application forms, campus visits. The path to college can be a daunting one, especially when you add tuition to the mix. Then, of course, there is the cost of room and board, meal plans, textbooks...feeling stressed yet?

This hour, we tackle the realities of affording a college education, and we also hear from you. Are you the parent of a college-age student? Are you, yourself, working toward a college degree? How has this impacted you financially...emotionally? 

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

There’s a new initiative in Hartford aimed at exposing area teenagers to careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

David DesRoches

Shawn and Shane Brooks had a problem. They'd been accepted into Morehouse College, excited to attend the same school as Martin Luther King Jr. and other black male leaders. 

But then they got their financial aid packages. 

mygueart/iStock / Thinkstock

A state investigation into Norwalk's special education program has found that the district has not been following federal law, but the findings reflect deeper problems that the district has faced for years.

The complaint that sparked the investigation was filed on behalf of 14 Norwalk students, but Jill Chuckas, a special education advocate who filed the complaint along with two lawyers, said the problems impact all kids with disabilities in the district.

Mark Ojakian
Chion Wolf / Connecticut Public Radio

There's currently a $12 million hole in the state's community college budget for next year, and the gap is expected to widen in the coming years if changes don't happen soon.

The Board of Regents for Higher Education approved the use of $8 million from its reserve funds to cover some of the shortfall, but that money won't last forever.

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. 

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