School districts typically build emergency days into their calendars in case of bad weather. But this winter's relentless snow and bitter cold have some schools reeling. Now, administrators are scrambling to find creative ways to make up for lost time, even as they prepare for more severe weather. NPR's Cheryl Corley has that story.
CHERYL CORLEY, BYLINE: What's the most crucial factor when it comes to schools these days? Not tests or transportation or even grades. It's likely this...
When schools close for bad weather, some kids miss out on much-needed nutritious meals. "It's hard to be a hungry person, and it gets harder when the weather is like this," Nancy Roman, president of the Capital Area Food Bank in Washington, D.C., says of severe cold and snow.
Originally published on Wed February 12, 2014 8:32 pm
For many Americans it's been a harsh, disruptive winter, from the country's Northern edges to the Deep South.
When cold snaps and blizzards shutter schools, kids miss more than their daily lessons. Some miss out on the day's nutritious meal as well.
This recently became apparent to school administrators in rural Iowa, where extreme cold delayed openings two days in a row at Laurens-Marathon Community School, where 59 percent of students who eat school lunch qualify for free or reduced-price meals.
Norman Public Schools voters have approved the largest bond issue in district history, with more than $126 million set to go toward school improvements.
Complete but unofficial results show that the five-year bond issue passed Tuesday with about 84 percent of voters approving the two measures.
The bond issue was split into two proposals. The first provides $122.5 million for school renovations, safety and security, technology and other projects. The second proposal calls for $3.5 million to go toward transportation.
Community college leaders are in Washington this week, pushing for a bigger role in getting more people to enroll in two-year schools. They're also pushing the job training that business and industry say they desperately need.
Still, community colleges are significantly underfunded. And as NPR's Claudio Sanchez reports, it's unclear whether these schools can open their doors to more people or offer programs that are likely to cost a lot more.
And when it comes to hiring pastors and teachers, religious organizations - churches and schools - are exempt from most laws against discriminating and employment. Now a lawsuit in Massachusetts aims to clarify how much leeway those institutions have. For example, can they discriminate against people in same-sex marriages for non-religious jobs like gym teacher or cafeteria worker? NPR's Tovia Smith reports.
TOVIA SMITH, BYLINE: Matthew Barrett thought he'd scored his dream job when he was hired to be the boss of a school cafeteria.
In America, total student loan debt tops $1 trillion and a four-year college degree can cost as much as a house — leaving many families wondering if college is really worth the cost.
Yes, a new study of young people finds. The study, released Tuesday by the Pew Research Center, looks at income and unemployment among young adults. Paul Taylor, executive vice president of special projects at Pew, says it's pretty much case closed when it comes to the benefits of going to college.
Teacher salaries are losing ground fast in North Carolina.
Jennifer Spivey has been a teacher for three years at South Columbus High School, on the north side of the border between the Carolinas. She's been recognized as an outstanding teacher; she has a master's degree, and last summer she won a prestigious Kenan fellowship to improve education. But she still lives in her parents' basement.
Educators from around the country have spent the last two days talking about sexual misconduct on college campuses. The conference that wrapped up today at the University of Virginia was billed as a first of its kind. It comes nearly three years after the government issued legal guidelines for universities to deal with such misconduct.
As Sandy Hausman of member station WVTF reports, attendees learned how to better support victims, and students spoke out against stereotypes.
More schools have announced plans to cancel classes March 31 so students and staff can attend a rally at the state Capitol in favor of more education funding.
The Tulsa World reports that school boards in Bixby, Broken Arrow and Sapulpa all voted Monday to cancel classes for the March for Education rally. Leaders in Claremore and Owasso have tabled discussions on the issue until next month.
Euclid Market, a corner store in East Los Angeles, recently got a makeover to promote healthier eating. It not only sells more fruits and vegetables, but also offers cooking classes and nutrition education.
Credit Courtesy of Margaret Molloy/UCLA Fielding School of Public Health
Public health researcher Alex Ortega heads a UCLA project that aims to increase the demand for healthy food in low-income neighborhoods.
Credit Margaret Molloy/UCLA Fielding School of Public Health
In inner cities and poor rural areas across the country, public health advocates have been working hard to turn around food deserts — neighborhoods where fresh produce is scarce, and greasy fast food abounds. In many cases, they're converting dingy, cramped corner markets into lighter, brighter venues that offer fresh fruits and vegetables.