Funding for college work-study programs would be cut in half, public-service loan forgiveness would end and hundreds of millions of dollars that public schools could use for mental health, advanced coursework and other services would vanish under a Trump administration plan to cut $10.6 billion from federal education initiatives, according to budget documents obtained by The Washington Post.  The administration would channel part of the savings into its top priority: school choice. It seeks to spend about $400 million to expand charter schools and vouchers for private and religious schools, and another $1 billion to push public schools to adopt choice-friendly policies. view article arw

A new report shows Oklahoma isn't a particularly hospitable state for one group of well-educated professionals, and ranks far below neighboring Texas. Teachers? Nope. Nurses.  Analysts working for WalletHub reviewed all 50 states based on numerous metrics to determine which are the most “conducive to both personal and professional success” for new nurses. Oklahoma ranked 36th. No state bordering Oklahoma ranked lower, and our state's rank was far below several bordering states. New Mexico ranked second. Texas ranked fourth. Colorado ranked fifth. view article arw

Republicans late Monday unveiled compromise legislation to prevent North Carolina school districts from potentially having to cut supplemental programs or that could cause crowding in other classrooms next fall. The measure is intended to meet more slowly a mandate to reduce average class sizes in early grades. The bill, approved by the Senate education committee, addresses upcoming requirements to reduce the maximum class sizes in kindergarten through third grade that would more closely match state funding to hire teachers in these grades. view article arw

Autistic and nonverbal, Olivia Espinoza’s son was unable to tell anybody about the abuse. While the disabled child was enrolled at an elementary school in Las Vegas in 2014, his special education teacher pushed and grabbed him, slapped his hands, and threw him to the ground. “I have a typical daughter, and when she comes from school, I ask her, ‘What’s going on at school? What did you do?’ and she answers,” Espinoza said. “But when my son comes from school, I don’t know nothing about it.” After at least three teachers aides spoke out, teacher James Doran pleaded guilty to battery — and Espinoza, who has sued the Clark County School District, is now calling on Nevada lawmakers to approve a bill requiring cameras in self-contained special education classrooms where more than half the students are nonverbal. view article arw

Today, U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos visited Royal Palm Elementary with Miami-Dade Public Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho, where they toured the school, read to students, and spoke with teachers and administrators. Secretary DeVos then continued on to Miami Dade College, where she met with President Eduardo J. Padrón and toured the college's Miami Animation and Gaming International Complex.  view article arw

 If you've ever thought of taking your child out of the traditional brick and mortar school but didn't want to homeschool your children, there's a free, state-funded online schooling program offered. Students attending the Oklahoma Connections Academy take four core classes like Math, Science, English, and Social Studies and two other electives. The program, which is open to students in grades K-12, requires them to spend an hour a day in each subject. Connections teacher Melissa Patrick said the students begin their day by logging in and checking their planning calendar. view article arw

A funding formula signed into law four years ago has mostly leveled the playing field among the state’s school districts, a report released Thursday found — but the money is not necessarily going to the neediest students. view article arw

Camden Jamison's favorite time at Magnolia Elementary in Pearland ISD is after school, when the 10-year-old and more than 90 others gather each day to do homework, science experiments and Camden's favorite: dodgeball.  If the after-school program ended, Camden would be devastated. "I'd quit school," he said. "It wouldn't be fun just to come to school and leave."  But the Magnolia Elementary after-school program and 127 others in the Houston area are in danger of losing funds after President Donald Trump's proposed budget called for eliminating the grant that funds them. view article arw

From helping to pay for pre-K programs to teacher training, federal education funding has a direct impact on area schools — and so do proposed cuts, said Gilmer ISD Superintendent Rick Albritton. That's why many East Texas school districts are looking at a recently released budget proposal from President Donald Trump and how it would affect their programs if his proposed spending cuts are approved by Congress. view article arw

Police in Corpus Christi, Texas, are looking for a Tennessee school teacher and a student he's accused of kidnapping. view article arw

The rainy day fund contains $10-plus billion at a time when slumping oil prices have left the state facing a potential $6 billion shortfall just to maintain current spending levels in the 2018-2019 budget the Legislature is now devising. Democrats and Republicans in the House want to spend some of that to forego widespread cuts.  But in its version of the budget, the Senate avoided raiding Texas' piggy bank by using an accounting gimmick that would temporarily divert $2.6 billion previously earmarked for highway funding. House Speaker Joe Straus decried that as "counting money twice."  "I'm not interested in cooking the books just to avoid a vote on the rainy day fund," said Straus, a San Antonio Republican. view article arw

Some fifty education groups are urging lawmakers to vote against the American Health Care Act, better known as the GOP alternative to the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare to the haters. The reason? The bill, which is being pushed by both President Donald Trump and Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wisc., the speaker of the House, would make changes to the way that Medicaid is funded. It would base state allocations in part on how many people they have from a particular population. Proponents say this will help states be more creative with their Medicaid dollars, but the education groups argue that it will lead to significant cuts, to the tune of $880 billion over time. view article arw

During his address before a joint session of Congress earlier this week, President Donald Trump paused to introduce Denisha Merriweather, a graduate student from Florida sitting with first lady Melania Trump. Merriweather "failed third grade twice" in Florida's public schools, Trump said. "But then she was able to enroll in a private center for learning, great learning center, with the help of a tax credit," he continued, referring to Florida's tax credit scholarship program that allows students attend private schools. Because of this opportunity, Denisha became the first member of her family to graduate from high school and college. Trump used Denisha's story to call for his favorite education policy, school choice, asking lawmakers to "pass an education bill that funds school choice for disadvantaged youth, including millions of African American and Latino children. These families should be free to choose the public, private, charter, magnet, religious, or home school that is right for them." view article arw

I recently shared an article on my own Facebook page that was indicative of some of the proposed changes facing students and educators in House Bill 610. The future of education and the opportunities for the enrichment of all children is at my core as an educator for 30 years, a parent and a grandparent.  These proposed changes have their roots in the school voucher system proposed by new and, in my opinion, highly unqualified Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. They go far beyond offering people the opportunity to choose any school they want; they go toward dismantling some of the strongest aspects of public education and disabling the assurance of all students' rights to an education. view article arw

Victoria school district is one of 26 public school districts across Texas that are invited to apply to participate in a new leadership institute based in Austin. A presentation about the Holdsworth Center and its opportunities will be given to the Victoria school board on Thursday by Susanne Carroll, VISD executive director of curriculum, instruction and accountability. view article arw

Vouchers died in the Oklahoma legislature, for now. The sponsor of voucher legislation pulled the bill, saying he didn’t want it to squeak through. Probably, he didn’t have the votes. No reference was made, apparently, to the research showing that vouchers don’t improve academic performance and often depress it. “A divisive school-choice proposal that would create state-funded education savings accounts allowing students to attend private schools is off the legislative agenda, at least for now. view article arw

The Latest on a Kansas Supreme Court ruling on public school funding (all times local): 6 p.m. The Kansas Legislature's top leaders say a state Supreme Court ruling on education funding won't require lawmakers to change course on drafting a new school finance law. view article arw

Taking a power nap has never been easier for some high school students in New Mexico. "Sleep pods" have been installed at a few high schools in the Las Cruces area. KRQE reports that the pods let students lie on a recliner while listening to music as colorful lights shine inside. view article arw

 The Latest on a Kansas Supreme Court ruling on public school funding (all times local): 6 p.m. The Kansas Legislature's top leaders say a state Supreme Court ruling on education funding won't require lawmakers to change course on drafting a new school finance law. Senate President Susan Wagle and House Speaker Ron Ryckman Jr. said their chambers of the Republican-controlled Legislature already were working on a new school funding law before the court's decision. view article arw

There is a growing and disturbing trend of anti-intellectual elitism in American culture. It's the dismissal of science, the arts, and humanities and their replacement by entertainment, self-righteousness, ignorance, and deliberate gullibility. Susan Jacoby, author of The Age of American Unreason, says in an article in the Washington Post, "Dumbness, to paraphrase the late senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, has been steadily defined downward for several decades, by a combination of heretofore irresistible forces. These include the triumph of video culture over print culture; a disjunction between Americans' rising level of formal education and their shaky grasp of basic geography, science and history; and the fusion of anti-rationalism with anti-intellectualism."  view article arw

A Mississippi school district has been ordered to desegregate its schools after what the Justice Department called a five-decade-long legal battle. The Cleveland School District, about two hours northwest of Jackson, was told that it must consolidate its schools in order to provide real desegregation for students in the city of about 12,000. view article arw