Youth & Education | KNKX

Youth & Education

Stories and features about education in the Pacific Northwest. Including stories from Washington state and the United States. 

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J.D. Scott / photo courtesy of Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum

Our country’s racial divides have been in the news a lot this year. Dr. Beverly Daniel Tatum has written extensively about the topic, including in her book, Why Are All The Black Kids Sitting Together In The Cafeteria? And Other Conversations About Race.

Ali Mohsenian / photo courtesy of "Angst" documentary

Anxiety is the most common psychiatric disorder among children, but most kids aren’t getting treatment, according to a report from the Child Mind Institute. A new film called Angst: Raising Awareness Around Anxiety from the Seattle-based production company IndieFlix explores the problem.

Washington state lawmakers will likely have to come up with an extra $1 billion for schools when they convene in January for the 2018 session.

The Washington Supreme Court issued a unanimous order Wednesday that said the state is not on track to fully fund public schools by a court-imposed deadline of September 1, 2018.

Joe Wolf / Flickr

Even though state lawmakers passed a plan this summer to fully fund basic education, Washington's highest court said Wednesday the state still isn't on track to comply with its constitutional duty.

Ashley Gross / KNKX

 (Updated at 2:30 pm, Nov. 15, 2017, to correct that schools are not required to inform parents before the books and lessons will be used in class.)

The Seattle school district is introducing books and short lessons to teach kids in kindergarten through fifth grade that there are many ways to express gender. District officials said it’s in response to a growing need and in line with updated state health education standards.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Low-income kids, black and Latino students and children in special education are suspended and expelled at above-average rates. State lawmakers have passed legislation in recent years aimed at reducing the disproportionate use of discipline.

Kyle Stokes / KNKX

A new report on the needs of black and African-American students in south Seattle and six south King County school districts says they continue to face inequities and racism. One area of focus is disproportionate use of discipline.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Education and business leaders are visiting two schools in Tacoma this week to find out more about an initiative started five years ago to help improve outcomes for kids.

Seattle Native Americans Rally For Indigenous-Focused High School

Nov 6, 2017
Members of the Urban Native Education Alliance gather in a circle outside the John Stanford Center for Educational Excellence while holding tribe flags.
Enrique Perez de la Rosa / KNKX

Updated on 11/07/2017 at 2:27 p.m. See correction below.

Members from Seattle’s Native American community rallied before a school board meeting last week to demand the reestablishment of a school that had an emphasis on American Indian culture.

Jeremy Segrott is licensed under cc by 2.0 http://bit.ly/2gV5MSv

Washington State University is facing a $30 million budget deficit. University President Kirk Schulz is calling for 2.5 percent cuts in all departments to get the school back in the black in the next three years. 

The situation has raised a lot of questions about how all this happened. KNKX Morning Edition Producer Ariel Van Cleave turned to Spokesman-Review higher education reporter Chad Sokol for some answers.  

Joe Wolf / Flickr

Washington state’s highest court is now weighing whether to end the long-running McCleary school funding case.

An attorney for the state asked the justices Tuesday to find that the state has now complied by passing an education funding plan, but many groups argue it hasn’t done enough.

The Washington Legislature enacted a new state property tax this year to shift the burden of school funding off local levies. But the question before the state Supreme Court Tuesday was whether Washington lawmakers fully funded schools as required by the court .

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Tuesday is a big day in Olympia for people concerned about school funding issues in Washington. That’s when the state Supreme Court will hold a hearing on whether the legislature has met the court’s requirements to amply fund basic education in the long-running McCleary case.

Mel Peffs / Flickr

The threat of a strike by school bus drivers in Seattle has many parents anxious. About 12,000 students in the district regularly use school bus service. Now, the union that represents the drivers is calling on the Seattle school board to put pressure on their vendor to resolve the labor dispute.

Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism / Flickr

Here’s one more sign that Seattle’s economy is booming: A private school here has organized what it says is the city’s first ever boarding school educational fair on Monday night, with local boarding schools as well as ones from across the country taking part.

Andrew Harnik / AP Photo

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos is expected to draw large crowds when she speaks Friday evening at the Hyatt Regency in Bellevue.

She is speaking at the Washington Policy Center's sold-out gala, where the minimum ticket price was $350, though the group says tickets for people in its Young Professionals program were $50 and some college students will attend for free. The organization is expecting 1,500 people for DeVos's first visit to Washington state as education secretary.

Ashley Gross / KNKX

This week, Seattle schools have been putting an extra emphasis on Native culture because of Indigenous Peoples' Day. 

But some parents at the school with the highest concentration of Native kids are frustrated with the school district. They say a shortage of classroom space in the brand-new facility for Licton Springs K-8 threatens their kids’ ability to learn.

Courtesy of UW School of Nursing

Nearly every county in Washington has a shortage of doctors, particularly in the areas of primary care and mental health. But there is a new push to train more practitioners for rural and underserved places.

Did Washington’s prepaid Guaranteed Education Tuition program give VIP service to state lawmakers with accounts?

Nearly a week after Hurricane Maria battered Puerto Rico, students who can't return to school may need to continue their education on the mainland.

Some of the largest school districts in Florida, plus major cities like New York City and Chicago, are preparing for the possibility of an influx of students from the island.

In South Florida, Miami-Dade County public schools are already working to accommodate students who need to transfer from Puerto Rico.

Ashley Gross / KNKX

The gifted program in Seattle Public Schools known as the highly capable cohort is dominated by white kids.

White students make up 70 percent of that program, but only 47 percent of the entire district population.

courtesy of Highline Public Schools

Graduation rates are something each school district tracks closely, but there are human stories underlying those numbers. Telling those stories is what Highline Public Schools set out to do in a new documentary called "Eleven Paths."

Anonymous Account / Flickr

Washington state has a big problem with kids not coming to school with one of the worst rates of chronic absenteeism in the nation, according to a report by the group Attendance Works.

Washington State University hopes to get more schools in the state to use an online assessment tool to figure out the reasons why kids aren’t attending.

biologycorner / Flickr

Only about 48 percent of eighth graders in Washington state met the standard in math this past school year.

The state schools superintendent’s office has just released test results for the Smarter Balanced assessment for a number of grades. Overall, test scores trended down a bit compared with a year earlier.

For example, on the English language arts assessment, 59 percent of eighth graders met the standard compared with 60 percent last year.

Southeast Seattle Education Coalition

School starts Wednesday in Seattle, and for the second year in a row, bell times are changing.

The nonprofit group Southeast Seattle Education Coalition has created flyers in Chinese, Somali, Vietnamese and Spanish to let families know about the changes.

The Evergreen State College in Olympia begins this school year with a drop in enrollment and an imminent hiring freeze. The conservative blogosphere is crowing that it's fallout from recent campus unrest, but the university administration disagrees.

As Washington state prepares to reopen its popular pre-paid college tuition program, a recently terminated employee is alleging “gross mismanagement.”

Michael Bennion served as the associate director for fiscal planning at the state’s Guaranteed Education Tuition program until he was let go earlier this month.

Ted S. Warren / AP Photo

Groups that advocate for kids with disabilities are weighing in on the state’s education funding plan passed by lawmakers in June. 

They have submitted a friend-of-the-court brief to the Washington state Supreme Court in the McCleary case over education finance, arguing that the funding plan shortchanges kids who need special education.

There are more than 60 schools in the U.S. with names tied to the Confederate South. One school, Robert E. Lee Elementary, is right here in the Northwest.

Cathy Renna

This week, about 1,500 people are gathering in Seattle to take part in the 16th annual Gender Odyssey conference, which brings together transgender kids, adults and their families and gives them an opportunity to talk about issues they face.

Among them will be Joe Maldonado, a 9-year-old transgender boy from New Jersey who successfully challenged the Boy Scouts’ ban on accepting trans kids.

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