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The Washington Post Local Education section provides coverage and analysis of schools, home school and education policy for DC, Maryland and Virginia. With in-depth coverage and analysis of Washington, DC education and schools, including DC charter schools, DC Schools Chancellor, DC teacher contract news and map of DC schools.
Updated: 7 hours 10 min ago

U-Va.’s in-state price likely to rise 4.3 percent

Thu, 04/17/2014 - 7:46pm

Undergraduate tuition and fees at the University of Virginia would rise 4.3 percent for Virginians in the coming year under a proposal the governing board will consider next week.

The basic in-state price of the public flagship university, not counting room and board, would be $12,998 if the Board of Visitors approves the increase at its meeting Wednesday in the southwest Virginia town of Abingdon. The current price is $12,458.

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Categories: Education News

D.C. parents raise questions about funds for at-risk students, school renovations

Thu, 04/17/2014 - 6:54pm

D.C. parents and education activists on Thursday praised Mayor Vincent C. Gray’s proposal to invest tens of millions of extra dollars to help at-risk students in the city’s traditional schools next year, but they criticized Gray’s administration for failing to explain how and where those dollars would be spent.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: The ‘new’ Graze to the Top program

Thu, 04/17/2014 - 3:55pm

If you need a laugh, this is for you. It’s by Matt Farmer, a Chicago trial lawyer who is a member of the Local School Council at Philip Rogers Elementary School. Farmer wrote this satirical piece about Race to the Top, the competitive funding program run by Arne Duncan’s Education Department to dispense federal grants to states and school districts that promised to implement specific school reforms.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Seven things kids need to read better (and raising standards isn’t one of them)

Thu, 04/17/2014 - 7:00am

For two decades, Ellie Herman was a writer/producer for television shows including “The Riches,” “Desperate Housewives,” “Chicago Hope” and “Newhart.” Her fiction has appeared in literary journals, among them The Massachusetts Review, The Missouri Review and the O.Henry Awards Collection. In 2007, she decided, “on an impulse,” she wrote, to become an English teacher and got a job at a South Los Angeles charter school that was 97 percent Latino and where 96 percent of the students lived below the poverty line. She taught drama, creative writing, English 11 and 9th grade Composition at a charter high school in South Los Angeles until 2013, when she decided to stop teaching and spend a year visiting classrooms and learning from other teachers. She is chronicling the lessons she is learning on her blog, Gatsby in L.A., where the following post appeared. I’ll be posting more work from her soon.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Even the strongest relationships sour

Thu, 04/17/2014 - 4:00am

Bobby Jindal, governor of Louisiana, and John White, Louisiana’s education commissioner, were once a great school reform pair -- seemingly inseparable. Times have changed.

In early 2011, Jindal tapped White, then the superintendent of the Recovery School District in New Orleans, to become education chief in Louisiana and the state Board of Education approved the choice. At the time, Jindal said in a statement:

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Categories: Education News

Dartmouth president calls for end to ‘extreme behavior’ that mars image of elite college

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 10:00pm

Dartmouth College’s president lamented Wednesday that the Ivy League school’s promising future “is being hijacked by extreme behavior,” including sex assaults, parties with “racist and sexist undertones,” and a campus culture in which “dangerous drinking has become the rule and not the exception.”

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Categories: Education News

Virginia Tech pays fine for failure to warn campus during 2007 mass shooting

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 6:57pm

Virginia Tech has paid $32,500 to satisfy federal fines lodged by the U.S. Department of Education, which charged that the university did not adequately warn its campus community at the beginning of a 2007 rampage that became one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history.

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Categories: Education News

SAT quiz results: Can you do better than other readers?

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 3:27pm

The early results of The Washington Post’s SAT quiz -- including sample questions from the College Board’s revamped SAT -- are in, and it’s clear from the numbers that those who took the test are more astute at reading than they are at math.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: What is the SAT good for?

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 11:00am

The College Board released new details on Wednesday about how the SAT will change in early 2016. My colleague Nick Anderson wrote about the changes in this story, explaining how the test, once billed as evaluating “aptitude,” is now being marketed as a measure of high school achievement. But does it even do that? Bob Schaeffer, public education director of the National Center for Fair & Open Testing, known as FairTest, explains. FairTest is a non-profit organization dedicated to ending the misuse of standardized tests.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Students don’t need a ‘voice.’ Here’s what they really need.

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 10:00am

Sam Levin was a student when, in 2011, he founded the Independent Project at Monument Mountain Regional High School in Massachusetts. He had thrown out an idea to administrations about allowing students to create a learning environment in which teachers serve as mentors and coaches while students post questions and design ways to answer them in unorthodox ways. The project started as a pilot and is now in several different schools. Levin graduated and went to Oxford University in England, where he is now a senior. Here’s a piece he wrote about what students really need in school.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Live online chat at 1 p.m. today

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 9:39am

I’ll be doing a live chat on washingtonpost.com at 1 p.m. today, so if you have any questions or comments about anything in education (or even marginally related), send them in here:

http://live.washingtonpost.com/the-answer-sheet-20140416.html#submit-question

Here’s a transcript of the first chat, and here is the transcript of last week’s.

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Categories: Education News

A few ‘SAT words,’ defined

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 12:01am

So, we knew you were wondering. What are the definitions of those “SAT words”?

Here they are.

Obsequious: showing too great a willingness to serve or obey; fawning.

Enervation: the state of being deprived of strength, force, vigor.

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Categories: Education News

College Board releases preview of new SAT exam questions

Wed, 04/16/2014 - 12:01am

Attention, high school freshmen. If you’re planning to take the SAT in two years, you probably won’t need to memorize the definitions of words like “obsequious,” “propinquity,” “enervation” or “lachrymose.”

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Categories: Education News

Virginia Intermont College says merger collapses, raising questions about its future

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 6:41pm

A struggling liberal arts college in southwestern Virginia said Tuesday its plan to merge with a larger university in Florida has collapsed.

Virginia Intermont College, in Bristol near the Tennessee border, reported 378 students in the fall term — an enrollment decline of 35 percent since 2010. One of many small private colleges that have faced recruiting troubles in recent years, Virginia Intermont had said in January that it intended to join forces with Webber International University, based in Babson Park, Fla. A memorandum of understanding had called for the merger to take effect in July.

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Categories: Education News

Options likely to remain open, but DCPS will not manage it

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 5:21pm

The District’s Options Public Charter School appears likely to continue operating at least through the end of the 2014-15 school year, but the city’s school system will not take over its management as previously hoped, D.C. government lawyers said in court Tuesday.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Testing resistance movement exploding around country

Tue, 04/15/2014 - 4:00am

The testing resistance movement is growing rapidly around the country and parents are opting out their children from high-stakes standardized tests in most states. What do test reformers want to accomplish? Monty Neill, executive director of FairTest, explains in this post. FairTest, or the National Center for Fair and Open Testing, is dedicated to eliminating the abuse and misuse of standardized tests.

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Categories: Education News

Bowser makes subtle change in D.C. school boundary position

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 7:50pm

It was a subtle change, striking out a two-word phrase. But when Muriel Bowser, the District’s Democratic nominee for mayor, made that alteration to her stated position on a proposed overhaul of the city’s public school boundaries, it highlighted the issue’s deep political implications.

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Categories: Education News

Why can’t his daughter take AP calculus?

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 4:05pm

Walter Fields’s 15-year-old daughter is a sophomore at Columbia High School in Maplewood, N.J. She scored advanced proficient on state math tests in middle school and received an A in algebra in eighth grade.

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Categories: Education News

Strauss: Guess where Florida is field testing its new standardized tests? (Not Florida)

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 3:21pm

Alberto M. Carvalho is the superintendent of the Miami-Dade County Public Schools in Florida, and was named the national 2014 Superintendent of the Year by the School Superintendents Association. He’s held that job for more than five years, having worked his way through the school district as a teacher, assistant principal, lobbyist and other positions.

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Categories: Education News

At Woodson high, suicide numbers too high to ignore

Mon, 04/14/2014 - 1:51pm

Parents, teachers and students at W. T. Woodson High School in Fairfax have been reeling in recent months after two students died from apparent suicide within days of each other. The two deaths are among six suspected suicides that have occurred among students at the school since 2011. No other school in Fairfax County has had such a high rate of suicide among its teen students.

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Categories: Education News
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