Higher Education News

Harvard Officials, Accused of Racial Bias, Defend Their Admissions Policy

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 19, 2018 - 7:10pm
After the first week of a trial in which the university’s use of race in admissions decisions has been under attack, the strategies of each side are starting to come into focus.
Categories: Higher Education News

2 Former Officials at Fort Valley State U. Are Charged in Prostitution Investigation

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 19, 2018 - 4:28pm
Warrants were issued for the arrest of the Georgia university’s former chief legal counsel and a former executive assistant to the president.
Categories: Higher Education News

One College Used Football to Win Fame. But What Has It Lost?

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 19, 2018 - 2:00pm
On countless TV screens, Independence Community College stands for second chances. But to many people who live here, watching the show that made their town famous is like staring into a broken mirror.
Categories: Higher Education News

U. of Southern California Settles With Patients of Gynecologist Accused of Abuses for $215 Million

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 19, 2018 - 12:47pm
Each patient who shares details of the harm she suffered could receive up to $250,000, the university said on Friday.
Categories: Higher Education News

Harvard on Trial

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 10:00pm
A trial over the race-conscious admissions policy of Harvard University could have lasting implications for selective colleges. Here is detailed background on the case and coverage of the trial as it unfolded, in a federal court in Boston.
Categories: Higher Education News

What Happened After 2 Colleges Banned Hard Liquor at Fraternities

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 7:28pm
Last month the North-American Interfraternity Conference called for such a ban at all its member chapters. Here’s how such a policy has worked at Mizzou and Purdue.
Categories: Higher Education News

At Harvard Trial, a Dissection of Student Applications and Some Testy Exchanges

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 5:24pm
Admissions officials defended their process in the fourth day of a trial in which the university has been accused of discriminating against Asian-American applicants.
Categories: Higher Education News

Transitions: Naval Postgraduate School Selects New President, New Provost Named at Cabrini U.

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 4:25pm
The next leader of the Naval Postgraduate School has been president of College of DuPage since 2016. Cabrini's new provost comes from Cottey College.
Categories: Higher Education News

How This Sociologist’s Research Led a State to Abolish the Death Penalty

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 4:00pm
After years of debate, a state supreme court’s ruling gave “great weight” to Katherine Beckett’s analysis of race in criminal justice.
Categories: Higher Education News

3 Takeaways From Harvard’s Alumni Interview Handbook

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 3:18pm
The document, made public in a lawsuit challenging the university’s race-conscious admissions process, suggests that interviewers steer clear of questions about test scores.
Categories: Higher Education News

#RethinkSchool: Minding the Gap

U.S. Department of Education Blog | Ed.gov - October 18, 2018 - 1:33pm

As the former Superintendent of Education for South Carolina, I worked to transform the information provided and options offered to students and parents. The goal was that each student would leave high school confident about what comes afterwards. While a four-year college degree is the path of choice for many students, many would prefer pursuing vocational experiences and learning marketable skills. Each student is unique and their interests and talents vary accordingly. As educators, we need to embrace these differences and help our students select the path that is best aligned with their skills and aspirations. For some, that is a traditional four year degree, for others, an associate’s degree, or an industry credential.

With this in mind, I approached the “Back to School” tour with the goal of highlighting programs, schools and institutions that are “Rethinking” their approach to career and technical education.

Deputy Secretary Zais visited Anoka –Hennepin secondary technical education program and observed many of the student taking core classes at their high school and technical/manufacturing courses at STEP.

During the week of September 9, 2018, senior staff from the U.S. Department of Education traveled across the country on the Back to School Tour, visiting schools in 46 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. I kicked off my part of the tour at the Anoka Ramsey Technical College and Secondary Technical Education Program (STEP) in Anoka, Minnesota.  This is a promising partnership between a local community college and the Anoka-Hennepin School District. It is designed to offer high school sophomores, juniors, and seniors the opportunity to explore careers, fulfill high school academic requirements, and earn college credit at no cost. The program is specifically designed for students interested in preparing for highly skilled technical careers. Jessica Lipa, the Director of Career and Technical Education for Anoka-Hennepin Schools, led me through a tour of the nearly 20 different technical career options available. One of the classrooms I visited was a Machine Technology class where the students operated a 5-axis milling machine, one of the most advanced models in the field. Anoka-Hennepin Schools and Anoka Ramsey Technical College have done a commendable job in bringing together the education leaders with members of their business community to create programs aligned with local workforce needs.

Deputy Secretary Zais shakes hands with students at Summit Academy in Minneapolis, MN.

My next stop was a visit to Summit Academy OIC. This is an accredited vocational school located in northern Minneapolis. Mr. Louis King II is the President and CEO. Shortly after my arrival, he shared with me that Summit operates under the mantra “the best social service program in the world is a job”. He has built the academy’s programs around that concept. Summit Academy is “Rethinking” school by offering accredited, 20-week vocational trainings in the construction, healthcare and IT fields. Most recently, Summit Academy has added a graduation equivalency degree (GED) program to meet the needs of their most underserved community members. Summit serves nearly 1,000 people every year, with about 80% students of color.

While touring the facility, I realized that Mr. King and the team at Summit Academy are providing adult learners with an opportunity to gain in-demand skills that will help them enter the workforce immediately. In fact, through partnerships with local businesses, Summit is usually able to place graduates with local employers earning more than $16.00 per hour. After the tour, I participated in a roundtable discussion with some of the students, staff and faculty of Summit Academy, as well as with several elected officials and other members of the community. It was heartening to see so many community leaders come together with the shared goal of preparing underserved populations for a high-paying career.

Our third stop was a visit to the Des Moines Area Community College’s (DMACC) Career Academy at the Hunziker Center in Aimes, Iowa. The DMACC Career Academy provides hands-on technical experience and college credit to area high school students in subjects such as: automotive collision and technology, computer programming and cyber security, diesel technology, fire science and horticulture. After touring several classrooms, I participated in a roundtable with students and faculty. While it was a thoroughly engaging discussion, I was most impressed with the amount of in-field experience possessed by each faculty member present. At one point, Dr. Robert Denson, the President of DMACC, proudly stated that he specifically hired for in-field experience, which he believes pays dividends in the classroom.

After leaving Iowa, my next visit was to Omaha Bryan High School in Nebraska. Before arriving at the high school, I met Matt Blomstedt, Nebraska’s Commissioner of Education, and his Deputy, Deborah Frison, for lunch at a local restaurant. The Commissioner was kind enough to update me on the innovative programs at Omaha Bryan High School and discuss the state of education in Nebraska more broadly.  While I certainly wish he could have joined us for the school visit, I was honored that he and his team took the time to meet with me while I was in their state.

Omaha Bryan High School has built its curriculum around 16 career clusters, designed to equip students with the skills necessary to be successful in the modern work force. During the tour of the facility, I observed the facilities for the school’s urban agriculture academy and viewed their progress in constructing a new warehouse for their Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics Academy. Throughout my visit, I was joined by Dr. Cheryl Logan, the Superintendent of Omaha Public Schools, and Mr. John Witzel, the President of the Nebraska State Board of Education. We had an illuminating discussion about how Omaha, the largest city in a state without charter schools, still found ways to embrace a form of choice. Omaha Public Schools accomplished this by working with neighboring school districts to allow students and families to choose the school that was right for them.

The fifth stop on my tour was at Madison High School in Madison, South Dakota. The town of Madison has a population of slightly more than 7,200 people. It’s located in farm country. Upon arriving, I was greeted by the school principal, Adam Shaw, and the state’s interim Secretary of Education, Mary Stadick-Smith.  Together, we viewed a welding classroom that relies on community partners to supply trained professionals who teach students advanced welding techniques. The class can also count for college credit. We then visited a culinary arts classroom where students can earn a certificate allowing them to work in most culinary institutions and restaurants. Overall, I was most impressed with how this small community effectively used its resources by leveraging relationships between the schools and local businesses.

Deputy Secretary Zais visited with students and administrators at New Tech High School in Sioux Falls, North Dakota.

For my final visit, I toured New Technology High School in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. While this school is operated by the Sioux Falls School District, New Technology High School uses their own school reform model and curriculum which highlights cross-discipline study and project-based learning. Secretary Smith and I were joined by Sue Augilar, President of the South Dakota Board of Education Standards. Together, we visited a BioLit (Biology and English II) classroom where we viewed presentations on a project called “Mystery, We Wrote.” The project requires the students to use deductive reasoning, as well as actual forensic methods, to solve a criminal case. The students are then asked to write and perform a skit based around the project. I was most impressed with the level of commitment demonstrated by the students and their willingness to tackle complicated, cross-discipline study. New Technology High School should be proud of their students. They are terrific ambassadors for their school and a testament to the program.

I am honored to have had the privilege of visiting so many amazing schools and programs. Each is an example of how it is possible to rethink school to meet the needs of all students. The most recent survey by the U.S. Census Bureau states found that about 33% of American adults have a four year degree. We have a duty to the other 67% to ensure that they are prepared for careers in the modern workforce. The schools I visited, like many others around the country, stand at the forefront of this innovative and flexible approach to learning that is connected to the world of work.  I am encouraged to know that others across the country are also embracing these more personalized approaches.

 

Mick Zais is the Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Education.

Continue the conversation on Facebook or Twitter.

Note: This is a post in our #RethinkSchool series. The series features innovative schools and stories from students, parents and educators highlighting efforts across the United States to rethink school. The #RethinkSchool series presents examples of approaches schools, educators, families and others are using to rethink school in their individual and unique circumstances. Blog articles provide insights on the activities of schools, programs, grantees and other education stakeholders to promote continuing discussion of educational innovation and reform. The Department of Education does not endorse any educational product, service, curriculum or pedagogy.

The post #RethinkSchool: Minding the Gap appeared first on ED.gov Blog.

Categories: Higher Education News

Why One Science Professor Has Students Write a Children’s Book

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 18, 2018 - 9:09am
A biologist lets students in his upper-level courses choose to write a book explaining complex concepts to kids instead of taking a final exam.
Categories: Higher Education News

Disenchanted Ph.D. Recipients, Take Solace: It Gets Better, New Research Suggests

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 17, 2018 - 10:01pm
Despite complaints that doctorates aren’t worth it nowadays, over time graduates say their programs prepared them well for their jobs, whether academic or nonacademic.
Categories: Higher Education News

What Factors Hold Back the Careers of Women and Faculty of Color? Columbia U. Went Looking for Answers

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 17, 2018 - 10:01pm
The university has released detailed data on how salary, workload, work-life balance, and climate issues affect scholars’ experience on campus.
Categories: Higher Education News

#RethinkSchool: Excelling in the Classroom, Leading the Charge to Stop Bullying

U.S. Department of Education Blog | Ed.gov - October 17, 2018 - 4:07pm

Students at Ronald Wilson Reagan College Preparatory High School in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, were anxiously waiting for Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education Frank Brogan to arrive when he walked through the doors on Tuesday, Sept. 11, as part of his Rethink School back-to-school tour. Brogan and other U.S. Department of Education leaders traveled to more than 40 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands to highlight the Trump Administration’s key education initiatives.

Brogan was visiting Ronald Reagan Prep to learn about some of the innovative education approaches at the high school and to hear about its anti-bullying program, which is student led and student focused.

On the way to the library where Brogan sat down with students to talk about their anti-bullying program, he passed through hallways that came to life with stunning pieces of artwork by students. The school deems the arts critical to student growth and development—just as important as math, English and science.

Clearly, the group of students who were chatting with Brogan were proud of their school, a nationally recognized high school by U.S. News & World Report, Newsweek and the Washington Post. The school offers a comprehensive IB curriculum and is the only four-year full-IB high school in Milwaukee.

Despite their rigorous coursework and demanding schedules, these students take time to serve as leaders in the anti-bullying program. They want their school to be a safe, caring environment where students can focus on learning and take full advantage of educational opportunities that some of their friends don’t have.

Frank Brogan hosted a roundtable discussion at Ronald Wilson Reagan College Preparatory High School in Milwaukee, WI and discussed the anti-bullying model used within the Milwaukee Public School District.

During a roundtable, Brogan listened to students talk about the program and how it’s making a difference at their school. Called “Reagan Link Crew leaders,” juniors and seniors are paired with incoming freshmen the summer before the latter enter high school. The goal is to serve as mentors and partners—big brothers and big sisters—to help make the transition from middle school to high school easier for freshmen so they can focus on learning in a welcoming, non-threatening environment. The crew leaders even help freshmen study for tests and with homework.

Brogan praised students for their work to curb bullying at their school and for stepping up to take on such an important issue. He also gave them some words of advice. He warned them to be careful of what they put on social media and how their negative online posts could haunt them years later, especially in their careers.

It’s all about judgment,” Brogan said. “Bullying destroys lives. Look at the number of young people we have lost to suicide because of bullying.” Addressing social media, he said, “Once you hit ‘send,’ you can’t take back those words.”

Alanna Bielawski, a senior at Ronald Reagan Prep, said, “When kids are bullied, they can’t learn. They are pre-occupied with their safety. Their minds aren’t open to learning if they feel they aren’t in a safe environment.”

That message was echoed by students throughout discussions with Brogan, who was joined at the roundtable by Milwaukee Superintendent Keith Posley, Regional Superintendent Jennifer Smith, Principal Mike Roemer and other local and school educators.

One student said, “We are all connected, so we look for ways to get all kids involved in something here at school. We want freshmen to know that we care and that we are paying attention to them. If they start missing classes or school, we let them know that we miss seeing them. Knowing that someone is paying attention to you and genuinely wants you to succeed cuts down on feelings of isolation and bullying.”

Kudos to Ronald Reagan Prep for creating an inclusive environment where students are excelling in the classrooms and leading the charge to stop bullying.

 

Jo Ann Webb is a member of the press team at the U.S. Department of Education.

Continue the conversation on Facebook or Twitter.

Note: This is a post in our #RethinkSchool series. The series features innovative schools and stories from students, parents and educators highlighting efforts across the United States to rethink school. The #RethinkSchool series presents examples of approaches schools, educators, families and others are using to rethink school in their individual and unique circumstances. Blog articles provide insights on the activities of schools, programs, grantees and other education stakeholders to promote continuing discussion of educational innovation and reform. The Department of Education does not endorse any educational product, service, curriculum or pedagogy.

The post #RethinkSchool: Excelling in the Classroom, Leading the Charge to Stop Bullying appeared first on ED.gov Blog.

Categories: Higher Education News

U. of Southern Maine Pulls Course That Gave Students Credit for Protesting Against Kavanaugh

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 17, 2018 - 3:09pm
The one-credit course, which bused students to Washington, D.C., was offered by a retired economics professor who has now been banned from teaching.
Categories: Higher Education News

How Harvard’s Admissions Office Courts Donors and Low-Income Students

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 17, 2018 - 11:44am
The third day of testimony in a trial challenging the university’s admissions policies revealed new details about the once-secretive process. Harvard has been accused of discriminating against Asian-American applicants.
Categories: Higher Education News

In 3rd Day of Harvard Trial, Admissions Dean Is Asked About Donors’ Clout

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 17, 2018 - 11:44am
Emails between university officials that were shown in a federal courtroom offered a glimpse into how being connected to a major donor might improve a high-school student’s chance of admission to the prestigious institution.
Categories: Higher Education News

At Harvard Admissions Trial, a Dean Defends Decades of His Work

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 16, 2018 - 4:39pm
William R. Fitzsimmons, who has led the university’s admissions program for more than 30 years, was questioned on Tuesday by lawyers in a case that is challenging Harvard’s race-conscious policy.
Categories: Higher Education News

There’s a Newfound Enthusiasm for Women’s Colleges. But Can They Keep It Going?

Chronicle of Higher Education - October 16, 2018 - 3:42pm
Social changes like the #MeToo movement have opened students’ eyes to the benefits of women’s colleges, their leaders say.
Categories: Higher Education News

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