Youth & Education

Stories about education focused on the Pacific Northwest, with many from KPLU's Youth & Education reporter, Kyle Stokes.

The interim head of Seattle Public Schools says she doesn't want the job permanently.

Susan Enfield made the surprise announcement Friday in a letter to staff and community members.

A man accused of taking money from a Seattle School District program pleaded not guilty Thursday to theft charges. KOMO Radio reports Silas Potter remains in jail following his arraignment.

Katie Kennedy

Hundreds of high school students are rallying at the University of Washington in protest of cuts to education. They walked out of their classrooms this afternoon and marched or rode buses to the University District. 

Students from at least five high schools, including Ingraham and Nathan Hale - and even a few students from Tacoma - have banded together for the protest. 

OLYMPIA, Wash. - Washington Governor Chris Gregoire wants to put teeth into a statewide system for evaluating teachers and principals. In Olympia Tuesday, Gregoire said she'll ask the Legislature to approve a new four tier performance rating. It would go from unsatisfactory, to basic, to proficient, and top out at distinguished.

The governor wants the law to require educators in the two lowest tiers improve within a year or be fired.

Faye Rasmussen / Shoreline School Distict

iPads are probably on a lot of people’s wish lists this holiday season, including teachers. Educators say the tablet devices allow them to reach students with learning difficulties in ways they’ve never been able to before. 

The Seattle School Board may ease the district's policy on selling junk food in vending machines to help student groups raise money for activities.

BlueTurf / Flickr

Boise State University’s football program joins the Big East in 2013. That’s the official word from league and university officials today .

Teachers across the state plan to protest cuts to public schools on the first day of the legislature’s special session to shore up the budget.

Hundreds of educators will rally in Olympia on Monday, Nov. 28. Even more teachers will deliver their concerns virtually.

Richard Wohl-Corbin

"...There are ideas out there other than cutting.”

College students will descend on Olympia today as the legislature kicks off a special session to tackle the state’s budget shortfall. Nearly a dozen schools have banded together to send busloads of students to the capitol. 

montchr / Flickr photo

The ability to smoke a cigarette on college campuses is becoming a subject for the history books.

Several colleges in the Pacific Northwest have banned smoking – not only in and around buildings as required by law – but everywhere on school grounds.

It’s been more than a quarter century since high school graduation requirements changed in our state. Now, the board of education has voted to increase credits in certain subjects. 

Some school administrators say the move is a step backward for other learning opportunities.  

Charla Bear / KPLU

Thousands of students across the state are taking the SAT this weekend.

The college entrance exam plays a big role in admissions, but a lot of students are poorly prepared for it. Some educators say an easy way to change that – and get students to gear up for college earlier – is to pay for sophomores or juniors to take a preliminary version of the test. 

Student achievement in Oregon and Washington isn't improving or declining, according to results released Tuesday by the National Assessment of Educational Progress.

The bi-annual "Nation's Report Card" shows Oregon 4th graders scoring just below the national average on both Reading and Math. Oregon 8th graders are statistically tied with the nation as a whole. Christine Miles with the Oregon Department of Education says the results are basically flat.

The Regents of Washington State University are considering a Martin Stadium upgrade project that would cost an estimated $80 million.

When Oregon State University defeated Washington State University in college football last Saturday, it did so with five team members who had been heavily recruited by WSU.

“They loved Washington State, loved everything about it, their parents were crazy about it. They ended up going to Oregon State—now this is not Oregon, Oregon State, primarily because of their facilities,” says Bill Moos, WSU's director of intercollegiate athletics.

Paula Wissel / KPLU

King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg has brought felony theft charges against former Seattle Public Schools manager Silas Potter Jr. and two associates, David A. Johnson and Lorrie Sorensen.

Potter was at the center of a financial scandal that led to the firing last March of former Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johsnon and Seattle Public Schools Chief Financial Officer Don Kennedy.

The unemployment rate for teens and young adults in Washington is one of the highest in the nation – and it’s especially tough on high school dropouts. That’s why state education leaders are trying to ramp up an effort to help students get diplomas and jobs or college placements at the same time.

It's been eight months since the Seattle Public Schools financial scandal was first uncovered, and after a full criminal investigation, King County prosecutors plan to bring charges of felony theft against Silas Potter, Jr., the man at the center of the scandal.

The Tacoma school board has given a vote of confidence to Deputy Superintendent Carla Santorno. They’ve approved a plan to appoint her to two temporary posts as interim superintendant. That puts her in a strong position to take on that role permanently a year and a half from now.

Waddell & Reed

It's a museum on wheels! The traveling World War I exhibition, dubbed the "Honoring Our History Tour", rolls into Seattle this weekend on a custom, 18 wheel truck.

Charla Bear / KPLU

Students in a Federal Way Public School taught a Hollywood actor a little about STEM education. Danny Glover visited a science, technology, engineering and math school to learn about innovations in public education. 

KENT, Wash. — Actor Danny Glover is in Kent to visit a program that helps low income and minority children gain science, math and technology skills. The visit was planned to help him prepare for a new TV role playing a professor who works with kids gifted in math and science.

Washington STEM, which promotes science, technology, engineering and math education in the state, brought Glover to meet with teachers and students on Tuesday at the Technology Access Foundation, an alternative school in the Federal Way school district.

Charla Bear / KPLU

“We want them to expand their palates ..."

When you hear the words “school lunch,” it’s doubtful you think of mouth-watering cuisine. A group of gourmet chefs in Seattle wants to change that.

They’re developing recipes fit for foodies that can be served in the city’s public elementary schools. 

El patojo / Flickr

What do coffee drinkers and teachers have in common?

A shared passion to educate local school kids. At least, that’s what the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Starbucks are counting on. The two mega-institutions have teamed up to help King County public school teachers get money for unfunded classroom projects.

PULLMAN, Wash. — Any Washington State University student caught trespassing, damaging property or drinking under age can expect to pay a $100 fine.

Trinity Presbyterian Church

Thousands of students in Tacoma are behind in school, according to state tests that show they’re not meeting grade-level expectations. City leaders say if adults in the community pitch in just one hour a week, it could help these kids catch up.

The school year just started last month and chances are a lot of kids have already missed a day or two of class. Educators say that’s a huge problem since attendance is one of the biggest indicators of whether students will graduate.

Now, some new efforts are underway to get kids to school ... one involves famous people. 

OLYMPIA, Wash. – Washington schools chief Randy Dorn has defied a request by the governor to provide a list of new education budget cuts. Instead, Dorn sent Governor Chris Gregoire a letter that explains why he told his staff not to respond to her request.

A new study from the group Complete College America says that despite years of increasing enrollments at colleges around the country, the number of students finishing college is stagnant.

Tom Woodward / flickr

The Seattle City Council voted Monday to provide high-speed Internet to low-income students for less than $10 a month. The Great Student Initiative is expected to help 16,000 of the 47,000 students in Seattle Public Schools who are on the free lunch program.

Longtime ABC news reporter and anchor Ted Koppel accepted the 2011 Edward R. Murrow Award from Washington State University Friday night.

When Ted Koppel wrapped up a press availability with members of the news media Friday, some younger members of the press corps gave him a round of applause. Koppel admonished those reporters for doing so; reporters, he said, never applaud at the end of a press conference.