Youth & Education

Tacoma teacher strike
9:41 am
Mon September 19, 2011

Tacoma teachers' strike keeps schools closed

TACOMA, Wash. — Schools are closed Monday for another day in Tacoma as negotiations continue between the school district and striking teachers.

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Tacoma teacher strike
8:43 pm
Thu September 15, 2011

Striking Tacoma teachers want contract solutions now, not later

Tacoma teachers picketing outside the court room where Judge Bryan Chushcoff ruled their strike was illegal and ordered them back to their classes. The teachers instead voted Thursday to stay out on strike.
Charla Bear KPLU

Tacoma schools will be closed again Friday after teachers voted on Thursday to stay out on strike. Friday will be their fourth day on the picket lines, despite a court order to return to their classrooms.

The teachers say that without a resolution to the basic contractual issues in the conflict, returning to class now would only prolong the turmoil, possibly for years.

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Tacoma teacher strike
3:00 pm
Thu September 15, 2011

Update: Tacoma teachers will stay on strike

Teachers were given high-fives and other encouragements as they left the Tacoma Dome where they voted overwhelmingly to continue striking.
Erin Hennessey KPLU

Teachers in Washington state's third-largest school district have voted overwhelmingly to remain on strike, in defiance of a judge's order that they return to work.

Some 93 percent of the nearly 1,600 Tacoma School District teachers meeting in the Tacoma Dome arena today said they wanted to continue picketing. The teachers walked out Tuesday.

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Education
1:24 pm
Thu September 15, 2011

Oregon universities avert SEIU strike

SALEM, Ore. – Negotiators have averted a potential strike at Oregon's seven public universities, at least for now. The Oregon University System and the union representing nearly 4,000 front-line employees agreed on a tentative two-year settlement early Thursday morning.

As the clock ticked past midnight, SEIU lead negotiator Marc Nisenfeld says it was clear the momentum was there for an agreement. So the bargaining team did everything they could to stay awake.

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Tacoma teacher strike
7:32 pm
Wed September 14, 2011

Update: Tacoma teachers to meet at picket lines to decide next step

(Go here for the latest developments of this story.)

Tacoma's striking teachers have decided to go back to the picket lines this morning rather than directly to their classes to decide on their next action, a union official clarified last night. (Editor's note: An earlier version of this story stated the teachers were rejecting the judge's orders. It's still unclear whether they will return to class or not.)

Tacoma Education Association (TEA) "certificated members should meet at their regular picket line locations as scheduled Thursday morning, as you heard from your picket captains," TEA president Andy Coons said in an email to union members.

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Tacoma teacher strike
5:30 pm
Wed September 14, 2011

Update: Tacoma teachers wait to decide whether to return to class

Leaders of the Tacoma teachers’ union say they will leave it up to the striking teachers to decide what to do with a judge’s order to return to the classroom tomorrow morning.

Andy Coons, president of the union, told teachers at a rally this afternoon that he would be contacting them possibly later today with options for them to decide on.

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Test scores
2:11 pm
Wed September 14, 2011

Washington students tops on SAT

Washington students seem to be putting their No. 2s to good use when it comes to the SAT test.
Krug6 Flickr

Washington students appear to be acing one test, the SAT test. 

Average scores were the highest in the nation among states where more than 50 percent of eligible students take the college-entrance exam.

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Tacoma teacher strike
6:01 am
Wed September 14, 2011

Strike day two: Tacoma district heading to court to end walkout

On day one, Tacoma teachers took to the sidewalks. Today, the district will take to the courts.
Associated Press

More than 28,000 kids are still locked out of their classrooms today, while school district officials head to court to force teachers back to work.

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Tacoma teacher strike
9:46 am
Tue September 13, 2011

Strike day one: Tacoma teachers begin picketing

(Twitter feed at bottom of story.)

TACOMA, Wash. — Teachers in Washington state's third-largest school district have begun picketing, hours after they overwhelmingly voted to walk away from the classroom.

The strike keeps 28,000 students at home.

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K-12 Education
6:16 pm
Mon September 12, 2011

Update: Union VP says she's proud of Tacoma teachers' vote to strike

Tacoma teachers grab their picket signs after voting with an 87 percent majority to boycott the district.
Tacoma Education Association

"It really had to come down to a strike ..." 

Tacoma schools will be closed to students tomorrow. Teachers voted to go on strike at their union meeting tonight. They expect to start picketing first at Lincoln High School at 6 a.m. Tuesday morning. 

“I’m so proud of our teachers – 87 percent of our teaching membership voted to strike. It’s that important to them to have a fair contract,” said Adrienne Dale, VP of Tacoma Education Association. “It’s very difficult for teachers to leave their classrooms because they’re in it for kids. So, it was a very powerful moment when the numbers came back.”

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Education
4:57 pm
Mon September 12, 2011

Strike vote nears at Oregon universities

SALEM, Ore. - Workers at Oregon’s seven state universities are nearing a possible strike authorization vote on Thursday. The union representing nearly four thousand higher ed workers issued a report Monday blasting the state's university system.

The SEIU accuses the Oregon University System of being top-heavy with administrators. The union also says the schools have gone on a building spree that means money that could fund services is now going to pay off construction debt.

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K-12 Education
2:00 pm
Mon September 12, 2011

Federal Way says putting more kids in advanced classes worked

As a high school senior last year, Shrae Hogan didn't want to take Advanced Placement courses, until a new district policy placed her in one. The district says AP exam results show the policy has been a success.
Charla Bear KPLU

Federal Way's attempt to push kids to the next level may have had some impact. Recent results of exams in advanced courses, the school district says, shows more kids did take the tests without lowering the percentage of passing scores.

Bottom line: More kids in advanced classes + more kids taking the exams and passing = more students who can handle harder classes than they might have taken on their own.

The district hopes that also means more kids will go to college.

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Education
5:00 am
Tue September 6, 2011

Back to school: Memories of junior high jitters

Seattle writer Tim Haywood laughs to avoid crying over memories of first day of junior high.
Erin Hennessey

Seattle writer Tim Haywood of Reflections of a shallow pond fame has the jitters. His youngest daughter is about to start middle school.  That brings up  memories of his own journey, 35 years ago, from elementary school to junior high. 

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Education
8:17 pm
Mon September 5, 2011

How to identify bad teachers: Ask a parent

Ann Cone of Post Falls, Idaho decided to enroll her son Dalton, 9, in a neighboring school district to get better teachers.
Jessica Robinson Northwest News Network

Most people can remember a favorite teacher – the one who got you love a certain book or made science class exciting. But you may also remember that bad teacher – the one who made your life miserable. And according to the studies, those teachers may have had just as big an impact on your education.

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Education
8:13 pm
Mon September 5, 2011

Mentor programs reach fraction of young teachers

Eric Phillips welcomes mentor Karen Herinckx into his classroom at Judson Middle School in Salem.
Chris Lehman Northwest News Network

SALEM, Ore. - An old proverb goes like this: "Each one, teach one." It means that everyone is responsible for passing along knowledge to the next generation. That's true in many professions. A senior surgeon will demonstrate a high-stakes operation to a young medical student. A veteran fire-fighter will show the ropes to a fresh-faced rookie.

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