It’s not just math anymore, students are falling behind in history and civics too. A new report by independent, non-partisan research organization — the Pioneer Institute — says the state of US history and civics education is so abysmal that it makes “reading, mathematics and science achievement seem robust by comparison.” Washington state’s record isn’t any better. The state received a D grade from educational excellence organization, the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, for its quote “meager” US history standards.
To reverse this trend the Pioneer Institute report recommends a simple policy: require high school graduates to pass the US citizenship test. Ross Reynolds talks with Sandra Stotsky, professor of education reform and one of the authors of this report.
Twelve Washington school districts have formally announced they’ll apply to become charter school authorizers. Bellevue, Highline, Kent, Tacoma, Spokane and Port Townsend are among the districts seeking the power to approve charter school applications in their regions. Those districts met the State Board of Education's April 1 deadline for notices of intent to apply for authorizer status.
The first members of Washington state’s new Charter School Commission are due to be appointed Wednesday. The commission will be able to approve some of the 40 charter schools allowed under the law voters passed last fall.
This week we’ve been taking a closer look at the battle over how to improve state education. Today we get another perspective from Mary Lindquist, president of the state’s largest teachers' union, the Washington Education Association.
Former gubernatorial candidate Rob McKenna supported charter schools, and some are arguing that his grand old party is leading the way on education reform while democrats in Olympia simply tout old policy. Ross Reynolds talks with Tacoma News Tribune columnist Peter Callaghan.