Education

We cover how our residents are growing and learning, starting from pre-K, through higher education, and beyond, into adulthood. 

Coverage of education in western Pennsylvania on 90.5 WESA is supported by a generous grant from
The Grable Foundation.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

More than 100 Pittsburgh students marched out of their school Friday and stood in Market Square for 13 minutes in memory of the people who died 19 years ago in Colorado's Columbine High School Shooting.

Ryan Devlin / Submitted Photo

For a month last summer, U.S. teachers worked alongside their Ethiopian counterparts to create lesson plans, PowerPoints and videos to give students in the U.S. a more nuanced understanding of the people and customs of Ethiopia.

That curriculum, called Teach Africa, is now being piloted in classrooms across the region.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

The Pittsburgh Public Schools board approved three employee contracts Wednesday night, more than a month after a planned teacher and support staff strike was averted.

Senate OKs Anti-Hazing Bill Drafted After Penn State Death

Apr 18, 2018
Gene J. Puskar / AP

Criminal penalties for hazing would become more severe under a bill — approved Wednesday by the Pennsylvania Senate — that was inspired by the death last year of a Penn State pledge after a night of heavy drinking.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

A new contract for Pittsburgh Public Schools teachers was accepted by 90 percent of voting members Wednesday night.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Remake Learning began in Pittsburgh 10 years ago to help adults understand how the digital age has changed education and how to best prepare kids for the future.

Gene J. Puskar / AP

A Pennsylvania school district has given its teachers small wooden baseball bats as a reminder to fight a school shooter with any weapon available should other options fail.

The superintendent of the Millcreek Township School District says the 16-inch bats are primarily symbolic, but the district did want to have a "consistent tool" for all teachers should they need to fight and attacker.

Courtesy Photo

Several Fayette County students are in Washington D.C. this week to showcase projects they have been working on in their school’s “Fab Lab.”

GoogleMaps

A Pennsylvania school district has canceled an active-shooter training event over concerns raised about "violent, homophobic and anti-Muslim" social media posts by the company conducting it.

More than 260 parents had registered for the event planned by the North Allegheny School District.

The event was intended to show parents the type of security training staffers receive. It was canceled after some parents raised concerns about Pittsburgh-based contractor INPAX, which has worked with the district for years. The parents cited posts they called "inappropriate."

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

After more than two decades of renting space in in other school buildings, a nonprofit that educates children with special needs is now building a permanent space to house its schools for children with autism and who are deaf.

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Officials say a Pennsylvania high school rifle team has received thousands of dollars in donations since the school board refused a grant from the National Rifle Association.

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A Pennsylvania school board has decided to turn down a $4,730 grant from the National Rifle Association for new rifles for the school's rifle team.

The Pocono Record reports that the Stroudsburg School Board voted 6-2 Monday night against the NRA grant.

Board member Merlyn Clarke cited the organization's stands on some issues and asked why the board should "promote a gun culture that has nothing to do with our rifle club."

Schools Encourage Girls To Get Involved In Science, Tech

Mar 27, 2018
Charlie Riedel / AP

Don't bring that "a woman's place is in the kitchen" kind of stuff around Jessica Perfetto.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Moon Area High School was one of more than a dozen local schools to receive a threat in the weeks following a school shooting that left 17 dead in Parkland, Fla

PA District Arms Teachers With Rocks In Case Of School Shooter

Mar 24, 2018
Google Maps

A rural school district in eastern Pennsylvania is arming teachers and students with buckets of rocks as a last resort should an armed intruder burst in, the superintendent said Friday.

Every classroom in the district about 90 miles northwest of Philadelphia has a 5-gallon bucket of river stones, said Blue Mountain School District Superintendent David Helsel.

"We always strive to find new ways to keep our students safe," Helsel told The Associated Press in a telephone interview, adding that the rocks are one small part of the district's overall security plan.

Google Maps / Provided Photo

The Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh announced two elementary school mergers and one closure over the weekend.

Church leaders report enrollment has dropped by 50 percent since 2000. The district remains the fourth largest school system in Pennsylvania, serving about 17,000 students and employing nearly 1,500 teachers.

Nicholas Vaskov, a spokesperson for the Diocese, said the cost of tuition and fewer people identifying with religion could be factors.

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Teachers in the South Butler County School District will not be in their classrooms Friday, according to union spokesperson Brooke Witt.

Duolingo / Provided Photo

One of the world’s most uncommonly mastered languages can now be introduced to learners in five minute daily increments.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Officials at a Pennsylvania high school say they will issue detentions to more than 200 students who walked out of school as part of a nationwide protest against gun violence.

90.5 WESA

A group of Pennsylvania lawmakers and environmental advocates are trying to lower the lead levels in schools.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Standing on a platform in front of hundreds of her peers who attend Allderdice High School in Squirrel Hill, freshman Sophia Levin said she didn’t want to be the next victim of gun violence.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Meals in schools changed about five years ago when the U.S. Department of Agriculture issued standards that said schools had to reduce sodium, saturated fat, and trans fats from meals in order to be reimbursed through the National School Lunch program.

Mike Stewart / AP

The National Rifle Association has awarded more than $237,000 in grants to 25 Pennsylvania schools in recent years, according to an Associated Press analysis.

The NRA Foundation grants went to school programs including the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps and rifle teams. More than 80 percent of the grants were provided as equipment rather than cash.

Only a fraction of Pennsylvania's 500 school districts received awards between 2010 and 2016.

Carnegie Mellon University / Provided Photo

Carnegie Mellon University’s Board of Trustees unanimously agreed to name Farnam Jahanian as the school's 10th president.

Jahanian, a nationally recognized computer scientist, was named interim president in June after the sudden resignation of former president Subra Suresh. Suresh led CMU for four years and is now the new president of Nanyang Technological University Singapore.

Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh Public Schools teachers and support staff are reviewing a summary of proposed changes to their collective bargaining contract including pay raises, new health care benefits, changes to teacher scheduling and sick leave. 

Robert F. Bukaty / AP

A Pennsylvania court has ruled that a teacher who retired before same-sex marriage was legalized is entitled to health care benefits for his husband.

PennLive.com reports that Gateway School District in suburban Pittsburgh denied the man's request to retroactively sign up for spousal benefits when he married his longtime partner in 2014. He had retired in 2013, before same-sex marriage was legally recognized in Pennsylvania.

Amy Sisk / 90.5 WESA

A strike by Pittsburgh Public Schools teachers has been averted just days before members of the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers had planned to walk out.

Chris Knight / AP

Pennsylvania's treasurer is starting up a program that could eventually provide educational grants for all children born in this state, beginning with $100 to get it started when they are born.

Amy Sisk / 90.5 WESA

The union representing 2,400 Pittsburgh Public Schools teachers announced Monday morning that it plans to go on strike Friday.

Amy Sisk / 90.5 WESA

Negotiators for Pittsburgh's teachers union and school district wrapped up a marathon bargaining session late Friday night without a deal in place, but with no imminent plans for a strike.

Nina Esposito-Visgitis, president of the Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers, said the two sides made progress Friday. They will meet again this week for another negotiating session.

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