Education


Senate school safety committee recommends changes to ESPLOST

The state senate’s school-safety panel recommends adding hundreds of mental health professionals, and expanding school districts’ taxing power to pay for them. In its final meeting Tuesday, the Georgia Senate School Safety Study Committee unanimously voted on a plan to present to the State Legislature in January. The proposal’s biggest emphasis is crisis prevention. “Our...


‘Basic needs aren’t being met’: Schools run behind on maintenance

‘Basic needs aren’t being met’: Schools run behind on maintenance

LaTonya Hill is certain her classroom is making her sick. The Dresden Elementary School special education teacher has spent more than two weeks out of her classroom battling sinus and upper respiratory infections she said were not common before she began working at the school in 2016. At first, she attributed the health problems to working with children who carry a lot of germs.
Georgia university creates scholarship for hurricane-damaged counties

Georgia university creates scholarship for hurricane-damaged counties

Georgia Southwestern State University announced a program Monday that will offer scholarships starting next fall for first-year students in 56 southwest Georgia counties impacted by Hurricane Michael. “Hurricane Michael devastated much of our state, with Southwest Georgia taking the brunt of the impact,” said the university’s president, Neal Weaver.
Cherokee students arrested on weapons charges

Cherokee students arrested on weapons charges

Cherokee County schools sent out a message to parents Monday saying that two River Ridge High School students were arrested on weapons charges. The students, whose names are not being disclosed due to privacy laws, were charged by the school police for possessing a weapon on a school campus.
DeKalb Schools’ graduations under contract for week after school ends

DeKalb Schools’ graduations under contract for week after school ends

Any hope parents had of persuading DeKalb County School District officials to change the district’s graduation plans, currently expected for the week after school ends, are mostly moot. District officials signed a contract on Oct. 12 to hold 2019 high school graduation May 28 to June 2, the week after school ends.
Gwinnett public schools enrollment inches upward

Gwinnett public schools enrollment inches upward

Despite census projections showing Gwinnett County as one of the fastest growing counties in the state, enrollment numbers in the school district have increased by less than 1 percent year over year. In August, the school system was optimistic that it would surpass 180,000 students.
Punishment of Brookwood band pranksters may never be revealed

Punishment of Brookwood band pranksters may never be revealed

The fate of the four Brookwood High band members who pulled a racially charged prank during the halftime show last Friday will never become public knowledge. Federal laws to protect student records won’t allow school systems to reveal names of students who commit school infractions or the punishments. On Friday, Nov.
Kennesaw State University, student group settles lawsuit

Kennesaw State University, student group settles lawsuit

Kennesaw State and a student group that sued the university over its campus speech guidelines have agreed on a settlement. The group, Young Americans for Freedom, said university administrators intentionally made it difficult for the students to bring a guest speaker to campus because of the group and speaker’s conservative beliefs. The lawsuit was filed in March.
Parkview educator named Gwinnett Teacher of the Year

Parkview educator named Gwinnett Teacher of the Year

Gwinnett County Public Schools named Parkview High’s Heidi Campbell its top teacher Thursday during the annual Teacher of the Year banquet at the Infinite Energy Forum in Duluth. Described as a teacher who never runs out of smiles or tires of offering a friendly “hello,” Campbell was first the 2019 Gwinnett County High School Teacher of the Year.
Morehouse College ignored student’s sexual harassment complaint, lawsuit says

Morehouse College ignored student’s sexual harassment complaint, lawsuit says

Morehouse College administrators did little to help a student who complained a faculty member sexually harassed him, according to a new lawsuit. The alleged victim was a first-year student at the Atlanta college when he went on a study-abroad trip to Brazil in May 2015 with other students and faculty when he said the harassment began.
Burgess-Peterson teacher named APS ‘Teacher of the Year’

Burgess-Peterson teacher named APS ‘Teacher of the Year’

Atlanta Public Schools gave its Teacher of the Year award to a fourth-grade teacher at Burgess-Peterson Elementary School.  Tracey Pendley was announced as this year’s winner of the “District Excellence in Teaching Award” on Wednesday.  She’s taught fourth grade at Burgess-Peterson for four years.
Georgia Tech couple violated nepotism rules, report says

Georgia Tech couple violated nepotism rules, report says

An employed couple at Georgia Tech violated the school’s nepotism policy, and concerns from colleagues that the wife assisted her husband in getting involved in a project went “mostly uninvestigated” for about a year, says a report released Wednesday by state officials.
Gwinnett elects first minority school board member; passes bond

Gwinnett elects first minority school board member; passes bond

Everton Blair discovered before 11 p.m. Tuesday that he had made history as a Gwinnett County Board of Education candidate. The 26-year-old Shiloh High graduate won the District 4 seat, making him the first black and the youngest board member ever. Voter counts are still being certified, but Blair has done the math.
Enrollment a record high at Georgia college system

Enrollment a record high at Georgia college system

Nearly 329,000 students are getting educations this fall at the University System of Georgia, a record high enrollment, officials announced Wednesday. The enrollment is a 1.1 percent increase from the prior year, according to its data. Much of the increase comes from Georgia Tech, where enrollment is up 11 percent, to nearly 33,000 students.
Cobb unofficial school board results: two seats to Democrats

Cobb unofficial school board results: two seats to Democrats

Republicans remained in control of the Cobb County school board, though Democrats apparently picked up two seats, to bring their number to three out of seven members. Challenger Charisse Davis trailed two-term incumbent Scott Sweeney until the final 5 percent of votes came in.
Fulton safety plan includes hiring 16 police officers for elementary schools

Fulton safety plan includes hiring 16 police officers for elementary schools

A Fulton County Schools safety committee recommended the district hire 16 more school police officers and invest in online mental health services, among other suggestions. The committee, which the district formed in July, gave its report to the school board Tuesday. The board could approve the plan at its Nov. 15 meeting.
Gwinnett BOE will have first member of color

Gwinnett BOE will have first member of color

Despite technical issues that led a Gwinnett County judge to order two Snellville voting precincts to stay open later than usual Tuesday, Gwinnett County Board of Education candidate Everton Blair discovered before 11 p.m. that he had made history. The 26-year-old Shiloh High graduate apparently won the District 4 seat making him the first black and the youngest member of the school board.
Republican state school Superintendent holds off Democratic challenger

Republican state school Superintendent holds off Democratic challenger

Republican state school Superintendent Richard Woods held a comfortable lead over Democrat Otha Thornton with only a handful of precincts yet to report early Wednesday.  Thornton led in metro Atlanta and a handful of other counties around the state, which otherwise went for the incumbent.
Straker retains school board seat in Clayton

Straker retains school board seat in Clayton

Benjamin Straker, Sr., a Democrat, will get a second term on the Clayton County Board of Education, winning easily in District 9. Kimberly E. Cowan-Keane, a Republican is a school teachers in the system and ran on her knowledge and experience.
Former Fulton school superintendent returns as interim

Former Fulton school superintendent returns as interim

A former Fulton County superintendent will return to lead the school district on an interim basis after the coming resignation of Jeff Rose. The Fulton school board Tuesday appointed Cindy Loe, who served as superintendent from 2008 to 2011, as the district’s interim superintendent.
Atlanta school board renews KIPP charter schools, leases in 5-4 vote

Atlanta school board renews KIPP charter schools, leases in 5-4 vote

The Atlanta school board -- by the thinnest of margins -- voted Monday to renew its authorization of charter schools run by KIPP Metro Atlanta and agreed to new leases for use of district buildings.  KIPP’s charter expires June 30, but Monday’s 5-4 school board vote allows the network of charter schools to continue to operate for another five years.
For Kennesaw State student, ending campus hazing is personal

For Kennesaw State student, ending campus hazing is personal

For Kennesaw State University senior Juliana Piazza, ending hazing on college campuses became very personal a year ago. On Feb. 4, 2017, her cousin, Timothy, died two days after a drinking party at a fraternity house at Penn State University, where he was a student. Tim was pledging to join Beta Theta Pi fraternity.
Fulton school board to appoint interim superintendent Tuesday

Fulton school board to appoint interim superintendent Tuesday

The Fulton County school board will vote on the appointment of an interim superintendent at its Tuesday meeting. The decision of who to tap as temporary leader comes after Fulton County Schools Superintendent Jeff Rose announced last month that he would resign at the end of the year. Rose cited personal reasons for leaving before the end of his contract, which expires Oct. 31, 2019.
Savannah State to lay off more than two dozen faculty members

Savannah State to lay off more than two dozen faculty members

Savannah State University is laying off 26 non-tenured faculty members at the end of the academic year, which it says is necessary to balance its financial books. The university’s enrollment is down for a second consecutive year, according to a news release posted on its website late Friday. Last fall, Savannah State had 4,429 students, a 10.6 percent drop from the prior year.
High school halftime show racial slur was planned prank

High school halftime show racial slur was planned prank

News that members of Brookwood High School’s marching band used instrument covers to spell out a racial slur upset and saddened many members of the Gwinnett County community. But when they found out the perpetrators were minorities, it was like a one-two punch.
Say what? Edu-speak obfuscates simple language

Say what? Edu-speak obfuscates simple language

Mark Twain said, “I never write ‘metropolis’ for seven cents when I can write ‘city’ and get paid the same.” He was no “educator.” They seem to be paid by the syllable. If you believe the way we talk and write reflects and shapes how we think and clear thinking is good, the language of education could scare you. Consider a few examples.
Clayton school board member wants to build on successes

Clayton school board member wants to build on successes

Benjamin Straker, Sr., a Democrat, is seeking his second term as a member of the Clayton County Board of Education for District 9, which is around the Rex community. He is facing Republican challenger Kimberly Cowan-Keane.
Clayton teacher challenges incumbent

Clayton teacher challenges incumbent

Kimberly E. Cowan-Keane, a Republican candidate for the Clayton County Board of Education, District 9, which is around the Rex community, is running against Democratic incumbent Benjamin Straker Sr. Cowan-Keane graduated from Clayton County public schools, went to college and eventually returned as a teacher.
Georgia identifies schools that need ‘additional support’

Georgia identifies schools that need ‘additional support’

Georgia’s first list of schools “in need of additional support” contains 103, the Georgia Department of Education said Friday. The six big metro Atlanta school districts have schools in this category, called Comprehensive Support & Improvement.
Q&A with Michael Thurmond on Paine College’s fight for its future

Q&A with Michael Thurmond on Paine College’s fight for its future

DeKalb County Government CEO Michael Thurmond was in Dallas, Tex. on Tuesday for a cause that’s personal for him: protecting the future of his alma mater, Paine College. Thurmond, Paine’s board chairman-elect, was part of a group that met with the Dallas-based Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS) accrediting commission.
Mothers of hazing victims to speak at Kennesaw State on Monday

Mothers of hazing victims to speak at Kennesaw State on Monday

They learned in the most tragic way the dangers of hazing. On Monday, they’re bringing their message to end the practice to Kennesaw State University. Rae Ann Gruver and Evelyn Piazza, mothers whose sons died in hazing incidents, are scheduled to speak Monday evening at the Convocation Center on the university’s Kennesaw campus.  The event begins at 7 p.m.
Texts, photos didn’t keep molestation suspect in custody before suicide

Texts, photos didn’t keep molestation suspect in custody before suicide

DeKalb County School District police interviewed Zachary Meadors the day allegations surfaced that he was having an inappropriate relationship with one of his Freedom Middle School students. On Oct. 12, Meadors told investigators he had spent time with the boy outside of the school, at his home and public parks.
Paine College announces new path to keep accreditation

Paine College announces new path to keep accreditation

Paine College, which began 136 years ago Thursday, announced a birthday present that is an important step for its future. The Augusta college has been granted “candidacy status” by the Texas-based Transnational Association of Christian Colleges and Schools (TRACS) accrediting commission, the college said Thursday in a press release.
Atlanta charter school leader picked to run APS charter office

Atlanta charter school leader picked to run APS charter office

Atlanta Public Schools picked the leader of one of the city’s oldest charter schools to head up the district’s charter office. Matt Underwood, executive director of Atlanta Neighborhood Charter School, has been chosen as executive director of  the APS Office of Innovation. The school board must give final approval for the hire, which it is slated to do Monday.
Survey finds child-care challenges undermine Georgia’s economy

Survey finds child-care challenges undermine Georgia’s economy

A new survey tries to put a cost on the disruption to Georgia’s economy and tax base when parents miss work or leave the workforce altogether due to challenges with child care. The bottom line comes from economist Tom Cunningham: $1.75 billion in lost economic activity and and $105 million in diminished state tax receipts.
Georgia State freshman’s class has record grade-point average

Georgia State freshman’s class has record grade-point average

Georgia State University’s freshman class had the best high school grades of any incoming class since the university began tracking such data. This semester’s first-year students had a 3.5 grade-point average, officials said in its annual report released Wednesday of the freshman class. Average SAT scores for incoming students have increased by 20 points, to about 1100.
Parr says teaching experience will help guide her

Parr says teaching experience will help guide her

In the race for the District 4 seat on the Cobb County Board of Education, which is north-central Cobb County, Cynthia “Cyndi” Rose Parr, a Democrat, is hoping to unseat David Chastain. Parr has dual bachelor’s degrees from Point Park University in Pittsburgh in secondary education and journalism and mass communication.
Chastain wants to build on past successes

Chastain wants to build on past successes

David Chastain, a Republican incumbent for District 4 on the Cobb County Board of Education, north-central Cobb County, graduated from Cobb County schools in 1975 and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration in real estate urban economics. He is an analyst at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics with 21 years experience.
Buford search committee gets 55 superintendent applications

Buford search committee gets 55 superintendent applications

After residents demanded a voice in choosing the next superintendent for Buford City Schools, school board members vowed to involve the public and formed a search committee. Two-thirds of its members are current or former school district or city of Buford employees.
New schools on Georgia’s worst-performing list

New schools on Georgia’s worst-performing list

The latest list of Georgia’s worst-performing schools held steady at 104, with some new names added and some old ones, including the only one in Clayton County, dropping off the list. “We are excited about the fact that we do not have a school on the Turnaround Eligible Schools list,” Clayton schools chief Morcease Beasley said.
Contenders for District 6 in Cobb School Board race stake positions

Contenders for District 6 in Cobb School Board race stake positions

Cobb County voters will elect two school board members Tuesday. In District 6, incumbent Scott Sweeney (R), will face Charisse Davis (D). Here are some basics on those two candidates. Charisse Davis, the challenger, is a 15-year educator and mother of two boys in Cobb County schools.
13 Atlanta schools on state’s ‘turnaround-eligible’ list

13 Atlanta schools on state’s ‘turnaround-eligible’ list

Atlanta Public Schools reports it has reduced the number of struggling schools that appear on the state’s “turnaround-eligible” list from 16 to 13.  The list, created by a 2017 state law, consists of schools whose three-year average on the state report card, made up largely by test scores, falls in the bottom 5 percent of the state.
How to get tickets for Barack Obama’s campaign rally at Morehouse College

How to get tickets for Barack Obama’s campaign rally at Morehouse College

If you want tickets to see former President Barack Obama make his pitch Friday afternoon for Democrat Stacey Abrams in Georgia’s governor’s race at Morehouse College, you’ll have a few hours to do so. The state’s Democratic Party has set up 11 locations statewide to get two free tickets - first-come, first-serve - from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday.
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