Education

Ways to Connect

Do transgender boys or girls have the right to use the restroom at school that corresponds with their gender identity? The U.S. Education Department said Monday that it won't hear complaints about or take action on this question.

Mark Seidenberg is not the first researcher to reach the stunning conclusion that only a third of the nation's schoolchildren read at grade level. The reasons are numerous, but one that Seidenberg cites over and over again is this: The way kids are taught to read in school is disconnected from the latest research, namely how language and speech actually develop in a child's brain.

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SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

It has been a year since Betsy DeVos was sworn in as education secretary, and this month marks the first anniversary of our weekly education news roundup!

Let's pause to mark those moments ... and then get on to this week's headlines.

On one level, it looks like all is mostly back to normal in the small, rural community of Rancho Tehama in Northern California. But just below the surface it's clear people here are still grappling with the aftermath of a local man's murderous rampage nearly three months ago that killed five and wounded 12 others.

Katie Atkinson / Center for Collaborative Journalism

An annual speech at a Georgia university that usually occurs with little fanfare is attracting controversy this year.

 

Mercer University's Founder’s Day address will be delivered by alumni Jay Sekulow on Feb. 6. Sekulow is a member of President Donald Trump’s legal team and a prominent figure in the conservative Christian community.

His selection is not sitting well with some students and faculty.

Parents today struggle to set screen time guidelines.

One big reason is a lack of role models. Grandma doesn't have any tried-and-true sayings about iPad time. This stuff is just too new.

But many experts on kids and media are also parents themselves. So when I was interviewing dozens of them for my book The Art of Screen Time, I asked them how they made screen time rules at home.

Look up from this screen right now. Take a look around. On a bus. In a cafe. Even at a stoplight. Chances are, most of the other people in your line of sight are staring at their phones or other devices. And if they don't happen to have one out, it is certainly tucked away in a pocket or bag.

But are we truly addicted to technology? And what about our kids? It's a scary question, and a big one for scientists right now. Still, while the debate rages on, some doctors and technologists are focusing on solutions.

"In the ways that we teach and learn about the history of American slavery," write the authors of a new report from the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC), "the nation needs an intervention."

Welcome to our weekly education news roundup. This week, we thought we would devote some time to President Trump's State of the Union speech, which had very little education news to round up.

In fact, that word appeared only twice in the speech, both times in passing reference while he was talking about other topics.

What the president did have to say came about halfway through the speech, in this one line: "Let us open great vocational schools so our future workers can learn a craft and realize their full potential."

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