Mississippi voters have rejected a constitutional amendment requiring lawmakers to increase funding for public schools. Supporters of Initiative 42 say voter confusion likely led to its defeat.
Post Tagged with: "politics"
Alabama School Connection’s Trisha Powell Crain Talks Money, Politics, and More in Alabama Education
There’s never a shortage of stories coming from Alabama’s schools. But before the WBHM/Southern Education Desk’s “Issues and Ales” education forum Thursday evening, we wanted to shed as much light as possible on the big picture behind the headlines because — for better or worse — that backdrop always includes money and therefore politics.
Alabama’s State Board of Education is set to vote tomorrow on new K-12 science standards that would go into effect next school year. Most science teachers in the state say the new standards are better than the current decade-old ones. We wanted a national perspective too, so our Alabama reporter caught up with Dr. Minda Berbeco, Programs and Policy Director for the National Center for Science Education. He asks if she’s surprised there hasn’t been much controversy on standards dealing with evolution, climate change, and more.
The United States locks up people at a higher rate than anywhere else in the world. Some of the most overcrowded prisons are in Alabama. Julia Tutwiler Prison for Women is one of them. It’s also been under federal investigation for sex abuse by guards. But some inmates there have access to a unique state-funded program that offers academics and life skills they’ll need after release. The problem is, this J.F. Ingram State Technical College program, which could ease overcrowding, is struggling for funds. Our Alabama reporter Dan Carsen has this national story, and a full-length interview with J.F. Ingram’s president.
Across the country, school boards have been losing power to state and federal authorities, and some experts see local boards as increasingly ineffective. But last month the Fordham Institute, an education policy think tank, released a national report on the influence of school board leadership. According to the report, local boards actually do impact student achievement. Given recent events in Birmingham City Schools and other systems across the Southeast, our Alabama reporter Dan Carsen caught up with co-author Arnold Shober, who says the overall vision of a school board is key, as is the way members are elected.
INTERVIEW: Recently our Alabama reporter needed a terrorism expert for a story, so he sat down with Birmingham-Southern College’s Randall Law, an author and terrorism historian. Their widespread conversation covered profiling, politics, the psychology of terror and more. It starts with Dr. Law’s thoughts on new super-sensitive dogs that can track bombs as they’re being transported.
In the past decade, it’s gotten much harder for scientists to get the federal grants that fund the vast majority of American research. This year’s sequester has made it even more difficult, and the government shutdown is likely to slow things down even further. So scientists are looking for new ways to pay for their work, including “crowdfunding.” But going online and asking the public for money has real drawbacks. Even so, as Alabama reporter Dan Carsen tells us, some think it could open up the field in a good way.
Louisiana’s Supreme Court rules the current funding mechanism for the statewide voucher program is unconstitutional.