education

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia is launching a new grant program aimed at helping students get skills for high-demand jobs.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe's administration says the New Economy Workforce Industry Credentials Grant Program will make certain workforce credential training programs at community colleges cheaper for students.

The grants cover 124 community college training programs .

Students will be eligible to receive up to $3,000. If they complete a training program covered by the grants that costs $4,500, they'll pay just $1,500.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - The U.S. Department of Education has found that Maryland's spending on prisons is growing at a rate that's twice as fast as spending on education.

The Baltimore Sun reports that such an increase is not unique to Maryland. Nationally, state and local budgets for incarceration rose three times faster than school spending.

The report analyzed spending data from 1980 to 2013. During that time, Maryland's incarcerated population rose from about 11,000 to nearly 34,000. The state's population rose as well, but at a far slower rate.

Wor-Wic Community College logo

Wicomico County handed over a check yesterday for $265-thousand to fund scholarships for qualifying students who attend Wor-Wic Community College.

The Community Foundation of the Eastern Shore will handle the funds and distribute the money for the scholarships.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that the students must be Wicomico County residents and recent high school graduates.

The money will cover their tuition and fees.

This year they must apply by July 29th.

They must also maintain a 2.0 grade point average.

freepik.com

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - Democrats who control Maryland's legislature are hoping Republican Gov. Larry Hogan approves spending $80 million that lawmakers have fenced off for education, health care and public safety. But a Hogan spokesman says the governor hasn't decided yet due to economic uncertainties.

The money could be released at the start of the new fiscal year Friday.

Del. Maggie McIntosh says lawmakers steered the money into areas they believed Hogan would be inclined to support to avoid last year's dispute over $68 million for education that Hogan declined.

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BALTIMORE (AP) - DeRay Mckesson, who took a leave of absence from his career as an educator to become an activist and one of the most recognizable faces in the Black Lives Matter movement, has been appointed to a post with Baltimore schools.

Baltimore City Public Schools said in a news release that incoming chief executive officer Sonja Santelises appointed Mckesson to be interim chief human capital officer. The Board of School Commissioners approved the appointment Tuesday.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - House lawmakers have passed legislation endorsing a proposed school redistricting plan for Wilmington while not committing any funding for the effort.

The measures cleared the Democrat-led House with no Republican support Wednesday.

Wilmington is currently served by four school districts. The redistricting plan centers on moving inner-city students from the Christina district and into the Red Clay district in hopes of improving educational outcomes for minority students.

dsea.org website

Public school districts across the nation have been struggling to keep up with the new regulations and testing required by Washington -- from No Child Left Behind to Race to the Top.  Delmarva Public Radio's Don Rush spoke with Frederika Jenner, president of the Delaware State Education Association about the challenges the school districts face.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state Senate has narrowly approved a bill requiring that school districts wait until after Labor Day to begin the school year.

The measure cleared the Senate on an 11-to-10 vote Wednesday and now goes to the House.

Supporters of the bill, which follows the majority recommendation of a task force that studied the issue, say it could provide an economic boost, allowing high school students to keep summer jobs longer and extending the summer tourism season into the Labor Day weekend.

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There’s a new petition being circulated that calls on the Dorchester County schools restricting transgender students use of bathrooms or locker rooms.

WBOC reports that there are a 100 names so far on the petition with the group hoping to get 5-thousand.

The petition says that they were concerned about the safety and privacy of their children in the school locker rooms and bathrooms.

There has been no decision by the board on the issue but it could play a role in their decision.

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NEWARK, Del. (AP) - The University of Delaware has announced a commitment to recruiting more diverse students and faculty from under-represented backgrounds.
    
The university plan focuses on recruiting and developing faculty members who are the first in their families to go into academia and are from low-income backgrounds.
    
The state is currently accepting bids for consultants to study the issue of diversity on Delaware's flagship campus.
    

dover.delaware.state.gov

DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state Senate has unanimously approved a bill aimed at strengthening reporting of sexual assaults on college campuses.

The bill approved Wednesday requires employees of higher education institutions to offer to report sexual assault incidents to law enforcement officials if the alleged victim agrees. Lawmakers struck a previous version of the bill that required school officials to contact police regardless of the alleged victim's wishes.

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Brandywine School District voters gave their overwhelming support for a referendum for another 28 cents per $100 of assessed property value.

The money will go towards the operating budget and capital projects.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that over 9-thousand voters cast their ballots for referendum while nearly 58-hundred were opposed.

Superintendent Mark Holodick told the paper that if the referendum did not pass that school district would have had to cut $8 million from its $174-million.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Delaware lawmakers are considering legislation to shorten the terms of local school board members.

The bill, which was to be discussed in the House Education Committee on Wednesday, changes the term of a school board member from five years to three years.

According to the bill,  longer terms that can enable school boards to have more years of experience among their members must be weighed against the goal of providing other community members with sufficient opportunities to seek election to school boards.

governor's office

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (AP) - Members of Gov. Terry McAuliffe's "Children's Cabinet" are heading to Virginia Beach to discuss policies that impact the state's kids.

The group will meet Monday to tour the Brock Environmental Center and discuss their goals and priorities for the remainder of the Democratic governor's term. Among other things, the group has focused on trying to reduce the number of students being referred to law enforcement.

university website

There’s a large building that stands at the corner of Route 13 and West College Avenue which houses the education programs at Salisbury University.

This week it was dedicated to the man who for years represented the area…in the Maryland House of Delegates.

University President Janet Dudley Eshbach was there to formally make the announcement changing its name to the Conway Hall

Conway was a major player in Annapolis and chaired the Appropriations Committee generating millions of dollars for the educational institutions on the Eastern Shore.

Khanes Athiratanakran / creative commons

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Nearly 400,000 Virginia elementary and middle school students will take shorter Standards of Learning math tests this spring.

The state is expanding the use of computer-adaptive testing, which it says means shorter exams for students.

The Virginia Department of Education says the computer-adaptive version of the test third graders will take this year has just 32 items. Last year, the exam third graders took had 50 items.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state Senate has unanimously passed a bill requiring students enrolling at Delaware colleges and universities that have campus housing to prove that they have been vaccinated against meningococcal disease.

The bill, which was approved Tuesday and sent to the House, requires that students be vaccinated within five years prior to the date of enrollment.

Don Rush

Wicomico County Executive Bob Culver unveiled his $135 million budget this week – a 5 percent increase over last year.

Under the plan county employees will get a 3 percent raise with a major contribution to the public school system to meet the rising number of new students.

On the education front high school grads would receive free tuition at Wor-Wic Community College.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports that Culver keeps a lid on estate taxes and business property taxes.

Virginia Space Flight Academy website

The Virginia Space Flight Academy has been granted $12,500 by the U.S. Navy for – what’s called – STEM education.

The Salisbury Daily Times report that the award was announced during a meeting of the Wallops Island Regional Alliance earlier this week.

The program is part an effort to enhance education programs in science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The money will provide for two 3-D printers and two computers along with scholarships.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - The state Senate has passed and sent to the House legislation overhauling the way Delaware serves students with autism spectrum disorders.

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DOVER, Del. (AP) - Gov. Jack Markell is supporting legislation to expand a state scholarship program that provides two years of free tuition at Delaware's technical and community colleges.

The Student Excellence Equals Degree, or SEED, program is available to Delaware residents who maintain a 2.5 grade point average and stay out of trouble. It is used by Del Tech and the University of Delaware's associate in arts program, which can lead to a four-year degree.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Gov. Terry McAuliffe has vetoed a bill that seeks to allow certain school security officers to carry guns.

Republican Del. Scott Lingamfelter's bill would allow school security officers to carry a firearm if they're a retired law enforcement officer and have met certain training standards. The local school board would also have to agree to it. 

McAuliffe said in his veto message that the bill would expose students and schools to "unnecessary risk and potential harm" by allow people without adequate training to carry firearms in schools.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe has vetoed a trio of education-related bills he said would undercut state support for all public schools.

McAuliffe vetoed legislation Tuesday that would have allowed students at struggling schools to transfer to another school in the same school district.

Another bill would allow disabled students to use public school funding for private school or other items.

And a third bill would have created a new state board tasked with overseeing full-time virtual school programs.

governor's office

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Virginia's Democratic governor has vetoed a bill that seeks to force schools to notify parents if their children will be assigned books with sexually explicit content.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe said in his veto message Monday that he believes it's inappropriate to interfere with local school board policy. He also said the bill is unnecessary because the Virginia Board of Education is already examining such a policy.

The bill received a 22-17 vote in the Senate, meaning there's likely not enough support to override the governor's veto.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - Gov. Terry McAuliffe says he will block an effort by lawmakers to prevent capital projects at colleges and universities from moving forward until he signs construction contracts to replace the General Assembly Building.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - The clock is ticking to enroll in Virginia's prepaid college tuition program.

The deadline for the current enrollment period ends Thursday March 31. The program will then be closed to new enrollments until the next window of opportunity, typically in December.

Called Virginia529, the program allows families to purchase semesters of tuition for children through ninth grade.

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Dr. Donna Hanlin has been named the next Superintendent for the Wicomico County School District.

After the announcement Hanlin said that she looked forward to bringing the community together to improve the education of the county’s students.

WBOC reports that currently she is the Co-Chair and Director of Assessment and Accountability in the Department of Education at Shepherd University in West Virginia.

But she was raised in Wicomico County and was principal at James M. Bennett High School among other positions in the county.

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ISLE OF WIGHT, Va. (AP) - A private school in southeast Virginia says three students have been disciplined for using "blackface" to depict an African-American character in a video.

Isle of Wight Academy Headmaster Benjamin Vaughn says the video was presented in a senior government class that illustrated a landmark Supreme Court case. One of the students in the video is in blackface representing an African-American woman.

The Daily Press reports that the video was made several weeks ago but came to light this week through social media.

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Liza Hastings has been named Middle School Principal of the year for Maryland.

Hastings is principal of Bennett Middle School.

The Salisbury Daily Times reports she was startled when she heard the news by a district school official who broke into the morning announcements.

She is a graduate of the Wicomico County school system and began teaching sixth grade history at Glen Avenue Elementary school in 1997.

Hastings eventually went on to be an assistant dean and history teacher at Wicomico High School.

desu.edu

More than a quarter of Delaware State University’s majors are being cut.

The Wilmington News Journal reports that the elimination of the 23 programs will allow for expansion of academic programs that are expected to bring in more money.

The paper reports that the decision came during a vote in January.

The cuts in areas such as education and romance languages are one of the biggest changes in the history of the university.

University President Harry Williams said the leveling off of state and federal funding has forced the school to shift its priorities.

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