Results for Think Out Loud (Other Results)

Teaching Teachers

As summer winds to a close and students and teachers get ready to return for the fall term, we reached out to educators so they could weigh in on the teaching of teachers, both in colleges and in school districts. We received a great deal of feedback, with many echoing the sentiments of Michelle Nelson, a 3rd grade teacher from Dallas, Oregon. “College courses give you some knowledge of historical and theoretical aspects of teaching, but the real 'how-to' stuff you absolutely have to learn on the job," Nelson said. "Lengthening the amount of time spent working with children or in classrooms would improve teacher education" This tracks with a recent state audit on teacher preparation that found improvements in teacher training are not happening fast enough in Oregon teaching colleges and school districts. The audit asked school administrators from 90  districts about teacher preparation in public universities. Half of the administrators believed that the universities' teaching programs did not adequately prepare teachers for the classroom. The audit also concluded that school districts themselves need to offer more training and mentoring for new teachers. Some of the funding and coordination needed for such programs should become available under recent $45 million education legislation. The funding from the bill will be awarded in grants beginning in September and October. Alicia Baker Geiger, an elementary school teacher in Portland, highlighted the need for more teacher mentor programs in the districts. "It's difficult to create a situation where anyone can truly be in charge of a classroom until they get their own classroom. That's where on the job mentors would come in handy,” Geiger said. The new grant money will provide some of the necessary funding for increased mentorship programs, better teacher evaluation methodology and other initiatives. These programs will need to be implemented across vastly different districts and schools throughout the state.

Segmentarticle - Sept. 3, 2013

News Roundtable: July 18th, 2013

We're wrapping up the news of the week a day early this time around. As always, our news roundtable is our chance to chat about the week's news with a panel of journalists, editors, and news watchers. This week, our discussion topics include: Reactions to the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin and what the trial means for the future of 'Stand Your Ground' laws The Senate avoiding the "nuclear option" of filibuster reform The discovery of Multnomah County Chair Jeff Cogen's affair with a fellow county staffer Governor Kitzhaber's staffing troubles following the latest headlines of advisor Patricia McCaig's possible conflict of interest with a Columbia River Crossing contractor and Rudy Crew's expenses

Segmentarticle - July 18, 2013

An Hour With Governor Kitzhaber

Governor Kitzhaber has made education a priority. Last year, the legislature passed a bill making the governor the state superintendent of schools. It was a leadership role he was happy to take on, with the help of Oregon's first chief education officer, Rudy Crew. Kitzhaber's 2013-2015 budget proposal includes increased funding for several education initiatives. He's advocating for a bill that he says would streamline education bureaucracy by consolidating several government organizations under one Department of Post-Secondary Education. He's also set an ambitious goal of a 100 percent graduation rate for the class of 2025. The budget proposals released by both Democratic and Republican legislators last week are also heavily focused on money for schools. But, of course, that money has to come from somewhere. Kitzhaber says the changes to the Oregon Health Plan will free up some state and federal money. He is also urging lawmakers to consider changes to mandatory sentencing laws to reduce the state's prison budget. Kitzhaber is encouraging the continuing conversation about how to reform the public employee retirement system (PERS). Though they have a common goal, lawmakers differ with the governor on how to change PERS. Follow along and participate in our live blog of the interview with the Governor: <a href="" data-mce-href="">TOL talks with Governor Kitzhaber at Portland City Club</a>

Segmentarticle - March 15, 2013

Kids in Crisis

The recent disappearance of one Portland teen and the shooting death of another have shaken some of the city's youth. After 14-year-old Yashanee Vaughn disappeared in March, a teenage boy was arrested and charged with her murder even though no body has been found. Since then, Yashanee's friends have poured out their feelings on Facebook and held vigils in her honor. Last week, Portland teenagers got another shock when another 14-year-old was shot outside Lloyd Center Mall. Shiloh Hampton later died from his wounds. His funeral was Tuesday. Many of Shiloh's classmates at Madison High School also had a connection to Yashanee Vaughn. Students planned a vigil for Shiloh April 20.

Segmentarticle - April 27, 2011

Math Appeal

A new study shows US students’ advanced math skills trail those of students in most other industrialized nations (the US came in 31st among 56 nations in the study). The same study also measures how each of the 50 states compare to each other. Oregon students actually did fairly well, scoring 8th in the nation. Oregon’s Department of Education says those results validate its efforts to raise education standards. But when compared to the other 55 countries in the study, the Oregon students were outperformed by 25 countries. Susanne Smith of Oregon's Department of Education says some parents, as well as educators, fear students won't be able to meet raised standards. Those sentiments partly reveal an aversion to math that is common among adults. Many of us don’t want anything to do with math once we’re out of school and in the working world.

Segmentarticle - Nov. 22, 2010

Getting Good Grades

This summer more than a thousand Portland area students are getting ready for their first year of high school with help from the program Ninth Grade Counts. They'll visit colleges and business and talk with local leaders about their future. If they complete the program, they'll be rewarded with $100 gift cards.  The idea is that if kids do well in ninth grade, they are far less likely to drop out of high school later. Rewarding students for academic performance is being tried in New York and other cities around the country, but not without some controversy. The concept of paying students to motivate them to learn irks some educators and worries others. But for some students, options are limited. Some school teachers in the Portland area report dramatic results with learning disabled students participating in The Shadow Project, which rewards kids with "shadow bucks" that they can use to buy toys, school supplies and gifts.

Segmentarticle - Aug. 24, 2009

Faith Healing

In the past two years, members of a small church in Oregon City have been the subject of national media attention — and prosecution. Followers of Christ church doesn't believe in using medicine to cure ailments, and instead rely on ritual and prayer. Think Out Loud has been following cases involving the church since it first made headlines in 2008, after a toddler whose parents belonged to the church died of pneuomonia. Only three months later, the toddler's teenaged uncle died from an easily treatable illness. In light of these cases, as well as one where a toddler almost went blind, Oregon passed a law removing any religious defense for parents who treat their children solely with prayer. The most recent controversy involves a newborn baby who died hours after birth due to a bacterial infection in his lungs. Dale and Shannon Hickman have been charged with second-degree manslaughter for the death of their son. The Hickman trial is set for this week.

Segmentarticle - Sept. 14, 2011

Responses To Gang Violence: Spartan Boxing And K.E.Y.

We continue our occasional series highlighting different responses to gang violence in Oregon with a look at a boxing program in Medford, part of a larger approach called Keep Encouraging Youth (KEY).

Segmentarticle - Aug. 25, 2014

Oregon Is Not Meeting Its Minority Teacher Goals

A new report says Oregon is not on track to meet its goal of increasing the number of minority teachers.

Segmentarticle - July 15, 2014

Oregon Presents New Plan To Evaluate Teachers

After being granted extra time to meet federal standards, a group of Oregon education professionals has drafted a new plan for how teachers are held accountable.

Segmentarticle - May 1, 2014

Primary Conversations: Superintendent of Public Instruction

Incumbent Susan Castillo is facing state representative Ron Maurer in the race to become the state's superintendent of public instruction. This is two-person non-partisan race (with partisan overtones: Castillo was a Democratic state senator; Maurer is a Republican representative), so it will be decided in the primary.  The winner will have to face potential changes to No Child Left Behind, a dismal grade on the state's recent "Race to the Top" federal grant application, and a looming $2.5 billion budget hole.

Segmentarticle - May 10, 2010

Life After Special Ed

Dwayne Parham, a former special education student, doesn’t mince words when asked about his life since graduating from Springfield High School with a modified diploma in 2005. The 21-year-old, who suffers from ADHD and a learning disability, describes his existence today as kind of lame.... It's really hard for me to learn stuff, and nobody wants to take the time to work with me. Adrift, he says he spends his days sitting at home.

Segmentarticle - April 7, 2009

Student Debt

How does the cost of college impact students today?

Segmentarticle - Sept. 9, 2008

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