Devin Katayama

Education/General Assignment Reporter

Devin Katayama is the education reporter for WFPL Louisville Public Media. He earned his M.A. in Journalism from Columbia College Chicago where he won the Studs Terkel Community Media Workshop Scholarship award for his work on street youth in Chicago. 

Devin previously worked with WBEZ Chicago Public Media’s Worldview program and with Northern California KQED’s The California Report. He credits his volunteer work with KBOO community radio in Portland, Ore. and for Vocalo.org for helping him achieve in public radio.

For more of his work, check out audiocollected.org.

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Local News
12:15 pm
Tue February 12, 2013

Kentucky Kingdom Group 'Encouraged' By First Impressions From Shuttered Park

Ed Hart speaks to media outside of the Kentucky Kingdom amusement park.

Leaders of a  group that’s expected to reopen the Kentucky Kingdom amusement park say their team is on the ground and money has been spent.

The state fair board approved a lease agreement last month with the Kentucky Kingdom Redevelopment Company led by local businessman Ed Hart, who once operated the park before Six Flags took over.

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Education
11:00 pm
Mon February 11, 2013

JCPS Officials: State’s 'Priority' School Report Doesn’t Tell Full Story

Superintendent Donna Hargens addresses the media after Monday's board meeting.

Jefferson County Public Schools officials say there’s more to the report released last week showing a majority of the district’s lowest performing schools have not made adequate progress.

JCPS officials acknowledged at Monday’s board meeting more needs to be done to turn around the status of its lowest performing schools, but they say there have been some gains in student test scores.

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Education
8:48 am
Mon February 11, 2013

Church and Local Leaders Seek Community Solutions to Gun Violence

A panel of Jefferson County leaders including Third District Congressman John Yarmuth and Jefferson County Public Schools superintendent Donna Hargens will convene this month to discuss ways the community can reduce gun violence.

St. Matthew's Episcopal Church recently passed a resolution urging an end to the sale of semi-automatic weapons and urging support of adequate funding for mental health.

“We don’t intend this to be political, though obviously it’s a political issue but our intent is this is a moral issue,” says Bob Nesmith, the church’s event coordinator.

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Education
6:00 am
Sun February 10, 2013

Jefferson County's 'Priority' Schools Struggle the Most

A majority of Kentucky’s priority schools—formerly known as persistently low-achieving—have not made adequate progress for turning around student achievement, according to a report presented to the Kentucky Board of Education this week. And Jefferson County is being singled out.

Of the 41 schools that have been deemed priority schools only 18 have made acceptable progress, said the education department's Susan Allred.

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Education
6:16 pm
Thu February 7, 2013

Education Commissioner Terry Holliday Testifies to U.S. Senate

Credit Kentucky Education Department

Kentucky Education Commissioner Terry Holliday testified in front of the U.S. Senate’s Education Committee Thursday asking Congress to move forward with updating the law known as No Child Left Behind.

Most educators and lawmakers agree the law that seeks to make every student proficient in math and reading by 2014 is unrealistic and outdated and several states including Kentucky have been granted waivers.

Now Holliday says the law should be updated to provide long-term federal accountability.

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Education
5:57 pm
Thu February 7, 2013

New Program Emphasizes Student Compassion

Credit File photo

A new program called Youth Engaging Compassion is encouraging Louisville region public and private school students to be more...well...compassionate. 

Educators announced the program Thursday ahead of the Dalai Lama’s visit later this year.

Jefferson County Public Schools and the Archdiocese of Louisville are partners in Youth Engaging Compassion along with other private schools.  The program allows students to share projects and ideas on the web.

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Local News
2:13 pm
Thu February 7, 2013

Large Crowd Welcomes Soft Opening of Big Four Bridge

The Big Four Bridge reopens.
Credit Laura Valentine/WFPL

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer stands behind the gates Thursday holding back a large group of pedestrians, bicyclists and pets that will hike up the spiral walkway and onto the Big Four Bridge.

"Count it down," someone yells, anticipating the gates being lifted.

Instead, a sound of a railroad locomotive plays over the speakers, kicking off the bridge's soft-opening, representing the days when the bridge was used for trains.

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Local News
1:39 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Louisville Ethics Commission Expects to Receive Recommendations on Shanklin's Case This Afternoon

Barbara Shanklin
Credit Louisville Metro Government

Recommendations from the hearing officer—who acts as judge—assigned to Metro Councilwoman Barbara Shanklin's ethics case have been submitted and are expected to be accepted by the Louisville Metro Ethics Commission this afternoon.

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Local News
9:00 am
Mon February 4, 2013

Big Four Bridge Could Open This Week, Or Next

Credit Nick Roberts, SpeedDemon2 Photography, www.speeddemon2.com

Officials say the opening of the Big Four Bridge could be delayed further and they say they’ll know Monday when the public can access the pedestrian and bicycle pathway.

The Big Four Bridge connects downtown Louisville and Jeffersonville, Indiana. The bridge was expected to open weeks ago but delays in construction and putting the finishing touches on the project have postponed the soft opening, which will allow the public access to Louisville’s on-ramp and most of the bridge.

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Education
7:00 am
Mon February 4, 2013

How Some Louisville Teachers are Shifting Grading Practices and Redefining Success

Students and parents are often concerned with bad grades. Grades say a lot to colleges and universities and high scores on college entrance exams such as the ACT and SAT are important for getting into certain schools.

Depending on the teacher, points can be earned for class participation, going the extra mile to make visual presentations or through extra credit, among other measures.

That’s the way grading has been done the past century; educators including Brown School Principal Tim Healy say it should change.

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