The Next Louisville

Education
7:08 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Stories of Dropping Out: 'I Was Learning to Handle Things My Own Way'

Steven Gholston says he didn't feel like he fit in to any social group in school.
Credit Creative Commons

Twenty-three-year-old Steven Gholston was born in Louisville’s South End but moved all over Jefferson County, even spending time in Cincinnati and Georgia. He says constantly being on the move was difficult.

Gholston says he attended over half a dozen Jefferson County Public Schools before dropping out. 

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Education
3:06 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

JCPS Supports Raising Dropout Age to 18, School Board Requests Quick Action

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Jefferson County Public Schools officials support raising the district’s dropout age to 18 and they want to move forward with approval soon.

Currently, students can drop out of school at age 16 with parental permission. But the General Assembly has passed legislation that would give local school districts the option to change that.

It's a decision JCPS has openly supported on its legislative agenda for the past two years, says Superintendent Donna Hargens.

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Politics
4:22 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Kentucky House, Senate OK Bill Gradually Raising Dropout Age to 18

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Updated: School districts will have the option of raising the minimum age when students can drop out to 18 under legislation that on Monday cleared both the Kentucky House and Senate—which may lead to statewide implementation in the future.

The approved bill is a compromise reached after past efforts to strike a deal failed.

The dropout bill allows  local school boards to choose whether to raise the dropout age to 18. After 55 percent of Kentucky's school boards raise the drop out limit, the change in four years becomes mandatory statewide.

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Education
12:00 pm
Sun March 10, 2013

Author Ron Berler Spends a Year Inside a Failing School

We hear a lot about failing and persistently low achieving public schools in Louisville. But schools like this exist across the state and across the country.

Author Ron Berler spent a year inside Brookside Elementary School in Norwalk, Connecticut. He tells his story in his new book “Raising the Curve: A Year Inside one of America’s 45,000 Failing Public Schools.”

As part of The Next Louisville education project WFPL’s Devin Katayama spoke with Berler.

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Education
7:20 am
Wed March 6, 2013

Stories of Dropping Out: 'I Started to Procrastinate'

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Twenty-year-old Kimani Straub says he left Seneca High School just shy of receiving his high school diploma. He's been diagnosed with attention deficit disorder and bipolar disorder, but he was always able to maintain good grades. 

But when he discovered after 14 years the man he thought was his father wasn't, things started to slip.

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Education
4:32 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

The Next Louisville: Educators, JCPS Board Chair Discuss Urban Education

What do zoning laws, progressive teachers unions and community organizing all have in common? They were all part of the conversation today during a WFPL education news special.

Many urban school districts with large student populations perform lower than their peers. Graduation rates and state test scores are dismal in areas like Chicago and Detroit where around 90 percent of students are low-income.

In Jefferson County Public Schools test scores and graduation rates are regularly below the state average.

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Education
4:03 pm
Tue March 5, 2013

JCPS ACT Results Rank in Middle of Large Urban Peers

Credit Casey Serin/Creative Commons

While Jefferson County Public Schools’ ACT test scores have traditionally been lower than state and national averages, it ranks among the middle of its metropolitan peers.

Comparing local schools to schools across the nation can be difficult. Not all states use the same tests or metrics and even graduation rates could be calculated differently, although the U.S. Department of Education is changing that practice so all states follow each student until he or she graduates.

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Education
10:45 am
Mon March 4, 2013

WFPL News Special Today: Challenges of the Urban School District

Credit Photo Archives / University of Louisville

Jefferson County Public Schools is among the top 30 largest school districts in the nation. Its $1 billion budget is the largest in the state but its test scores are often some of the lowest in Kentucky.

JCPS is not the only large school district struggling. Many large metropolitan districts perform lower on standardized tests when compared to their state averages and graduation rates mirror that same trend.

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Education
6:38 am
Mon March 4, 2013

Jefferson County Teachers Union Pushes for Wiggle Room in Teacher Evaluations

Credit File photo

The Jefferson County Teachers Association says it wants more freedom to create its own teacher and principal evaluations, which are expected to be in place by the 2014-2015 school year. 

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Education
10:28 pm
Wed February 27, 2013

Some Principals of Low-Performing JCPS Schools Can Stay, Kentucky Education Department Says

Credit File photo

Leaderships audits conducted for seven of Jefferson County Public Schools' 18 lowest-performing schools were presented to the district Wednesday and the results show principals in those schools have the capacity to continue leading their turnaround efforts.

The Kentucky Department of Education's leadership audits are performed every two years for the state's 41 "priority" schools, which are schools that have persistently performed at the lowest level statewide.

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