Lisa Miller

Reporter

Lisa Miller traded the Midwest for Charlotte in 2006 to take a job at WFAE.  She worked with public TV in Detroit and taught English in Austria before making her way to radio.  Lisa graduated from University of Chicago with a bachelor’s degree in English.  She covers several different areas with a focus on education. 

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Library
9:34 am
Fri January 25, 2013

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library On Steadier Ground

Scaleybark Library. It will open a fifth day beginning April 1st.

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library has not had an easy three years.  Mecklenburg County cut a big chunk of its budget.  In response, the library drastically cut hours.  But now library CEO Lee Keesler says things are moving in the right direction.  

What a difference three years makes.  Back then, library board meetings were somber affairs.  But at yesterday’s meeting, the mood was light.  There were even some jokes.   

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Local News
10:51 pm
Tue January 22, 2013

For A Price, Catawba Jail Visits Now Can Be Done Without Leaving Home

Visiting inmates at the Catawba County jail no longer requires a trip to the actual jail, but it’s going to cost you 50 cents a minute.  People who want to talk with their loved one or friend can pick a time, then sit at their home computer, and talk through video software. 

It’s not so different from what visitors did before.  A few years ago, the jail did away with face-to-face visits and set up monitors at the jail so visitors could talk through video. 

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Education
5:02 pm
Tue January 22, 2013

CMS Board To Decide On Whether Four Schools Go Year-Round

Four CMS schools that serve pre-k through 8th graders could move to a year-round calendar next year in an effort to boost learning.  The CMS school board plans to vote on the proposal tonight.
 

All kids have experienced the “summer slide.”  When students get back to school in the fall, they spend time re-learning what they forgot over the summer.  But for low-income kids, that backsliding can be even bigger since camp and other enriching activities are harder to come by. 

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Education
11:17 am
Wed January 16, 2013

SC Looks At Tweaking Definition Of Needy Schools To Preserve Loan Forgiveness Program

South Carolina has long had a college loan forgiveness program to attract aspiring teachers to needy schools.  But most public schools in the state are now on that list.  Some state education officials want to tweak it and make sure the program is really directing teachers to the neediest schools. 

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Library
4:27 pm
Mon January 14, 2013

A Dozen Charlotte Mecklenburg Libraries To Open A Fifth Day

Scaleybark Library, one of a dozen branches to add back a fifth day.

A dozen Charlotte Mecklenburg libraries that saw their hours drastically reduced with budget cuts will add back an extra day.  The library’s smaller, community branches will be open five days a week with longer hours beginning April 1.  Those include Hickory Grove, Mountain Island, Sugar Creek and West Boulevard branches.  It will take 30 extra positions to staff the additional hours. 

Libraries Director David Singleton says it’s the right time to expand hours.  

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Education
4:05 pm
Wed January 9, 2013

NC School Board Set To Approve Policies Guiding Online Charters

North Carolina is getting ready for a new breed of charter school.  They’re virtual schools, where students do all or most of their work online.  The state board of education Thursday is set to approve new policies to guide these schools.  They include paying the schools less per student than a regular charter and capping the student to teacher ratio.

North Carolina has no online charter schools, but it’s had a lot of interest in opening one.  That’s got the state board of education wondering how to deal with schools that operate so differently from traditional schools. 

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Education
9:32 am
Tue January 8, 2013

Big Changes In Store For End Of Year School Tests

Kids are half-way through the school year and no doubt talk of end of year tests has already come up in class.  There are some big changes in store for students across the state.  For one, there will be a lot more end of year tests and they won’t just be multiple choice.  They’ll include essay questions.  It’s not just kids that’ll be tested.  It’ll be a test for teachers in more ways than one. WFAE’s Lisa Miller is in the studio to talk about these changes, including a flood of new tests. 


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Education
4:15 pm
Fri January 4, 2013

Judge Sides With NCAE Over Law Banning Dues Deduction

A state law that prohibits the North Carolina Association of Educators from deducting dues from member’s paychecks is illegal.  A judge made that ruling this week.  The group’s president Rodney Ellis says the law is unfair because it singles out the teacher’s organization. 

“We felt it was as a result of us taking a position of opposition of what was going to be, in our opinion, a budget that would not benefit the students and educators in North Carolina and our schools,” says Ellis. 

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Local News
3:08 pm
Thu January 3, 2013

Wilmington 10 Member: Pardon Lifts Painful Cloud

This week Governor Bev Perdue signed a pardon of innocence for the Wilmington 10.  That’s a group of nine black men and one white woman who were falsely convicted of fire-bombing a white-owned grocery store in a black neighborhood in Wilmington more than forty years ago.  Their trial gained national attention.  A few years after the trial, the prosecution’s key witnesses came forward and recanted their testimony. 

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Local News
8:12 pm
Mon December 31, 2012

Governor Perdue Pardons Wilmington 10

Governor Bev Perdue has signed a pardon of innocence for the Wilmington 10.  That’s a group of civil rights activists who were falsely convicted more than 40 years ago in the fire-bombing of a grocery store in Wilmington.  The case got world-wide attention. 

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