Education

The Charlotte Observer
4:34 pm
Thu March 7, 2013

Plagiarism Allegation Derails Charlotte Charter School Opening

Cameron Creek Charter won’t be allowed to open in east Charlotte this year, based on accusations that it cut and pasted large parts of its application from another Charlotte proposal.

The N.C. Board of Education voted Thursday to deny that school a charter. But 23 new charter schools around the state got final approval to open in August, including six in the Charlotte area.

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Local News
1:53 pm
Mon March 4, 2013

Inexperienced Teachers A Booming Trend

NaToya Dingle talks to a group of her 8th-grade biology students at Coulwood Middle School.
Credit Ben Bradford / WFAE

The push for high-performing college graduates and non-teachers from other professions to enter the classroom has reached an all-time high in the past few years. Proponents of “alternative entry” see it as a fast way to send motivated, knowledgeable instructors into schools—particularly high needs schools and subjects like math and science—but their inexperience and high turnover rate has drawn fire from critics.

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Education
4:49 pm
Fri March 1, 2013

Bill Would Require NC Public Schools To Teach Kids Cursive

It used to be that learning to write in cursive style, was just a part of growing up.  But in this age of keyboards, keypads and tablets -- many people are asking, ‘is cursive writing still relevant?’   A set of common curriculum standards adopted by North Carolina and 44 other states since 2010 does not mention cursive writing.   But a bill introduced in the state legislature would require public schools to teach cursive writing.    WFAE’s Mark Rumsey looked into the issue.

Education
7:12 pm
Wed February 27, 2013

CMS Gets Off To A Better Start With Latest Teacher Pay Plan Discussions

A couple years ago CMS was charging full steam ahead with a plan to pay teachers based partly on their students’ performance.  But it upset so many teachers and parents, the district put a halt to it.  Now, CMS officials are reviving the idea and trying hard to avoid past missteps.  They’ve asked teachers to begin working on another plan. 

WFAE’s Lisa Miller joins All Things Considered host Mark Rumsey to discuss the latest efforts.

RUMSEY: Lisa, why is CMS talking about this issue again? 

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Local News
9:28 am
Wed February 27, 2013

CMS Board Asks County For $34 Million In Security Upgrades

Charlotte Mecklenburg School officials have a $34 million capital plan to improve security at all of the district’s schools.  It includes cameras and 8 foot tall chain-link fences on all campuses.  But the plan still requires buy-in from the county commission. 

The idea is to limit the number of entry points into schools.  Think about high schools like Myers Park and West Mecklenburg that have sprawling campuses reminiscent of small colleges.  CMS Chief Operating Officer Millard House says it’s too easy for intruders to get inside.  That’s where the 8 foot high fences come in.  

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Local News
6:04 pm
Mon February 25, 2013

Project LIFT To Distribute Free And Discounted Computers To Students

A student tests a computer Project LIFT families can buy for a discounted price.
Credit Lisa Miller

This week about 2,200 elementary school kids will be getting free laptops.  It’s part of the Project LIFT effort to boost learning at nine schools on Charlotte’s west side. 

These laptops are made for kids.  They’re white and green and sturdy. 

“It has the handles so it wouldn’t fall when I’m holding it because I really drop stuff without handles,” said Maya Dunbar, a third grader at Allenbrook Elementary. 

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Local News
5:28 pm
Fri February 15, 2013

Winthrop Announces New President

Winthrop University has named a new president.  Jayne Marie Comstock has served as a senior administrator at a handful of small universities. 

For the first time in twenty-four years, there will be a new face in the president’s house at Winthrop this summer.  Comstock is leaving her post at the American Council on Education to replace retiring president Tony DiGiorgio.  She says she’s long been impressed with the school and is eager to be a part of its next chapter.    

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Education
8:12 pm
Tue February 12, 2013

Jump In Applications To Open Charter Schools Presents Challenges

The number of applications to open charter schools has jumped significantly since the charter school cap was lifted in 2011.  There used to be a couple dozen applications per year.  This year 156 groups plan to apply and that means a whole lot of work for the people who review them. 

Joel Medley is in charge of the office that oversees all of the state’s charter schools.  This year, he expected to hear from a lot of groups wanting to open schools, but not quite this many. 

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Solar Energy
2:29 pm
Tue February 12, 2013

Solar-Powered House Under Construction At UNC Charlotte

Jacob Wittmer shows off the solar house to Paul Camuti, senior vice president of innovation and chief technology officer at Ingersoll Rand.
Tasnim Shamma

For almost a year, students at UNC Charlotte have been hard at work designing a solar house that is both affordable and energy-efficient. That hard work has paid off. Their design qualified for the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon's biannual competition.  

For the next eight months, UNC Charlotte engineering and architecture students will be busy building the house. UNC Charlotte is one of only 20 teams to qualify for the competition.   

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Local News
5:15 am
Mon February 11, 2013

Should Teachers Train To Fight Shooters?

Another instructor strips Ken Glenn of a rubber pistol, in a demonstration of how to disarm a gunman.
Credit Ben Bradford/WFAE

A Gaston County martial arts instructor held a seminar a week ago for teachers about how to respond in a school shooting. First grade teachers, school nurses, and administrators practiced how to defend a classroom should a shooter try to enter, and how to fight back. Similar events have been popping up across the country, run by martial arts gyms, firearms training centers, and even schools, in the wake of Sandy Hook.

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