education

Politics & Government
4:12 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Senate Passes Bill Changing Ed Board Appointment Process

Ind. Sen. Travis Holdman authored Senate Bill 1, which reorganizes how the State Board of Education is appointed.
Credit Courtesy / Indiana Senate Republicans

The Senate passed their version of a bill Tuesday to change how the State Board of Education is constructed.

Senate Bill 1 allows the members of the State Board of Education to select a board chair from within their ranks.

Right now, the state superintendent automatically assumes that position. But the General Assembly has taken it upon itself to change this, following months of strained relations among the board, current superintendent Glenda Ritz and Governor Mike Pence.

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Education
3:50 pm
Tue February 17, 2015

Legislature Trying to Fast-Track ISTEP+ Changes

The General Assembly is trying to speed up the process for approving changes to this spring’s ISTEP+ test.

Late last week, the State Board of Education and Department of Education approved a handful of recommendations to shrink this year’s version of the test, which students can start taking in less than two weeks. 

By law, those changes must get the okay from the General Assembly. In order to fast-track that process, two things happened in the House of Representatives Tuesday:

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Politics & Government
10:33 am
Tue February 17, 2015

GOP Leaders Highlight Education in New State Budget

Indiana House Ways & Means Chair Tim Brown says education spending is a top priority in the GOP's new budget, released Monday.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

House Republican budget architect Tim Brown says his caucus’ proposed budget will include more money spent on education than ever before in state history.  The House GOP’s budget proposal was unveiled Monday.

House Republican leaders have said for months that education was their top priority this session and that they planned a significant increase in funding for K through 12 schools. 

To that end, House Ways and Means Chair Tim Brown says, under the House GOP budget, schools would get $469 million more over the next two years than they did in the last state budget.

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Education
10:09 am
Tue February 17, 2015

Protesters Pack Statehouse in Support of Ritz

Indiana Superintendent Glenda Ritz appeared at a rally at the statehouse Monday. Protesters packed the building to express opposition to several bills that would reduce Ritz's power.
Credit Rachel Morello / StateImpact Indiana

Educators, parents and even a few kids out of school for the snow day packed the statehouse in Indianapolis Monday to show support for state superintendent Glenda Ritz.

Icy relations have become the norm among the state’s top education policymakers, including Ritz, Governor Mike Pence, the State Board of Education and the Department of Education.

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Education
5:33 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

Education Officials Say ISTEP+ Will Go Forward at Current Length

Gov. Pence issued an executive order Monday calling for a reevaluation of the length of the ISTEP exam.
Credit Courtesy / State of Indiana

The Indiana Department of Education says it will proceed as planned to issue the ISTEP+ exam beginning Feb. 25, even after Gov. Mike Pence signed an executive order Monday to re-evaluate the test’s length.

Even though the test could change -- after the testing consultant hired through Pence’s executive order issues recommendations on how to shorten it -- the DOE says they are preparing school districts as if the test will not change.

Deputy state superintendent Danielle Shockey says Pence’s actions only add to the confusion in preparing for this year’s ISTEP.

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2015 Session
12:59 pm
Tue February 10, 2015

House Backs Bill Removing Ritz

State Superintendent Glenda Ritz.
Credit Indiana Department of Education.

The House passed a bill Monday to remove the state superintendent as chair of the State Board of Education, a move some say is politically motivated.

Historically, the state superintendent has automatically assumed the position of state board  chair. This bill changes the law defining that responsibility, allowing board members to elect a  chair from within their ranks.  

The word “dysfunction” has appeared in countless descriptions of board relations since current  State Superintendent Glenda Ritz, a Democrat, took office.

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Education
6:01 pm
Fri February 6, 2015

Obama Touts Community College Plan in Indianapolis

President Obama praised Ivy Tech's ability to connect students to high-paying jobs in a visit to Indianapolis Friday
Credit Courtesy / White House

President Obama says other states should follow Ivy Tech Community College’s lead when it comes to connecting students to high paying jobs. The president traveled to Indianapolis Friday to tout his plans aimed at getting more people on the track to better wages.

During the event at Ivy Tech, Obama once again explained his plan to make two years of community college free.

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News
4:11 pm
Thu February 5, 2015

Public Schools Superintendents Call for More Funding

Dr. Wendy Robinson, superintendent of Fort Wayne Community Schools.
Credit Virginia Alvino / WBOI News

Superintendents from all four public school districts in Allen County joined  Greater Fort Wayne Inc. Thursday to call for more funding for all districts in the  state. 

Districts across Indiana are facing budget problems – from the base amount every  district is afforded by the state, to the amount they’re allowed to collect from  property taxes, every Northeast Indiana superintendents agree – it’s not enough to  support their schools.   

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Education
2:03 pm
Thu February 5, 2015

Democratic Chairman Calls for End to "Overreach" on Ritz Legislation

Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody says proposed legislation reducing Superintendent Glenda Ritz's powers are politically-motivated.
Credit Brandon Smith / Indiana Public Broadcasting

Indiana Democratic Party Chairman John Zody says Republicans need to halt their partisan attacks on State Superintendent Glenda Ritz.

There are multiple bills this session that shift power away from Glenda Ritz’s office to the GOP-controlled State Board of Education. 

That includes a proposal to allow the State Board to elect its own chair, a position currently filled automatically by the Superintendent. 

State Democratic Party Chair John Zody says the measures are an attempt to silence the 1.3 million Hoosiers who voted Ritz into office in 2012.

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2015 Session
3:39 pm
Wed January 21, 2015

Bill Would Require New Teachers to Learn to Recognize Dyslexia

Representative Woody Burton authored HB1108.
Credit Indiana General Assembly

A new bill would require prospective elementary school teachers in Indiana to be able to identify dyslexia in their students. 

Research suggests dyslexia is among the most common learning disabilities, affecting ten to twenty percent of the population. The precise number is unknown since so many people go undiagnosed.

House Bill 1108 would require new elementary school teachers to be able to recognize learning disabilities that affect reading, including dyslexia.

Republican Representative Woody Burton authored the bill.

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