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News Links | April 4, 2017

April 04, 2017 by SBCTC Communications

System News | Opinion

Washington state’s lauded community college system is 50 years old today

Fifty years ago on April 3, the state created a system of community colleges that ushered in dramatic growth in the network of schools that now enroll 300,000 students. ... National education experts often cite Washington’s community colleges as among the strongest systems in the country. In 2013, Walla Walla Community College won the Aspen Institute Prize for Excellence in community colleges, and this year, Pierce College won the Leah Meyer Austin Award for making significant changes to the way it approaches education. ... The first state community college was Centralia College, which opened its doors as Centralia Junior College in 1925, with 15 students. ... The legislation helped usher in new community colleges. In 1966 and 1967, seven new community colleges opened: Seattle Central, Bellevue, Whatcom, Spokane Falls, Walla Walla, Pierce College Fort Steilacoom and Edmonds.
The Seattle Times, April 3, 2017

Big Bend board president to be honored in New Orleans as outstanding alumni

Jon Lane, board president at Big Bend Community College and a former Moses Lake mayor, is one of six recipients nationwide, to receive the 2017 Outstanding Alumni Award. Lane will accept the award from the American Association of Community Colleges on April 24 in New Orleans.
iFiber One News, April 3, 2017

Pierce College welcomes 540 local eighth graders during College Exploration Day

Local eighth graders from throughout the area spent an exciting morning at Pierce College Fort Steilacoom, learning about the importance of higher education and getting the most out of their high school years. Local rock band The Melting Point kicked off the festivities with a few songs to get students in the spirit before the program began. The band is comprised of high school students, including Pierce College Running Start student Ryan O’Neal. Following the band’s vibrant performance, students listened to Highline College Outreach Manager Rashad Norris as he spoke of the importance of preparing yourself for higher education and asking for help when necessary.
The Suburban Times, April 3, 2017

New Big Bend building could start construction by 2018

The construction schedule will depend on funding, but as of now the plan is to open the workforce education building at Big Bend Community College in 2020. Preliminary plans for the new building were delivered last week. The new building, also called the professional-technical building, will house BBCC’s technical training programs, with the exception of aviation mechanics. That will be housed in a separate building next to its current location on the flight line, said Linda Schoonmaker, the college’s vice president of finance and administration.
Columbia Basin Herald, April 3, 2017

Mitsubishi Aircraft, Big Bend announce partnership for new STEM program

The Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation and Big Bend Community College are partnering to unveil a new program in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The partnership was announced by Mitsubishi officials on Thursday, along with Gov. Jay Inslee and Kenichiro Sasae, Japan’s ambassador to the U.S.
iFiber One News, March 31, 2017

Inslee inaugurates STEM day with Japanese ambassador

Gov. Jay Inslee was in Moses Lake on Thursday to help unveil a new program from Mitsubishi Aircraft designed to encourage interest in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) among high school freshmen in Moses Lake. Called “Reach for the Stars,” Mitsubishi Aircraft plans to bring about 600 ninth-graders from around the region to Big Bend Community College for half a day on May 16 to listen to and meet with scientists, engineers, pilots, and even an astronaut.
Columbia Basin Herald, March 31, 2017

Senate passes capital budget

District 13 is slated to receive new funding for buildings at Big Bend Community College and Central Washington University. The Senate unanimously approved a nearly $4 billion capital budget that includes millions in new education spending and investment into new facilities at local colleges. Sen. Jim Honeyford, R-Sunnyside, said the biggest increase in the capital budget was education spending, the combined $713 million in higher education, and $1.1 billion in other education makes up more than a third of the total spending.
Columbia Basin Herald, March 31, 2017

Program creates new type of law professional

Washington state attorneys and educators are working to create a new type of legal professional who can provide counsel without a law degree, with the goal of providing less expensive services to underserved populations. Administered through the Washington State Bar Association, the program enables both experienced paralegals and new students studying to become paralegals, who take additional courses and pass relevant exams, to become what are called limited license legal technicians. ... This first portion of the program is offered at five community colleges — Spokane Community College here, Tacoma Community College in Tacoma, Highline College in Des Moines, Edmonds Community College in Lynnwood, and Whatcom Community College in Bellingham. Crossland says the LLLT board also is in discussions with Green River College in Auburn, and the University of Washington, to add the program’s core requirement to their college course offerings.
Spokane Journal of Business, March 30, 2017

GHC student named to national academic team

The student body president of Grays Harbor College has been named to the All-USA Community College Academic Team. Yulisa Morelia is one of 20 students from across the country who will be honored April 24 at the American Association of Community Colleges convention in New Orleans. GHC is covering Morelia’s travel expenses.
The Daily World, March 30, 2017

Trends | Horizons | Education

With $800,000 raised, cost won’t keep any Washington student from taking IB, AP exams

Teacher David Quinn worried for months that some of his students might not be able to pay to take the exams they must pass to earn the rigorous International Baccalaureate diploma. With no federal funding available this year, the Edmonds-Woodway IB coordinator agonized over the possibility that his low-income students probably couldn’t afford the full fee themselves. Coordinators for International Baccalaureate and Advanced Placement programs across the state had the same concern. Lt. Gov. Cyrus Habib had pledged to raise money to help the students, and succeeded in getting about $400,000 in donations. Another $400,000 came from the state Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction. That means about 15,000 low-income students from across the state will have their exam fees covered this spring. And while they usually end up paying about $15 per test, this year they won’t have to pay anything.
The Seattle Times, April 4, 2017

Student debt and home buying

Politicians often cite skyrocketing debt as a prime reason why students aren’t purchasing homes, but a new report suggests otherwise. Whether students attend college at all plays a far greater role in determining the likelihood they’ll buy a home later in life, the report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York indicates. Home ownership rates are higher among college graduates and those who have pursued credentials beyond an associate degree, regardless of how much debt they’ve accrued.
Inside Higher Ed, April 4, 2017

Gifted programs across Washington leave out black and Latino students — except in Federal Way

The classrooms where Washington students get the kind of advanced-level learning that grooms them for advanced-level careers might make visitors wonder if they’ve somehow stepped back in time. Black, Latino, American Indian and Pacific Islanders — who now comprise a third of all students — are nonetheless represented at minuscule rates in programs for the gifted, a statistic deemed “stunning” by the state official who manages them. Whites and Asians, meanwhile, fill almost all those seats.
The Seattle Times, April 2, 2016

As devices flood schools, some want to do more to teach children – and teachers – media literacy

Schools have embraced the promise of electronic devices to open new windows on the world for students. Preschoolers are using iPads, and some school districts are working toward what’s known as a 1:1 policy — ensuring there’s a laptop, netbook or tablet in the hands of every student. But kids — and their teachers — need help navigating the constantly changing online environment.
The News Tribune, March 30, 2017

Faculty ‘diversity statements’ are called threats to academic freedom

The “diversity statements” that many colleges now require of applicants for faculty positions are coming under attack by traditionalists and conservatives as threats to academic freedom. The Oregon affiliate of the National Association of Scholars has issued a report accusing colleges in that state and elsewhere of creating “ideological litmus tests” for faculty hiring and promotion by asking candidates for statements discussing their commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, March 30, 2017

Opinion: Keep statewide exams as graduation requirement

Although only 13 states still require high school students to pass exams to earn their diploma, Washington has stayed the course to make sure high school diplomas continue to mean something. Lawmakers should hold onto that ideal and defeat House Bill 1046, which would make the English, math and science exams no longer count for graduation. From the WASL to the Smarter Balanced assessments, statewide tests have forced Washington school districts and policymakers to pay attention to the achievement gaps between students of different races and economic classes. Yes, the tests are high stakes, but that’s among the reasons students take them seriously.
The Seattle Times, March 29, 2017

Politics | Local, State, National

Sanders keeps focus on free college

Seeking to offer an alternative vision to that of President Trump and congressional Republicans, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Democratic colleagues on Monday unveiled new legislation Monday to make public colleges and universities tuition-free.
Inside Higher Ed, April 4, 2017

4 student aid experiments will end

The Department of Education will end four experimental initiatives launched under the Obama administration granting participating institutions a waiver from certain statutes concerning federal student aid. Those initiatives, known as experimental sites, included a program popular with colleges allowing them to limit the unsubsidized loans a student could take out.
Inside Higher Ed, April 3, 2017

A step ahead of for-profits

As the Trump administration tries to roll back education regulations, one city is attempting to stay a move ahead by fortifying its own protections for some college students. The Milwaukee Common Council unanimously passed legislation last week to prohibit financial assistance to for-profit institutions unless they meet federal financial aid regulations. The legislation, which updates a previous rule, means the city won’t provide monetary aid to for-profits or to related development projects if the involved colleges fail to meet federal financial aid regulations that were in force on Jan. 1, 2017, before Trump's inauguration.
Inside Higher Ed, April 3, 2017

Anti-Clinton lawyer apparently is tapped for key civil-rights post

A lawyer who helped the Trump campaign organize an event last fall with several women who have accused Bill Clinton of sexual misconduct says she has accepted a top civil-rights position at the Department of Education, according to reports by Politico Pro and The Washington Post. The lawyer, Candice E. Jackson, wrote on her personal website that she had accepted “an appointment” in the Education Department and would no longer be practicing law. The Pepperdine School of Law reported more specifically that Ms. Jackson had accepted an appointment to serve “as the deputy assistant secretary for civil rights and acting assistant secretary for civil rights.”
The Chronicle of Higher Education, April 2, 2017

Opinion: Funding K-12: solutions to help every child

Washington state is facing arguably the most challenging crunchtime in its history. ... The Legislature and the governor have the opportunity of a generation. Our state’s children need more than a fair and equitable school funding system. They need a system that improves graduation rates and sends more children to college with the background they need to succeed. The color of their skin or the neighborhood where they grow up should not determine their future career path.
The Seattle Times, March 31, 2017

Opinion: On the inside: Prison education saves money

Our state Legislature is considering a bill (SB 5069) to provide associate degree education to offenders inside our adult prisons. The bill is based on studies that demonstrate such education dramatically reduces recidivism rates, saving taxpayer dollars. It will also improve public safety by decreasing criminal activity.
Key Peninsula News, March 31, 2017

Key financial aid tool could be down for months

The Department of Education and the Internal Revenue Service said Thursday that an important online tool for financial aid applicants could be down for months while protections are added to protect the security of users.
Inside Higher Ed, March 31, 2017

Student free speech bill dies in the House

A measure aimed to protect high school and college students' rights to publish and speak freely in school-sponsored media did not make it out of the House Education Committee before a key Wednesday deadline.
The Bellingham Herald, March 28, 2017

Last Modified: 2/9/18 11:42 AM
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