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News Links | May 9, 2017

May 09, 2017 by SBCTC Communications

System News | Opinion

Everett elementary teaches English to immigrant parents

At one table were native speakers in Greek and Ukrainian. At another, Indonesian and Spanish. They were brought together by a desire to communicate better, especially with their children and school staff. Emerson Elementary in south Everett started a new English class for parents this spring. About two dozen families are participating. ... The teacher, Alanna Yang, is from Everett Community College. She asked the parents if being nervous about English kept them from volunteering at school. Hands shot up.
Everett Herald, May 8, 2017

Community Court gives first graduate ‘real hope for the future’

From the top of the mountain – literally – to struggling with addiction, domestic violence and crime, Raymond Gregson has been through a lot on his way to becoming the first person to graduate from Grays Harbor Community Court. Now, he’s taking classes at Grays Harbor College, has reconnected in a real way with his 9-year old daughter and, for the first time in many years, has real hope for the future.
The Daily World, May 8, 2017

World Naked Gardening Day: It all started in Seattle

Not to worry, Seattle, about the Seattle we fear losing. Not as long as people like Mark Storey are around. That would be the unconventional, a bit off-kilter Seattle that separates us from same-sameness that envelopes many of our cities. He’s one of the co-founders of World Naked Gardening Day, now in its 13th year, which was celebrated around the world last Saturday, as it always has been, on the first Saturday in May. ... He teaches philosophy at Bellevue College and is a longtime advocate of au naturel. 
The Seattle Times, May 7, 2017

Twin Harbors continues skills center programs for high school students

The Twin Harbors branch of New Market Skills Center is offering summer skills classes free of charge for high school students in grades 9-12. Two sessions will be offered and students can earn 0.5 credits in any course successfully completed. ... A new program in collaboration with Grays Harbor College is available in Medical Assisting as well.
The Daily World, May 6, 2017

Opinion: Community colleges are a powerful force for Washington’s economy, if legislature funds them

Whatcom Community College and Washington’s community and technical college system are celebrating their 50th anniversaries this spring. Meanwhile, House and Senate budget negotiators are working hard to craft a two-year spending plan for our state. The two events are closely connected, because the decisions made in the final budget will decide the fate of Washington’s 34 community and technical colleges and their students in the years to come.
The Bellingham Herald, May 6, 2017

Dr. P.J. Peterson LCC's 2017 Alumna of the Year

Lower Columbia College announced its 2017 Alumna of the Year Friday with the selection of Dr. P.J. Peterson. Peterson, a 1967 graduate of LCC, grew up south of Kalama and attended Kalama Public Schools, where she graduated as the valedictorian of her class. While at LCC, Peterson played clarinet in the college’s symphony, belonged to Phi Theta Kappa (the international honor society for two-year college students) and was the 1967 Outstanding Student in Natural Science.
Longview Daily News, May 5, 2017

First new PNW history book in 30 years offers new perspectives on regional history

Those living in the Pacific Northwest know it to be a diverse region filled with the vibrant stories of the natives and pioneers who formed the fabric of the local, regional and national history. However, the area has been neglected by historians outside of the region, a fact that local history professors David J. Jepsen and David J. Norberg seek to address in their book “Contested Boundaries: a New Pacific Northwest History.” ... Jepsen, 69, a history professor at Tacoma Community College, faced difficulty reaching students using currently available textbooks on Pacific Northwest history, the last having been published some 30 years ago. Norberg, 43, has encountered similar problems with his students as a history professor at Green River College.
The News Tribune, May 4, 2017

Indian Education/TCC powwow enjoys biggest turnout ever

The 11th annual Tacoma Indian Education/Tacoma Community College powwow was held on Saturday, April 15 on the campus of TCC. This has been an ongoing successful partnership between the Tacoma Indian Education program and TCC going on 11 years. This was the most successful powwow to date with more than 500 people in attendance.
Tacoma Weekly, May 4, 2017

‘This is Centralia College making its mark:' Community celebrates TransAlta Commons

Centralia College christened its newest building on Tuesday when the TransAlta Commons was officially unveiled to students, staff and the public during a grand opening ceremony that was years in the making. ... The large open spaces give students numerous places to gather, study and meet friends, which creates a sense of community, Mohrbacher said. This helps students feel welcome and helps them be successful. The building is just under 70,000 square feet. It represents one of the final steps of a master plan outlined years ago to upgrade Centralia College.
Centralia Chronicle, May 4, 2017

Graphic design student earns prestigious fellowship

As graduation approaches, it’s inevitable for finishing students to start hearing questions about what they plan to do next. For graphic design student Ben Donan, that plan includes moving to Germany for one year to become the first Clover Park Technical College student to participate in a prestigious fellowship program. Donan was selected as one of 75 American students who will participate in the 2017-18 Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals (CBYX). 
The Suburban Times, May 4, 2017

Trends | Horizons | Education

Demanding results on transfer

An unusually structured new grant from the Michael and Susan Dell Foundation seeks to help eight colleges design a better pathway for community college students to earn four-year degrees. The foundation is funding the nonprofit Education Design Lab to lead a one-year “design challenge” for four pairs of community colleges and four-year institutions to develop customized sets of proven interventions to get more transfer students to graduation.
Inside Higher Ed, May 9, 2017

Divinity, diversity and division

Professor calls diversity training workshop to which colleagues were invited a “waste,” setting off debate about inclusiveness and civility. Divinity schools aren’t void of infighting, but controversies from these centers of academic and spiritual contemplation rarely spill into the public domain. Unsurprisingly, then, recently released documents about an ongoing dispute over the role of diversity training within Duke University’s Divinity School have grabbed religious scholars’ attentions.
Inside Higher Ed, May 9, 2017

Students don’t always recognize good teaching, study finds

Effective teaching has a lasting impact on students but is rarely recognized in their course evaluations, according to an analysis, released on Tuesday, of nearly 340,000 mathematics students at the University of Phoenix. A skilled instructor affected his or her students’ performance in a course on a scale equal to moving their grade from a B to a B-plus, say researchers at the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in a report on their study, “Measuring Up: Assessing Instructor Effectiveness in Higher Education,” which appears in Education Next. The gain in learning carried over into subsequent courses. “It’s a boost with staying power,” wrote Pieter De Vlieger, Brian A. Jacob, and Kevin Stange.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 9, 2017

The destructiveness of call-out culture on campus

Last month, hoping to better understand how digital communications affects life on campus, I posed this question: “Were College Students Better Off Before Social Media?” One undergraduate responded that what he likes best about the communications environment at his college, where there are about 10,000 students, is that “it has taught me a great deal about rapid-response crisis communications.” After graduation, he explained,  “I’m interested in pursuing a career working on political campaigns.” And campus life for his peers “has been a veritable trial-by-fire for crisis comms.” Dozens of other college students sent answers to my inquiry, too.
The Atlantic, May 8, 2017

The new intellectuals

The political wars on today’s college campuses are being quickly reduced to a small number of unsatisfying explanations. Many of these are injurious and insulting to the students who already hold marginalized positions within the university. Diatribes against the “coddling” of students may have given way to debates over “free speech.” But both conceptual frameworks, despite notable complications to the latter, get in the way of any meaningful understanding of the situations students, faculty, staff, and administrators find themselves confronting.
The Atlantic, May 8, 2017

UW offers scholarships for high-tech certificate programs

The University of Washington is offering scholarships for lower-income adults to take high-tech certificate classes tuition-free. The first 10 scholarships will be awarded for the fall quarter, and they will be based on the applicant’s financial need and the potential for the certificate to have an impact on his or her career. They are open only to Washington residents.
The Seattle Times, May 8, 2017

$1.43 million wake-up call

In a long-waged battle, Jane Meyer, a former senior member of the University of Iowa’s athletics department, sued her former employer, claiming discrimination based on gender and her sexual orientation — and won. Meyer’s unequivocal legal victory, which netted her $1.43 million in damages from the university, represents too a win for other women in collegiate athletics, experts say. ... In interviews, advocates say these biases are widespread, proven by the persistence of legal skirmishes over the years. Their proposed solutions: hire more female coaches and women in athletics leadership positions, and require clear, substantial training so everyone on campuses understands the federal law barring discrimination.
Inside Higher Ed, May 8, 2017

America’s most challenging high schools

America’s Most Challenging High Schools ranks schools through an index formula that’s a simple ratio: the number of Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Advanced International Certificate of Education tests given at a school each year, divided by the number of seniors who graduated that year. A ratio of 1.000 means the school had as many tests as graduates.
The Washington Post, May 5, 2017

Indiana school faces backlash over Trump ‘resistance’ class

A private college in Vice President Mike Pence’s home state of Indiana is facing backlash after offering a “Trumpism & U.S. Democracy” course that described the president in class materials as a purveyor of “sexism, white supremacy, xenophobia, nationalism, nativism and imperialism.” Now officials at Butler University in Indianapolis are doing damage control after conservative news outlets picked up on the description of the fall class, which also indicated students would discuss and “potentially engage” in “strategies for resistance” to President Donald Trump.
The Seattle Times, May 5, 2017

From for-profits to community colleges

As some of the largest for-profit institutions in the country lost federal funding or were punished or closed by federal and state agencies, many experts wondered what would happen to the students who relied on federal aid and left those institutions. A new paper by researchers at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia found that many of these students don’t abandon postsecondary education altogether — instead, they enroll at community colleges.
Inside Higher Ed, May 5, 2017

Lisa Brown stepping down as WSU Spokane chancellor, says she’s considering congressional run

Lisa Brown is stepping down as chancellor of Washington State University’s Spokane campus and says she is again considering a run for Congress. Brown has spent the past four years leading the Spokane campus and was instrumental in the formation of a medical school there. She previously served for 20 years in the Legislature, the last eight as the Democratic majority leader in the Senate. She said Thursday she will leave WSU in August.
The Spokesman-Review, May 4, 2017

Politics | Local, State, National

For-profit task force no more

With interagency panel launched under Obama no longer active, observers see a Department of Education less interested in leading oversight of for-profit college sector. State regulators may become more important. In the midst of a push late in the Obama administration to crack down on abuses by for-profit colleges, the Department of Education launched an interagency task force to coordinate oversight of the sector with other governmental agencies.
Inside Higher Ed, May 9, 2017

New law would expand dual-language programs — if legislators fund it

As the number of students learning English continues to climb in Washington, the state has added several new tools to help school districts prepare both native and nonnative speakers for fluency in at least two languages. Bipartisan legislation that Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law Monday would provide grants of up to $200,000 that districts could use to create or expand dual-language programs. Students in those immersive programs spend half the day learning in their native language, and half in another.
The Seattle Times, May 9, 2017

Texas law bans sanctuary cities — and campuses

Texas Governor Greg Abbott Sunday night signed into law legislation that prohibits local and campus police departments from limiting their officers’ cooperation with federal immigration enforcement authorities. The bill targeting “sanctuary cities” would impose fines ranging up to $25,500 per day on local or campus police departments that prohibit their officers from inquiring about the immigration status of a person lawfully detained or arrested or from sharing information with or otherwise cooperating with federal immigration officers. It would also make a local police chief or sheriff’s knowing failure to comply with a detainer request from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement a misdemeanor offense.
Inside Higher Ed, May 8, 2017

A Trump flip-flop on black colleges

President Trump confused and angered advocates for historically black colleges Friday when he suggested that a key aid program for the institutions could be unconstitutional. But, amid criticism, Trump aides reached out to black-college supporters and said his Friday comment didn't mean he was going to change anything. And then on Sunday he issued a statement calling his support for the institutions “unwavering.”
Inside Higher Ed, May 8, 2017

After outcry over rejected grants, DeVos forbids formatting rules

Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos and her department faced public criticism following news reports that the department had flat-out rejected dozens of colleges’ Upward Bound grant applications based on minor line-spacing and font-size errors. Now, Ms. DeVos has issued an order forbidding department officials from mandating any page or formatting rules in grant applications.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 8, 2017

Opinion: The wrong way to fix student debt

Tens of millions of Americans together owe more than a trillion dollars in student debt. For the financial health of their households and the entire economy, ensuring a fair and smoothly functioning student loan system is critically important. But with a series of regulatory changes, the Trump administration is taking us in the wrong direction, making student loans riskier, more expensive and more burdensome for borrowers.
New York Times, May 6, 2017

Opinion: Enough: Contact state legislative leaders to step up as they should to fund K-12

All 147 legislators and Gov. Jay Inslee share responsibility for Washington state’s continuing failure to fix its unconstitutional, inequitable public K-12 school funding system. But it’s largely up to a handful of leaders in the state House and Senate to end the tiresome partisan standoff that is halting progress. They must start compromising — and negotiating — to get the Legislature across the finish line. This editorial board is counting on these smart and capable leaders to do their paramount duty and fully fund K-12 schools. Washingtonians should contact these representatives directly and encourage them to negotiate a solution.
The Seattle Times, May 5, 2017

McCleary roundup: As session drags on, school districts sweat

As compromise remains elusive in the Washington Legislature, school districts are left with the familiar exercise of planning their next year budget without a clear expectation of how much money to expect from the state.
The Seattle Times, May 5, 2017

Bipartisan bill to reauthorize Perkins Act

A bipartisan bill introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives today would reauthorize the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act, which provides federal support to career education programs. The proposed legislation builds on a similar bill that passed the House last year but was not considered by the U.S. Senate. The bill's sponsors said this version would give states more flexibility in how to use the federal money. It also would tighten the program's focus on in-demand jobs, reduce administrative burdens and ensure the participation of underserved students.
Inside Higher Ed, May 5, 2017

Which tests should students have to pass to graduate? None, some lawmakers say

A standoff over whether high school students should have to pass a biology test to graduate pushed the Legislature to work a record number of days in overtime two years ago. Now, lawmakers mostly agree the biology-test requirement should go. But some want to do away with other testing requirements as well, leading to yet another stalemate over standardized tests.
The News Tribune, May 5, 2017

In Congress, even lawmakers’ degrees are a partisan issue

Of the many ways that the U.S. House of Representatives fails to mirror the nation as a whole, here’s an underrated one: The educational attainment of our representatives far surpasses that of the electorate.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, May 5, 2017

Washington college students could get course in financial literacy

Incoming freshmen at Washington’s public colleges will get a course in financial literacy starting with the upcoming school year, if the Legislature gives the schools the money to pay for it. A bill signed Thursday requires the state’s colleges and universities to make sure new students take a seminar that provides them with information about financial aid, scholarships, work study and loan options, and an overview of their costs and consequences. It also must provide information on average salaries for a range of jobs and contact information for financial aid resources.
The Spokesman-Review, May 4, 2017

Opinion: Who’s failing? It’s the system, not the schools

Cascade Middle School in Auburn has been labeled a failing school by the Washington Policy Center. Too few kids are passing statewide tests. The numbers aren’t improving. And the unexcused absence rate is high. But Principal Isaiah Johnson says the school and its students aren’t failing. Washington’s education system is what needs to try harder. I agree.
The Seattle Times, May 4, 2017

Last Modified: 2/9/18 11:40 AM
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