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Students at CHAD audit their school lunch program

By Fabiola Cineas on Jul 15, 2015 07:06 PM

Auditing a school’s lunch program is not a standard initiative for teenagers. Yet students from Philadelphia’s Charter High School for Architecture & Design (CHAD) became auditors for 10 weeks.

“It took a lot of hard work, but it was a great opportunity,” said De’ Juan Newton, an 11th grader at CHAD who played a large role in the project.

Philadelphia Student Union searches for new home

By Michaela Ward on Jul 15, 2015 04:22 PM

The Philadelphia Student Union has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo to finance new office space.

In April, the youth advocacy group was evicted from its offices in University City.

Allan Domb: From condo king to tax collector?

By Jared Brey for PlanPhilly on Jul 15, 2015 11:13 AM

Allan Domb wants to collect all the taxes, and he thinks New York can show Philadelphia how to do it.

Test scores dropped sharply in 2015 because of added rigor, Pa. officials say

By Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks on Jul 14, 2015 11:36 PM

The number of Pennsylvania students who scored "proficient" or "advanced" on state standardized tests in 2014-15 fell precipitously compared with the previous year.

And it marks a fourth straight year of test score declines.

The Pennsylvania Department of Education confirms the drop, but will not provide specifics – citing the need to finalize data.

Two key local foundations get new leaders

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jul 14, 2015 06:08 PM

Sarah Martinez-Helfman, who has led the Eagles Youth Partnership for 20 years, was named Tuesday to be the new president of the Samuel S. Fels Fund, an 80-year-old city philanthropy that awards grants and seeks to promote positive social change.

Teachers upbeat after weeklong literacy training

By Fabiola Cineas on Jul 14, 2015 03:59 PM

Last week, nearly 700 Philadelphia K-3 teachers proved their commitment to improving their students’ literacy.

They attended a weeklong institute at Martin Luther King High School and gathered teaching methods and resources for their classrooms.

Hints of a stop-gap budget in Pa., but no big breakthrough

By Mary Wilson for NewsWorks on Jul 14, 2015 09:34 AM

A top Republican lawmaker suggested Monday that Pennsylvania may need a short-term budget as a compromise on a full spending plan proves elusive.

"The Senate Republicans [and] the House Republicans don't want to see services for the most vulnerable in the commonwealth ... held up," said Senate President Pro Tempore Joe Scarnati (R-Jefferson) as he emerged from a private meeting with Gov. Wolf, a Democrat.

Dickey also leaving the District?

By Dale Mezzacappa on Jul 13, 2015 10:20 PM

It looks like another member of Superintendent William Hite's leadership team is leaving the Philadelphia School District.

A newspaper in the Atlanta area is reporting that Donyall Dickey, who has been the District's chief academic support officer for barely a year, is headed for a job as chief schools officer in the Atlanta district.

Summer activities for kids and families | Week of July 12

By Samantha Weiss on Jul 13, 2015 11:09 AM


Finding fun and inexpensive ways to spend the summer doesn’t have to be a hassle. Family-friendly events and activities that can keep kids active and mentally stimulated are happening all around Philadelphia.

Teaching kids to read is much harder than you think

By Fabiola Cineas on Jul 10, 2015 02:01 PM

Literacy expert Nell Duke has said that teaching children to read is like rocket science.

She brought that message to Philadelphia on Tuesday, when she addressed key players in the city’s READ! by 4th campaign, a collaboration of educators, organizations, and businesses dedicated to having all 4th graders proficient in reading by 2020.

“Teaching children to read by 4th grade is a formidable task more akin to cardiac surgery than it is akin to what many people think of as an easy, playful task,” said Duke.

Wolf cagey on pension position as Pa. impasse drags on

By Mary Wilson for NewsWorks on Jul 10, 2015 01:27 PM

Democratic Gov. Wolf of Pennsylvania isn't ruling out a switch to 401(k)-style retirement plans for future state and school employees.

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