Education

Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Members of the Senate Education Committee made major changes Monday to a bill that would repeal Common Core English and math standards in West Virginia. The bill no longer calls for a repeal, instead requires the West Virginia Department of Education study the standards for two years.

House Bill 2934, as approved by the House of Delegates, would have fully repealed the content standards by July 1,2015. As it moved through the Senate, an Education subcommittee agreed to give the repeal an additional year, amending the date to July 1, 2016.

Cecelia Mason / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Public schools are closed in all but one West Virginia county due to the recent winter storm.

The exception Friday is in Hancock County.

While the temperature dipped to record lows, Hancock County schools Superintendent Sue Smith says the roads were clear and dry, and bus drivers had no trouble getting around Friday morning.

Hancock County missed three days of school earlier this week due to bad weather. With 13 missed days already, the school year isn't scheduled to end until June 16 in order to fulfill the state's minimum mandate of 180 days in the classroom.

Perry Bennett / WV Legislative Photography

The Charter Schools bill made its way into the House Wednesday. The House Education Committee debated the bill until almost midnight that night. It ultimately passed and will soon be on first reading in the full House.

Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Senators continue to move on a bill that would repeal Common Core standards in the state Tuesday by proposing amendments during an Education subcommittee meeting.

House Bill 2934 was approved over the weekend by the House of Delegates and called for a total repeal of the math and English standards by July 1, 2015.

Martin Valent / West Virginia Legislative Photography

Members of the Senate approved a bill Monday evening that allows for the creation or conversion of a public school to a public charter school in West Virginia.

A public charter school is a school that uses government funding, but is not overseen by the county Board of Education, giving the school's administrators and teachers more flexibility in how they deliver education. The schools, however, are subject to state education standards. 

Martin Valent / WV Legislative Photography

Members of the West Virginia Senate began discussing a bill Monday that, if approved, would repeal Common Core standards in West Virginia. The legislation passed the state House of Delegates Saturday.

House Bill 2934 calls on the West Virginia Department of Education to repeal the Common Core standards adopted in 2010 for math and language arts. It then requires the board, along with the state Department of Education, to draft new standards.

http://theclio.com/web/

  A team at Marshall University has received a Knight News Challenge Grant to take a smart phone or mobile device history app and improve its black history offerings.

http://westliberty.edu/

West Liberty University's Board of Governors is expected to meet soon to discuss its options regarding an ethics complaint against the school's president.

Media outlets report that the board's executive committee met behind closed doors on Wednesday to discuss the complaint against West Liberty President Robin Capehart. Board chairman George Couch says the board's legal counsel gave the committee an update. He didn't provide details.

Couch says the full board likely will hold a special meeting in the next week to 10 days.

Liz McCormick / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Since it was created by the legislature in 1998, the Children’s Health Insurance Program known as CHIP has covered thousands of children and teens under age 19. 

Roxy Todd

During January’s West Virginia Board of Education meeting, the Board voted to withdraw a controversial new policy that addresses how science teachers should teach climate change to public school students.

Folks have until 4:00 pm Tuesday February 17th, to weigh in on this new policy.

West Virginia University

A second West Virginia University fraternity member faces hazing-related misdemeanors following the November death of a student.

Twenty-one-year-old Jordon

  Parrish Hankins of Hightstown, New Jersey, was arraigned on hazing and conspiracy to commit hazing charges Friday in Monongalia County Magistrate Court.

Earlier this week, 20-year-old Richard William Schwartz of Williamsville, New York, was charged with the same counts.

Electron / Wikimedia Commons

The West Virginia Board of Education has approved a measure to eliminate statewide standardized testing in social studies and reducing examinations in science. 

The Charleston Gazette reports that the board approved the measure on Thursday along with several other changes.

While the move will only applies to testing this spring, the board could approve a more permanent reduction in the future.

DEP Secretary Responds to New Storage Tank Bill

Feb 11, 2015

  At the legislature today, legislation limiting abortions is on its way to the Senate after the House passed the bill overwhelmingly today.  Uber, the international car service, wants to do business in West Virginia, but legislators have concerns.  And we’ll talk with the Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection about the bill to roll back the aboveground storage tank law on The Legislature Today.

West Virginia Legislative Services

West Virginia House lawmakers have approved a bill opening up teacher certification to more people without education degrees.

The push is aimed at allowing programs like Teach For America to start up in the state.

On Tuesday, the Republican-led House of Delegates voted 60-35 in favor of the reform.

Bill proponents said the option would be essential to fill hundreds of teaching vacancies across the state.

Opponents said formal education training prepares teachers for situations they otherwise may not be able to handle.

West Virginia Legislative Services

Coal mine safety was on the minds of Democrats in the house Tuesday; that issue was House Bill 2011, dealing with deliberate intent.  The measure doesn’t address mine safety standards, but those opposed to the bill said it will hurt miners.

Coal Mine Safety Debated in House and Senate

Feb 10, 2015

At the legislature today, emotional debate in both houses as the Senate takes up the Coal Jobs and Safety Act of 2015. In the House, Delegates focused on the legal remedies those hurt or killed in a mining accident will have. And we'll talk with Agriculture Commissioner Walt Helmick about his plans to grow the state's economy on The Legislature Today.

The University of Charleston's School of Pharmacy is no longer on probation.

The university says the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education's Board of Directors lifted the probation last week. The board restored the pharmacy program's full accreditation.

The council had placed the pharmacy school on a two-year probationary status in July 2014. The council said the school was noncompliant with a standard requiring that an accredited school be headed by a dean, collaborate with the larger university, and be autonomous.

Principal Resigns Amid Charges

Feb 9, 2015
http://chs.kana.k12.wv.us/

  A Kanawha County principal has resigned after being charged with failing to report an alleged sexual assault.

The Kanawha county Board of Education accepted Capital High School Principal Clinton Giles' resignation on Monday.

Giles was suspended on Feb. 3 after prosecutors filed the misdemeanor charge against him in Kanawha County Circuit Court.

West Virginia Legislative Services

Anyone visiting the state capitol who is licensed to carry concealed weapons would be allowed to keep loaded firearms in their motor vehicles that are parked near the complex. This bill overwhelmingly passed the house Thursday.

Jamie Mathis is raising both of her grandsons
PBS Newshour

In the rural West Virginia county of McDowell County, almost half of all children live apart from their parents. Families have splintered in the face of economic and social troubles, leaving many grandparents to take on the role of parenting. Special correspondent John Tulenko of Learning Matters visits to see how public schools are supporting these caretakers to improve kids’ lives.

http://chs.kana.k12.wv.us/

 Prosecutors have charged a Kanawha County principal with failing to report an alleged sexual assault at his school.

Capital High School Principal Clinton Giles was charged with the misdemeanor in an information filed Tuesday in Kanawha County Circuit Court.

Giles didn't immediately return a telephone call from The Associated Press.

A 15-year-old female student told a counselor at the school on Jan. 26 that she was sexually assaulted. Charleston police later charged a 17-year-old male student with second-degree sexual assault.

 The Kanawha County Board of Education is settling a lawsuit filed by a teacher who was fired in 2005.

The board agreed Monday to pay $149,000 in back wages to Nitro High School history teacher Robert Fulmer.

Fulmer was fired in 2005 after a former student accused him of sexually assaulting her. She later recanted the allegations and Fulmer was rehired in 2008. He filed the lawsuit in 2009.

The First 1,000 Days: Watch Now

Feb 2, 2015

The First 1,000 Days is a new TV documentary that explains the science and techniques that build healthy brain architecture during the first 3 years. You can watch 1,000 Days on demand through our website.

WVSSAC Director Gary Ray to Retire

Jan 30, 2015
http://www.wvssac.org/

The executive director of the West Virginia Secondary School Activities Commission is retiring.

Gary Ray will step down next January after more than eight years as head of the agency that oversees interscholastic athletics, cheerleading and band activities among its member schools.

The SSAC board of directors accepted Ray's retirement at a meeting Wednesday. A search will begin soon for Ray's replacement.

Daniel Walker / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

At the end of every floor session, senators and delegates are allowed to give remarks to the entire body.  In the House Thursday, these remarks led to extended debate about jobs in the north and the lack of them in the south; about drug addiction and education, and the debate lasted for nearly an hour.

Marshall Celebrates Life of Stephen J. Kopp

Jan 13, 2015
marshall.edu

Members of the Marshall and Huntington community remembered President Stephen J. Kopp yesterday as a great leader and caring man.

Marshall University held a memorial service Tuesday for President Kopp who passed away suddenly on December 17th. Speakers from all walks of Kopp’s life as leader of the University spoke about the kind of man Kopp was. His daughter Liz Bradley.

http://www.boe.faye.k12.wv.us/school_home.aspx?schoolid=7

Two buildings on an Oak Hill middle school's campus have been closed because of safety issues.

Fayette County school officials closed Collins Middle School's main building on Monday. A building housing the school's gym and a school-based health clinic was closed in December.

An inspection found that a third building housing fifth- and sixth-graders is sound. That building will remain open.

Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

Bullying and harassment in schools was the topic of discussion during the Joint Standing Committee on Education yesterday.

West Virginia Higher Education Policy Comission

The Marshall University Board of Governors announced last week that Gary White will take over as interim president in the wake of the death of President Stephen J. Kopp.

White takes over while a search for a permanent replacement takes place. Former President Stephen J. Kopp passed away on December 17th. White is a native of Logan and recently served on Marshall’s board of governors in 2010. White also recently served on the Higher Education Policy Commission. He said his plan for the university while they look for a permanent replacement is to stay the course.

Michael Martirano
Ashton Marra / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

West Virginia's superintendent of schools is heading to the Eastern Panhandle this week to meet with teachers and students in Berkeley, Jefferson and Morgan counties.

Michael Martirano starts his road trip on Wednesday at Musselman High School in Berkeley County. He has other stops at county schools that day before moving on to Jefferson County schools on Thursday. He wraps up the tour on Friday in Morgan County.

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