June 24, 2019


Kansas City Area Education News

As classrooms grow more diverse, equity training shows teachers have a lot to learn

By Mara Rose Williams, KC Star

The data was clear: minority students in one North Kansas City classroom were not achieving at the same level as other students, and Rene Cooper had a suspicion why. Cooper, the teaching and learning coach at Northgate Middle School, started looking for patterns in the teacher’s work. She visited her classroom. “I was looking for who was she talking to first. Who was she allowing to answer questions in the classroom? Who was she calling on? Who was she greeting at the door? And how was she greeting them,” Cooper said. “When we started looking at them (patterns) we noticed that she had biases in her work.”  It wasn’t intentional. “She had no idea,” Cooper said. “She had the best intentions. She’s an amazing teacher.”

This Couple Wants To Turn An Abandoned Kansas City Block Into A Vibrant Community

By Gina Kauffman, KCUR

The night of his high school graduation, Daniel Edwards and his friends looked out at Kansas City from a fourth-floor window at Lincoln College Preparatory Academy on 21st and Woodland. They could see vacant property in every direction, and as they prepared to head off into the world, they joked about coming back as grown-ups to buy an empty block and start their own neighborhood.

Kansas City Schools Are Still Suspending Lots Of Students, Even As Discipline Policies Change

By Elle Moxley, KCUR

Kansas City schools issued more suspensions in 2018 than in 2015, according to a new citywide analysis from Turn the Page KC.  That’s despite a national reckoning with how students of color are disciplined versus their white peers.  “Missouri as a state, unfortunately, has a really high and disproportionate number of black boys that are suspended out of school each year,” said Annie Watson, the director of early education and parent success for Turn the Page. “What we see is that trend is certainly accurate at the local level.”

Missouri/Kansas Education News

Hundreds volunteer time to annual Project Shine event in Independence

By 41 Action News

INDEPENDENCE, Mo. — Hundreds of volunteers gathered to help spruce up four Independence, Missouri, schools with Project Shine Saturday morning. The 11th annual event helped clean, paint and beautify Bryant Elementary, Korte Elementary, Proctor Elementary and Pioneer Ridge Middle School. The event began 11 years ago when the Independence School District annexed six schools from Kansas City. An emergency clean up was necessary to get the schools ready for students. The impressive community support and volunteer spirit helped Project Shine become an annual event.

National Education News

The Children of Philadelphia Have Been Attending Toxic Schools for Years. This Is a National Crisis

By Sen. Vincent J. Hughes, The Root

The children of Philadelphia are in dire need of our help. They are at the mercy of a man-made, ticking time bomb that is nearly inescapable. I’m talking about toxic schools. Conditions in Philadelphia schools have needed a remedy for many years. Lead, asbestos, mold and other toxins are far too common in our aging school infrastructure, but folks have been vigilantly fighting for justice, proposing the necessary resources and means to make a difference. One such school building, Cassidy Elementary, remains at the center of the conversation about toxic schools, largely due to the efforts of a heroic student, Chelsea Mungo.