November 25, 2019

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Kansas City Education News

Propane Buses at Work for Kansas City Public Schools

By Michael Bates, NGT News
The Missouri Propane Education and Research Council recently presented Student Transportation of America with a check for $20,000 for its acquisition of new propane school buses, which are in service throughout the Kansas City Public Schools district. The rebate presented to STA is part of MOPERC’s Clean Bus Replacement Plan, which has committed $1 million to help Missouri school districts transition from diesel to propane buses. The plan offers rebates of $2,000 per propane bus, up to 10 per district or contractor, at the time of delivery.

Criminal investigation likely in KCPS attendance scandal, prosecutor says

By Marc Lavoie, 98.1 KMBZ
Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd expects to see a criminal investigation into reports of falsified attendance records at the Kansas City Public School district. The numbers were reportedly tampered with between 2013 and 2016, before Dr. Mark Bedell took over as KCPS superintendent. He said last week that the seven employees alleged to have changed the numbers are no longer working in the district. Attendance figures are used to determine certain thresholds for state and federal funding in school districts. “There certainly are laws in the state of Missouri against falsifying government records,” Zahnd said. “There are also general laws prohibiting forgery in the state of Missouri and there are laws against tampering with computer records.”

One person arrested after allegedly making threat aimed at Blue Valley Northwest High School

By Matt Stewart, Fox 4 News
Students, staff and parents will notice additional police at one local school Monday after officers arrested a person who allegedly threatened violence against the school. The principal at Blue Valley Northwest High School sent the following email to parents Sunday night: “Husky families, earlier this evening we learned there was a threat of violence against our school community. We immediately notified local authorities to determine the credibility of the threat.

KC schools waiting to learn what the fake attendance data scandal will cost them

By Mara Rose Williams, KC Star
Missouri’s department of education had planned this week to announce how much Kansas City Public Schools owed the state for submitting inflated attendance numbers. But on Friday, state officials said they are still waiting for data from the district before they can calculate that amount. It could be December before the state has any word on that figure. “It is a very slow process,” said Kelly Wachel, district spokeswoman.

Missouri Education News

Missouri officials tout ‘Clear the Air’ campaign

By Daniel Cobb, News-Press Now.com
A new initiative has Missouri officials hoping to bring more awareness to the dangers of vaping. In October, Gov. Mike Parson signed an executive order setting the “Clear the Air” campaign into motion. With the Departments of Elementary and Secondary Education, Health and Senior Services and Public Safety, the goal of the campaign is to provide parents, educators and students various resources to better inform them of the risks of vaping through online toolkits and informative videos and graphics. “DESE’s role in the campaign is really ensuring that we are using all of our existing communication platforms to share this message with our Missouri public school districts and charter schools so that our educators and Missouri families are informed about the vaping epidemic and really how this is affecting our children — both their well-being as well as their academic success,” DESE Communications Coordinator Mallory McGowin said.

National Education News

National Education Week Has Roots Here In Iowa

By KIWA Radio
Exactly 100 years ago, the NEA was distressed that 25 percent of the country’s World War I draftees were illiterate and 9 percent were physically unfit. Representatives of the NEA and the American Legion met in 1919 to seek ways to generate public support for education. The conventions of both organizations subsequently adopted resolutions of support for a national effort to raise public awareness of the importance of education. In 1921, the NEA Representative Assembly in Des Moines, Iowa, called for the designation of one week each year to spotlight education. In its resolution, the NEA called for: “An educational week … observed in all communities annually for the purpose of informing the public of the accomplishments and needs of the public schools and to secure the cooperation and support of the public in meeting those needs.”

As Thanksgiving Approaches, ‘Unlearning’ History Continues

By Mark Lieberman, Education Week

Not too long ago, it was common in K-12 classrooms for students to use construction paper to craft stereotypical renderings of Native American headdresses, and to pose as colonists and Natives harmoniously sharing a meal together. Now? According to Jacob Tsotigh, citizen of the Kiowa tribe and the tribal education specialist for the National Indian Education Association, “There’s less and less of that, as more people are made aware of that version being a myth, and our realization that there is a really different perspective that needs to be considered.” Thanksgiving became a national holiday during the administration of President Abraham Lincoln, and the myth of familial relations between colonial settlers and Native Americans has persisted in American culture ever since.

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