June 30, 2016   School Closings
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American Graduate

Become an American Graduate Champion

Become an American Graduate Champion

An American Graduate Champion commits their time, skills and resources to make sure that young people succeed. He or she is an individual who plays an active role in improving educational outcomes for students. A champion is a parent who is active in the lives of young people or a volunteer who creates a positive environment daily for youth in their community.

Make the commitment to help all young people succeed by becoming or recognizing an American Graduate Champion. Recognize yourself or someone else online now.


Today’s global economy demands a more educated workforce. Communities are working together to improve 21st century learning and increase high school graduation rates to prepare more students for college and successful careers. Public media stations across the country are at the center of this community-based work — from quality content and forums to local partnerships and classroom resources — to increase understanding and access to solutions.

Download the American Graduate Fact Sheet

American Graduate: Let’s Make it Happen is a long term public media commitment, supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), to help communities implement solutions to the high school dropout crisis. Public media plays a significant role building individual activity, community capacity, and national awareness.

The dropout crisis demands attention now, and we are rising to the challenge of doing our part to address this problem. A new study conducted by the Everyone Graduates Center at Johns Hopkins School of Education finds that the American Graduate initiative has succeeded in building community capacity to meet the national priority of ending America’s high school dropout crisis.

Working with Alma and Colin Powell’s America’s Promise Alliance, Civic Enterprises, Johns Hopkins Everyone Graduates Center, and The Alliance for Excellent Education, and over 1000 local partners, the initiative puts faces on the numbers and increases understanding of the risks and solutions through national and local content, covering all facets of the issue for broadcast, web and  mobile platforms. In addition, American Graduate is engaging and empowering teachers, parents and students to help those most at risk of dropping out through community collaborations and classroom resources.

More than 80 public radio and television stations in over 30 states have joined forces with over 1000 partners and at-risk schools to shed light on the problem and share solutions. Through American Graduate: Let’s Make it Happen, public media is increasing national and local reporting, convening diverse local stakeholders, and providing access to free, digital classroom resources for teachers and parents. By working with the community, public broadcasting stations are increasing the footprint of progress, reaching more children and families to seed the foundation for a prosperous economic future for our country.

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Local Partners

Broadway P16 Council/Slavic Village Development Corporation
Cleveland Metropolitan School District
College Now
Cuyahoga Community College
Neighborhood Connections
Neighborhood Leadership Institute
Third Federal Foundation

State Education Roundup on Sound of Ideas

Thursday, June 30, 2016 at 11:06 AM

The U.S. Supreme Court recently upheld a race-consious admissions program at the University of Texas. What effect will the ruling have on Ohio colleges? State Impact Ohio education reporter Michelle Faust joins The Sound of Ideas to discuss that and other education topics, including dropout prevention.

Follow a link to hear the segment: http://www.ideastream.org/programs/sound-of-ideas/state-education-roundup


Expect a Levy for CMSD on the November Ballot

Wednesday, June 29, 2016 at 5:43 PM

November ballots will include a levy for Cleveland Municipal Schools.

The Cleveland Board of Education unanimously voted Tuesday to put issue to voters.

An affirmative vote would extend the operating levy for four more years. It was originally passed by voters in 2012.

The levy generates 69.7 million dollars a year for the district--10 percent of the operating budget.

The district claims the levy is central to reforms made since the implementation of 'The Cleveland Plan,' including a 14 percent increase in the graduation rate since 2011.

Oberlin College Asks Faculty to Retire

Friday, June 24, 2016 at 6:40 PM

by Michelle Faust

A Northeast Ohio college has a plan to save millions of dollars to make up for a slowed tuition increase: voluntary buyouts of more than 300 faculty and staff.

Oberlin College expects savings of between $2.75 and $3.5 million per year depending on how many employees opt to retire.

"It allows us to think about our resources and to do it in a way that honors our employees. But also allows us more flexibility," says Marvin Krislov, college president.

After Criticizing Dept of Ed As "Worst" State Agency, Auditor Says He's Met With New Superintendent

Thursday, June 23, 2016 at 5:19 PM

by Karen Kasler

The state auditor is standing by his concerns about the oversight of charter schools by the Ohio Department of Education, an agency he said two weeks ago is among the worst in state government.

Auditor Dave Yost has been a critic of charter school attendance and transparency. And he says he met with incoming state school superintendent Paolo DeMaria last week.

Ohio Education Leaders Discuss the State of ‘Dropout Prevention and Recovery Schools’

Thursday, June 23, 2016 at 12:41 PM

by Michelle Faust

Education leaders from around Ohio met in Columbus Wednesday to discuss the state of ‘dropout prevention and recovery schools.’

The committee was formed as part of house bill 2—that measure creates reforms for the state’s charter schools.

‘Dropout prevention and recovery schools’ are safety-net programs for students who have left more traditional schools.

Pre-K Teachers Make Half What Kindergarten Teachers Make

Monday, June 20, 2016 at 6:01 PM

by Michelle Faust

The U.S. Department of Education released a report last week showing preschool teachers earn poverty-level wages. Some believe this can affect retention of good teachers.

Preschool teachers in Ohio make less than half of what elementary-school teachers make.

“People look at kindergarten as education and look at preschool as babysitting,” says Barbara Cicerchi, who trains early childhood educators at Cuyahoga Community College.

Transgender Bathroom Issue Briefly Comes Up in Ohio Board of Education Meeting

Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 6:50 PM

A Northeast Ohio Board of Education member wants local districts to decide for themselves how to handle bathroom policies for transgender students.

Sarah Fowler of Rock Creek proposed (see proposal below) Tuesday that local school boards be given an alternative to an Obama administration recommendation.


Westlake Teachers Vote to Strike

Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 6:28 PM

Westlake Teachers overwhelmingly voted to strike Wednesday.

The strike vote comes in response to the board of education's Monday decision to implement a contract teachers rejected last month.

The strike goes into effect June 24th for summer programs. The district released a statement saying it is working to find coverage for programs already in progress. 

All other teachers will begin their strike effective August 18th.


Discussion Over Gifted Education Continues at State Board of Education

Wednesday, June 15, 2016 at 6:06 PM

How are gifted children taught in Ohio? That depends on the district. Ohio schools are not required to offer gifted programs. This week, the Ohio Board of Education discussed ways to standardize the approach to educating gifted kids. 

Advocates for gifted children argue that these students need specialized learning.

Westlake School Board Implements Contract, Teachers to Vote on Strike Option

Monday, June 13, 2016 at 11:01 PM

by Michelle Faust

Teachers at Westlake City Schools will hold a strike vote Wednesday.

In a Monday night meeting, the Westlake Board of Education voted to implement the “last, best, and final” contract offer. The same contract that the Westlake Teachers Association voted to reject in May.

At the May 9th board meeting, WTA President Patrick McMurrow presented a compromise to the board vowing to forgo the right to strike as long as the board continued to negotiate.