AP Analysis: Billionaires fuel powerful state charter groups

Since 2006, philanthropists and their private foundations and charities have given almost half a billion dollars to state-level charter support organizations, according to an Associated Press analysis of tax filings and Foundation Center data… More

Opinion: On pensions, heads should but won’t roll

Because state lawmakers have refused for 17 years to fix the pension systems that they broke in 2001, every school district in the state is required to contribute to employees’ pension plans an amount equal to 34 percent of their payrolls, and continue to do so for the next three decades… More

Under DeVos, Ed. Dept. has abandoned vulnerable students, principals’ group director says

The executive director of the National Association of Secondary School Principals called on Education Secretary Betsy DeVos to “recommit” the department to student equity, saying that the department is signaling to vulnerable students through its actions that it does not intend to defend their rights. Education Week, July 12, 2018 (Subscription may be required… More

Casey measure aims to help grandparents stepping in to take care of kids

The Supporting Grandparents Raising Grandchildren Act, signed last week into law by President Donald Trump, calls for establishing an advisory committee made up of federal agencies to map out available resources for grandparents raising their grandchildren, increasingly due to the opioid epidemic… More

Governor Wolf announces $2 Million to retain more teachers, school leaders

Governor Tom Wolf today announced the Pennsylvania Department of Education has awarded approximately $2 million in grants to eight universities to develop and implement year-long residency programs for teachers and principals, a critical element in his commitment to increasing and retaining the number of qualified instructors and school leaders serving the Commonwealth’s public schools… More

Gov. Wolf refutes Wagner’s claim that he seeks cuts from small districts

Gov. Tom Wolf clarified Thursday that he has no intention of seeking imminent cuts from so-called “overpaid” and shrinking school districts to compensate underpaid, growing ones — despite outcry earlier in the day from gubernatorial candidate Scott Wagner that Wolf backs a proposal that would “decimate” Western Pennsylvania’s smallest schools… More

Counseling, mental health access dominate federal school safety meeting

Students—especially those from vulnerable populations and children in remote areas—aren't getting nearly enough access to mental health services. That's according to a slew of experts who testified before the federal school safety commission Wednesday. EducationWeek, July 11, 2018 (Subscription may be required… More

Tough sell for collective bargaining-boosting bills, but unions see hope

In the wake of a Supreme Court decision halting unions' ability to compel public sector employees to pay fees, pro-union state lawmakers are trying to come up with a rebuttal. WITF… More

Opinion: For some children, summer should also be a time for learning

For many students, the months of June, July and August are a detrimental break from the healthy learning habits they formed throughout the school year… More

The looming retirement crisis for public and private employees

When people talk of pension problems, Social Security and public-sector pensions are what always come up. The Philadelphia Inquirer, July 12, 2018 (Subscription may be required… More