Wolf signs plan for ‘cyber snow days’

Snow days may no longer be school-free days for Pennsylvania students. Schools can now have “cyber snow days” when bad weather prevents students from coming to school, according to legislation signed Tuesday by Gov. Tom Wolf… More

State of the State: The (sometimes tumultuous) path to passing PA’s budget (podcast)

Pennsylvania officially has a budget for the new fiscal year, and it was — mostly — signed into law two days ahead of deadline. As far as budgets go in Harrisburg, it was a breeze — after all just four years ago, an impasse over funding dragged on for nine months… More

ISTE 2019: Access, teacher training key to tackling digital divide

The integration of technology into education — which includes everything from online homework to digital textbooks — has led to increasing concerns around digital equity, said panelists at the 2019 International Society for Technology in Education conference. They also addressed the question of how educators can bridge the gap… More

Seven big takeaways for education in the new PA budget

As Pennsylvania lawmakers finalized this year’s budget, a flurry of hotly-debated education proposals have been decided. Here are the latest updates on seven major education issues — from funding to charters, school security to teacher evaluations — that made headlines in Harrisburg over the last few months… More

Haves and have-nots: 60% of PA school districts headed for fiscal stress

The majority of Pennsylvania public schools are headed over a fiscal cliff in the next five years… More

PA grants to fund programs that educate on environmental issues

A one-acre pollinator garden. Climate change workshops. Riparian buffer planting. Field trips for fourth- and sixth-graders. Those are some of the programs being funded by the latest round of Environmental Education Grants announced Friday by the state Department of Environmental Protection… More

Making the grade: The pitfalls of over-reliance on standardized tests

The Pennsylvania Department of Education has 500 school districts to manage, each with its own blend of geography and demographics. But every district has to be held accountable to the same standards. The problem has been an overemphasis on test results… More

After historic term on Philly Board of Education, what did two students learn?

The first student representatives to the Philadelphia School District’s governing body in a generation have wrapped up their term speaking for 200,000 students, and it’s been an eye-opening year, say Julia Frank and Alfredo Praticò… More

SCOTUS decision doesn’t impact PA’s redistricted Congressional map

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Thursday that federal courts can not decide whether gerrymandering violates the U.S. Constitution, and that solutions must come from Congress or the states. The decision does not impact Pennsylvania’s recently redistricted map, because the case was based on the state constitution… More

PA budget deal still in limbo amid last-minute brinksmanship

Amid the deadline brinksmanship, measures approved by lawmakers Thursday included a $34 billion budget package and changes to laws that govern elections, public schools and human services. A key budget-related bill that guides education policy hit opposition Thursday night in the House of Representatives, and remained in limbo. The 2019-20 fiscal year begins Monday… More