Education:

How books can be a powerful ‘punishment’ for those who commit hate crimes

In 2016, an old schoolhouse in Virginia that was once used for teaching black students during the era of segregation was sprayed with offensive graffiti. From the moment Prosecutor and Deputy Commonwealth Attorney Alejandra Rueda heard about the racist and anti-Semitic graffiti scrawled across the schoolhouse in Ashburn, Loudoun County, Virginia, she suspected the culprits were children. Her intuition proved correct. Five children aged 16 and 17 were arrested for the crime and pleaded guilty to one count of destruction of private property and one count of unlawful entry. Their punishment? For an entire year, the offender had to read one…

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  • BBC
  • Date:04/17/2019

What educators can learn from the elementary school Lebron James set up

The elementary school that superstar basketball player Lebron James set up in his hometown of Akron, Ohio isn’t like other schools connected to celebrities. That’s mainly because the I Promise school, as it’s known, is not a charter school run by a private operator but a public school operated by the district. The school’s $2 million budget is funded by the district, roughly the same amount per pupil that it spends in other schools, with Mr. James’s foundation providing another $600,000 in financial support for additional teaching staff to help reduce class sizes, and an additional hour of after-school programming…

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  • New York Times
  • Date:04/16/2019

The inspiring story behind Peter Tabichi, the world’s best teacher of 2019

We could all learn a thing or two about generosity from Peter Tabichi, a maths and physics teacher at a secondary in a remote part of Kenya’s Rift Valley. Tabichi gives away 80 percent of his income to help the poorest students at the poorly-equipped and overcrowded school who could otherwise not afford uniforms and books. Despite only having one computer, a poor internet connection and a student-teacher ratio of 58:1, Tabichi started a “talent nurturing club” and expanded the school’s science club, helping pupils design research projects of such quality that many now qualify for national competitions. The most…

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  • Quartz
  • Date:03/26/2019

Kids in Ukraine are taking media literacy lessons to better identify propaganda

The war in eastern Ukraine between government forces and Russian-backed separatists has triggered an unfortunate surge in propaganda and disinformation. To combat this, schools across Ukraine have integrated media literacy techniques within their lessons to help students better assess the information they're receiving. A report released on Friday by a global education organization described that the students who attended the lessons were twice as likely to detect hate speech and 18 percent better at identifying fake news than students who missed out on them. Kids who received the modified lessons also performed better in all media-analysis skills, such as distinguishing…

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  • NPR
  • Date:03/25/2019

Trade schools in America are losing the stigma and attracting more students

There’s an immense amount of social pressure on graduating high school students to enroll in expensive four-year universities, which creates a glut of people all applying to the same white-collar jobs. No wonder university graduates are struggling to find jobs. Meanwhile, graduates of trade schools where practical knowledge is taught are having no problems finding jobs. That’s because there’s a huge need for industry workers such as electricians and welders due to the fact so many students go to universities instead of trade schools, which have long had a negative stigma surrounding them. That stigma, however, is starting to disappear.…

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  • Popular Mechanics
  • Date:03/19/2019

Academic publishing is absurdly expensive—but soon it could be free

The University of California (UC), the largest public academic system in the US, is ending its $11 million subscription to Elsevier, the world’s biggest and most influential publisher of academic researcher. Perhaps this seems like an insane move by such a renowned university, but it’s a move driven by principle: The UC system doesn’t want scientific knowledge locked up behind paywalls, and thinks the costs of academic publishing have grown out of control. Another major problem with journals such as Elsevier is that they somehow get away with not paying for the research that they publish. Now the question is:…

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  • The Atlantic
  • Date:03/05/2019

Here’s why parrots can talk like humans

Our closest mammal relatives haven’t been able to replicate human speech, and yet, parrots do so easily. Have you ever wondered why that is? First, get the “bird brain” out of your head. Parrots are actually smart animals, and have been known to create unique songs so their mate will recognize them. Parrots also communicate with other flocks of parrots in a similar way to humans. Brains aside, parrots have a voice box that is far more dynamic than humans, which allows them to speak somewhat similarly to a human. But to understand the reason why parrots are so good…

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  • Vox
  • Date:03/05/2019

Homeless kids helped design a new school built specifically to help them excel

After listening to homeless children speak about the ideal elements they would want in a school, a non-profit in Oklahoma City has built a school specifically for those kids. The idea of the school is to help homeless kids get back up to speed so they can enter the public school system while dually providing those children with the things they’re missing without a home of their own. The school, which is set to open in September, features a big kitchen, spaces to nap, a treehouse, and many other homely elements.

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  • Fast Company
  • Date:02/01/2019

Chinese protesters come up with an innovative idea to protest against homophobia

In an act of protest against homophobia and homosexual “conversion therapies” in China, three men have come up with an innovative idea to raise awareness about the issue among the Chinese people. The protesters have sent bright red trucks with slogans denouncing the “treatment” clinics that claim to turn people straight.

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  • The Telegraph
  • Date:01/22/2019

The online company shaking up the future of higher education

Coursera, one of the biggest educational online platforms, is on the verge of offering full-degree courses to its users at a cost much lower than that of physical universities. The company’s CEO foresees the virtual learning environment to become the most effective way for working people to acquire new skills. With more than 3,000 classes already being offered by 150 international university partners, the company is already shaking up higher education.

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  • Forbes
  • Date:12/31/2018
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