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Judge blocks North Carolina school voucher program

A North Carolina judge on Thursday blocked the state's new school voucher program, saying it unconstitutionally diverted money from public education to private schools, many of them religious. The Opportunity Scholarship program, designed to give poor and middle-class families public funds to help pay private school tuition, was passed by the state's Republican-controlled Legislature last year and had already begun operating. School vouchers have drawn criticism from those who say they drain money from public schools and subsidize overtly religious education. In his order blocking the program, Judge Robert Hobgood said it diverted money that under the state constitution can only be used for public schools.

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Some US colleges calling students back from Israel

In this 2014 photo provided by Michigan State University, students in the school's Summer Study Abroad Program take a break while hiking in Israel. Some U.S. colleges have now pulled students from their overseas study programs in Israel as the Gaza war rages. Colleges site security as the top concern. (AP Photo/Michigan State University)HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Some U.S. colleges are pulling students from overseas study programs in Israel as the Gaza war rages, though the relative calm beyond the immediate battle areas is raising questions in some quarters about why they had to leave.


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Crowdfunding Your Medical Bills

Jennifer Anderson, 33, knew her entire life that she would be unable to have kids naturally. Then one day when she was browsing Facebook, Anderson came across a link to the crowdfunding site GoFundMe, where people could ask for money from friends, family and strangers to help fund anything from medical bills and college tuition to vacations and weddings.

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Fewer U.S. youth using sunscreen new study finds

The percentage of high school students using sunscreen dropped from 67.7 percent in 2001 to 56.1 percent in 2011, according to the study by researchers at William Paterson University in New Jersey and published Thursday in the publication Preventing Chronic Disease. The study analyzed survey data from high school students collected for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System. The drop in sunscreen use occurred as melanoma, the most dangerous form of skin cancer, increased 1.6 percent annually among men from 2001 to 2010 and 1.4 percent among women, the study said.

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Iowa-based higher education consultants to merge

A Cedar Rapids-based company that provides fundraising and enrollment management services to colleges and universities announced Thursday the acquisition of a company that specializes in higher education ...

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5 Must-Download Apps for College Students

This year's crop of college freshmen was in elementary school when Apple Inc. released its first iPhone and, along with it, the App Store. Keeping up with which apps are the best bets for taking notes, managing schedules and studying for an upcoming exam can be a full-time job, though, with hundreds of new apps released every day. Below are five must-download apps for college students. Campus apps: Colleges have started to jump on the mobile craze, and schools such as Ohio State University and Massachusetts Institute of Technology have launched apps that allow students to check grades, manage their university accounts and track campus bus lines.

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Millennials Latest College Funding Strategy

Millennials are socking away money for their kids’ college education earlier than their parents did for them.

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Starbucks Chases College Students Onto Campuses

Starbucks Chases College Students Onto CampusesA Starbuck's food truck is coming to three lucky college campuses this semester. 


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Former POW Bergdahl seeks to return to civilian life, lawyer says

"He is ready to move on to the next chapter of his life," Bergdahl's attorney, Eugene Fidell, told Reuters. "He would like to get a college education." Bergdahl, 28, an Army sergeant, was released by the Taliban in May in exchange for five Taliban prisoners who were taken to Qatar from the U.S. The prisoner swap triggered an outcry from critics of the Obama administration amid accusations by some members of Bergdahl’s Army unit that he had deserted before being captured by the Taliban. "People who have had this kind of experience, in my understanding, tend not to remain in the service," Fidell said. "It is time for Sergeant Bergdahl to just become plain old Bowe Bergdahl and move on with his life." An Army general is investigating how Bergdahl, from Hailey, Idaho, came to be a prisoner of the Taliban.

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Parents: Think Hard Before Borrowing for, With Your Student

Earlier this month, the Department of Education issued new, draft rules that, if adopted, will change the eligibility criteria for both graduate and Parent Direct PLUS loans.

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Colleges add luxury touches to new stadiums

FILE - In this July 2, 2014, file photo, people stroll along the river walk across from the new McClane Stadium at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. The on-campus facility is set to open this fall amid great fanfare. (AP Photo/Waco Tribune Herald, Jerry Larson)KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Lining the brightly lit hallways of Populous, one of the leading architectural firms behind college sports, there are hundreds of scale models and graphic renderings of college football stadiums in various stages of renovation and construction.


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How College Students Can Avoid Getting Sick

Indeed, bugs like upper-respiratory infections, colds and, on the more serious side, mononucleosis and meningitis, tend to flourish on college campuses. "Fortunately, most of these illnesses aren't life-threatening," says Alan Glass, director of student health at Washington University in St. Louis and former president of the American College Health Association.

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How to Be a Good Cybercitizen on a College Campus

The rules and regulations for technology use evolve, too. High school students may be accustomed to illegally downloading movies or picking on Facebook friends on their own laptop in the basement. Schools don't do surveillance on their students, but freshmen would still be wise to check out those polices before they first log into the university network to know just what is and isn't being monitored, says professor Jibey Asthappan, director of the National Security Program at the University of New Haven. Below are several tips for students who want to use technology wisely and avoid getting in trouble with college or legal authorities.

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2015 Edition of Best Colleges Rankings Coming Soon

Prospective students and parents looking for the school that best fits their needs will find the most complete version of the 2015 Best Colleges rankings, as well as other tables and lists, on our website. In addition, the site offers extensive statistical profiles for each school, a comprehensive college search and detailed explanations of the ranking methodologies. For extended college rankings tables, expanded school profiles with additional data, enhanced college search and other exclusive interactive tools, you can sign up for the U.S. School officials can access more Best Colleges rankings and data -- including historical information about their own school and peer institutions -- via U.S.

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5 Questions to Ask the International Students Office at U.S. Colleges

For international students who don't know where to begin, or for those who have found a handful of places that seem equally good on paper, contacting the international students office at each of your shortlisted colleges is a good way of deciding which is the right place for you. While college websites might boast a course profile that looks perfect for you, it's always worth checking with the international students office to confirm how the applications for classes work. If you are an international student studying aboard on a temporary basis, there is a chance professors will be more likely to favor full-time students. The international students office will be able to advise you on how to maximize the class selection process and arrange the best possible schedule.

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It’s Back-to-School Season, and Local Food Is on the Cafeteria Menu This Year

It’s sweet-corn season in Iowa, and with the school year about to commence, it would seem that the easiest way to get ears on the lunch trays of students would be to truck the harvest straight to the cafeteria. Well, kids who attend Des Moines Public Schools can expect more local corn on the menu this year, but it’s not coming to them straight from the stalk. For Des Moines Public Schools, the plant has helped eliminate two of the biggest hurdles keeping local foods off the lunch line: price and logistics. “Here in the Midwest, our growing season is so short,” explained Chad Taylor, child nutrition management specialist and executive chef for Des Moines Public Schools.

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Start the Year Right With 3 Free Tech Tools for High School Teachers

Below are three tools that seasoned educators recommend for fellow teachers to try to excel this school year. -- Google Classroom: The new tool from Google is designed to help teachers stay organized and streamline their work processes. The product is a part of Google Apps for Education, which includes Google Drive, Google Docs and Gmail, among other productivity tools. One of Google Classroom's main features is the ability for teachers to digitally distribute assignments to students, which students can subsequently turn in digitally.

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Preparing Kids for Cyber Jobs and Cyber Warfare

Preparing Kids for Cyber Jobs and Cyber WarfareIn April of this year, high school students from Iowa gathered at the Hilton Coliseum in Ames to match wits in a new kind of competition. These students were participating in the 2014 IT-Olympics, sponsored by Iowa State University and the Technology Association of Iowa. The Technology Association of Iowa and Iowa State teamed up to form HyperStream, a program that helps Iowa high schools and middle schools establish after-school clubs focused on coding and cyber defense. These clubs were then invited to compete in the cyber competition to test their skills against technology professors and mentors brought in by the HyperStream program.


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Obama trumpets proposals to lower college costs

EDGARTOWN, Mass. (AP) — President Barack Obama is calling on Congress and colleges to help make the cost of higher education more manageable.

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Philadelphia schools to open on schedule despite shortfall

By Sean Landis PHILADELPHIA (Reuters) - Philadelphia’s cash-strapped public schools will open on schedule in three weeks after $32 million of budget cuts, the school district's superintendent said on Friday, easing fears of closures or a late start to the school year to save money. Calling the budget cuts the “least harmful” option, Superintendent William Hite said the cuts would require the district to scale back on cleaning and repairs, leave current police vacancies unfilled and halt bus transportation for high school students who live within two miles of school, affecting about 7,500 students. Parents and teachers had feared a repeat of the school closures and massive layoffs of previous years. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett was also withholding about $45 million in state funding in a move to extract concessions from unionized teachers.

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Union chief: Teachers felt rushed after Newtown

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Teachers felt they were rushed into returning to the classroom following the 2012 mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the president of the local teachers union said Friday.

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How Immigrants Without Legal Status Can Pay for College

More than 1 million immigrant children without legal status reportedly live in the United States. Two major barriers -- a lack of information and assistance -- often prevent immigrant teens without legal permission from continuing their education, says Laura Bohorquez, coordinator of the DREAM Educational Empowerment Program at United We Dream, a nonprofit immigrant advocacy organization. "Unfortunately, we're still getting a lot of questions from students thinking that because they're undocumented, they can't access higher education," Bohorquez says. Students without legal status have options, though, including laws at the state level that allow some noncitizens to receive in-state tuition at state colleges and universities, and Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, an executive order issued by President Barack Obama that gives some young immigrants -- often referred to as DREAMers -- temporary resident status and a pathway to work legally.

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Washington state school officials criticize federal 'failing' status

By Victoria Cavaliere SEATTLE (Reuters) - Superintendents from 28 Washington state school districts have begun sending letters to parents that criticize the classification of many schools in the state as failing under federal standards, education officials said on Thursday. A large number of schools in Washington's 295 districts this year will receive a failing grade under the federal No Child Left Behind education law, which ties U.S. funding to students' performance on standardized tests and penalizes schools for low performance. In April, Washington became the first state to lose a waiver exempting it from some of the law's requirements after its state legislature declined to link student test scores to teacher evaluations. Though the list of schools to be classified as failing by the U.S. Department of Education will not be released until Aug. 27, superintendents in the Puget Sound area, which includes Seattle and Tacoma, this week began informing parents via mail of some schools' failing status.

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A New Factor in Your College Decision: Does the School Help Save the Planet?

In the ever-expanding universe of “best of” lists for higher education, parents and students can consult rankings to determine everything from colleges that deliver the most academic bang for the buck to universities that have the coolest dorms, the most active social scenes, and top intramural athletic programs. Now there’s a ranking for colleges and universities that help save the planet.   On Monday Sierra, the magazine of the environmentalist Sierra Club, published its eighth annual list of “Ten Coolest Schools,” colleges and universities that have integrated sustainability into campus operations, curricula, and student lifestyles. The 10 schools, according to Sierra, have “displayed a deep and thorough commitment to protecting the environment, addressing climate issues, and encouraging environmental responsibility.”

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Powers Rangers to morph into theaters in 2016

A feature based on the hit kid's TV show "Power Rangers" is due for release in 2016.Announced in May, the new film adaptation of the famous 1990s TV series now has a release date: July 22, 2016. Produced by Lionsgate and Saban, the feature is scripted by Robert Orci ("The Amazing Spider-Man 2") and by "X-Men: First Class" screenwriters Zack Stentz and Ashley Miller. It will explore the origin story of the "Power Rangers," the group of ordinary high school students who become endowed with extraordinary powers. Based on the Japanese series "Super Sentai," the American "Power Rangers" franchise invaded the small screen and the shelves of toy stores in the 1990s.


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Guilt by Accusation—How Colleges Deal with Campus Sex

It may take an avalanche of lawsuits to restore due process at the very institutions on which we rely for finishing the education of our best and brightest. Take the example of a male student at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, who filed suit against the school after having found him guilty of sexual misconduct. Yet Amherst immediately opened an investigation of those specific allegations and ordered him to move off campus. After three days, Amherst informed him that he was determined to be “responsible” for “sexual harassment, sexual misconduct, and [violating] community living standards.” The school expelled him after he appealed to the same administration responsible for the original hearing.

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The Nation’s Grade-School Population Has Changed, and It Speaks Spanish

At 49.8 percent, white children will remain the largest single ethnic or racial group enrolled in American public schools, according to a recent NCES survey. But blacks, latinos, and Asians combined will comprise 49.9 percent of students enrolled, thus putting white students in the minority. The percentage of Latino and African American children will be greater than white children, largely driven by immigration from Mexico and Central America. At about 25 percent, Hispanic students are by far the largest minority group; African American students are about 15 percent of the total, and roughly 5 percent of minority students are Asian and Pacific Islanders.

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Morning Linkage: Fishing Derby on the LA River, Bev Hills's Well-Paid Teachers

Morning Linkage: Fishing Derby on the LA River, Bev Hills's Well-Paid Teachers· The LA River gets its first fly-fishing derby next month · Silver Lake church up for sale as development site · Now you can earn points for eating at ESPN Zone · Bev Hills teachers to be highest...


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Atlanta educators face trial in widespread cheating scandal

By David Beasley ATLANTA (Reuters) - The trial of a dozen former Atlanta educators charged in one of the nation's largest school test-cheating scandals began on Monday, a case receiving wide attention as similar cheating accusations blemish schools across the United States. Lawyers say it could take several months to try the group of former teachers, principals and administrators, accused of conspiring to alter students' standardized test scores after a state investigation uncovered cheating at 44 Atlanta public schools in 2009. The high-profile Atlanta case is one in a string of cheating cases affecting 39 states over the last five years, said Bob Schaeffer, education director at the National Center for Fair and Open Testing, known as FairTest, which seeks to end the misuse of standardized tests. “I think the nation closely follows the Atlanta investigation and trial to determine the scope of the problem,” said Schaeffer.

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Kansas teachers' union challenges anti-tenure law

The largest teachers' union in Kansas filed a lawsuit Monday against a new state law that ended guaranteed tenure for public school teachers, arguing that legislators violated the state constitution by ...

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New Mexico faces teacher shortage two days before school begins

By Joseph Kolb ALBUQUERQUE N.M. (Reuters) - Just two days before classes resume, New Mexico's biggest school district faces a shortage of almost 200 teachers, officials say, with the majority of the unfilled positions in special education and elementary grades. With some 87,000 students due to return to Albuquerque Public Schools (APS) on Wednesday, the district is still looking for 392 staff, including 198 teachers. APS spokeswoman Johanna King said the shortages represented just a small fraction of the district's total teacher roster of around 6,300. APS will likely need short- and long-term substitutes, and it would also ask teachers to sacrifice some of their preparatory time in order to take on more classes and to have bigger class sizes.

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Testing High School Athletes for Doping Uncommon

One of the largest school districts in the U.S. is making a bold move to combat doping in high school sports. Florida's Miami-Dade County Public Schools announced last week a pilot program to test student-athletes for steroids and other performance-enhancing drugs. The district is the fourth largest in the U.S., serving more than 340,000 students, according to data from the National Center for Education Statistics. "We are very concerned about the use of these illegal drugs," says Marcos Moran, assistant superintendent of school operations in the district.

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See how they run: The 2016 presidential checklist

FILE - This July 23, 2014, file photo shows Vice President Joe Biden as he speaks on voting rights at the NAACP annual convention in Las Vegas. The Associated Press has tracked the movements and machinations of more than a dozen prospective presidential candidates including Vice President Biden. (AP Photo/John Locher, File)WASHINGTON (AP) — For a year, The Associated Press has tracked the movements and machinations of more than a dozen prospective presidential candidates. The latest presidential prep checklist:


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White students to no longer be majority at school

This photo taken July 21, 2014 shows students in Jane Cornell's summer school class learn story telling skills at Mary D. Lang Kindergarten Center in Kennett Square, Pa. For the first time ever _ U.S. public schools are projected this fall to have more minority students enrolled than white, a shift largely fueled by growth in the numbers of Hispanic children. White students are still expected to be the largest racial group in the public schools this year at 49.8 percent, but according to the National Center for Education Statistics, minority students, when added together, will now make up the majority. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)KENNETT SQUARE, Pa. (AP) — For the first time, U.S. public schools are projected this fall to have more minority students than non-Hispanic whites, a shift largely fueled by growth in the number of Hispanic children.


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Racial, ethnic look at US public school students

HOLD FOR RELEASE 12:01 AM SUNDAY, AUG. 10 Graphic shows U.S. public school demographics; 2c x 5 inches; 96.3 mm x 127 mm;This year, for the first time, there will be more minority students than white students in the U.S. public school system, according to federal government projections. A look at how the numbers break down for public schools from 2014-19, according to the projections from the National Center for Education Statistics:


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Federal government says Virginia schools restrained, isolated students

(Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Education has concluded that two Virginia public schools denied the right of education to emotionally disabled students after discovering teachers had frequently secluded and restrained them. The department wrote in a July 29 letter of findings that it had entered an accord with the two public schools in Prince William County, PACE East and PACE West, to correct the problems. The schools are for students with serious emotional and behavioral problems. According to the letter from the department's Office for Civil Rights, school employees in some cases physically forced students to lie face down on the floor or put them into solitary padded areas.

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Fewer Colorado teens think pot harmful, use down since legalization

By Keith Coffman DENVER (Reuters) - The number of Colorado high school students who believe marijuana is harmful has fallen since the state legalized recreational pot, while teen use of the drug has declined slightly during the same time, health officials said on Thursday. Colorado and Washington became the first U.S. states to legalize the possession and use of recreational marijuana by adults in ballot measures approved by voters in 2012. Retail marijuana stores opened in Colorado on Jan. 1 and in Washington last month. The survey found that one in five students admitted using marijuana within the last 30 days, down from 22 percent of those surveyed in 2011. One-third said they have tried pot.

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Embattled NCAA lets richest colleges play their own game

NCAA President Emmert speaks during news conference at NCAA headquarters in IndianapolisU.S. college sports took a first step in addressing broad criticism about treatment of student-athletes with a vote Thursday to grant some autonomy to rich athletic conferences, a tacit acknowledgement of their unrivaled economic clout. The new structure among the five biggest conferences hands them broader authority to set their own rules and could potentially pave the way for the 65 universities to offer compensation to student-athletes. The National Collegiate Athletic Association's Division I board of directors approved the measure that would let the so-called power five - the Atlantic Coast Conference, Big 10, Big 12, Pac-12 and Southeastern Conference - self-govern in areas such as scholarships, insurance and travel for athletes' families. The conferences and the NCAA have faced legal, political and public pressure to share its billions in revenue they generate from amateur athletes and guarantee them stronger benefits.


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Sen. Walsh drops out of race amid plagiarism probe

This Tuesday, June 3, 2014 file photo, Sen. John Walsh, D-Mont., leaves the Capitol in Washington. A campaign spokeswoman says Walsh is taking personal time at his Helena home but declined to answer questions about whether he plans to remain in the U.S. Senate race amid allegations that he plagiarized a research paper. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite,File)U.S. Sen. John Walsh of Montana is dropping his campaign for office amid allegations that he plagiarized large portions of a 2007 research project he wrote for a master's degree, a Democrat close to the former National Guard commander's campaign said Thursday.


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2 Virginia schools blamed for restraining students

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Department of Education has concluded that two Virginia schools denied students with emotional disabilities the right to a free, appropriate public education by frequently subjecting them to seclusion and physical restraint.





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