School News Network: Summer STEAM

Jul 30, 2019
Summer STEAM photo
School News Network

As summer heats up, parents are looking for simple ideas to keep children entertained and engaged indoors and out. School News Network turned to an area technology and media expert for some educational options.

School crossing sign with money and pencil graphic

The Benton Harbor school board has rejected a tentative agreement that would have staved off the closing of the city's high school.

During a special meeting Tuesday, the five-member board unanimously rejected a resolution calling for it to work with the state of Michigan on the proposed deal.

Board president Stephen Mitchell said school officials want to work with the state, but need to have "trust and collaboration" before a deal is made.

SNN: Lessons from a retiring teacher

Jun 24, 2019
Kris Weller, Kenowa Hills Central Elementary photo
School News Network

After 33 years in front of a Kenowa Hills Central Elementary classroom, a retiring teacher shares her thoughts on how to bring more people into the profession and improve schooling for the students they serve.

For Kris Weller, it wasn’t about the big events or recognitions. It was the small moments…making meaningful connections and building relationships with students…that made her a more effective teacher.

She offered these thoughts from her decades of experience:

Gretchen Whitmer campaign photo

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says her administration's proposal to close Benton Harbor's high schools was no "ultimatum," and state and local officials are entering a period in which there will be a lot of negotiation and research after the school board rejected the plan.

The Democrat said Wednesday that "getting it right is the most important thing." Under the proposal, Benton Harbor high school students would attend school in surrounding districts starting in 2020, while K-8 schools would remain open.

National Endowment for the Arts logo
Wikimedia Commons

The National Endowment for the Arts has awarded two West Michigan organizations with grants supporting educational programming. Nearly 1,600 organizations submitted Art Works applications to the National Endowment for the Arts. Of the 977 grants awarded, only two West Michigan-based institutions received a portion of the $80 million Arts Endowment.

Dr. Ron Gorman photo
Grand Rapids Public Schools

Grand Rapids Board of Education has hired an interim superintendent as its search for a fulltime district leader continues.

Superintendent Teresa Weatherall Neal’s last day on the job is July 1st. The search to replace her has been extended after the Grand Rapids Board of Education decided neither of the two finalists for the job, were a good fit for the district. As the nationwide search continues, the board moved forward Monday with a special work session appointing an interim superintendent.

SNN: Climate change activist Mustafa Ali

May 13, 2019
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Global warming is a burning issue for many young people, including local students who recently heard from – and performed for – climate-change activist and former EPA official Mustafa Santiago Ali.

Kalil Adams loves hip-hop, but he never really connected it to global warming until he met Mustafa Santiago Ali.

SNN: Kent ISD Aviation Program

May 7, 2019
Kent Career Tech Center Aviation program
School News Network

The low unemployment rate has exposed the need for developing skilled professionals in a number of industries and aviation is one of them. School News Network visits Kent Career Tech Center where students have an interest in flight.

Kent County high school students who attend the aviation programs at the Kent Career Tech Center are getting a head start on their aviation careers by learning the fundamentals of aircraft maintenance and electronics.

SNN: Third grade Science Shift

May 6, 2019
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Teachers in Sparta, Northview, Kentwood and Wyoming are participating in a pilot science program that ties Next Generation Science Standard-aligned lessons with lessons in math and literacy.

For many third graders, the year began grappling with big questions like “Why do I see so many squirrels, but can’t find any Stegosauruses?”

Students looked for both, then tried to figure out why the squirrel survived and the dino didn’t. Adaptations of ankle bones, tails and diets seemed to make all the difference.

SNN: Angst Documentary Screening

May 2, 2019
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A new documentary explores a topic many teens can relate to, but many more don’t often talk about….anxiety.

Anxiety is one of the most common psychological complaints in the world, according to the World Health Organization. And teenagers are no stranger to it. A free film and conversation about anxiety and raising awareness around it takes place on Thursday, May 2nd at 6pm on the campus of Kent ISD.