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Students Hold Protest to Get More Face Time with Teachers

Most high school student protests involve getting out of class one way or another. But several dozen Proctor students and parents recently held a protest outside two schools to point out how much all K-12 students need to get back into their classrooms in order to avoid falling further behind. The unusual protest organized by Proctor High School senior Sibley Dunbar made the pages of the Duluth News Tribune. “I have family friends who have kindergartners in the district and they’re calling their parents at work because they don’t know how to write their E’s or because they can’t figure out how...

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How COVID-19 upset the case against school choice

I have written extensively on how COVID-19 has changed the education landscape and has revealed to parents the shortcomings of a top-down education system, leading many to seek out alternative learning environments that they may not have previously been interested in or privy to before the virus hit. With support for school choice on the rise, "the anti-choice stance is less compelling than it used to be."...

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St. Cloud Public School Enrollment Dips as Parents Seek Alternatives

The statistics don't lie. A sizable number of families in the St. Cloud School District have made the decision to remove their K-12 students from the public school system this fall. The St. Cloud Times tallied up the marked decline in enrollment at the start of the school year. St. Cloud school district has about 4% fewer students in district classrooms this fall compared to last year. That's a decrease of about 375 students — for a total of about 9,250 students — in kindergarten through 12th grade and at the district's alternative sites. "A big portion of what we're seeing this year...

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A post-COVID agenda for Minnesota’s state government: Education

COVID-19 has laid bare the educational disparities that continue to remain a stubborn feature of our education system. The status quo, one-size-fits-all does not fit all, and if we do not use this opportunity to focus on students instead of systems, existing achievement gaps and learning loss will continue to be exacerbated....

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Schools Still Push Parents to Pass Dozens of Referenda Despite Covid Downturn

It takes a catastrophe like the Great Recession and Gov. Tim Walz's statewide shutdown and continuing restrictions to force most local governments to even consider holding the line on property taxes. Now many have done just that as even big government enclaves like St. Paul and Duluth recognize the devastating impact on their constituents' pocketbooks and employment prospects. But leave it to K-12 educators to plow ahead anyway with multi-million dollar capital project levies, bond referenda and operating levy questions on November 3. All this in the midst of a pandemic that's forced parents to bear much of the teaching load...

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