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January 24, 2018
With the defeat of vouchers, Memphis Catholic leaders seek charter conversion
But whether that avenue is open depends on Shelby County Schools.
choice for most
August 10, 2017
Explore: Indiana private schools’ policies on LGBT students
How do schools in Indiana’s voucher program deal with LGBT students? Search for a school, city, or county to see their policies.
vying for vouchers
May 23, 2017
On Betsy DeVos’s budget wish list: $250M to ‘build the evidence base’ for vouchers
The funding boost aimed at justifying private-school choice programs is one way DeVos is delivering on years of advocacy for those programs.
June 28, 2016
Religious schooling is the top reason parents use vouchers, survey finds
Parents who use Indiana’s voucher program say the opportunity for their kids to get religious instruction was the most important reason they chose their current school.
February 10, 2016
Most private schools in Memphis on the fence about accepting state tuition vouchers
While Memphis would be most impacted if the state allows public funds to be used for private school tuition, many private schools are undecided if they will participate.
January 25, 2016
Chalkbeat explains what school vouchers could mean for Tennessee
Despite being debated for almost a decade in Tennessee, questions remain about the impact of proposed school vouchers. Here's what you need to know.
Bills to watch
January 20, 2016
School vouchers bill clears key House panel in Tennessee’s perennial legislative debate
For the first time, a proposal to provide school vouchers clears a key House subcommittee after years of being stalled.
August 13, 2015
Hannon's goal: Help parents make choices and give schools useful data
A unified enrollment system is not a unique idea, but Caitlin Hannon hopes this system will go beyond its primary goal of simply helping match up families with schools.
February 24, 2015
Big jump in voucher use for students who never tried public school
Students using the voucher program — the largest and fastest-growing of its kind in the nation — now account for 2.6 percent of Indiana's school system, up from 1.8 percent last year.
February 19, 2015
Pence hails charter schools, vouchers at school choice rally
Gov. Mike Pence told a gathering of children from charter and private schools today that education can take them where they want to go in life, as it did for his family.
September 5, 2014
Chalkbeat's complete guide to all our ISTEP coverage
Over the past month, Chalkbeat has written a dozen stories since the release of ISTEP scores and we've collected them all here to make it easy for you to fine the information you want to know.
August 26, 2014
Indianapolis private schools score high but most saw ISTEP drops
Statewide, about 43 percent of about 300 private schools did worse this year than last year. In Indianapolis, it was a majority of private schools — 55 percent — that lost ground from the prior year.
August 11, 2014
Private schools top Marion County on ISTEP, charters best IPS
Half of the 230 schools in Marion County — public, private and charter — ranked in the bottom quarter of all schools in Indiana that took the state ISTEP test last spring. Just 20 percent of of the county’s schools were even in the top half of the state for ISTEP scores, with 13 percent in the top quarter. Charter schools in Marion County outperform Indianapolis Public Schools, but not by a large margin, when it comes to where they rank statewide.
May 23, 2014
How a very unlikely school visit improved my students’ writing
Rather than turning exclusively to other private schools for insight, a Catholic school principal looked to district schools and a Brooklyn charter school teaching Greek for new models.
May 12, 2014
As Cristo Rey grows, so do student supports
Providence Cristo Rey high School in Indianapolis is a work in progress, but has learned some key lessons over seven years about how to help students with challenges to achieve academic and professional dreams some of them come in believing are only for wealthy suburban kids. It’s corporate partners, philanthropic supporters and a influx of public support through Indiana’s voucher program have also been central to the school’s effort to expand its support for students.
January 27, 2014
New rules helping more Indiana children use vouchers
Changes to Indiana’s voucher program that lawmakers made in 2013 helped fuel it’s dramatic growth and allow somewhat more wealthy families to access tax dollars to pay private school tuition. The Indiana Department of Education's data, released today, show 19,809 students are using vouchers this school year, more than double last year's total of 9,324. The first-year number was 3,919. Indiana's voucher program is the fastest growing in U.S. history and the nation’s second largest.
August 28, 2013
Advocates say city is agreeing to pay special ed costs less often
Advocates and lawyers representing students with disabilities say the city has only intensified its recent battle against parents who want their children's private school tuition reimbursed. The adversarial showdown, which stems in large part from the city's efforts to cut special education costs, means that children with special needs are taking longer to receive services that their parents believe they need. "They're basically just fighting everything a lot more," said Kim Madden, director of legal services at Advocates for Children of New York, about the city's lawyers. AFC represents low-income families in many cases against the Department of Education. As the new school year is set to begin, Madden said she expects the help line that her organization runs to start ringing off the hook. The complaints often come from parents who want schools to provide the services mandated by their child’s special education plan, such as occupational and speech therapy. Other requests are for transportation for medically fragile students and extra tutoring for learning disabilities. But it’s the expensive reimbursement requests to cover private school tuition, which account for many of the cases, that have the city on the defensive. The city is projected to spend $256 million in 2014, or about 9 percent more than this year, on private school tuition for students whose parents successfully petition for reimbursements. All together, the city's bill for nonpublic school payments, excluding charter school spending, is on pace to increase 35 percent since 2010.
July 10, 2013
Weiner would give private schools equal standing at city DOE
Anthony Weiner presents a proposal to support non-public schools outside a shuttered Catholic school in the Bronx. Private schools would get a promotion in Anthony Weiner's Department of Education if he's elected mayor. A headlining proposal of Weiner's plan to save Catholic schools would be to elevate the head of the office that administers taxpayer-funded services to non-public schools to a cabinet position, "giving them essentially a seat at the table at the highest realm," the former congressman said today at a press conference where he unveiled his plans. Right now, the "Non-Public Schools Unit" is a relatively obscure office within the city's education department, falling under the Division of Operations. It distributes funds and services to which private schools are legally entitled under state and federal law. These include funding for textbooks and technology, and in-school nurses. In all, non-public schools, including charter schools, received $260 million for those services last year, according to the city's Independent Budget Office. But Weiner said non-public schools aren't taking full advantage of the funding streams they're entitled to. To make it easier, Weiner is proposing to digitize the loan process so schools could submit applications online. He said he'd also match the state's dollars with city money to provide additional technology for non-public schools.
February 23, 2010
Private school tax credit killed
A bill that would have allowed lower-income families to receive $1,000 annual tax credits for children enrolled in private schools was killed Tuesday by the House Finance Committee.
February 5, 2009
Teacher: Cash-strapped private school families flood my school
A teacher named Mandy Kwan submitted this entry to Brian Lehrer’s Uncommon Economic Indicators project: In the elementary school where I am teaching, I’m…
January 29, 2009
Did Barack Obama miss the real story about Tuesday's snow?
Hanna Rosin: With all due respect, Mr. President, this is the problem with public officials sending their kids to private schools. The real story…
December 3, 2008
A preview of the desperate practices that are about to commence
Anxious parents posting on UrbanBaby are asking for your thoughts on Trinity, Brearley, Chapin, Riverdale, and Manhattan’s PS 87. Private school admissions season…
October 23, 2008
In fraught times, Urban Baby tackling tough issues
To relieve the tension of waiting for the City Council’s term limits vote, I’m reading Urban Baby, the sometimes sensational chat site popular among…
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