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Nordonia tries to avoid state takeover with fifth levy try

By admin Published: October 30, 2011

The Nordonia Hills school district probably will slide into fiscal emergency and possible state takeover if voters reject a new property tax on Nov. 8.

The situation is so desperate that J. Wayne Blankenship, the district's superintendent of nine years, announced this week that he is retiring, effective Monday.

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Celebrations

By admin Published: October 30, 2011

Education

Robert Lord, a professor of psychology at the University of Akron, received the 2012 Distinguished Scientific Contributions Award from the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. The national award honors the investigator who has made significant contributions to the field.

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Anti-Israel statement by Kent State professor stokes national anger

By admin Published: October 28, 2011

The focus is back on a Kent State faculty member with former ties to a jihadist website.

Julio Pino's shout of ''Death to Israel'' at a public lecture by a former Israeli diplomat ''was not surprising,'' said Jennifer Chestnut, executive director of the Jewish organization Hillel at Kent State, who attended the speech.

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Nordonia schools superintendent resigns in attempt to help pass levy

By admin Published: October 28, 2011

J. Wayne Blankenship, superintendent of Nordonia Hills School District for the last nine years, resigned Wednesday to persuade voters to support a 6-mill levy on the Nov. 8 ballot.

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Nordonia superintendent resigns to pass levy

By John Published: October 27, 2011

J. Wayne Blankenship, superintendent of Nordonia Hills School District for the last nine years, asked the school board last night to accept his resignation as the district attempts for the fifth time to pass a levy or face fiscal emergency and state takeover. The district has a 6 mill levy on the November 8 ballot.

"I made this decision in hopes of encouraging passage of an operating levy so desperately needed to enable the District to continue its Excellent with Distinction academic performance rating," Blankenship said in a district press release. "It saddens me greatly to sit by and watch levy after levy get defeated even after millions of dollars in cuts resulting in the elimination of academic programming. This saddens me to a point where I felt that I must do something that could possibly make a difference for the future of Nordonia Schools." 

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UA employees to get additional holiday time off

By admin Published: October 27, 2011

Many University of Akron employees got an early holiday present Wednesday: news they will get three additional days off between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

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Akron must pass levy and make cuts to avoid deficit

By admin Published: October 25, 2011

If Akron voters do not approve a new tax levy next month, the school district will be nearly $22 million in the hole by the end of the 2012-13 school year.

Akron Treasurer Jack Pierson estimates that the hole will be almost $176 million deep within five years, according to the forecast approved Monday by the Akron school board.

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Music of the enchanted loom: the brain

By John Published: October 21, 2011

Sometimes you just have to just sit back and marvel at that organ wrinkled like a walnut between your ears:


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Universities rolling back tuition for former residents

By admin Published: October 20, 2011

As many as 2,000 Kent State students got pleasant news this week: The university is rolling back out-of-state tuition through an Ohio Board of Regents initiative.

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I.Q. scores not fixed in stone for teenagers

By John Published: October 19, 2011

New research  published today in Nature shows that IQ changes are correlated in physical changes in the adolescent brain.

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Summit County Teacher of the Year honored

By admin Published: October 19, 2011

For the second year in a row, a Manchester Local Schools teacher is the Teacher of the Year in Summit County.

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A robot that survives Day Care by crying when it's hurt

By John Published: October 18, 2011

The Dana Foundation has a fascinating update to the story of Rubi, a robot teacher's aide.

To solve the problem, researchers equipped Rubi with sensors that detected when a child might be getting too rough and triggered the robot to cry, digital tears and all. Seeing this, the children backed off, just as they typically do in interactions with one another.

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Akron Early College High School, Grill elementary named promising schools

By John Published: October 18, 2011

The Ohio Department of Education has named 122 "schools of promise" based on the latest report cards showing high academic achievement in urban and rural districts that struggle with high poverty.

In Summit County, Akron Public Schools' Early College High School and Norton's Grill elementary were among the 122.

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Manchester's Shari Gardner is Teacher of the Year

By John Published: October 18, 2011

Third grade teacher Shari Gardner was named Teacher of the Year last night at the Summit County Education Celebration. The Summit County Educational Service Center holds the annual event to honor area teachers and contributors to education.

Gardner has taught at Manchester's Nolley Elementary School all 23 years of her career. She is the second Teacher of the Year winner from the Manchester district in as many years.

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Debunking "miracle schools"

By John Published: October 18, 2011

There's a new watchdog on the block. Check out this web site dedicated to investigating the claims of "miracle schools" cited by reform activists as proof that stubborn obstacles such as poverty and inequal funding are just excuses for lazy teachers and the unions that coddle them. In fairness, reformers of all political stripes and persuasions have been prone to cherry pick "miracle" schools, teachers, principals, superintendents, whole countries (Finland!) to make their cases for or against  various policies. The claims seldom survive scrutiny, if they're scrutinized.

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Charter schools (almost) open in Akron?

By John Published: October 17, 2011

The Vindicator in Youngstown has a strange story about two troubled charter schools that apparently were trying to relocate in the Akron area and were advertising for students in Doylestown. However, the schools were shut down by their sponsor, the Portage County Educational Service Center, before they could get off the ground. The reporter called me last week asking if I'd heard of the schools ( I hadn't). I talked with the enrollment specialist at Akron Public Schools who tracks charter schools and she said she hadn't heard of  them either. However, she said sometimes the district won't find out about students who have transferred to a charter school until a month after the fact.

Read the Vindy's story here.

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Students at 15 Akron, 10 Canton schools eligible for vouchers

By John Published: October 17, 2011

The Ohio Department of Education has posted the list of schools where students are eligible to apply for private school vouchers.

1) been in Academic Emergency or Academic Watch for two of the past three school years (2008-2009, 2009-2010, and 2010-2011) or

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Celebrations: Oct. 16

By admin Published: October 17, 2011

Community

Corrigan M. Irwin has earned the Eagle Scout Award, the highest award in the Boy Scouts. He is a member of Troop 935, which meets at the McDonaldsville St. Paul United Methodist Church. He is the son of Scoutmaster Kevin Irwin and his wife, Stephanie.

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Governor's new early-ed task force leaves out educators

By John Published: October 14, 2011

This just in from Gov. John Kasich:

Read the executive order here.

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Things you didn't know about men

By admin Published: October 14, 2011

When Ron Levant was a semi-custodial father of a preteen daughter in the 1970s, he fumbled and stumbled. He admits he didn't have a clue what to do.

That sense of inadequacy bothered him until he saw the 1979 movie Kramer vs. Kramer and realized that perhaps it wasn't him it was that men of his generation were being asked to do things for which they weren't prepared. That spawned a lifelong interest in the psychology of men.

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National Museum of Education names this years young inventors

By John Published: October 13, 2011

Did you know the National Museum of Education is located in Akron? The museum will hold its 16th annual American Young Inventors Induction Ceremony on Nov. 12 at noon at the Ramada Plaza Hotel. Read the press release here. Read more about the inductees here.

Here are the five inductees:

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Public Radio education team finishes Charter school series

By John Published: October 13, 2011

StateImpact Ohio has wrapped up an extensive series on charter schools in Ohio. Click here to revisit any part of it.

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Painters of 1947 mural at Kenmore school reunite with art teacher

By admin Published: October 13, 2011

During the spring of 1947, the art teacher at Lawndale school in Kenmore inspired her seventh-grade students to paint a mural about the Akron rubber industry.

The students painted several scenes, including a rubber tree tapper, a chemist in a laboratory and workers molding an automobile tire.

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Baby scientists

By John Published: October 12, 2011

Hey you TED addicts, check out this TED talk by child psychologist Alison Gopnik, who has long been interested in how babies and small children think.

The TED intro describes the talk this way:

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West Akron chief's feathers plucked for storage

By admin Published: October 10, 2011

West Akron's chief has been scalped.

Workers removed the solid oak feathers that adorned the head of the old Indian chief statute in front of Resnik elementary school Monday morning. They used a crane to lift the feather section of ''Chief Rotaynah'' and laid it onto a flatbed truck so it could be taken into storage before another Ohio winter sets in.

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Software report card ignores some results

By admin Published: October 9, 2011

The website of Carnegie Learning, a company started by scientists at Carnegie Mellon University that sells classroom software, trumpets this promise: ''Revolutionary Math Curricula. Revolutionary Results.''

The pitch has sounded seductive to thousands of schools across the country for more than a decade. But a review by the U.S. Department of Education last year would suggest a much less alluring come-on: Undistinguished math curricula. Unproven results.

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CWA seeks to expand UA membership

By admin Published: October 8, 2011

The Communications Workers of America union is trying to organize up to 600 clerical and staff members at the University of Akron.

Local President Bob Wise, a telecommunications specialist at AT&T, said UA staff has expressed ''some interest'' in joining 260 university employees in the skilled trades and crafts who already belong to the CWA.

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The Treasure Hunt: winner of brain awareness video contest

By John Published: October 7, 2011

The Society for Neuroscience chose this video as the overall winner in its brain awarenes video contest. A child narrates his discovery to learn more about his grandfather's aphasia after he suffers a stroke and can't always find the words he wants. Thanks to Daniel Lende's blog Neuroanthropology for the heads up.

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Kent State hosts entrepreneurship fair on Oct. 6

By admin Published: October 6, 2011

When Kent State University student Genia Kollie couldn't find the Thai, Indian and Asian foods she craved, she hit on a solution: start an international foods grocery store.

Now her HOME Markets store in downtown Kent offers the flavors she favors as well as exotic foods for 1,500 international students on the KSU campus.

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State to take over 7 charter schools

By admin Published: October 5, 2011

The state will take over sponsorship of seven charter schools after revoking the eligibility of their current sponsor, Ashe Culture Center of Cleveland.

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Born that way or subject to change: brain plasticity and learning

By John Published: October 4, 2011

Kevin Mitchell, who writes the Wiring the Brain blog has in interesting post that examines a conundrum: if the human brain, even the adult brain, can be changed through learning by experience, does it still make sense to talk about innate traits?

Mitchell considers the conundrum with examples in autism, dyslexia and dyscalculia. He suggests that effective early interventions can break the vicious cycle in which innate tendencies reduce the opportunities for experience to change the brain's wiring. Read the whole post here.

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State takes over Ashe-sponsored charter schools

By John Published: October 3, 2011

This just in from the Ohio Department of Education:

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Celebrations

By admin Published: October 1, 2011

Education

Trent Ware of Mogadore High School received the $1,000 Springfield Township Professional Fire Fighters Scholarship. The award goes yearly to a student graduating from Springfield, Mogadore, Lake, Green, Akron or Coventry who is interested in becoming an emergency medical technician or firefighter.

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UA developing video game for learning cell biology

By John Published: October 1, 2011

Eric Mansfield at WKYC has an interesting story on UA researchers who are developing a video game based on the Kinect 3D camera system on Xbox that will be tried out next year at three area high schools along with students at UA.

 

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