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300 EpisodesProduced by APM ReportsWebsite

Stories about education, opportunity, and how people learn. From APM Reports.

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No Excuses: Race and Reckoning at a Chicago Charter School

August 9th, 2022


Producer DJ Cashmere spent seven years teaching Black and brown students at a Noble Street charter high school in Chicago. At the time, Noble …

Standing in Two Worlds BONUS episode

August 4th, 2022


Camille Leihulu Slagle is Native Hawaiian. She always knew she wanted to go away for college. Education would help her afford to stay in her …

Standing in Two Worlds: Native American College Diaries

August 2nd, 2022


Native American students are just a tiny fraction of all the college students in the United States. They come with different histories, confronting …

Under Pressure: The College Mental Health Crisis

August 19th, 2021


Even before the pandemic, campus counselling services were reporting a marked uptick in the number of students with anxiety, clinical depression and …

Fading Beacon: Why America is Losing International Students

August 3rd, 2021


Colleges and universities in the United States attract more than a million international students a year. Higher education is one of America’s top …

Who wants to be a teacher? Episode 4: This very leaky pipeline

July 28th, 2021


Today, more Black and Hispanic teachers enter the classroom through alternative pathways than through traditional teacher degree programs. The number …

Who wants to be a teacher? Episode 3: The trouble with grading teachers

July 28th, 2021


Critics of the rise in alternative and for-profit programs will claim teacher quality, and student learning, suffers when people are fast-tracked into the classroom without comprehensive training. But it’s hard to know …

Who wants to be a teacher? Episode 2: The rise of the for-profit teacher training industry

July 28th, 2021


Beginning in the early 1980s, a lot of states began to open up the pathways to becoming a teacher. People who already had a bachelor’s degree in …

Who wants to be a teacher? Episode 1: The teacher emergency

July 28th, 2021


Every president since Eisenhower has talked about the need for more teachers, especially in certain rural and urban schools, and in subjects such as …

Black at Mizzou: Confronting race on campus

August 14th, 2020


Lauren Brown says college was "culture shock." Most of the students at her high school were Black, but most of the students at the University of …

What the Words Say

August 6th, 2020


Everyone agrees that the goal of reading instruction is for children to understand what they read. The question is: how does a little kid get there? Emily Hanford explores what reading scientists have figured out about …

Covid on Campus

July 29th, 2020


The coronavirus pandemic represents the greatest challenge to American higher education in decades. Some small regional colleges that were already …

Same Pandemic, Unequal Education (from Us & Them podcast)

May 30th, 2020


The coronavirus pandemic has left West Virginia schools particularly hard hit. The Us & Them podcast from West Virginia Public Radio brings us …

Facing uncertain futures, high school seniors weigh tough college options and alternate paths

May 14th, 2020


Editor-in-chief of The Hechinger Report, Liz Willen, shares what she's heard from high school seniors who are feeling anxious and overwhelmed as they …

Listeners tell us how they're adapting to at-home education

May 7th, 2020


Teachers, students and families talk about how they've adapted while schools and campuses stay closed.

Is learning to read a constitutional right?

April 30th, 2020


A federal court recently ruled that underfunded schools in Detroit violated students' right to a basic education. Advocates hope the case is the …

A few silver linings emerge in a dark time of closed schools

April 23rd, 2020


Delece Smith-Barrow of The Hechinger Report shares some hopeful stories about education during the pandemic.

'Everything has changed': A look at K-12 education under coronavirus

April 16th, 2020


Sarah Garland of The Hechinger Report on how (and whether) education carries on while schools are closed.

College in the time of coronavirus

April 9th, 2020


A conversation with Hechinger Report higher education editor Jon Marcus on how learning and the college experience are changing, and what's yet to …

What good is a history major?

April 2nd, 2020


As fewer college students opt to major in history, there's an effort by history departments to prove the practical value of their discipline.

Graduation rate for Native students surges at the University of Minnesota

March 26th, 2020


The percentage of Native students graduating from the U of M has doubled in the past decade.

Black girl, white college

March 19th, 2020


When it was time for me to enroll in a four-year college, I chose North Dakota State, a school that's mostly white, conservative and insular -- …

A conundrum for student advocates: change their school or change society?

March 12th, 2020


Unlike protesters at many universities, activists at Harvard seek social justice reforms beyond campus.

At some HBCUs, enrollment rises from surprising applicants

March 5th, 2020


After decades of declining enrollment, HBCUs are seeing an uptick in new applicants, especially among Latino and international students.

With more students demanding action on climate change, teachers try to keep up

February 27th, 2020


Most states and districts have adopted science standards that require teaching climate change. Teachers are left to get up to speed and help students understand the impacts.

Reading update: Experts say widely used reading curriculum is failing kids

January 27th, 2020


A first of its kind review finds Lucy Calkins' materials don't align with the science of reading.

New salvos in the battles over reading instruction

December 20th, 2019


Several powerful people and organizations have weighed in on the national conversation prompted by APM Reports' podcast episodes.

National assessment shows more K-12 students struggling to read

November 1st, 2019


Correspondent Emily Hanford talks about the latest NAEP results and what they say about the state of reading instruction in the U.S.

A conversation with Emily Hanford on reading instruction in the U.S.

October 24th, 2019


Hanford talks about her reporting on what's wrong with how schools teach reading.

Ditching the lecture for active learning

September 19th, 2019


There's a growing movement at colleges and universities to create classrooms where students take the lead.

How colleges are mishandling racial tensions on campus

September 12th, 2019


As administrators navigate issues of inclusion and free speech, students of color have been left to find their own way.

As colleges navigate inclusion and free speech, students of color work to find their own way

September 12th, 2019


Do administrators have to choose between protecting free speech and creating a civil climate on campus?

Flagship universities don't reflect their state's diversity

September 5th, 2019


Across the country, a gap persists between the number of black and Latino students graduating from state high schools and the number enrolling in …

The Bond Buster

August 29th, 2019


Paul Dorr is a master of tactics to defeat referendums intended to finance public schools. He believes schools run by government steer kids away from …

At a Loss for Words: What's wrong with how schools teach reading

August 22nd, 2019


For decades, schools have taught children the strategies of struggling readers, using a theory about reading that cognitive scientists have …

Students on the Move: Keeping uprooted kids in school

August 14th, 2019


A growing body of research finds that repeatedly uprooted children are more likely to struggle in school and more likely to drop out. But there are …

Under a Watchful Eye: How colleges are tracking students to boost graduation

August 6th, 2019


At Georgia State in Atlanta, more students are graduating, and the school credits its use of predictive analytics. But critics worry that the …

Tens of thousands of dollars later, most college grads say the degree was worth it

March 11th, 2019


A recent survey from the APM Research Lab found most Americans think college is worth the cost.

Majority of Americans don't know that government has cut billions from higher education funding

February 25th, 2019


A survey from the APM Research Lab shows that many people think funding has increased or stayed the same.

U.S. continues to slip behind other countries in percentage of population with degrees

January 28th, 2019


A lack of highly skilled workers leaves American employers unable to fill jobs.

Oklahoma charter school becomes lightning rod in debate over rural education

December 17th, 2018


A businessman struggling to recruit employees opened the school despite objections from the local school board.

Hundreds of thousands of people could lose their legal status. One hopes to graduate with his college degree first

December 3rd, 2018


If the Trump administration has its way, Jose would be forced from the U.S. just a few months before graduation.

Despite decades of pledging to hire more black faculty, most universities didn't

November 5th, 2018


The number of black faculty on college campuses has gone down during the last decade.

As they lose customers, universities try expanding the menu

October 22nd, 2018


Colleges nationwide have added more than 40,000 new degree and certificate programs in last six years, but are they better serving students?

In the fight over Kavanaugh, echoes of a battle being waged on college campuses nationwide

October 8th, 2018


Across the country, schools wrestle with how sexual assault is defined and how much proof is needed.

Poverty, perseverance and a PhD

September 24th, 2018


An elite university helped her climb but changing class can be a lonely journey.

Hard Words: Why Aren't Our Kids Being Taught to Read?

September 10th, 2018


Scientific research has shown how children learn to read and how they should be taught. But many educators don't know the science and, in some cases, …

Old Idea, New Economy: Rediscovering Apprenticeships

September 3rd, 2018


You might think apprenticeships are a relic from an earlier era, but a growing number of Americans are using them as a way into the middle class.

Still Rising: First-Generation College Students a Decade Later

August 27th, 2018


They bet that college would help them move up. Did it pay off?

Changing Class: Are Colleges Helping Americans Move Up?

August 20th, 2018


Colleges have long offered a pathway to success for just about anyone. But new research shows that with the country growing ever more economically …

School on the move

August 13th, 2018


A little-known program has been helping the children of migrant farmworkers graduate for more than 50 years.

Edged out of the middle class, teachers are walking out

July 30th, 2018


Dissatisfied with low pay and school funding, teachers in more red states are poised to protest.

State financial aid money dries up before many low-income college students get help

July 16th, 2018


Last year, almost a million students who qualified for state financial aid didn't get it.

Liberal arts face uncertain future at nation's universities

June 4th, 2018


Programs are being cut to make way for degrees with "clear career pathways."

Giving parents more freedom to choose doesn't guarantee better schools

May 21st, 2018


Other countries offer clues about how effective nationwide school choice would be in the U.S.

'I never want to be in a neighborhood where I'm shot at again'

May 7th, 2018


A first-generation college graduate reflects on moving up America's class ladder.

Are America's colleges promoting social mobility?

April 23rd, 2018


Economists dig into the data to understand which schools are doing the most to help revive the American Dream.

Schools prove soft targets for hackers

April 9th, 2018


Cybersecurity is a growing concern as schools collect an increasing amount of data on students.

High schools push few students with disabilities to consider college

March 26th, 2018


Most students with disabilities can make it to and through college, but are hindered by low expectations.

Is the trauma of training for a school shooter worth it?

March 12th, 2018


Most American students practice "active shooter" drills in school. Fewer than one in a million of them will need it.

A college degree, or your money back

February 26th, 2018


A growing number of colleges and universities are guaranteeing a job after graduation.

Overwhelmed by student debt, many low-income students drop out

February 12th, 2018


Almost a third of Americans who take out loans to pay for college don't get a degree.

High school football makes a comeback in New Orleans

January 29th, 2018


Charter schools cut football to win minds. Now to win hearts, they're bringing it back.

Nearly 1 in 5 female college students are single moms

January 15th, 2018


Struggling to juggle school, work and child care, most of them won't make it to graduation.

History of civil rights movement gets short shrift in Mississippi classrooms

December 18th, 2017


Despite efforts to require lessons on civil rights, outdated textbooks indicate little has changed.

Rural students are the least likely to go to college

December 4th, 2017


They're being ignored as the nation tries to ramp up degree completion.

Yoga and dogs bring calm to school for troubled kids

November 20th, 2017


The doors are locked at this special ed school in Minneapolis so no one runs away. It's a surprising place to find kids doing breathing exercises.

Some prisons trying to maintain college education

November 6th, 2017


It's one of the best defenses against recidivism, but investment is lacking.

Mr. Rodriguez is undocumented and unafraid

October 23rd, 2017


Teachers with DACA serving low-income, immigrant communities could be tough to replace.

Resegregation in Alabama

October 9th, 2017


When predominantly white cities secede from larger districts, it has a segregating effect.

How alumni revived a dying college

September 25th, 2017


As small private colleges struggle to survive, we look at one that almost didn't make it.

Shadow Class: College Dreamers in Trump's America

September 11th, 2017


President Trump is ending DACA, which allowed some 800,000 undocumented young people to stay and work in the United States. For some, that may mean …

Hard to Read: How American schools fail kids with dyslexia

September 11th, 2017


Public schools are denying children with dyslexia proper treatment and often failing to identify them in the first place.

Shackled Legacy: Universities and the Slave Trade

September 4th, 2017


Profits from slavery and related industries helped build some of the most prestigious schools in New England. This documentary focuses on three …

Keeping Teachers

August 28th, 2017


There may be nothing more important in the educational life of a child than having effective teachers. But the United States is struggling to attract and keep teachers.

'The oldest not-18-year-old'

August 7th, 2017


A descendant of slaves sold to save Georgetown University in 1838 will be a member of this year's freshman class — at age 63.

Segregation's Back

July 21st, 2017


People who lived through the desegregation era see their former schools fall back into segregation.

What children in food deserts do during the summer

July 10th, 2017


There are millions of kids in America who the USDA considers "food insecure" -- they live in households without regular access to nutritious food. …

When a diploma means more than just 'seat time'

June 26th, 2017


A state law says Maine high school students have to prove they have mastered specific skills to get a diploma.

College is a leap of faith - and funds - for first-generation students

June 12th, 2017


At a public charter school in Boston, students spend years preparing to go to college. But paying for it is another story.

'All they wanted to do was get an education'

May 30th, 2017


Thirty-five years ago, four immigrant families won a landmark Supreme Court case that protects the rights of children in the United States to attend …

Making room for poor kids at rich schools

May 16th, 2017


A new study shows selective colleges could bring in many more talented low-income students. So why don't they?

A public school that's just for immigrants

May 2nd, 2017


English learners are the least likely to graduate from high school when compared to other groups of students. There's a new high school in Bowling …

Is free college free?

April 18th, 2017


New York's new scholarship promises free college, for a price.

Kids with dyslexia are not getting what they need in American public schools

April 4th, 2017


A mother and her dyslexic daughter tell their story. It's a preview of an upcoming documentary from APM Reports.

Immigration enforcement has DACA students on edge

March 21st, 2017


Collision over college dreams for undocumented students.

Improving the odds for young black men

March 7th, 2017


Can the excitement about My Brother's Keeper last now that Obama's out of office?

Protecting the legacy of HBCUs

March 2nd, 2017


Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos recently called HBCUs "real pioneers of school choice." We thought this would be a good time to revisit our …

Reforming School Discipline

February 17th, 2017


If suspensions don't work, what does?

The great equalizer

February 9th, 2017


Are we asking too much of America's high-poverty schools?

'Dick and Jane were not my friends'

February 2nd, 2017


There are proven techniques to help children with learning disabilities, but can affected kids get what they need in public schools?

The View From Room 205

January 26th, 2017


One reporter chronicles a neighborhood school in need of the American dream.

Chinese students ponder Trump

January 19th, 2017


How much will anti-immigrant rhetoric dissuade foreigners from studying in the United States?

What Betsy DeVos might bring to the Department of Education

January 12th, 2017


The nominee for secretary of education has a long history of funding school-choice efforts and charter schools in Michigan.

High achievers left behind

January 5th, 2017


In a system that prioritizes struggling students, what happens to everybody else?

Detroit students sue for better school conditions

December 22nd, 2016


The suit claims Michigan is denying Detroit students their fundamental right to literacy.

School confronts trauma in students' lives

December 16th, 2016


Adversity isn't destiny at a "trauma-informed" school in Minnesota.

Offering sanctuary to vulnerable students

December 8th, 2016


An immigration law scholar says colleges have no business declaring their campuses "sanctuaries" for undocumented students.

Keeping black teachers

December 1st, 2016


Why African American teachers are leaving the profession faster than they're entering it.

Fear, uncertainty for undocumented students under Trump administration

November 17th, 2016


Since 2012, many undocumented young people have been protected from the threat of deportation. With a new president, that may change.

College-educated and out-of-touch

November 10th, 2016


Donald Trump's win was a surprise to many in the college-educated elite. Should it have been?

Election leaves undocumented students in limbo

November 3rd, 2016


The next president could end temporary protections for undocumented college students.

Clinton and Trump don't talk much about education

October 27th, 2016


Education has hardly been mentioned in the presidential debates. We look at where the candidates stand.

The stress of racism may impact learning

October 20th, 2016


A new study finds that black and Latino students who experience racism have higher levels of cortisol, a hormone linked to stress, and one that is …

Talking about race in schools

October 13th, 2016


Can children as young as 4 learn to have meaningful dialogues about race?

Schools give low-income students a chance to travel abroad

October 7th, 2016


Some in education think providing travel opportunities can reduce the gap in how well some groups of students perform in school.

What a flipped classroom looks like

September 29th, 2016


In a flipped classroom, students watch or listen to lectures on their own, then spend class time working on projects.

How thousands of kids were denied special education in Texas

September 15th, 2016


Strap on your cowboy boots: A new investigation by the Houston Chronicle finds that Texas has denied special education services to thousands of kids in the state.

Rewriting the Sentence: College Behind Bars

September 8th, 2016


After an abrupt reversal 20 years ago, some prisons and colleges try to maintain college education for prisoners.

What It Takes: Chasing Graduation at High-Poverty High Schools

September 1st, 2016


The nation's high school graduation rate is at an all-time high, but high-poverty schools face a stubborn challenge. Schools in Miami and Pasadena …

Spare the Rod: Reforming School Discipline

August 25th, 2016


A get-tough attitude prevailed among educators in the 1980s and 1990s, but research shows that zero-tolerance policies don't make schools safer and …

Stuck at Square One: The Remedial Education Trap

August 18th, 2016


A system meant to give college students a better shot at succeeding is actually getting in the way of many, costing them time and money and taking a …

Hungry hungry students

August 11th, 2016


When was the last time you ate? In one survey, 7 percent of college students said they went an entire day without eating.

What is restorative justice?

August 4th, 2016


Students of color are twice as likely to be suspended as white kids. So schools are turning to an alternative called restorative justice.

A homeless student struggles towards graduation

July 28th, 2016


We follow a homeless student as she fights to graduate from high school.

The facts and fictions of student debt

July 21st, 2016


A student debt crisis in America? We break down the myths and realities of student debt.

Race in suburban schools

July 14th, 2016


The suburbs are no longer just white picket fences and green manicured lawns. They're diversifying. So what does that mean for suburban schools?

Going to college in prison

July 7th, 2016


A prison education advocate shares his experience in prison and talks about his work spreading college to others.

Few teachers, little money, low test scores: Rural schools in the South

June 30th, 2016


The South is famous for its bayous, BBQ, and bourbon. It's less well known for its rural education. Our guest tells us why.

Merging small, rural school districts

June 23rd, 2016


Small, rural schools around the country are closing. Our guest says that could actually be a good thing.

Fighting for ‘our school’

June 17th, 2016


What's the role of a school in a rural town? We begin our series on rural schools by looking at a state where the fight has been particularly fierce: …

How do we learn better: digital or print?

June 9th, 2016


Do you understand facts better online or in print? New research has massive implications for teaching in the 21st century.

Theological schools feel the squeeze

June 2nd, 2016


Theological schools are straining for cash as they suffer from drops in enrollment over the past few years. Our guest tells us how they are dealing …

The ‘invisible tax’ on teachers of color

May 26th, 2016


Our guest says the so-called 'invisible tax' on teachers of color leads to burnout at a time when teachers of color are already leaving the …

Should colleges teach men how to be men?

May 5th, 2016


Should colleges have men's studies majors or men's resource centers? Our guest this week tells us that male college students would get better grades …

‘My frain is bried’: shadowing a student

April 28th, 2016


"Welcome to our world." Educators take an entire school day to shadow a student and walk in their shoes. We find out how it went for one teacher.

High school job prep

April 21st, 2016


Want a job? So does every student ever! Maybe career and technical education classes are the way to go. Shaun Dougherty says you could be more likely …

How tutoring helps students

April 14th, 2016


Private tutoring is no longer just for the rich kids. Our guest tells us how the individual attention improves student learning and graduation rates.

Is advanced math necessary?

April 7th, 2016


In our last episode, Andrew Hacker argued that math courses like algebra are unnecessary for most high schoolers. This week's guest couldn't disagree …

Decoding the math myth

March 31st, 2016


Politicians and economists say people need advanced math skills to be successful in the highly technical jobs of the 21st century. But the author of …

Writing discipline reform into law

March 24th, 2016


We're working on a documentary that explores the backlash against harsh school discipline practices across the country. This week we talk about state …

The science gap starts early

March 17th, 2016


A new study shows that what a child knows about science in kindergarten can strongly predict how he or she scores on an eighth-grade science test.

Minnesota’s graduation gap

March 10th, 2016


Minnesota has a reputation for having great public education. But if you're Hispanic, black, Asian-American or Native American, your chances of …

A brief history of school discipline

March 3rd, 2016


Research shows suspensions aren't effective at changing kids' behavior. And kids of color are more likely to get kicked out than white kids. This …

Colleges want smart AND nice

February 25th, 2016


The college application process has come under scrutiny in a new report by the Harvard Graduate School of Education. It recommends that schools ask …

What students in remedial english can teach us about K-12 education

February 18th, 2016


Nearly two-thirds of all students who enroll in community college are not "college-ready" in math and/or English. This week we hear from a remedial …

Making sure learning sticks

February 12th, 2016


If you want to really learn something before a big test, put your books down. Research shows that the traditional method of "cramming" for an exam by reading the same thing over and over again, doesn't work. (Rerun from …

When school vouchers are not a leg up

February 4th, 2016


School voucher programs are controversial because they allow students to use public funds to pay for private school. A new paper is one of the first …

Learning financial literacy

January 28th, 2016


Most teenagers are not learning about personal finance in school, according to an annual survey on financial literacy. Our guest this week says that …

Questioning inequalities in higher ed

January 21st, 2016


College was once considered the path of upward mobility in this country, and for many people, it still is. But research shows that the higher …

Learning as a science

January 15th, 2016


What does research say about how students learn best? A group of deans from schools of education around the country has united to make sure future …

Where are the student voices in ed reform?

January 7th, 2016


A growing coalition of young people claims that student voices are largely missing from discussions of education reform.

Most likely to succeed

December 24th, 2015


In most modern work places employees are expected to be self-directed and also work collaboratively. But do conventional public schools do enough to …

Siblings and the education gender gap

December 17th, 2015


The gender gap in education disproportionately affects poor children. New research looks at siblings to find out why boys born into poverty are less likely to succeed than girls.

Where budding chefs learn philosophy, too

December 10th, 2015


Despite what you may have heard about the death of the liberal arts, leaders of one of the nation's top cooking schools, and one of the most …

Letting kids fail

December 3rd, 2015


A few years ago, writer Jessica Lahey started noticing something troubling about many of her students: they were afraid of making mistakes in the classroom. She writes about this in her new book, "The Gift of Failure: …

Inside school discipline in Mississippi

November 25th, 2015


Policymakers and community leaders have started to question traditional forms of school discipline like detention, suspension and expulsion because

Building bridges between the Western and Arab worlds

November 19th, 2015


There’s clearly a gulf of understanding between the Western and Arab worlds. A group called Bridges of Understanding wants to change that by helping …

Inside Oyler: a conversation with Amy Scott

November 11th, 2015


Residents of Lower Price Hill in Cincinnati decided to turn a troubled neighborhood school into a community learning center, in hopes of battling …

Learning to breathe

October 29th, 2015


Can mindfulness reduce children's behavior and emotional challenges in school? That's what one district in Rockland County, N.Y. tried to find out.

Is the growth mindset craze overblown?

October 22nd, 2015


Last week on the podcast, we ran a story about “growth mindset,” an incredibly popular educational concept having to do with motivation and …

Helping students adopt a ‘growth mindset’

October 15th, 2015


When students are struggling to find an answer in school, it’s tempting for teachers to want to jump in and help them right away. But research shows …

The rising cost of extracurriculars

October 8th, 2015


Sports have long been an avenue for low-income students to get scholarships to college, but that might not be an option if the cost of after-school …

Wikipedia’s bum rap

October 1st, 2015


Wikipedia has gotten a lot of flak over the years for being inaccurate and untrustworthy. But in 2010, Wikimedia, the global movement behind Wikipedia, began recruiting professors from major U.S. universities to assign …

A visit from the Church Lady

September 25th, 2015


Back in the 1960s, the Supreme Court declared it was unconstitutional for public schools to sponsor organized prayer and bible readings, but today …

Teaching black lives matter

September 17th, 2015


In November, a new social studies book about the Black Lives Matter movement will be available for middle school and high school students nationwide. …

Beyond the Blackboard: Building Character in Public Schools

September 10th, 2015


This documentary explores the "Expeditionary Learning" approach, traces the history of ideas that led to its inception, and investigates what …

From Boots to Books: Student Veterans and the New GI Bill

September 3rd, 2015


The longest war in American history is drawing to a close. Now, the men and women who served are coming home, and many hope to use higher education to build new, better lives.

Teaching Teachers

August 27th, 2015


Research shows good teaching makes a big difference in how much kids learn. But the United States lacks an effective system for training new teachers or helping them get better once they're on the job.

The Living Legacy: Black Colleges in the 21st Century

August 20th, 2015


Before the civil rights movement, African Americans were largely barred from white-dominated institutions of higher education. And so black …

From the Archives: Early Lessons

August 7th, 2015


Head Start got its start 50 years ago. Our documentary, "Early Lessons," by Emily Hanford, profiles the program that inspired the creation of Head Start.

Goodbye, College Ratings (For Now)

July 30th, 2015


The Obama administration recently declared that it would no longer pursue a college ratings system based on accessibility, affordability and student …

Sweet Briar Returns

July 23rd, 2015


Sweet Briar College was about to close after struggling with dwindling enrollment and other problems. An alumni group raised more than 20 million …

The Future of Historically Black Colleges

July 15th, 2015


Historically Black Colleges and Universities proliferated throughout the late 19th and early 20th centuries, when many white schools refused to admit …

Talking About Race in Schools

July 7th, 2015


Over the past year, race relations have dominated the news cycle. This can bring up difficult questions, especially for parents and teachers. Our …

Minorities and Special Ed

July 2nd, 2015


For years policy makers believed that minorities were overrepresented in special education and that there was inherent bias in the way kids were …

Learning from Video Games

June 23rd, 2015


A lot of parents worry about whether their kids' video game habits are harmful - especially when gaming gets in the way of homework or reading. But …

Teaching the Birds and the Bees

June 17th, 2015


For more than a century, Americans have been arguing about how to teach children about the birds and the bees in public schools. A new book argues …

What can Japan teach us about teaching?

June 11th, 2015


Coming up this fall we'll be releasing a documentary about teacher preparation - how people learn to become teachers and how they get better once they're in the classroom. This week: how do Japanese teachers learn to …

Million-Dollar Teacher

June 2nd, 2015


When Nancie Atwell was growing up, she never thought she’d go to college, let alone become an award-winning teacher. But a few months ago, Atwell …

Divestment on Campus

May 28th, 2015


Across the world, college students are urging their institutions to “divest” from fossil fuels. This week we ask: is the divestment movement working?

Can how you move change how you think?

May 20th, 2015


Scientists have long thought of the brain as a “control center” for the body – a kind of computer that dictates how we move. But what if how we walk …

Forest Schools

May 12th, 2015


What if one day a week, school was in the woods? On the podcast, Emily Hanford takes us to Vermont to understand why teachers wanted to take their …

Exposing Conditions at Native Schools

May 6th, 2015


There are 183 federally-run Bureau of Indian Education schools in the nation, and about a third of these are in poor condition. Some students at BIE …

Green Teachers

April 29th, 2015


A generation ago, if you walked into an American classroom, you’d likely find a veteran teacher who'd been on the job for 15 years or more. Today you're more likely to find a brand-new teacher – someone who's been the …

The First Gen Movement

April 22nd, 2015


Over the past decade many elite colleges have taken great strides to admit low-income students, but there are unanticipated financial and cultural …

The Lost Children of Katrina

April 15th, 2015


In the year following Hurricane Katrina, 30 percent of displaced children were either not enrolled in school or not attending regularly. Today, …

Saving a Women’s College from Closure

April 8th, 2015


Last month the board of Sweet Briar College announced that the school will shut its doors at the end of this term, due to financial difficulties. The …

The Future of College

April 1st, 2015


Kevin Carey's book "The End of College" is stirring up debate in higher ed circles. This week, a response to the book by a critic.

The End of College or the University of Everywhere

March 25th, 2015


When education policy wonk Kevin Carey looks into the future, he sees the end of traditional colleges and universities and he says that's a good …


March 18th, 2015


Today older Americans are heading back to school in record numbers. Many have already started a career, but want to gain knowledge or skills that can …

The Test

March 11th, 2015


In her new book,“The Test: Why Our Schools are Obsessed with Standardized Testing–But You Don’t Have to Be,” NPR Education Blogger Anya Kamenetz …

An Administrator Responds to Adjunct Protests

March 4th, 2015


Last week, we talked about growing dissent among adjunct college instructors who claim they’re not getting compensated fairly for the work they do. …

Adjuncts Unite

February 25th, 2015


What would higher education look like without adjunct professors? That’s what a grass-roots group of academics is trying to prove by holding a …

To Test or Not to Test?

February 19th, 2015


Sometime in the next few weeks, Senate Republicans and Democrats will vote to reauthorize The No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. On the podcast this week, we talk to two education advocates who differ on how and when we …

Looking back: An Imperfect Revolution

February 11th, 2015


In June 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down school desegregation plans that look at students’ race. This week on the podcast, we’re featuring …

Are HBCUs the Key to Producing More African American Physicians?

February 4th, 2015


We talk to a Dallas doctor who thinks HBCUs may be the best pathways for African Americans interested in careers in medicine.

Boosting Black Male Student Achievement

January 28th, 2015


The Minneapolis Public School District created an Office of Black Male Student Achievement earlier this year. One goal of the office is to help young …

Free Community College for All

January 22nd, 2015


President Barack Obama wants to make the first two years of community college free for what he calls “responsible students” who are “willing to work …

What’s in a number?

January 14th, 2015


Our guest this week has a message for high school seniors and their parents who are poring over the latest college rankings lists: Put ‘em down.

Following the Money in Education Philanthropy

January 5th, 2015


Philanthropic foundations have been giving money to public education for years. But our guest this week argues that philanthropies are increasingly pushing specific educational agendas.

Rising prices on the poorest

December 16th, 2014


In January 2014 nearly a hundred college presidents gathered at the White House for a summit on the rising cost of college. But data show that those …

How Much Will College Cost My Family?

December 8th, 2014


In 2011 the federal government required colleges and universities to publish “net price calculators” on their web sites. These tools are supposed to …

Bridging the “Middle Skills” Gap

December 1st, 2014


There’s a paradox in today’s job market: even though there are millions of people looking for work, employers say they can’t find enough qualified workers. That’s due to an abundance of what economists call “middle …

Academic Fraud and College Athletics

November 24th, 2014


Last month the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill released a report that showed evidence of nearly two decades of academic fraud perpetuated …

The Utility of a PhD

November 17th, 2014


Humanities professors at colleges and universities are re-thinking what it means to offer a PhD. The old model is proving unsustainable. It takes an …

How to help students hope

October 27th, 2014


A polling expert finds students less engaged with school as they get older. Brandon Busteed from Gallup Education says if schools taught to …

What teachers need

October 14th, 2014


Education correspondent Emily Hanford talks with author Elizabeth Green about her new book, Building a Better Teacher: How Teaching Works (and How to Teach It to Everyone).

Intelligence is achievable and other lessons from The Teacher Wars

October 7th, 2014


Education correspondent Emily Hanford continues her conversation with Dana Goldstein, author of The Teacher Wars.

Teaching: The most embattled profession

October 1st, 2014


Education correspondent Emily Hanford talks with bestselling author Dana Goldstein about her new book, The Teacher Wars.

Video games: New literacy for a complex world

September 24th, 2014


Author James Paul Gee says video games are problems to solve that come with their own tools. He says they're like "an external mind," and teachers …

Ed researchers: Colleges can do more for students, especially in a bad economy

September 18th, 2014


College is worth the investment. College graduates can't find good jobs. Student loan debt keeps rising, and now tops a trillion dollars. What can be …

Ready to Work: Reviving Vocational Ed

September 11th, 2014


Vocational education was once a staple of American schooling, preparing some kids for blue-collar futures while others were put on a path to college. …

The New Face of College

September 4th, 2014


Just 20 percent of college-goers fit the stereotype of being young, single, full-time students who finish a degree in four years. College students …

Greater Expectations: The Challenge of the Common Core

August 28th, 2014


The United States is in the midst of a huge education reform. The Common Core State Standards are a new set of expectations for what students should …

The Science of Smart

August 21st, 2014


Researchers have long been searching for better ways to learn. In recent decades, experts working in cognitive science, psychology, and neuroscience …

Reinventing college for a new kind of student

August 4th, 2014


Long-predicted demographic changes mean a new kind of student is figuring out where to go to college, and how to pay for it.

Is school funding fair?

July 29th, 2014


A new report looks at why some schools have a lot of money to spend per pupil, while others don't, and what to do about it.

Who Needs College?

July 22nd, 2014


In May Stephen Smith was invited to be on a panel in Minneapolis that focused on the value of higher education. The panel answered questions such as: …

Unionizing Adjuncts

July 15th, 2014


A growing number of adjunct faculty at colleges and universities across the country are voting to unionize. Data from the Department of Education …

Kids and Data Mining

July 8th, 2014


The government wants to collect data on America's children. And that has parents across the country more than a little nervous.

Inside the Common Core: Math

July 1st, 2014


The second of a series on what's inside the Common Core State Standards. Last week we heard about the English Language Arts and Literacy portion; this week we talk to one of the lead authors of the standards for …

Inside the Common Core: ELA

June 24th, 2014


What do children need to know in school to be prepared for the future? That's the question that drives a new set of national learning standards …

Military-Friendly Campuses

June 17th, 2014


Members of the military and their spouses face more challenges than traditional students when it comes to getting a college degree. Their studies are …

Is Coding Fundamental?

June 10th, 2014


Next fall, dozens of school districts nationwide will offer new computer coding classes. Advocates say computer programming is a fundamental kind of …

Sexual Assault on Campus

June 3rd, 2014


This spring, the Obama administration announced it was joining the effort to hold colleges and universities more accountable for sexual assaults on …

The Education Gender Gap

May 27th, 2014


A new report says middle-schoolers who get Bs and Cs are less likely to finish college than their peers who get As. And because more girls get As, …

College Bang for the Buck

May 20th, 2014


For decades young people have been told that college is the path to prosperity. And research bears that out. But with the high cost of college …

The Kalamazoo Promise

May 13th, 2014


In 2005, a group of philanthropists decided to fund a scholarship program for public high school graduates in Kalamazoo, Michigan. The idea is that …

Degrees of Inequality

May 6th, 2014


Higher education has long been an engine of social mobility in this country. But today's college choices may actually be widening the gap between the …

Navigating the Financial Aid System

April 29th, 2014


Spring is the time of year when college acceptance letters start landing in the mailboxes - and inboxes - of high school seniors across the country. …

Yes We Must

April 22nd, 2014


A new majority of students going to college are low-income, Hispanic or African-American, and from the southern or western United States. They are …

School Counseling Crisis

April 15th, 2014


California schools have an average of 1,000 students for every guidance counselor. The American School Counselor Association recommends a ratio of …

Problem-Solving Skills and Jobs

April 8th, 2014


A new international survey of 15-year-olds shows students in the United States are pretty good problem solvers. The Organization for […]

Holding Online Schools Accountable

April 1st, 2014


A new survey shows online K-12 schools under-performing brick-and-mortar schools. Recommendations include specialized teacher training for virtual …

Don’t Wake a Sleeping Teenager

March 25th, 2014


Neuroscience research says teenagers don’t just like to sleep; they need to sleep. A new CDC study suggests early high […]

The Attainment Agenda

March 18th, 2014


A new book says success for low-income college students should be a national priority. There’s no G.I. Bill or Higher […]

The SAT Gets Revamped

March 11th, 2014


The College Board announced last week that it’s going to redesign the SAT exam by spring 2016. Will a new […]

Historically Black Colleges and Universities Struggle to Compete

March 4th, 2014


Until the end of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s and early ’70s, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) […]

Remaking Education

February 25th, 2014


A new paper says teachers shouldn’t be held accountable in a system that fails students. It suggests ways to take […]

Snow Days and Test Scores

February 18th, 2014


Snow days have been plentiful in 2014. What impact do they have on student test scores? Guest: Joshua Goodman, Professor […]

Helping Community College Students Graduate

February 11th, 2014


About half of all college students in the United States go to community colleges and only a third of those […]

Can Teach for America Keep Its Promise?

February 4th, 2014


Teach for America wants to close the achievement gap by sending future leaders to some of the nation’s toughest schools. […]

Does Teach for America Need Reforming?

January 28th, 2014


A new study says Teach for American may be more costly than valuable. Guest: Julian Vasquez Heilig, Professor of Education, […]

Improving Teacher Ed

January 21st, 2014


Many schools of education are awful, experts say. A new system for accrediting teaching colleges may add rigor and improve […]

A Conservative Defends Common Core

January 14th, 2014


Conservative and liberal activists across the country are speaking out against Common Core State Standards. But Michael Petrilli, who works […]

This College Breaks the Mold

January 7th, 2014


At Quest University in Canada, there are no departments, no majors and no faculty ranks. Classes are co-taught by a […]

Talking to Baby

December 31st, 2013


Research shows the more words babies hear, the better they do in school. The achievement gap starts early; now so […]

Invent to Learn

December 24th, 2013


Many educators say the best way to learn is by combining what you learn in school with real-world practice and […]

College Un-Affordability

December 17th, 2013


The cost of college keeps going up. But family earnings are staying the same. This is leading to an unsustainable […]

The United States gets a “C”

December 10th, 2013


The results are in from academic tests of 15-year-olds in 65 countries and regions. PISA shows Finland slipping, Vietnam doing […]

Competency-Based Education

December 3rd, 2013


At most colleges, a degree is based on “seat time.” But economists argue that the number of college grads is […]

College in High School

November 26th, 2013


It’s not just Advanced Placement any more. A new trend is for students taking college classes for college credit while […]

Measuring School Improvement

November 19th, 2013


A new study finds that the emphasis on accountability since No Child Left Behind may be harming students, not helping […]

Grouping Kids by Ability: Drawbacks

November 12th, 2013


Grouping students by ability has become more prevalent since No Child Left Behind. But does academic “sorting” hurt low-performing students? […]

Grouping Kids by Ability: Benefits

November 5th, 2013


Is academic tracking good for our kids? New research shows gains in test scores when students are sorted by their […]

Trey Kay’s “The Long Game: Texas’ Ongoing Battle for the Direction of the Classroom”

October 29th, 2013


In November Texas plans to adopt new science textbooks which will be used in classrooms there for the next decade. […]

Adult Literacy Around the World

October 22nd, 2013


A new global survey shows that American adults scored below average in literacy and math skills, even though they’ve gone […]

James Meredith’s Education Mission

October 15th, 2013


In 1962, James Meredith launched a one-man crusade to integrate the University of Mississippi, also known as Ole Miss. Today, […]

Smartest Kids in the World

October 8th, 2013


Kids in some other countries learn more at school than American students do. A new book says that’s about what […]

What Good Are Field Trips

October 1st, 2013


Tight budgets and more emphasis on test scores mean fewer field trips. New research shows how and why field trips […]

Crossing Class

September 24th, 2013


The Ivy League isn’t on the radar for most poor students. Travis Reginal defied the odds, and is now a […]

Delve into Deeper Learning

September 17th, 2013


Author of key report says students need both knowledge and know-how; content and the skills to apply it. Guest: Jim […]

Second-Chance Diploma: Examining the GED

September 1st, 2013


Most test-takers hope the GED will lead to a better job or more education. But critics say the GED encourages some students to drop out of school. …

Teaching to Each

August 20th, 2013


Our guest says teachers must meet students where they are, even if that’s 40 different places. Guest: Carol Ann Tomlinson, […]

The Sweet Spot of Learning

August 13th, 2013


Kids are naturally curious, but not naturally good thinkers.How personalized learning may help them learn to think. Guest: Daniel Willingham, […]

Pitfalls of the Common Core

August 6th, 2013


A supporter-turned-critic of the Common Core says the new standards may hurt more than they help. Guest: Carol Burris, New […]

One Child at a Time: Custom Learning in the Digital Age

August 1st, 2013


Learning with a personal tutor is one of the oldest and best ways to learn. Hiring a tutor for every student was never a realistic option. Now, new …

Common Core Explained

July 30th, 2013


The Common Core State Standards will tell educators what to expect of students, but not what or how to teach. […]

Achievement Gap Among States

July 23rd, 2013


Why do students in some states do better than students in others? A new report says the gap in state […]

What to Teach

July 16th, 2013


The Core Knowledge Foundation says the Common Core State Standards will help schools know what to measure, but not necessarily […]

Exercise for the Brain

July 9th, 2013


Physical activity is good for learning. Yet many schools cut back on gym class and even cracking down on fidgeting. […]

The Cost of College

June 28th, 2013


With tuition rising and debt mounting, author Jeffrey Selingo helps parents and students do the math for college. Guest: Jeffrey […]

New Grad School for Teachers

June 21st, 2013


A new report from the National Council on Teacher Quality says most graduate schools of education don’t prepare teachers for […]

The Disruption of Blended Learning

June 14th, 2013


How online tools may change classrooms today and forever. Guest: Heather Staker, Christensen Institute

Learning to Excel

June 7th, 2013


Students are capable of excellent work. Some schools insist on it. Guest: Ron Berger, chief academic officer at Expeditionary Learning

Achievement Gap: For Richer or Poorer

May 31st, 2013


How family income may cause disparities in school achievement, and what to do about it. Guest: Sean Reardon, professor of […]

The Case for Choice and Charters

May 24th, 2013


A controversial principal with a compelling personal story on why tough love is what students need and teachers’ unions are […]

Anti-Pigeonhole Plan

May 17th, 2013


New research shows how classroom teachers may be able to combat the impact of stereotype threat and help close the […]

Teachers Training Teachers

May 10th, 2013


How one exemplary school district does professional development despite lean times. Long Beach, Calif. has become a national model by […]

Affirmative Action: Against

May 3rd, 2013


Why college admissions should be colorblind. The U.S. Supreme Court will soon rule on the latest affirmative action case. Last […]

Affirmative Action: For

April 26th, 2013


Why being colorblind is a fine aspiration and a dangerous policy. The U.S. Supreme Court will soon rule on another […]

After Atlanta: More or Less Cheating?

April 19th, 2013


A key analyst during the Atlanta cheating scandal tells us what can be done about cheating as Common Core standards […]

Rethinking Pell Grants

April 12th, 2013


Pell Grants have been helping low-income students go to college for 50 years. A new report recommends changing the way […]

Happy Teachers

April 5th, 2013


A new poll finds that American teachers lead the most satisfied lives, second only to physicians. What’s making our overworked, […]

MOOC Recruiting

March 29th, 2013


There’s a talent war for computer engineers in Silicon Valley. That’s why MOOCs are getting in the head hunting game, […]

New GED Coming

March 22nd, 2013


In January of 2014, the GED exam is going digital, and it’s going to be harder to pass. This adult […]

Employers Want More From College Grads

March 15th, 2013


According to a new survey of employers, American colleges don’t produce enough qualified graduates for today’s workforce. Among the complaints: […]

Education Sequestration

March 8th, 2013


As the nation braces for cuts to federal programs under sequestration, a top education reporter describes how this new era […]

Financial Ed and the Common Core

March 1st, 2013


If students learn about personal finance in grade school, they’ll be more responsible spenders as adults. So goes the thinking […]

Project-Based Learning

February 22nd, 2013


A high school English teacher in Michigan says making videos of Shakespeare plays is better for students than memorizing facts […]

Beating the Odds

February 15th, 2013


We met Tracy Edwards last year during our reporting at the YES Prep charter school network in Houston, Texas. Unlike […]

Need-Based Aid

February 8th, 2013


Most private schools give out aid packages based on merit, often trying to compete for students from wealthy families who […]

Mississippi Charter Debate

February 1st, 2013


Mississippi legislators recently passed legislation that would allow charter schools in the state for the first time. In the Mississippi […]

The Decline of Catholic Education

January 25th, 2013


For much of the 20th century, a Catholic education was often a relatively inexpensive, higher-quality alternative to inner-city public schools. […]

Testing Teachers Reprise

January 18th, 2013


Teacher quality was in the news again last week with a PBS documentary about former D.C. schools chancellor Michelle Rhee […]

Merit Badges for Veterans

January 11th, 2013


Veterans who enter the workforce often have a tough time translating their military experience to “resume-ready” skills. But a new […]

Pre-K in OK

January 4th, 2013


Oklahoma is one of the most politically conservative states in the nation and it’s also home to one of the […]

eBay for Professors

December 28th, 2012


Ever heard of the self-employed college professor? Thanks to the efforts of the for-profit education company Straighter Line, some professors […]

School Safety

December 21st, 2012


According to the U.S. Department of Education, schools are actually safer than they’ve been in decades – which makes the […]


December 14th, 2012


It turns out being popular in high school could actually be important later in life. New research from the University […]

Diverse Schools

December 7th, 2012


In the 1960s “white flight” sent many middle-class families from the cities to suburbs out of fear that the quality […]

Goodbye to Cursive

November 30th, 2012


Since handwriting is becoming less important in modern life, teaching cursive is going out of style in American schools. But […]

The Real Digital Divide

November 23rd, 2012


For a long time it was assumed that a “digital divide” existed between rich kids and poor kids. But emerging […]

Tuition by Major

November 16th, 2012


Florida governor Rick Scott is proposing a tiered pricing plan for the state’s colleges and universities that would cut tuition […]

The Military and the GED

November 9th, 2012


The GED test was created to help returning World War Two veterans who hadn’t graduated from high school have an […]

Crack Cocaine and Education

November 2nd, 2012


From the 1960s to the 1980s the educational achievement gap between blacks and whites was shrinking. But around 1990 high […]

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