Education

Education and learning

GETGREDIT.COM / FLICKR-CREATIVE COMMONS

A recent report shows Illinois is facing a teacher shortage. But changes to teachers’ pensions — including cutbacks on the state’s share of contributions — spells uncertainty for anyone going into the profession.

  

When the Illinois General Assembly approved a budget last summer, they also agreed to cut back on about $500 million to the state's pension system. This might sound like a good idea if the money is allocated to pay for other needs in the immediate future. For teachers, however, it means the state might not be able to cover their pensions. 

Legislature Approves Teaching Cursive Writing In Schools

Nov 9, 2017
pxhere.com

Penmanship disappeared from the curriculum in many schools because teachers are devoting more time to preparing students for standardized tests. A new state law approved Wednesday will bring it back to ensure elementary students get instruction in cursive writing.

State Rep. Chris Welch, D-Hillside, filed the measure the same day lawmakers approved his resolution on zombie apocalypse preparedness. At the time, Welch wasn't sure anybody would care about cursive.

Free Webinar Offers Information On Opioid Crisis

Nov 8, 2017

How serious is the opioid crisis in Illinois? Last year, 1,900 people died of opioid overdose in our state -- twice as many as those who died in car crashes. 

To help provide more knowledge about addiction to pain killers, the University of Illinois Extension is hosting a free webinar at noon Thursday about what local groups -- including police and social service agencies --- can do to reduce opioid addiction.

Heidi Clark, Division Chief of Health and Data Policy for the Illinois Department of Public Health, will present the webinar.

The release of the Illinois school report card brought new details on school gains and losses. State Superintendent Tony Smith says there was some good news. 

“It’s pretty exciting that the four-year high-school graduation rate increased from 85.5 percent to 87 percent, so just over 2,000 more kids graduating in four years than last year,” he said. “The percentage of students enrolled in college 12 months after graduating also increased.”

Guy Stephens/WNIJ

A 3-percent pay increase for Northern Illinois University faculty and staff was approved this morning by the NIU Board of Trustees, which then voted to extend the raise to employees in union bargaining units that still are negotiating contracts but have signed off on the increase.

NIU Acting President Lisa Freeman recommended the increase in her State of the University address last month for all NIU employees hired before Jan. 1, 2017.

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