Education

Education and learning

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.

Katie Finlon/WNIJ

Sycamore High School is aiming to distribute a student survey on possible staggered start times before Thanksgiving.

Principal Tim Carlson says a committee has discussed the proposed schedule change several times, but large-scale student surveys have not been completed. He says committee members are still gathering information about what specific start times could be part of the staggered schedule and evaluating the individual needs of students.

rock.uwc.edu

The University of Wisconsin System would merge each of its 13 two-year campuses with a four year institution under a plan unveiled Wednesday by UW System President Ray Cross.

The UW-Rock County two-year campus in Janesville, for example, would become part of the University of Wisconsin—Whitewater under the restructuring plan.

The plan also would put the state’s public broadcasting networks under the auspices of the UW System administration.

Jenna Dooley

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has been taking a victory lap for the new school funding formula at schools across the state. Such visits can be a low-stakes way for the state’s top politicians to interact with their youngest constituents.

Last month, Rauner took questions from several inquisitive students at Galapagos Charter School in Rockford.

Rauner: So do you have any questions for me?

Student: How much do you get paid?

WalletHub

School funding problems, including disparities between districts, have grabbed the headlines in Illinois the last couple of years.  But a website recently ranked Illinois schools among the best in the country for teachers.

Personal finance website WalletHub said it looked at two broad areas when ranking the states:

One -- Opportunity and Competition -- included average starting salaries, income growth potential, pensions and tenure protections.

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