Legislative proposal would allow state to hold schools accountable for certain types of abuse

BY: - February 2, 2023

School staff have held students down and left them in closets as punishment without any repercussions, state officials, parents and advocates said this week.  Students with disabilities, especially, have suffered unnecessary seclusion and restraints, they told lawmakers on Wednesday. Some had been pinned to the ground under gym mats by staff, unable to move. Yet […]

students graduating

Dozens of legislative bills address curriculum, parent choice, teachers and more

BY: - January 30, 2023

Over the next five months, Oregon lawmakers will consider more than 100 proposals that could impact hundreds of thousands of students statewide. Curriculum, school resource officers, parent choice, expanding the teacher workforce, funding, graduation standards and student equity are among the topics being discussed.  K-12 education will be a primary focus this year as newly […]

high school graduation

Oregon’s high school graduation rate up slightly in 2022

BY: - January 26, 2023

Oregon’s high school graduation rate edged up slightly last year to the second highest in state history. Last year nearly 38,000 students graduated in four years – a rate of 81.3%, according to data released Thursday by the Oregon Department of Education. This marked an increase from the prior year’s rate of 80.6%. The state’s […]

inside the state capitol

2023 Oregon legislative preview: What you need to know

BY: , and - January 17, 2023

The Oregon Legislature begins its 2023 work in earnest on Tuesday, with just more than five months to pass a budget and tackle pressing issues including homelessness, addiction and a public defender shortage that has left hundreds of people without their constitutionally guaranteed right to an attorney. The 90-member Legislature must end its work by […]

Schools get new guidance for gender inclusivity, supporting students, safety

BY: - January 13, 2023

New guidance from the Oregon Department of Education instructs schools on how best to support and protect gender expansive students, or “people whose gender expression and identity expand beyond perceived or expected societal gender norms.” It also reminds schools of state and federal laws requiring they do so.  The 48-page document published Jan. 5, Supporting […]

New federal student loan repayment plan aimed at low-income borrowers

BY: - January 10, 2023

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Education unveiled a proposal Tuesday that would overhaul a federal student loan income-driven repayment plan, and, if implemented, could help millions of low-income borrowers. However, it’s unclear how the agency would be able to finance the program. Many student debt relief advocates also criticized the proposal for leaving out […]

Four Oregon districts get $20 million to hire school mental health staff

BY: - January 6, 2023

Three Oregon school districts and an education service district have received $20 million from the U.S. Department of Education to hire more mental health staff. The Douglas Education Service District, which serves 13 school districts in Douglas County in southwest Oregon, will get more than $6.8 million, the largest of the grants. Portland Public Schools, […]

Kotek announces new education adviser, leader for statewide education initiatives

BY: - January 6, 2023

Two women focused on improving K-12 student outcomes and boosting early learning around the state will serve in Gov.-Elect Tina Kotek’s office. Kotek announced her new education leadership staff in a statement on Friday, along with several other new appointments to key leadership positions. In the announcement, she also included news of Oregon Department of […]

The team behind Measure 112 celebrates Anthony Pickens' release from the Oregon State Penitentiary

How ‘a bunch of kids and people the state gave up on’ rid slavery from Oregon’s constitution

BY: - December 28, 2022

Willamette University Professor Melissa Buis Michaux was supposed to be at an election night party, but decided to skip it when the results started to roll in.  “I felt so nervous I stayed at home,” she said.  Her former students Niki Kates and Riley Burton watched eagerly online from Riley’s apartment in California as votes […]

Madysun Wilson was homeless in high school and didn't think she'd graduate but now she's a freshman at Southwestern Oregon Community College in Coos Bay where she stays in a dorm.

Dozens of Oregon school districts likely undercounting homeless students

BY: - December 21, 2022

Madysun Wilson had already given up on graduating when the dean at her high school showed up during her shift at Papa Murphy’s in Coos Bay, Oregon. She was technically homeless, crashing at a friend’s house after leaving her family home at 15. Casey McCord, the dean, had been calling her relatives for weeks letting […]

More oversight needed of community colleges after performance and enrollment declines, audit finds

BY: - December 20, 2022

The commission tasked with overseeing Oregon’s 17 community colleges must do more to increase student performance, achievement and access, according to an audit by the Secretary of State’s Office.  In its report published Monday, auditors said the Higher Education Coordinating Commission, or HECC, had done a good job of helping to narrow equity gaps in […]

Oregon’s overreliance on tuition to cover rising college costs hurts the economy, report finds

BY: - December 19, 2022

A new report shows that Oregon is “faced with many problems” when it comes to paying for the rising costs of higher education, ultimately hindering enrollment that has a spillover effect on the state’s economy. The report on trends in state higher education enrollment and funding found that the Legislature’s overreliance on universities raising tuition […]