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Issues in Education

Migrant Students a Part of County’s Poverty Picture

In Kent City Community Schools, where some 53 percent of students qualify for free or reduced-price lunches, the usual problems of poverty persist. But the issues are heightened because of the district’s significant migrant worker population working in northern...

Lee High School: A Tale of the Need for Equity

Lee High School freshman Paul Villarreal wrote down his vocabulary words: "zest," "campaigner," "poliomyelitis" and "delegate" while in the Scholastic READ 180 classroom. The program, which blends online and teacher-led instruction, helps students become better readers. "It has helped me...

Helping with Stress at the Holidays

When Karen Hoekstra was in high school, there was no "be nice" committee, and talking about mental illness just didn't happen, she said. "Had there been those sort of programs they have here today, it would have saved me a...

Students march for their lives: ‘If others aren’t going to do it, I think...

Six teenage organizers from Forest Hills and Grand Rapids led a crowd of thousands in the March for Our Lives at Rosa Parks Circle

Nonprofit Helps Students Boost Test Scores, Confidence Through Free Private Tutoring

Townline Elementary School fourth-grader Kadyn Toris has made huge gains in reading since he began receiving private tutoring at Streams of Hope. Since second grade, Kadyn has attended a total of six 12-week sessions inside the food pantry at the...

‘Communities are Going to See Repercussions’

In the library of Harrison Park School, Ryan Rose read aloud from a book about African animals as a dozen students listened expectantly. “We all went on a safari, past an old Acadia tree,” Rose read. “Nearby, giraffes were grazing....

Making it right to be real

Thornapple Kellogg High School recently kicked off a series of assemblies building on the Making it Cool to be Kind program...

Principal Stresses ‘Education Is the Road Out of Poverty’

As a child growing up in inner-city Chicago, Kathryn Curry had friends who were at school one day and gone the next, after their families were evicted from their homes. She attended a funeral of a friend killed by a...

Journaling, Imaginations Make Waves of Summertime Learning

Dante Botello may never have entertained the notion of caring for a pet monkey had it not been for his Spanish Elementary teacher, who drove to his house this summer with a stack of books and two lawn chairs...

Way Beyond ABC’s: Kindergartners Master a Growing List of Academic Skills

Byron Center’s Brown Elementary School kindergarten students are seated on a carpet in a big circle fronting a white board. They are making sense -- “number sense” that is. Teacher Andrew Smith writes the number 912 on the board and...

Dear Secretary DeVos: don’t overlook needs of the whole student

In a time of dramatic change and challenge in public schools, teachers increasingly have made their voices heard regarding policies of the U.S. Department of Education under Secretary Betsy DeVos...

At these schools, students’ hearts and minds are both nurtured

Endeavor and Challenger elementary schools are both recipients of the Capturing Kids’ Hearts National Showcase Schools Award

Helping Students Grow After Bullying Incidents

When Tarena VanDyke was accused of bullying another student, it really hurt, she said. “I’ve never seen myself as a bully,” said the Northview High School senior. “I hope I’m a nice person.” But after watching a series of videos about...

Beyond Teen Nation, Students Battle Bullying Every Day

Walking down a hallway of Kenowa Hills High School, Karley Lynn Mead said not everyone sees the bullying that sometimes goes on in her school. She does. As part of a student group called Knights Lights, she tries to stop...

Teachers Join Forces to Feed Families in Need

Lee Middle School eighth-grader Jonathan Lopez helped distribute food from a Feeding America Mobile Food Pantry truck recently to Godfrey-Lee Public Schools families. "Some people don't have enough food and most get paid minimum wage so they need help," said...

‘The Goal is to Keep Them Reading’

Second-graders Leonel Santiago and Carlos Saldana hit an exciting benchmark this fall: They started reading their first chapter books. Besides helping them learn the important time concepts of "first, next, after that and finally," said Bonnie Biggs, a retired Kent...
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