Education, From The Capitol To The Classroom

Weekly Planner: Automatic Federal Spending Cuts Kick In Next Friday

    Kyle Stokes / StateImpact Indiana

    Tori Tackett, 20, plays a board game with another student in the CHOICE program, an initiative of the Northeast Indiana Special Education Cooperative. Sequestration could make it harder for local school districts and states to cover the costs of special education services.

    Deep automatic federal spending cuts — known as “sequestration” — kick in Friday, March 1, potentially costing Indiana schools more than $100 million in total (barring Congressional action, of course).

    That tops our list of education stories StateImpact will be following in the coming week.

    While no single district would lose more than 3 percent of its overall revenues, some school administrators have told us they can ill-afford the cuts. But others make the case March 27 could be a much more important date for education-watchers to mark on their calendars.

    More education events to watch below:

    Coming Up Next Week

    • Saturday, Feb. 23: State superintendent Glenda Ritz is hitting the road this weekend. She’s headed to the University of Notre Dame in South Bend to speak at a research forum. She’ll later keynote a four-state education meet-up in Fort Wayne, sponsored by several groups that are generally opposed to the pushes for testing and choice that have typified Indiana’s education policies in recent years.
    • Monday, Feb. 25: Community members will have the opportunity to comment on an application to build a charter school to serve adult learners in Richmond — Excel Center Richmond, a cousin of currently-operating schools in Anderson and Indianapolis. The Indiana Charter School Board has scheduled a public hearing at the Richmond Community Schools administration building.
    • Tuesday, Feb. 26: Like in Richmond, the Indiana Charter School Board is holding a public hearing on a proposed charter school in Fort Wayne. We’ve profiled Carpe Diem, which currently is operating a school in Indianapolis, and has now applied to open an additional campus in Fort Wayne
    • Friday, March 1: A panel of state lawmakers gave initial approval to a proposal to require districts adopt formal seclusion and restraint policies this week. Parents, teachers and advocates will discuss the policy on Noon EditionWFIU’s weekly public affairs show, next Friday at 12 ET. (Elle’s co-hosting.)

    StateImpact is also watching the Indiana House and Senate floor calendars for education bills as they come up for a vote. (Also, don’t forget the Ivy Tech Cornhole Classic in Kokomo on Saturday!)

    What We’re Working On

    • An expansion of the state’s voucher program passed the Indiana house this week. We’ll take a look at the economics of the proposed changes and what they mean for the state’s private schools.
    • We’ll continue our coverage of the new, nationally-crafted Common Core academic standards with a look at how math is taught in the early grades. Have a Common Core question? Ask the education reporters. Send us an email, reach out to us on Facebook or Twitter or leave us a comment letting us know your Core Questions.


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