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Borsuk: Rise of quality early education programs are bright spot for Milwaukee

The Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel – Alan J. Borsuk

“There’s an energy surge in quality early childhood education in Milwaukee, and this is good news. “Quality early childhood education has been rising to the top of a lot of people’s agendas because the data is so clear that the foundation for success in school doesn’t begin on the first day of school; it begins the day a child is born,” said Tom Schneider, executive director of COA Youth & Family Centers, a long-standing north side agency offering programs for kids. Tracey Sparrow, president of Next Door, another high-quality north side nonprofit, said, “It feels like there’s a growing recognition of the importance” of early childhood learning.” (more)

Borsuk: Wisconsin Reading Corp tutors combat literacy crisis one child at a time

The Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel – Alan J. Borsuk

“As someone recently put it to me, improving Wisconsin’s overall results in reading will not come from pushing one button. It will require pushing maybe 10 buttons. A lot needs to be done. Some of the buttons that should be pushed connect to what goes on in school. Some connect to things beyond school, including what happens at home and what happens in a child’s earliest years. Some may not be so hard to push; others are enormous challenges. I hope — I even expect — that the Wisconsin Reading Corps will be a button that brings good results.” (more)

Kids in Crisis: Putting therapists in schools helps children with mental health needs

The Milwaukee Wisconsin Journal-Sentinel – Rory Linnane and Annysa Johnson

“At this time last year, Monica Pendleton felt like her 5-year-old son was in a constant temper tantrum. She’d get calls from his school: He was screaming or kicking tables and chairs, or both. Teachers were at a loss. Pendleton would have to leave work to pick him up. “The front office knows me and him personally,” Pendleton said.”(more)

New Wisconsin K-12 standards intended to spur interest in computer science careers

USA Today – Jordan C. Axelson

“Computer science is so ubiquitous in our everyday lives that it often goes unnoticed. Take for example, ordering a pizza. Computer science lets you request your pizza with a few taps on your phone; it protects your credit card information during the transaction; and it runs the delivery driver’s GPS, providing the fastest route, so you get the pizza while it’s still hot and melty. Computer science also extends into fields like medicine, communication, and manufacturing. It’s the most in-demand occupation in Wisconsin in 2017, and the sector is expected to grow by 12% through 2024 according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.”(more)

Borsuk: ‘Emergency’ effort to address teacher shortages reflects larger education issues

USA Today – Alan J. Borsuk

“It’s an emergency. It says so right there on the legal papers: “Order of the State Superintendent for Public Instruction Adopting Emergency Rules.” But it’s a curious kind of emergency. Elsewhere in the paperwork, it uses the term “difficulties.” Maybe that’s a better way to put it. Underlying the legal language lie questions that are causing big concern in perhaps every school district and independent school in Wisconsin this summer: Who’s going to fill the remaining open teaching jobs we have? How are we going to put together a staff when some specific positions are proving hard to fill? Are we really getting the best people we feasibly could to work in our classrooms?.”(more)