WXXI AM News

Schools

The state’s largest teachers union filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Division of Budget over more than $5 billion in state spending that’s expected to be withheld from school districts as the state grapples with an unprecedented budget crisis.

New York State United Teachers claimed in the lawsuit that a law approved earlier this year that would allow those cuts is unconstitutional and shouldn’t be enforced.

rhnet.org

Officials in the Rush-Henrietta School District say that two elementary school students have been diagnosed with COVID-19. A letter to parents says that one of these students attends Crane Elementary School, while the other is a student at Vollmer Elementary School. 

District Superintendent Lawrence Bo Wright sent a letter to district families and employees Friday evening saying that the news about the two cases "may be unsettling to some, but it is not unexpected."

We continue our series of conversations with local superintendents about reopening schools. This hour, we're joined by the superintendents of Gates Chili and Webster Central School Districts. They share their districts' learning models and their plans for testing, masking, physical distancing, and more.

Our guests:

As teachers prepare to head back to the classroom – either in person or remotely – they have much to consider. We’ve heard from local teachers and parents about concerns regarding the quality of remote learning. Experts at St. John Fisher College have developed a four-week training course for teachers to learn best practices in online education. The workshops are geared toward helping teachers sharpen their skills with technology and help students and teachers better interact. A number of local teachers have already completed the course.

This hour, we talk with two of them about what they learned, and we talk with the experts behind the workshop about best practices for remote learning. Our guests:

  • Joellen Maples, associate professor and interim dean of the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education at St. John Fisher College
  • Katie Sabourin, educational technologist at St. John Fisher College
  • Dena Fedkew, elementary school teacher in the Greece Central School District
  • Cassie Pruitt, special education teacher at Brighton High School

What do teachers think about going back to school? In recent weeks we've talked to parents, superintendents, security workers, custodial staff, bus drivers, and more. But today is our first chance to hear from teachers. Privately, we've been hearing from teachers all summer long. Some are eager to get back to the classroom. Others are profoundly concerned about safety and their own health. 

This hour, we hear from teachers from several school districts. Our guests:

  • Olivia, special education teacher in the Greece Central School District
  • Anne Baughman, chemistry and physics teacher in a local district
  • Kristen French, speech language pathologist at the Rochester City School District
  • Meagan Harris, special education teacher in the Rochester City School District

We continue our series of conversations with local superintendents about their districts' reopening plans. This hour, we hear from the superintendents of the East Irondequoit and Churchville-Chili Central School Districts. They discuss their learning models for the fall, and their policies related to physical distancing, testing, masking, and more.

Our guests:

  • Mary Grow, superintendent of East Irondequoit Central School District
  • Lori Orologio, superintendent of Churchville-Chili Central School District

Brighton High School bcsd.org

For Brighton High School social studies teacher Jennifer Pacatte, it hasn't exactly been a summer of fun and relaxation.  

"I would say it's been this pervasive state of anxiety for every teacher I know," she said.

Much of that anxiety, she said, is because until a few weeks ago, schools in New York didn't even know if they'd be allowed to reopen.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Aug. 7 that students can return to the classroom if coronavirus transmission rates stay below a certain threshold.

We continue our series of conversations with local superintendents about their districts' reopening plans. We're joined by the superintendents of the Brighton and Hilton Central School Districts, who discuss their learning models and policies related to testing, masking, and more for the fall.

Our guests:

We continue our series of conversations about reopening schools. This hour, we're joined by the superintendents of West Irondequoit Central School District and Honeoye Falls-Lima Central School District. They share their districts' plans for reopening, including their policies for testing, masking, and more.

Our guests:

  • Aaron Johnson, superintendent of West Irondequoit Central School District
  • Gene Mancuso, superintendent of Honeoye Falls-Lima Central School District

This fall, Greece Central School District will operate under a hybrid model. Under the plan, most students will be in schools two days a week and then do remote learning for three days, but students also have the option to learn at home 100 percent of the time.

Superintendent Kathleen Graupman says the model was selected after the district heard from thousands of parents and students. She joins us this hour to discuss Greece's plan. Our guest:

  • Kathleen Graupman, superintendent of Greece Central School District, and head of the Monroe County Association of Superintendents

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