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The Notebook's latest news posts.

Budget rift deepens between Pa. House and Senate

By Mary Wilson for NewsWorks on Dec 9, 2015 03:47 PM

Republicans in the state House and Senate remain at odds over how to resolve the state's five-month budget impasse.

The House on Tuesday passed a $30.3 billion spending plan vastly different from the $30.8 billion measure that had already been approved by the Senate with the governor's blessing.

House Republicans said their smaller budget is more realistic, given the votes they can muster in their caucus. But Democratic House Minority Leader Frank Dermody criticized the vote as a waste of time.

After another pact falters, uncertainty returns to long-overdue Pa. budget

By Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks on Dec 8, 2015 11:06 AM

For the second time in a month, a tentative deal to end Pennsylvania's five-month budget impasse has fallen apart.

Gov. Wolf and legislative leaders on both sides of the aisle came to an agreement late last week that would provide a historic $400 million boost to K-12 education funding by increasing the number of items eligible for sales tax.

Wolf, GOP leaders reach tentative budget deal providing historic education boost

By Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks on Dec 4, 2015 03:43 PM

Pennsylvania's Gov. Wolf and top legislative leaders say they've reached an agreement to end the state's budget impasse of more than five months.

The tentative pact includes what would be the largest increase in education spending in at least two decades.

The basic education subsidy would see a $350 million increase, and special education and pre-K funding would each receive a $50 million boost, in addition to $10 million more for Head Start.

William Penn High School demolition begins

By Brianna Spause on Dec 4, 2015 03:35 PM

William Penn High School is finally coming down. A walk or drive past the site, which covers nine acres in North Philadelphia, is a reminder that the fight to save and revitalize William Penn is really over.

3 schools named to receive redesign awards

By Paul Socolar on Dec 4, 2015 10:30 AM

Three Philadelphia neighborhood schools have been named by the School District to make up the second cohort of the District's School Redesign Initiative and will start planning now for changes to be implemented next fall.

Mentors and youth forge strong ties, but struggle to bridge racial divide

By Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks on Dec 3, 2015 06:47 PM

When you see Naje Taylor behind the counter of The Monkey & the Elephant cafe, his face shows no signs of past scars.

But they're there.

Taylor, who grew up in neighborhoods across South and North Philadelphia, was put into a foster home about a decade ago and has shouldered his way through adolescence with a weary air of indefatigable hope.

See feedback on city schools with District's latest survey results

By Greg Windle on Dec 3, 2015 12:18 PM

The School District of Philadelphia has launched a new website to display the results of a survey offered to parents, students, teachers, and principals at every District and charter school.

The survey was designed to measure and publicize stakeholder feedback, which recent research has found helps provide a more complete evaluation of a school – as opposed to relying solely on standardized test scores.

The site allows users to view responses from individual schools in five categories: leadership, parent/guardian-community ties, professional capacity, climate, and instruction.

PSP makes $10.5 million grant to five new charter schools

By Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks on Dec 2, 2015 05:45 PM

The Philadelphia School Partnership will provide $10.5 million in startup grants to five new charter schools that were approved to open for the 2016-17 year.

PSP will provide $3.3 million to Mastery Charter Schools to open Gillespie, a K-6 campus in North Philadelphia that plans eventually to enroll 588 students – giving admissions preference to students living in the Simon Gratz catchment area.

Four charter organizations apply to convert three elementary schools

By Kevin McCorry for NewsWorks on Dec 1, 2015 11:09 PM

Four charter management organizations have applied to take over operations at three District elementary schools and run them as neighborhood-based charters, the School District of Philadelphia announced Tuesday.

Superintendent William Hite proposed Renaissance charter conversion for Cooke, Huey and Wister Elementary Schools on Oct 1.

Hearings for new charter applicants set for next week

By the Notebook on Nov 30, 2015 04:09 PM

Hearings for 12 would-be school operators looking to open new charter schools will begin next week.

The School District will review applications for 13 new schools, which, if approved, could increase the city's public charter school enrollment by more than 9,000 students. One applicant, KIPP, is proposing to open two schools.

Last week, one of the applicants withdrew its proposal to create a James Baldwin Charter High School in Mantua focused on serving LGBT students, according to the District.

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