Education

Austin ISD, the University of Texas, Austin Community College, Texas A&M University, charter schools, legislative issues, and anything else related to K-12, public education, higher education and workforce development in Central Texas, Travis County, and Austin.

This episode was originally published on Oct. 20, 2016.

It's good manners to say "thank you" and show gratitude. But there are also ways that slowing down to notice and appreciate what's happening around us can give our brains some much needed rest. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss the impact of showing gratitude and appreciation on learning.


This episode was originally published on Oct. 23, 2016.

Most dictionary definitions of "learn" make reference to acquiring knowledge or skills, becoming informed or finding out something. Sure, that makes sense, but what does it really mean to learn something? How do we know if we've actually learned it? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss what learning does and doesn't mean.


Allison Shelley for The Texas Tribune

The man who helped Abigail Fisher sue the University of Texas at Austin for discrimination in a case that reached the U.S. Supreme Court twice is suing UT-Austin once again.

This time, he claims the university's use of affirmative action violates the Texas Constitution, not the U.S. Constitution. 

Nathan Bernier / KUT

Voters in the Austin Independent School District will decide this November on a $1 billion-plus bond package to partially fund a comprehensive building maintenance and upgrade plan. 

This episode was originally posted on Oct. 16, 2016.

How can educators, parents and other adults encourage young people to be curious and get creative? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger respond to a listener's question about promoting intellectual curiosity and confidence in kids.


Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

For children who get free meals at school, summer can mean going hungry. But that doesn’t have to be the case. Parks and schools across Austin are serving free meals to children under 18 while school's out, thanks to funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Central Texas Food Bank.

This episode was originally published on Oct. 9, 2016.

What do you think of when someone is described as "smart"? They know a lot of things. Maybe they got high grades in school. Or maybe they always use correct grammar. But what does it actually mean to be smart? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss the deeper meaning of the word "smart."


Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

It’s the final week of classes at Harris Elementary. UT graduate student Kim ​Canuette Grimaldi is meeting with her students one last time before summer vacation. Second- and third-graders Amira and Sajeda, both from Sudan, sit across from her at a small, half-moon-shaped table. While they’re working on multiplication, Amira starts sounding out the word on ​Canuette Grimaldi’s shirt.

A sticker there reads “mentor.”

In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger tackle a question posed by a listener about teaching giving and philanthropy in school. Can it be done? Should it be done? And if so, when?


So much of what we encounter in formal education is planned; we attend scheduled classes in designated classrooms and go through specific lessons plans. But there can also be real educational value in chance encounters or unexpected opportunities. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss lessons learned on the fly.


Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

The legislative session just ended this week. After 140 days of proposals, politicking and press conferences, we’re catching up on what actually passed and how it will change Texas.

Perhaps the biggest disappointment of Texas’s 85th Legislature was the demise of a bill that would have added more than half a billion dollars in funding for the state’s public schools.

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

At 43 years old, Katina Johnson is planning her high school graduation party. It's been about 30 years since she dropped out of middle school when she found out she was pregnant.

Even before then, though, she'd never had a stable education. Her mother was addicted to drugs and moved her around a lot before she died when Johnson was just 12 years old. "That was the last time I even seen the inside of a school," she says.

School Finance Legislation Is Pronounced Dead

May 25, 2017
Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

An effort to overhaul the state’s beleaguered school finance system has been declared dead after the Texas Senate Education Committee’s chairman said Wednesday that he would not appoint conferees to negotiate with the House.

“That deal is dead,” Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, said.

What factors show that a student is ready for college? Good grades? High test scores? A killer application and essay? Or, are more intangible qualities better indicators of college success? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger discuss what makes a high school student ready for higher ed.


Miguel Gutierrez Jr. / KUT

The Austin Independent School District is hosting a series of meetings to ask the public for input on what might be on a bond proposal this November. The plan includes modernizing some schools and tackling other projects prioritized by the school board.

"Goodbye." It's a word that actually gets said a lot in education. Students are constantly changing teachers, classmates, subjects and locations during their years in school. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about saying goodbye and moving on in education.


It is college commencement season, and graduating seniors will be hearing all kinds of sage advice from commencement speakers. But what advice would those graduating seniors give? What would they tell their younger selves as students if they could? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger share what some seniors say they wish they had known when they started school.


Teachers. We've all had some great ones, and we've all had some teachers who didn't rank among the best. What makes a good teacher? How has the profession changed over time? How has technology impacted the way teachers do their jobs? In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger talk about the evolving role of teachers.


This week, a question from a "Higher Ed" listener whose daughter is a sophomore in high school. The daughter has started attending college fairs and reading online about schools, and the family wants to know about the impact of studying abroad on a student's education. In this week's episode of KUT's podcast Higher Ed, KUT's Jennifer Stayton and Southwestern University President Dr. Ed Burger dig into the topic of studying abroad.


Bob Daemmrich for The Texas Tribune

State Rep. Dan Huberty succeeded at a difficult task Wednesday: getting the Texas House of Representatives to vote for legislation overhauling the funding system for public education, without a court mandate.


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