Minneapolis, St. Paul teachers to vote on potential strikes this week

BY: - February 14, 2022

Teachers in Minneapolis and St. Paul will vote this week on whether to strike over wages, student mental health support and class sizes. Minneapolis Federation of Teachers Education support professionals, including special education assistants, want the district to increase starting pay to $35,000. The current typical starting wage is about $24,000, according to the Minneapolis […]

Educators warn bills to give parents more power could push teachers out

BY: - February 14, 2022

Mostly Republican governors and legislators in more than a dozen states are fighting to give parents more control over what their children learn in public schools, banking on so-called parents’ rights bills as a political winner. But educators worry that empowering parents to veto books and history lessons would push many already stressed teachers out […]

The state of child care in Minnesota, in four charts

BY: - February 11, 2022

Minnesota’s struggling child care industry is already a centerpiece of this year’s legislative session, as lawmakers and advocates push to spend some of the state’s $7.7 billion projected surplus on early childhood programs. Even before 2020, child care providers said staying afloat was a challenge, and parents described finding affordable care as a nightmarish task. […]

Colleges see untapped potential in geothermal district energy systems

BY: - February 7, 2022

A small but growing list of U.S. colleges and universities are dusting off a centuries-old technology to help meet their ambitious climate goals. Carleton College, a small, private liberal arts college in Northfield, Minnesota, is the latest to trade fossil-fueled steam heat for geothermal district energy as it aims to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions by […]

Lawmakers hear plea for more mental health resources for schools

BY: - February 4, 2022

Braden Schmitt said conducting threat assessments of students thinking about harming themselves or others was an “infrequent” part of her job as a school psychologist before the pandemic. Now, it’s almost a daily occurrence, Schmitt said. “Despite their challenges, the students I am lucky to work with are amazing and resilient,” said Schmitt, who works […]

Walz seeks $5.1 billion to expand early learning, child care and enact paid family leave

BY: - January 25, 2022

Gov. Tim Walz unveiled a $5.1 billion proposal to fund schools, expand early learning programs and implement a paid family leave program he says will provide Minnesota students and families more options for pre-kindergarten and keep the state competitive. The plan outlined on Tuesday would be funded with a mix of one-time state general fund […]

St. Paul students stage walkout over rising COVID-19 cases

BY: - January 18, 2022

High school students across St. Paul walked out of classrooms Tuesday afternoon to protest the district’s COVID-19 precautions, which they say aren’t sufficient to protect students. The students want the St. Paul Public Schools officials to immediately switch to virtual learning for two weeks and implement other policies related to COVID-19, including providing KN95 masks […]

‘Raising Ollie’: A celebrated Minnesota teacher on raising his nonbinary child

BY: - January 18, 2022

Tom Rademacher, Minnesota’s 2014 Teacher of the Year, says nothing has been more inspiring to his work as an educator than raising his child, Ollie. Rademacher shares stories of his family and his work as a public school teacher during an especially eventful year of Ollie’s childhood in his recently published book, “Raising Ollie: How […]

Federal aid is propping up child care. It isn’t a long-term fix.

BY: - January 14, 2022

Federal COVID-19 relief dollars for child care providers will continue to flow through the states this year, cheered by both Republican and Democratic governors who say parents need affordable child care to get back to work. But child care providers and advocates warn that the federal money, which expires in 2024, won’t solve the industry’s […]

Guaranteed savings contract helps Minnesota college finance efficiency

BY: - December 22, 2021

One of Minnesota’s oldest state universities will undergo a major energy savings retrofit next year without tapping into any public funding. Winona State University, founded as a teachers’ college in 1858, is set to benefit from $12.3 million worth of upgrades to its southeastern Minnesota campus. School officials could have spent years trying to persuade […]

State education spending projections down $326 million in new budget forecast

BY: - December 7, 2021

The state of Minnesota will spend $326 million less than expected on preK-12 education this biennium, a 1.6% decline compared to projections released in spring 2021, Minnesota Management and Budget announced Tuesday. The update came as part of the annual November budget forecast, which this year projected a record-high $7.7 billion budget surplus. That’s mostly […]

Former principal sues Marshall school board for discrimination, retaliation and sexual harassment

BY: - December 3, 2021

MARSHALL — A former middle school principal filed suit against the Marshall Public School District Board on Wednesday, accusing the board of discrimination and retaliation for her refusal to remove a LGBTQ pride flag from a display in the school cafeteria last year. In her lawsuit, Mary Kay Thomas also accuses school board director Bill […]