California inflated its high school graduation rate by 2%, federal audit finds
California education leaders inflated the state’s high school graduation rate by 2 percentage points in 2014, according to the results of a federal audit announced Wednesday by the U.S. Department of Education. The Department’s Office of Inspector General found that California education officials inaccurately calculated its graduation rate and failed to provide “reasonable assurance” that...
By Mark Keierleber | January 17, 2018
A half-million U.S. kids attend school in Mexico. Educators are working together across the border to help them learn
In the desert just south of San Diego, towering 18 to 30 feet in the air, are eight prototypes for the wall President Donald Trump has promised to build along the 2,000 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border. But as the administration tests designs for keeping undocumented Mexicans out of the U.S. and cracks down on...
By Mark Keierleber | October 27, 2017
74 Interview: DACA-mented California teacher on what Trump’s immigration policies will do to undocumented kids
Diana Montelongo’s immigration story resembles those of a lot of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients. She remembers living in a small town in Mexico and walking to the alfalfa fields from her grandparents’ house. She doesn’t remember a whole lot else. That’s because a “coyote” drove her across the U.S.-Mexico border when she was...
By Mark Keierleber | October 26, 2017
The city Amazon should choose for its next headquarters (if it’s looking for college grads with STEM degrees)
Ever since Amazon announced it would open a second headquarters — a proposal that’s expected to generate up to 50,000 new jobs for the winning municipality — cities across the country have been rushing to show the online retail giant that their locale has the goods. Just about as quickly, journalists and data analysts have been trying to...
By Mark Keierleber | September 28, 2017
How Trump’s immigration crackdown is traumatizing students across the U.S. — including many born here
This is the third article in a series produced in collaboration with The Guardian examining the climate affecting immigrant school children and their parents as the new school year begins. See a version of this article at TheGuardian.com. Gathered around a camera in their family’s kitchen, the four Duarte children pleaded for help. When their undocumented...
By Mark Keierleber | August 25, 2017
Immigration agents inside schools? Why some activists are warning undocumented students about Trump’s policy shifts
This is the second article in a series produced in collaboration with The Guardian examining the climate affecting immigrant school children and their parents as the new school year begins. See a version of this article at TheGuardian.com. One student exchanged hand gestures with a classmate in the school hallway. Another drew graffiti in his...
By Mark Keierleber | August 24, 2017
As immigrant students worry about a new school year, districts and educators unveil plans to protect their safety (and privacy)
This is the first article in a series produced in collaboration with The Guardian examining the climate affecting immigrant schoolchildren and their parents as the new school year begins. See a version of this article at TheGuardian.com. If federal immigration agents come knocking, don’t open the door. You have the right to plead the Fifth Amendment and...
By Mark Keierleber | August 23, 2017
Reaching 90% grad rate unlikely without an acute focus on low-income, minority kids, report finds
As the national high school graduation rate continues to rise — it hit a record 83.2 percent last year — the leaders of a campaign to raise that number to 90 percent by 2020 said they fear the country will not meet that goal. Hitting that ambitious target would require a far more intense focus...
By Mark Keierleber | May 8, 2017
Immigration fears in California schools: Report shows 1 in 8 students have undocumented parents
Much attention has focused recently on a heightened fear of deportation among undocumented K-12 students, but the number of children actually affected is far greater, according to a new report from The Education Trust–West. About 250,000 undocumented children between the ages of 3 and 17 are enrolled in California public schools, says the report, released in...
By Mark Keierleber | May 1, 2017
John King on his year as ed secretary, the Trump administration, and his new role at Ed Trust
John King didn’t have long. It was October 2015, and Arne Duncan announced he would step down as President Barack Obama’s education secretary. Obama tapped King, a K-12 adviser at the federal Education Department with years of classroom and government experience, to fill the vacancy. In only about a year in the job, King, among...
By Mark Keierleber | March 31, 2017