In the Spotlight

News & Features

Issue: Education - Archived Stories and Audio (by Date)

Session 2000: A Better Profile?
As Lawmakers ended the session by modifying the two-year-old system of demonstrated learning. Some educators are applauding the changes, while others say it's not enough to ease their frustrations or end the political uncertainty. 5/18/00

North Star Standard Flunks Legislative Test
After several false starts on a Profile of Learning compromise, lawmakers eventually agreed on reforms to the state graduation rule. Missing from the agreement, however, were the alternative North Star standards favored by some House Republicans.5/18/00

In the Light of Day
Legislative leaders' last-minute rush early Wednesday morning to craft a compromise on changes to the Profile of Learning graduations standards may have resulted in some unintended concessions. 5/11/00

Session 2000: The Profile of Learning Agreement
House and Senate leaders worked through the night trying to resolve their differences over the Profile of Learning and finally reached a deal less than an hour before their deadline to adjourn. 5/10/00

Profile of Learning May Be on Borrowed Time
The Minnesota House Education Policy Committee has approved legislation to overhaul the Profile of Learning graduation standards. The measure retains, but siginificantly scales back the controversial show-what-you-know system.

Teachers Split Over Profile's Future
A coalition of education groups is urging the Minnesota Legislature to stick with the Profile of Learning graduation standards. Representatives of the organizations testified before the House Education Policy Committee, offering ways to improve the show-what-you-know system. But some teachers and parents say they still want the whole system dumped. 2/29/00

The Embattled Profile of Learning
The House Education Policy Committee has begun working on legislation to alter the Profile of Learning graduation standards. Committee members heard presentations on ten separate Profile bills with plans to reduce them to one by the end of next week. 2/24/00

Writing Test: A Discouraging Word?
Minnesota legislators are considering whether to ban state education officials from ever again using a contentious tenth-grade writing test question. Lawmakers who objected to the question, today backed away from their earlier proposal to throw out the test results. A House committee debated the issue but took no action. 2/8/00

Stalemate Looms over Profile's Future
Minnesota's largest teachers union and the state's education commissioner are calling for a moratorium on requiring students to meet the Profile of Learning graduation standards. There seems to be universal agreement at the Capitol that the standards aren't working in their current form, but some observers fear a repeat of last session, when legislators deadlocked over the issue and no changes were made. 2/3/00

Report Dispels Teacher Salary Myth
A new report from the Legislative Auditor says while some Minnesota school districts are having budget problems, the overall financial health of schools is better than a decade ago. The study of school district finances also found that average teachers' salaries have declined in the last 10 years. 2/2/00

Session Begins with Attempt to Scuttle Writing Test
Minnesota lawmakers returned to the Capitol for what's expected to be a hectic session dominated by tax cuts, borrowing for capital improvements, transportation funding and several major policy initiatives. On the first day of formalities, an independent lawmaker stirred the action with an attempt to kill the state's basic standards writing test.2/1/00