Delaware Public Media


Delaware Public Media's coverage of First State education issues

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The results of Delaware’s education assessments are less accurate than they appear, according to a new report.

A new study from Educational reform organization Achieve compared state reported proficiency rates across the nation to rates reported by the National Assessment for Educational Progress to discover discrepancies or "honesty gaps." The NAEP is the nation’s report card, regarded as the gold standard of student assessment across state lines.

Delaware was among the bottom 12 states for gaps in reported eighth grade math proficiency - with a proficiency rate 35 percent higher than what’s in the nation’s report card. There’s also a 35 percent gap between the state and NAEP fourth grade reading proficiency rates.

The Delaware State University Board of Trustees decided to raise the school’s tuition next school year.


The three percent increase means in-state tuition will rise by almost $200 a year, while out-of-state students will pay an extra $445 a year. There is no increase in housing costs for the 2015-2016 school year.

It’s DSU’s first tuition increase in three years.

For a second straight year, Milford School District failed to garner support for a plan to pay for new school construction and increase operating funds.

Voters Tuesday rejected a referendum that sought a tax hike to help build a new high school and bolster its operating budget.

The preliminary vote was 2,074 to 1,760 against the referendum that would have raised the district’s $20.7 million share of a new $69 million, 1,400 student high school and added $3 million annually in new operating funds.

Milford School District is looking to win over voters in tomorrow’s (Tuesday) referendum as it seeks a tax hike to help build a new high school and increase its operating budget.]

District residents last year turned down a request to pay for a new middle school and a similar call for more operating revenue.  This year’s combined request is larger than a year ago.

The new $69 million, 1,400 student high school will cost the district $20.7 million, with the state chipping in the rest. The operations request will raise $3 million annually.

Delaware Public Media

Those expecting a sizable income tax refund every year may be disappointed if they’re behind on their local school district property tax bill.

Local districts across the state have $32.4 million in uncollected property tax over the past five years and a new bill from state lawmakers would garnish state tax refunds to try and recoup it by including them in the state’s intercept program.

Our Enlighten Me segment again spotlights Generation Voice - our youth media project that’s completing its first year in the Brandywine School District at Mount Pleasant High School and its radio station 91.7 WMPH. 

The work produced by students with help from our youth media producer Anne Hoffman and Mount Pleasant teacher Paul Wishengrad is showcased on our new Generation Voice website.

And again this week on The Green - we offer a sample of what you’ll find at that website.

More Delaware high school students are taking and passing Advanced Placement exams, according to recent findings from the College Board.

The number of First State students taking AP exams has doubled since 2004. And scores have improved as well.

AP exams are graded on a scale of one to five, with five being the highest. The number of First State students who received a three, which can qualify them to earn college credit, also doubled over the past ten years.

Tom Byrne/Delaware Public Media

15 Delaware high schools are splitting a half million dollars in state money to create new career and technical education programs.

Gov. Jack Markell (D-Delaware) announced Wednesday the schools are receiving the grants as part of his Pathways to Prosperity initiative.

Tom Byrne/Delaware Public Media

Delaware State University is marking a historical milestone this week.

2015 is the 125th anniversary of the 1890 Morrill Act.  That was the federal legislation, sponsored by Sen. Justin Morrill of Vermont, that led to the creation of Delaware State and over a dozen other Historically Black Colleges and Universities.

The Colonial School District announced Friday that it will redesign its three middle schools around special themes.

George Read will offer instruction in Agriculture, Culinary and Business, McCullough will focus on STEAM (Science, Tech, Engineering, Art and Math) courses, and Gunning Bedford will be the home of the visual arts and media program.

Students interested in a specific program will be able to attend the corresponding school, rather than automatically go the school in the feeder pattern based on their residence.