Arkansas Education

A public school teacher from Bauxite, Arkansas is to speak to the Democratic National Convention Tuesday in Philadelphia.

Dustin Parsons, a 5th grade math and social studies teacher at Pine Haven Elementary, says he'll discuss how efforts by Hillary Clinton when she lived in the state benefited children. In particular, he says her role in leading education reforms had a lasting impact in Arkansas.

Arkansas Department of Education Logo

A new Arkansas Department of Education website details what data is collected on students throughout the state. The department announced the launch on Wednesday. The site also provides the public with easy access to information on several state and federal laws impacting the data collection on Arkansas K-12 students.

Holly Glover, the Department of Education’s Director of Data Use and Privacy helped develop the site.

A new report says the Arkansas lottery enjoyed record-breaking sales over the past year that funded an increase in college scholarships in the state. 

The report released Monday to the Legislature's Lottery Oversight Committee says total ticket sales during the fiscal year that ended June 30 were $455.6 million, up 11.5 percent over fiscal 2015. Instant ticket sales were up $25 million over the prior year, and draw games were up more than $22 million.

Ann Clemmer
Nathan Vandiver / KUAR

A former state lawmaker has been picked as the interim director of the Arkansas Department of Higher Education.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson on Friday named Ann Clemmer to head the department when Brett Powell resigns July 29 to become vice president for finance and administration at Henderson State University. The Arkansas Higher Education Coordinating Board is conducting a nationwide search to find Powell's permanent replacement.

Little Rock School District Superintendent Michael Poore at the Clinton School for Public Service. 2016.
Jacob Kauffman/ KUAR

In what was billed as the first policy speech from the new head of the Little Rock School District, Superintendent Michael Poore made the case for greater collaboration between schools and local industries.

He told a packed room at the Clinton School of Public Service Tuesday that career development centers, along with pre-K access, and quality teachers are key to his vision for returning the state-controlled district to local control.

Michael Poore Little Rock Superintendent
Jacob Kuaffman / KUAR News

After officially becoming superintendent of the Little Rock School District Friday, Michael Poore is scheduled to speak Tuesday at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service.

A news release from the school says Poore, who has a two year contract, "will lay out his vision for the future of the district." It’s currently under state control because six of its schools have had chronically low student test scores.

classroom desks

Over 20,000 more high school juniors in Arkansas took the ACT this March than the previous year, according to results released today. This 72% increase from 8,733 to 31,081 test takers was brought on by the Arkansas Department of Education’s push to offer the ACT to all high school juniors free of charge. Hope Allen is the director of assessment with the Arkansas Department of Education.

Arkansas Department of Education Building in Little Rock near the state Capitol building.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

A foundation run by the heirs of Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton has announced a $250 million initiative to support charter schools in 17 cities across the U.S.

The Walton Family Foundation on Tuesday announced its Building Equity Initiative aimed at helping charter schools establish and expand facilities. The foundation says it will initially focus on urban areas but will expand to help public charter schools serve at least 250,000 more students by 2027.

UALR Chancellor Joel Anderson speaking on campus in 2014.
Jacob Kauffman / KUAR

At the end of this week, University of Arkansas at Little Rock Chancellor Joel Anderson will mark his final day in 45 years of service. KUAR's Michael Hibblen recently sat down to speak with Anderson as he prepared for his retirement.

Several dozen Little Rock residents aspiring to have a leadership role in local schools will make their case before the Arkansas Board of Education Monday.

Applicants for slots on the Little Rock School District Community Advisory Board are giving three minute pitches for themselves. State Board member Jay Barth says the group is statutorily mandated as part of the state takeover of the district.

He says the board will have authority over hiring and firing appeals, along with a larger mandate to speak for Little Rock residents.