Arkansas Education

Local & Regional News
9:15 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Arkansas Education Board To Review Snow Day Waivers

Credit arkansased.org

The Arkansas Board of Education is set to review requests by school districts across the state to reduce their academic years after winter storms that forced some students to miss almost a month's worth of classes.

The state board is meeting Thursday and will consider waiver requests from 75 districts. If the waivers are granted they would shorten the required 178 days of instruction for Arkansas schools seeking not to extend classes into mid-June.

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Local & Regional News
2:42 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Jeff Bridges, Arkansas Governor Plan Panel Discussion

Actor Jeff Bridges
Credit Gage Skidmore / flickr.com

Actor Jeff Bridges is scheduled to visit Little Rock to promote an effort aimed at reducing childhood hunger.

The No Kid Hungry campaign is trying to increase participation in programs that provide meals for children at their schools. The campaign is a part of the national, non-profit group Share Our Strength.

Bridges is scheduled to attend a school assembly Monday at Little Rock's Stephens Elementary School, followed by a panel discussion with Gov. Mike Beebe and Share Our Strength CEO Billy Shore.

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Special Election
4:14 pm
Mon March 10, 2014

Pulaski Tech Seeks Millage Increase

Pulaski County voters will get to decide whether to allow a 1.9-mill property tax increase in a special election to provide additional funding for Pulaski Technical College. The two year college is seeking to create a tax district to generate approximately 11 million dollars in annual revenue.

The special election will be held Tuesday. The 1.9 mill increase would amount to about 38 dollars per 100,000 dollars of a property's assessed value.

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Local & Regional News
9:15 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Land Donated For Medical School Near Fort Smith

The Fort Chaffee Redevelopment Authority has reclassified 200 acres of land donated to a planned medical school near Fort Smith.

The action changes permitted use of the land from mixed commercial and residential to institutional and clears the way for building permits.

The Fort Smith Regional Healthcare Foundation announced plans in February for what it calls the Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine. The foundation's board of directors committed $58 million to the project and the Redevelopment Authority donated the land.

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Local & Regional News
9:11 am
Mon March 10, 2014

Trial To Start For Ex-UCA Official In Test Thefts Case

The trial of a former University of Central Arkansas chief of staff charged in the theft of tests is scheduled to start.

The trial for Jack Gillean is to begin with opening statements Monday in Van Buren County Circuit Court in Clinton after being moved there from Faulkner County because of pretrial publicity. A jury of seven men and five women plus two alternates was seated last week.

Gillean has pleaded not guilty.

Prosecutors say Gillean gave a UCA student a master key - knowing that the student would use it to steal tests from the offices of professors.

Local & Regional News
6:55 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

Measure To Arm Arkansas School Workers Fails In Senate

A proposal to allow Arkansas school districts to arm non-classroom employees as volunteer security guards has failed to win enough support to be considered by the state Senate.

The Senate voted 19-2 for a resolution allowing the bill by Republican Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson to be introduced. The measure needed at least 24 votes to be considered during the fiscal session, intended to focus on budget issues.

Hutchinson's proposal would have allowed the state to issue security guard licenses to non-classroom employees who go through training.

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Arkansas General Assembly
6:35 pm
Tue February 11, 2014

Fiscal Legislative Session: Day Two Happenings

The House floor after State Representatives convened Tuesday afternoon.
Credit Chris Hickey / KUAR News

The Arkansas Legislature convened for the second day of a month-long fiscal session Tuesday to consider state budgetary matters and other issues. Behind the scenes, lawmakers continue to plan possible changes to the state’s private option expansion of Medicaid in an effort to make reauthorizing funds for the program more palatable to many of the Legislature's conservative members. While House and Senate leaders were confident the program for low-income Arkansans can be reauthorized, House majority Leader Bruce Westerman told reporters that he didn't see that happening.

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Local & Regional News
12:39 pm
Thu January 30, 2014

University of Arkansas To Use Reserve Funds To Spike Deficit

The University of Arkansas says it will use reserve funds and money raised from private sources to wipe out the remainder of a $4.2 million deficit in the fundraising division's budget.

University officials said Thursday the division is in the middle of a major fundraising effort. As the school's endowment grows, a portion of the money will go to the fundraising division to balance its budget. The division will also repay the reserve fund.

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Local & Regional News
2:13 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

UA Trustees Laud Gearhart Amid Budget Flap, Affirm Support

File photo of current and former University of Arkansas officials during a legislative hearing on Jan. 7. From left to right, Vice-Chancellor for Finance and Administration Don Pederson, Associate Vice-Chancellor for Financial Affairs Jean Schook, Chancellor David Gearhart, former Vice-Chancellor of Advancement Brad Choate, former Associate Vice-Chancellor of University Relations John Diamond (behind Choate) and former Advancement Division Budget Director Joy Sharp.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

Trustees of the University of Arkansas have expressed support for Fayetteville Chancellor G. David Gearhart for his leadership amid a budget crisis in one division.

At their meeting Friday in Little Rock, board chairman Jane Rogers read a letter lauding Gearhart for taking "full responsibility" after the school's fundraising arm showed a multi-million deficit. Rogers said the school is committed to financial accountability and the freedom of information.

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Local & Regional News
5:12 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

UA Trustees Accept Audit Detailing $4.2 Million Deficit

File photo of current and former University of Arkansas officials during a legislative hearing on Jan. 7. From left to right, Vice-Chancellor for Finance and Administration Don Pederson, Associate Vice-Chancellor for Financial Affairs Jean Schook, Chancellor David Gearhart, former Vice-Chancellor of Advancement Brad Choate, former Associate Vice-Chancellor of University Relations John Diamond (behind Choate) and former Advancement Division Budget Director Joy Sharp.
Credit Michael Hibblen / KUAR

University of Arkansas trustees have accepted an audit report that detailed a $4.2 million deficit run up by the advancement division at the Fayetteville campus.

Thursday's discussion took only a few minutes and contained none of the criticism that was heaped on administrators during a recent legislative meeting on the topic.

Trustee John Goodson acknowledged the episode was a "painful" one but said it resulted in stricter financial controls throughout the university system.

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