We cover how our residents are growing and learning, starting from pre-K, through higher education, and beyond, into adulthood. 

Coverage of education in western Pennsylvania on 90.5 WESA is supported by a generous grant from
The Grable Foundation.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Almost a year after the September 11th attacks, researchers still saw children crashing toy airplanes into towers of blocks.

Globe Newswire / AP

One of the nation's largest student loan servicing companies may have driven tens of thousands of borrowers struggling with their debts into higher-cost repayment plans.

That's the finding of a Department of Education audit of practices at Navient Corp., the nation's third-largest student loan servicing company.

How Paying Attention To Trauma Is Changing This School In Bethlehem, PA

Nov 19, 2018
Seth Perlman / AP

Broughal Middle School Principal Rick Amato recently encountered a student wearing his jacket inside the school building.

University of Pittsburgh

Three students with connections to Pennsylvania are among the latest group of U.S. Rhodes scholars heading to Oxford University in England next fall. Harvard senior Brittany Ellis, University of Pennsylvania senior Anea Moore and University of Pittsburgh alumna Lia Petrose were named as recipients of the prestigious scholarship Sunday. 

In PA Coal Country, Debate Flares Over Arming Teachers To Prevent School Shootings

Nov 16, 2018
Matt Smith / Keystone Crossroads

Nearly three hours into a special meeting about a policy that would ask some staff at the Tamaqua Area School District to carry guns, parent Liz Pinkey read aloud a letter from educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

They had written to the Pennsylvania State Senate last year, when lawmakers were debating a bill to allow personnel with concealed carry permits to be armed on school property.

Future Ready PA Index

The state Department of Education has launched a new online index that’ll aggregate statistics on public and charter schools for parents, teachers, and students.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Eligible Pittsburgh Public Schools students could receive up to 30 percent off graduate program tuition at Carnegie Mellon University and Duquesne University, the institutions announced Wednesday.

Stephen DUnn / AP

The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court heard arguments Tuesday in a case that could set state precedent, holding school districts liable for ongoing student-on-student harassment.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh Public Schools continues to face stark challenges when it comes to students reaching academic milestones even though a report released Monday shows incremental improvement in a few areas.

Federal Aviation Administration

Tucked away in sweeping legislation approved by Congress in October to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration was a $5 million grant program expected to address a looming problem facing airlines.

Studies, like one this year from Boeing, say the demand for aviation maintenance workers will outstrip supply within the next decade. 

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Several Pittsburgh-based organizations committed to housing equity launched a city-wide tenants' union Thursday.

Allegheny County Elections Map

On Tuesday, just over half of Allegheny County voters rejected a property tax hike.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Allegheny County voters narrowly denied a ballot measure to increase property taxes for child well-being programs. 

Justin Merriman / Provided by Duolingo

One of the oldest languages in North America is at risk of endangerment.

Diné is the most common indigenous language in North America, but is now classified as an endangered language.

Duolingo has been working with the Navajo Nation, who are native speakers, to create a course to help preserve the language. The course is in beta testing and is available for free to people who want to learn the language.

Kiley Koscinski / WESA


Education is one of the top issues for many voters heading into Election Day on Tuesday. The Allegheny Intermediate Unit plays a conduit role in making sure public school students in the region receive a quality education by working with 42 districts and multiple special needs centers. 

David Proeber / The Pantagraph via AP

A school district near Allentown recently, and rather quietly, became Pennsylvania’s first to pass a policy permitting teachers to carry guns in schools.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

In the days leading up to the election, volunteers are knocking on doors to ask residents what they say is a simple question.

Bastiaan Slabbers / WHYY

An armed guard. Security cameras. An entrance locked by a keypad.

More Than Half Of PA Public Schools Do Not Have A Teacher Of Color

Nov 1, 2018
Emma Lee / WHYY

More than 60 years after the Brown vs. Board of Education ruling, an analysis of state data shows persistently stark disparities between the racial composition of teachers and students in Pennsylvania’s schools — among the widest gaps in the country.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA


Pittsburgh's grief-stricken Jewish community endured another round of funerals Wednesday for victims of a deadly mass shooting at Tree of Life Congregation synagogue that left 11 dead and six others injured. The shooting is being called the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history. 

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

History teacher Jackie Goldblum told her students that she felt helpless and scared after the attack on a synagogue about 2 miles from the school.

Min Xian / Keystone Crossroads

Nearly 3.5 million Pennsylvanians live in rural parts of the state. In many ways, rural areas face challenges different than those in urban areas. Researchers gathered this week for the 26th National Symposium on Family Issues in State College, with a focus on rural families and communities.

Six presenters discussed various topics on the first day, but one theme was common: the economy and the social structures of the United States are changing, but researchers say some changes are specific to rural America.

Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

School board member Sala Udin stood in front of a crowded room of concerned parents and community members this week and promised change.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

It was a case of mistaken identity.

“I think I just saw a cat,” said Sadie Fielding, stopping near a hedge on Windsor Street in Greenfield. “I did! Hey, Penny. Except now you’re fat, why are you fat?”

“What? Why is--?” exclaimed Betsy Vicente, whipping around to investigate. “That’s Slippers!”

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Pittsburgh Public Schools police officers will not be allowed to carry guns anytime soon.

The school board voted 8-1 Wednesday to deny a revised policy that would have authorized the district’s 22 sworn officers to carry firearms.

Skyrocketing Special Ed. Costs Falling Heavily On Pa. School Districts, Taxpayers

Oct 24, 2018
Michael Coghlan / Flickr

Special education costs are rising much faster in Pennsylvania than state aid — causing local taxpayers to foot most of the bill, while also stretching school budgets thin and increasing inequities between rich and poor districts, according to a new report by a duo of advocacy groups.

Science Scores Soar, But All Other Pa. Test Scores Flat In 2018

Oct 24, 2018
Alberto G. / Flickr

Student performance on Pennsylvania’s suite of standardized tests didn’t change much in 2018, with the exception of science scores, which shot up 12 percentage points.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA


Pittsburgh Public Schools’ Board of Education is expected to vote Wednesday night whether to arm the district's 22 police officers. Superintendent Anthony Hamlet says he respects school Chief George Brown's recommendation, but remains vehemently opposed to allowing firearms on PPS campuses.


Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

The vacant Horace Mann Elementary building is a four-story mass of fire-red brick that dwarfs the houses orbiting it’s three-acre plot.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

It took only five minutes for a Beaver Area school board to accept the resignation of its high school principal during a special Monday meeting, putting a quiet end to a divisive issue among community members.