May ‘By the Book’: PGH K-12 Bulletins

Welcome to "By The Book: PGH K-12 Bulletins," which provides updates on emerging and ever changing news in the Pittsburgh K-12 education landscape. With more than 40 school districts across Allegheny County, the Bulletins will update you on the region's latest education news, including close coverage of the Pittsburgh Public Schools, other Allegheny County school districts, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and other important agencies, which serve thousands of Pittsburgh families. Please check back frequently and email tylisa@publicsource.org with questions, tips or Bulletin ideas. Follow along on Twitter with the hashtag #PGHed for news updates on Pittsburgh education. 5/25/21: Allegheny County names first director of Department of Children Initiatives
A new Allegheny County director is tasked with better preparing children for success, especially in communities in which preschool and after-school programs have long fallen short.

Dispatches from the polls: PA votes to shift emergency powers; Pittsburgh City Council incumbent keep their seats

PublicSource will be updating this story throughout Election Day and monitoring as results come in. Wednesday results updates:

On Pittsburgh City Council —

Two City Councilors facing challengers in their reelection bids, Theresa Kail-Smith and Anthony Coghill, won by comfortable margins. Kail-Smith, the council president who has represented District 2 since 2009, defeated Jacob Williamson with 69% of the vote with 38 of 41 precincts reporting Wednesday morning. Coghill won a second four-year term representing District 4, capturing 62% of the vote to defeat Bethani Cameron with all precincts reporting. On state ballot questions —

Pennsylvania voters approved two proposed constitutional amendments that will shift power from the governor to the Legislature when it comes to declaring, extending and ending states of emergency.

Crayons beside child coloring.

‘The strongest lifeline’: Districts struggle to find Allegheny County’s homeless students as COVID increased distance and needs

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These days, Christina Russell and her daughter, Mareica Anderson, are busy unpacking their new home. It’s a brighter time for the duo, who faced housing insecurity living in Pittsburgh during the fall months of 2020 amid the COVID pandemic. “We had to go from a house to a shelter to a shelter to another shelter, you know what I mean, until we found our place where she was comfortable,” said Russell, 41. When school began in the fall, Russell did everything she could to keep her daughter engaged and feeling a sense of normalcy despite changing living environments. “Well, I didn't really let it affect her,” Russell said.

March ‘By the Book’: PGH K-12 Bulletins

Welcome to "By The Book: PGH K-12 Bulletins," which provides updates on emerging and ever changing news in the Pittsburgh K-12 education landscape. With more than 40 school districts across Allegheny County, the Bulletins will update you on the region's latest education news, including close coverage of the Pittsburgh Public Schools, other Allegheny County school districts, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and other important agencies, which serve thousands of Pittsburgh families. Please check back frequently and email tylisa@publicsource.org with questions, tips or Bulletin ideas. Follow along on Twitter with the hashtag #PGHed for news updates on Pittsburgh education. 3/24/21: By May 3, all PPS students will return, district leaders say
One year after leaving, Pittsburgh Public Schools students are learning when they may be able to return to classrooms. All 22,000 students are expected to return to brick-and-mortar school buildings for hybrid learning by May 3, the district announced Tuesday evening.

Amber York (left), a youth development professional with Boys & Girls Clubs of Western Pennsylvania serving through AmeriCorps, sits with students during a gym period at the organization's Lawrenceville location. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

How Pittsburgh-area learning hubs helped students through COVID and could change how public education is delivered

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Wanika Steele has clocked into the same job for 14 years. But in September, she put in her two-week notice. She feared her 10-year-old son, Ty’Kir, would have no one to facilitate his new full-time virtual learning experience. “I was ready to actually quit my job so I could be home,” said Steele, 45. But four days before her notice took effect, as if her very own deus ex machina, the Thelma Lovette YMCA learning hub in the Hill District announced it would open for students in kindergarten through middle school.

Pittsburgh Public board again delays student return to in-school learning, calls on district to survey needs

Pittsburgh Public students won’t return to brick-and-mortar school buildings until April 6 at the earliest, following a decision by the school board Wednesday evening and a two-day, 127-speaker public hearing in the days leading up to the decision. 

The board approved a resolution in a 7-2 vote, following amendments, to keep students at home in remote learning through the beginning of the school year’s fourth quarter. Board members Sala Udin and Devon Taliaferro voted against the amended resolution, signaling a desire to bring students and teachers back sooner than April. Board members Pam Harbin and Terry Kennedy presented an amended version of the original resolution at Wednesday’s meeting, which had more than 1,000 stream viewers, with additions to address transportation challenges and growing student needs. Among the changes to the resolution:

The district is expected to conduct a current survey of student needs for support, transportation availability, staffing levels and building health and safety protocols. A parent/guardian survey will be circulated on or before Feb.