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.

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.

UNIVERSITY PARK, PA. — PHEAA — the Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency — announced on Monday  the start of PA Forward, a new, low-cost loan program to help students and their parents pay for college.

Shawn Barbrow, a guidance counselor at Bellefonte Area High School, said PA Forward will help families fill the gap between federal loans and grants and the cost of college.

Sarah Kovash / 90.5 WESA

Marquita Brown is the mother of a fifth grader at Minadeo Elementary in Squirrel Hill, and is also on the board of the school’s Parent Teacher Organization. She said her daughter is happy, outgoing, and is succeeding there.

Zach Goldstein / 90.5 WESA

When Kate Anglin and her husband, Ben, were house hunting earlier this year, school quality was big concern. The couple have a toddler and a newborn.

Paul Slantis / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

About half of Pittsburgh Public Schools' 23,000 students attend their neighborhood schools. The map that assigns kids to those schools last changed in 2012, and that realignment was meant to even out class sizes and reduce excess capacity.


In the past, Pittsburgh Public Schools have organized teams to run in a one-mile race the day before the Pittsburgh Marathon.

Margaret J. Krauss / 90.5 WESA

The double yellow line that runs down the middle of Thomas Boulevard in North Point Breeze separates eastbound and westbound traffic. 

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

Sabira Bushra lives on the same street where she was raised.

The street filled with two-story homes and bush-lined sidewalks in the East End Belmar neighborhood hasn’t changed very much since she was a child.