Legislators are weighing what to do with a $1 billion surplus from Virginia’s college savings program

BY: - July 7, 2021

A Virginia college savings program has accumulated more than $1 billion in surplus revenue — money that could potentially be reinvested in financial aid and other higher education initiatives. Lawmakers directed the Joint Legislative Audit and Review Commission, a state watchdog agency, to study the possibility after reviewing a regularly scheduled audit of a now-discontinued […]


A Supreme Court ruling creates an existential crisis for the NCAA and its anachronistic idea of amateurism 

BY: - June 28, 2021

The world of bigtime college sports is about to change profoundly in ways not even experts yet comprehend because of a bombshell U.S. Supreme Court ruling against the National Collegiate Athletic Association. Last week’s unanimous and unambiguous decision in NCAA v. Alston eviscerates the American college football and basketball cartel’s business model of earning billions […]


Thomas Jefferson’s admissions results show equity and merit can go hand in hand

BY: - June 28, 2021

By Makya Renée Little Thomas Jefferson High School for Science & Technology, currently ranked the No.1 high school in the nation, has released admissions statistics for the Class of 2025. The results are groundbreaking and a model for the nation: Admissions reform increased diversity on almost every metric without compromising the quality of the incoming […]

Virginia is changing expectations for child care providers to put focus on early education

BY: - June 18, 2021

Come July 1, Virginia will join a growing number of states to fold child care oversight into its Department of Education. The seemingly small shift signifies a major change in how the state is thinking about early childhood development. For years, child care and K-12 schools have been treated as separate services, overseen by different […]

U.S. House Ag leader seeks permanent scholarship funding for 1890 land-grant colleges

BY: - June 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — Leaders from 1890 land-grant colleges told the House Agriculture Committee Wednesday how a fresh infusion of scholarship funding provided by Congress has helped those historically Black institutions educate and train the next generation of agriculture workers. Committee Chairman David Scott, (D-Ga.), said that their testimony would help members of the committee work to […]

Major staffing shortages beset Virginia’s child care providers

BY: - June 14, 2021

After more than a year of navigating the COVID-19 pandemic, Rosalind Cutchins is braced for a busy June as she prepares to reopen two Head Start programs at her child care centers across the Hampton Roads region. But she’s been confronted by a staffing shortfall — 22 unfilled positions across eight different locations. It’s a […]

Former governor, education secretary call for more investment in Virginia’s historically Black colleges

BY: - June 11, 2021

As Virginia lawmakers consider how to spend more than $4.3 billion in federal funding from the American Rescue Plan, two former state leaders are calling for more investment in the state’s historically Black colleges and universities. Former Gov. Doug Wilder and Jim Dyke, who served as Virginia’s first Black secretary of education in Wilder’s administration, […]

U.S. Senate panel grapples with fast-approaching state laws on rights of student athletes

BY: - June 11, 2021

WASHINGTON — There was little disagreement among senators Wednesday over whether a national law is needed to standardize what soon will be a patchwork of conflicting state statutes allowing some student athletes to earn money from their personal brands. But the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hearing shed little light on what a potential federal law […]


System ‘needs to be broken’: Pharrell Williams launching Norfolk private school

BY: - June 10, 2021

Virginia Beach native and multiple Grammy Award winner Pharrell Williams has announced he’ll create a private school in Norfolk initially aimed at third-to-fifth-graders from low-income families. He will thus become the latest entertainer around the country to spearhead an alternative to traditional schools.  It will be called Yellowhab and provide tuition-free education for the original […]


What grads really need to hear about the problems confronting us and the prospect of progress

BY: - June 7, 2021

FALLS CHURCH — Gov. Ralph Northam traveled to Northern Virginia last week with a timeworn message for this year’s high school graduates as they enter adulthood: Anything is possible in America. “The sky is the limit,” he said during an in-person outdoor ceremony at George Mason High School in Falls Church City. “Don’t ever, ever […]

Federal funding restrictions could force schools to spend millions improving buildings that should be replaced

BY: - June 4, 2021

Virginia schools received nearly $2 billion from the federal government in its latest round of COVID-19 relief funding for public education. But while current guidance allows that money to pay for pandemic-related improvements — including new HVAC systems, window repairs or replacing carpeted areas with tile — it strongly discourages new school construction, according to […]

Q&A: VMI’s new superintendent on report that says school has been ‘run by White men, for White men.’

BY: - June 2, 2021

Virginia Military Institute’s superintendent says he’s not surprised by the findings in a law firm’s scathing report released Tuesday that concluded the school long tolerated institutional racism and sexism. But he pushed back at assertions that leaders of the 180-year-old school were unwilling to change. The Virginia Mercury interviewed Maj. Gen. Cedric Wins about the […]