Global buzz: interesting education news from across the world

Interesting education news from across the world.

U.S. college ratings

As part of a plan to keep college education affordable for low-income and underrepresented students, U.S. President Barack Obama has directed the U.S. Department of Education to develop and publish a new college ratings system by the 2015-16 school year. This would expand college opportunity by recognising institutions that excel at enrolling students from all backgrounds, focus on maintaining affordability and succeed at helping all students graduate.

The ratings system aims at helping colleges and universities improve affordability, provide better information about college value to students and families and generate reliable, useful data that policymakers and the public can use to hold America’s colleges and universities accountable for key performance measures.

President Barack Obama. File photo

Adult science nights in Regina

Science centres across Regina, Canada, have started hosting adult-only nights that aim at combining education and bar service. Visitors, aged 19 and older, can enjoy advanced programming and stage shows, along with a licensed bar and snacks. At the Saskatchewan Science Centre, Adult Nights are considered special events and have an admission charge. Each night focuses on a different theme and has all-new experiments and activities to enjoy.

Young Aussie scientists

To mark 40 years of Australian radio programme The Science Show, University of New South Wales (UNSW), Australia, and ABC RN have launched a new initiative — Top 5 under 40 — to discover the country’s new generation of science thinkers and give them a voice. The initiative will help early career researchers, less then 40 years of age, to make an impact and turn their vital work into compelling radio programmes and online features to reach a wider audience. Ten applicants with the most innovative ideas will be selected for a two-day workshop in February 2015, coordinated by ABC RN.

Character class in U.K.

U.K.’s Education Secretary Nicky Morgan has announced a multi-million pound push to improve character education in England. The move aims at placing England as a “global leader” in teaching character, resilience and grit to pupils. Schools and organisations that offer activities promoting character in pupils will see these programmes expanded through a new £3.5 million fund, designed to place character education on a par with academic learning for pupils across the country. The government recently announced awards worth up to £20,000 each for schools and organisations that are already doing excellent work in character education. Schools and organisations will be invited to apply from January 5, 2015.

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