Larry Abramson

Larry Abramson is the Education Correspondent at NPR. Abramson covers a wide variety of issues related to education, from federal policy to testing to instructional techniques in the classroom. In 2006, Abramson returned to the education beat after spending 9 years covering national security and technology issues for NPR. Since 9/11, Abramson has covered telecommunications regulation, computer privacy, legal issues in cyberspace, and legal issues related to the war on terrorism. During the late 1990s, Abramson also was involved in several special projects related to education. He followed the efforts of a school in Fairfax County, Virginia, to include severely disabled students in regular classroom settings. He joined the National Desk reporting staff in 1997.

From 1990 to 1997, Abramson was senior editor for NPR's National Desk. His department was responsible for approximately 25 staff reporters across the United States, five editors in Washington, and news bureaus in Los Angeles, New York, and Chicago. The National Desk also coordinated domestic news coverage with news departments at many of NPR's member stations. The desk doubled in size during Abramson's tenure. He oversaw the development of specialized beats in general business, high-technology, workplace issues, small business, education, and criminal justice.

Abramson joined NPR in 1985, working as a production assistant with Morning Edition. He moved to the National Desk, where he served for two years as Western editor. From there, he became the deputy science editor with NPR's Science Unit, where he helped win a duPont-Columbia Award as editor of a special series on Black Americans and AIDS.

Prior to his work at NPR, Abramson was a freelance reporter in San Francisco and worked with Voice of America in California and in Washington, D.C. He has a master's degree in comparative literature from the University of California at Berkeley. Abramson also studied overseas at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, and at the Free University in Berlin, Germany.



Wed June 15, 2011

In Teaching, Pink Slips Are A Way Of Life

Teacher Rohya Prudhomme has gotten a pink slip from the Los Angeles school district. Despite good reviews, Prudhomme is one of many teachers who regularly receives layoff notices, making it hard to plan for the future.
Larry Abramson NPR

For many teachers, job uncertainty is one of the biggest downsides of their profession.

Recent estimates from the American Association of School Administrators show that about a quarter-million educators could face layoffs in the coming year as states cut education spending in an effort to balance their budgets. That has left many teachers wondering where their next paycheck will come from.

Two of those teachers facing uncertainty are in Los Angeles, where as many as 1,600 teachers and staff may lose their jobs this summer.

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Thu May 26, 2011

Detroit Looks To Charters To Remake Public Schools

Angie Melhado, a charter school consultant, talks to parents and community members who are considering serving on charter school boards. Detroit wants to convert dozens of traditional schools to charters, but many in the city remain skeptical about the plan.
Larry Abramson NPR

This story is the first in an ongoing series on education overhaul in Detroit.

The Detroit Public School system hopes to convert dozens of schools into charters in the next year or so in a last ditch effort to cut costs and stop plummeting enrollment.

The plan faces tremendous skepticism from a generation of parents and teachers frustrated from previous reform efforts.

No one has ever done what DPS is trying to do: turn more than 40 schools into charters, some in just a few short weeks.

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Tue May 17, 2011
Money Counts: Young Adults And Financial Literacy

Monkey Bars No More: Trying The Money Playground

Originally published on Tue May 17, 2011 2:01 pm

Kate Haynes (left) and Samantha Jensen watch the stock tickers and debate what to select for their investments while participating in Junior Achievement's Finance Park program in Fairfax County, Va.
Erin Schwartz NPR

Part of a series on young people and financial literacy

Fairfax County in the Washington, D.C., suburbs has plenty of shopping malls. Finance Park, though, is the only one exclusively for tweenagers. Every eighth-grader in this large, suburban school system must show up at this mock-up of the real world, spend money and act like an adult for a day. Jacque Weir says she was magically transformed into "a single mom with an 8-year-old."

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Sat May 14, 2011
Around the Nation

New Rules Seek To Educate Schools On Service Dogs

Nathan Selove relies on his service dog, Sylvia, to help him deal with meltdowns and other issues related to Asperger's syndrome.
Larry Abramson NPR

Many disabled people say that life without their service animals is unthinkable. And while public institutions are required to admit service animals without question, some public schools claim they cannot handle the disruption of a dog in a busy classroom.

Disabled students are hoping new federal guidelines will help them avoid legal battles over their animals.

Nathan And Sylvia

Everyone at Sherando High School in Virginia knows Nathan Selove: He's the kid with the dog.

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Tue May 10, 2011

Ed Programs Assail 'U.S. News' Survey

Amid criticism from education reform advocates who say many teacher preparation programs provide poor training, a national organization is conducting a review of more than 1,000 programs to help aspiring teachers choose from the best. This consumer guide for prospective teachers — conducted by the National Council on Teacher Quality — will be published in U.S. News and World Report next year.

But many schools of education say the effort is misguided, and they are threatening to scuttle the project.

Compiling The Stats

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