Our network

Schools

WSU researchers create gel to keep fields healthy during drought

WSU researchers create gel to keep fields healthy during drought

Washington State University researchers have created a product that could help farmers keep their fields moist during a drought.

Led by Associate Professor Jinwen Zhang, the group created hydrogel pellets similar to the super absorbent material used in diapers. The main difference is what they're made of. While diapers rely on petrolium based gel, WSU researchers have created one out of soy protein.

The pellets swell to hold 250 times their weight in water, and because they are made of biodegradable agricultural material instead of chemicals they leave no residue behind when they disintegrate in the ground. In fact, the soy protein can actually act as a source of nitrogen to help plants grow.

A soy-based product would also lessen dependence on foreign oil imports, and boos the local economy since the U.S. Produces half of the world supply of soy beans.

Local Idaho schools to receive grant funding for technology programs

Local Idaho schools to receive grant funding for technology programs

Fifteen Idaho schools will receive part of a $3 million technology grant, according to State Superintendent Tom Luna, four of them right here in the inland northwest.

The goal is for the schools to pilot innovative technologies that, if successful, can be duplicated in schools across the state to give teachers the tools they need to help raise academic achievement.

Currently Idaho has the lowest rate of high school graduates heading directly to college, at just over 45 percent. A study also found that over 60 percent of fourth grade students are not proficient in math and reading.

The Idaho State Department of Education reviewed applications from 99 schools across the state, totaling over $26 million in requests for grant funding. The applications covered a broad cross section of schools, made up of varying grade levels, demographics and regions of the state.

Student teams awarded $5,000 for giving back

For the third year, Spokane Teachers Credit Union is encouraging students to give back to their communities through the Hundred Dollar Project. Votes from the community have selected three groups to continue their projects with a total of $5,000 in additional awards from STCU.

$3 million in technology grants available for Idaho schools

$3 million in technology grants available for Idaho schools

From the Idaho State Department of Education:


For the second year, schools across Idaho will have the opportunity to submit their ideas for what the next-generation classroom looks like and put them into action. It’s all part of the Idaho Technology Pilot Program, which received a second year of funding from the Idaho Legislature.

 

Idaho State Board of Education approves tuition hikes

Idaho State Board of Education approves tuition hikes

The Idaho State Board of Education has approved tuition increases.

The board on Wednesday approved an increase of 4 percent at the University of Idaho and Boise State University.

Idaho State University will see a 3.5 percent increase and Lewis-Clark State College a 2 percent increase.

The increases mean full-time students at the University of Idaho will pay $6,784 a year and Boise State students will pay $6,640.

Idaho State University tuition rises to $6,566, while tuition at Lewis-Clark State College jumps to $5,900.

Boise State had asked for a 6.1 percent increase, while UI had asked for a 4.7 increase.

But the board said it wanted to hold increases to no more than 4 percent.

Fruit and vegetable grants available for Idaho schools

Fruit and vegetable grants available for Idaho schools

From the Idaho Department of Education:

Idaho elementary schools can apply now to implement the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program for the 2014-2015 school year.

 

Coeur d'Alene Tribe donates to schools

Coeur d'Alene Tribe donates to schools

The Coeur d'Alene Tribe has donated $1.2 million to 52 educational programs in Idaho.

The money is going to support educational efforts ranging from reading, music, arts, science, college scholarship programs and vocational preparation.

The chairman of the Coeur d'Alene Tribe, Chief Allen, says the money will allow students to focus on learning.

Most of the money was distributed in Kootenai and Benewah counties in northern Idaho, but some went as far away as Sugar City in eastern Idaho, and Wilder and Meridian in southwest Idaho.

The tribe returns 5 percent of its net gambling revenues to the financial support of education as part of its gambling compact with Idaho.