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Education

The Santa Barbara shootings this weekend and the online rants of the 22-year-old identified as the gunman brought an outpouring of reaction online over the weekend.

When College Isn't Worth It

May 28, 2014

The New York Times highlighted new data yesterday that once again beats the drum: Despite skyrocketing costs, a college degree is a good investment. In fact, MIT economist David Autor writes in the journal Science that the value of a degree is rising. College grads made almost twice as much per hour in 2013 as workers without a four-year degree. And the lifetime value of a diploma is now around a half-million dollars, even after you factor in tuition.

Former Clinton and Obama speechwriter Jon Lovett knocked it out of the park last year at Pitzer College's commencement. We asked the brilliant animator Steve Cutts to bring part of his address to life in pictures. You will likely never look at a commencement gown the same way again.

Each week, Weekend Edition Sunday brings listeners an unexpected side of the news by talking with someone personally affected by the stories making headlines.

Hortense McClinton has lived with a remarkable sense of determination — for 95 years.

Her father's parents were slaves, and McClinton grew up in a completely segregated society, the all-black town of Boley, Okla.

"I didn't realize how segregated everything was," she tells NPR's Lynn Neary. That changed after a visit with her uncle in Guthrie, Okla.

Something funny has happened to the familiar commencement address in the past 10 years. That something is YouTube. Steve Jobs' 2005 address at Stanford, to take just one example, has been viewed upwards of 20 million times.

Learning is something people, like other animals, do whenever our eyes are open. Education, though, is uniquely human, and right now it's at an unusual point of flux.

By some accounts, education is a $7 trillion global industry ripe for disruption. Others see it as almost a sacred pursuit — a means of nurturing developing minds while preserving tradition. Around the world, education means equal rights and opportunity. People risk their lives for it every day.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Flat, stagnant, static, those are words that the U.S. Department of Education has used to describe the latest reading and math scores for the nation's 12th graders.

Turning The Page On Illiteracy, Adults Go Back To Class

Oct 31, 2013

This is the first report of a four-part series on adult education.

The national debate around education usually focuses on children in school. But there are 30 million adults in the U.S. who have trouble with basic literacy — they struggle to read a menu, a pay stub or a bus schedule.

It also means it's difficult for them to get and hold onto the most basic jobs.

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