Josh Verges / St. Paul Pioneer Press
MINNEAPOLIS—The University of Minnesota's largest freshman class since 1970 started moving in Monday, Aug. 28, and found they had the dorms entirely to themselves. With the 700-bed Pioneer Hall out of commission for a two-year, $105 million renovation, the university reserved its dorms for just freshmen. It has also temporarily converted hundreds of school-run apartment units into dorm-style housing.
ST. PAUL — A University of St. Thomas student who reported being sexually assaulted will not have to participate in a lawsuit her alleged attacker brought against the school. U.S. Magistrate Judge David Schultz ruled Monday, Aug. 21 that the woman's pretrial testimony would be of "minimal relevance" to the case, and it's not worth making her "relive what was obviously a very painful experience."
MINNEAPOLIS — The University of Minnesota followed both federal law and its own policies while investigating and punishing several football players for an alleged sexual assault, an external review has found. In a report to a Board of Regents panel Wednesday, Aug. 16, lawyers with Dorsey & Whitney said U students accused of sexual assault are afforded extensive due process protections. However, they made several recommendations for revising protocols. Those recommendations included:
ST. PAUL — A former teacher with St. Paul Public Schools claims she lost her job because she advocated for students of color. Sarah Dickhausen, who taught at Open World Learning Community, sued the school district Friday, Aug. 11, in Ramsey County District Court. She wants her job back and more than $75,000 in damages. Dickhausen, who is white, was notified in April 2016 that she would not be brought back the following year because of "ineffective" teaching. About 60 students walked out of school to protest the decision.
ST. PAUL — A St. Paul father with only driving violations on his record is expected to be deported soon to his native Guatemala. Rudy Lopez Vasquez, 29, was placed in the custody of immigration officials within hours of his May 9 arrest in Coon Rapids for driving without a license.
ST. PAUL — Minnesota's high school graduating classes have shrunk in recent years, and fewer of those graduates are entering college right away. The college-going rate among new high school graduates fell slightly in 2016 for a third straight year to 69.6 percent, according to newly released data from the state Office of Higher Education. The rate topped out at 71.5 percent in 2013. Still, higher education commissioner Larry Pogemiller sees no cause for alarm. "We don't think it's statistically significant. We think it's flat, basically," he said.
ST. PAUL — Nearly a year later, the roadside near where Philando Castile was fatally shot still holds symbols of remembrance, and the St. Paul elementary school where he worked has a bench bearing his name. But perhaps the most meaningful memorials will live inside the young black graduates of his alma mater, St. Paul's Central High School. Friends of Castile, whose live-streamed July 6 death at the hand of a St. Anthony police officer in Falcon Heights sparked nationwide outrage, have raised some $51,000 for a Central High scholarship in his name.
ST. PAUL — Tuition will rise by 3.9 percent at state universities and 1 percent at state colleges, but a rate freeze will follow in 2018-19. The seven universities on average will charge $7,289 for full-time tuition next school year, an increase of $272. The colleges on average will charge $4,815 — up $48. Trustees of Minnesota State (formerly MnSCU) approved a $2.02 billion budget Wednesday, June 21, but tuition rates were somewhat out of their control.
MINNEAPOLIS — The University of Minnesota will raise tuition this fall at its Twin Cities campus by 2 percent for Minnesota residents and 12.5 percent for nonresidents. A few regents Tuesday, June 20 lobbied for a tuition freeze or slight decrease for residents, but the board voted overwhelmingly to approve President Eric Kaler's recommended budget. Kaler said his 2 percent proposal Tuesday was a compromise between the 3 percent resident rate hike he suggested last week and what regents wanted. "We have listened to the board carefully," he said.
ST. PAUL — Nikki Staab was on vacation in October when a fight broke out in her usually well-mannered seventh-grade science class at Farnsworth Aerospace school in St. Paul. In a typical year, the teacher said, the disruption would have led to three-day suspensions for the boy and girl involved. Instead, back at school the following day, they listened for 90 minutes as their classmates asked questions and described how the altercation made them feel. "It was incredibly powerful. It was really emotional," Staab said. "After that, everything went back to normal."