Rob Manning

Reporter/Producer, Oregon Public Broadcasting

Rob Manning has been both a reporter and an on-air host at Oregon Public Broadcasting. Before that, he filled both roles with local community station KBOO and nationally with Free Speech Radio News. He's also published freelance print stories with Portland's alternative weekly newspaper Willamette Week and Planning Magazine. In 2007, Rob received two awards for investigative reporting from the Associated Press and Society of Professional Journalists, and he was part of the award-winning team responsible for OPB's "Hunger Series." His current beats range from education to the environment, sports to land-use planning, politics to housing.

Ben Margot / / Associated Press

California officials delayed opening its recreational crab fishing season Thursday. Scientists have found high levels of a potentially lethal toxin in Dungeness crab in California. A similar delay could come any time for California's commercial crab season.

Steve Burt / / FLICKR

Oregon no longer has the worst graduation rate of any state in the country, according to federal data out Monday. But the grad rate is still among the worst.

Aaron Parecki / / FLICKR

Oregon labor officials consider drivers in transportation networks, like Uber and Lyft, to be "employees" of those companies, not independent contractors.

Andrew Moore / Creative Commons

U.S. Agriculture secretary Tom Vilsack announced a key step Friday in completing a 1,200 mile trail from Glacier National Park to the Pacific Ocean. Hikers already use what's called the "Pacific Northwest Trail," but it has gaps, and isn't fully built out.

Oregon Department of Transportation / Flickr

Northwest forests are extremely dry, but this fire season so far hasn't been as bad as last year. Spokesman for the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center, Tom Knappenberger, says there were 79 large fires at this point a year ago. This season, there have been 65 fires of at least 100 acres.

Benjamin Chun / Flickr

The top education official in Washington State said teachers could face investigation and schools could lose funding - if the number of students refusing standardized tests keeps rising. 

Washington superintendent Randy Dorn doesn't like the phrase "opt-out."

"It's really a refusal to take an assessment that's required by the federal government," Dorn said.

He said low participation rates could cost schools federal money.

albertogp123 / Flickr

Oregon's House Education Committee heard testimony Monday on high-stakes exams. A work group of teachers and administrators has recommended less emphasis on end-of-year state exams and more focus on classroom-level assessments.

One House bill would delay using the new "Smarter Balanced" exam results to judge schools and teachers. Another would make it easier to opt out of the tests. Portland parent and teacher Elizabeth Thiel argued that bill should go further - and prohibit sanctions against schools like hers, where students are opting out.

Rick Obst / Flickr

A University of Oregon task force on sexual violence proposed 23 recommendations at a university senate meeting Wednesday.

The task force report is called "Twenty Students Per Week." That refers to about how often undergraduate women at U of O experience unwanted sexual contact. The same survey with those numbers also found most student-victims don't report being sexually assaulted.

"The University of Oregon can become a leader in addressing this problem," Carol Stabile said.

Members of the International Longshore and Warehouse Union have agreed to a contract with grain handling companies at Northwest ports. The vote concludes two years of bargaining, and lockouts at the ports of Vancouver and Portland, last more than a year.

Rob Manning / EarthFix

It's three weeks until school starts in Oregon. It can't come too soon for parents who are struggling to keep their kids fed, supervised, and learning, over the summer.

OPB has been following a cohort of Oregon kids in the Class of 2025. They'll be in second grade soon. Rob Manning will visit with a few of those kids - as part of a broader look at what summer means for students in Oregon.