Arizona

Updated at 2:35 p.m. ET

Former Republican Sen. Jon Kyl has been tapped to replace the late Sen. John McCain in the Senate.

Kyl, 76, served three terms in the Senate, rising to become the No. 2 Republican before retiring in 2013.

He has been helping guide Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh through the Senate and has been a lobbyist at a Washington law firm. He also previously served in the U.S. House.

This week in our roundup, we travel from Arizona to the United Kingdom to the Philippines to bring you the education news.

Teachers in Arizona head back to class

For a few hours Wednesday, it appeared that the end to Arizona's massive teacher walkout was finally at hand. Protest leaders announced earlier this week they would accept a pay hike that they once dismissed as unsustainable — and Gov. Doug Ducey stood ready to sign it.

It's been nine weeks since teachers in West Virginia walked out of their classrooms to protest low wages and rising health care costs. That sparked a movement that has spread to a handful of other states where teachers have fought — or are fighting — not just for higher wages but also increased spending, more pay for support staff and, in some cases, to stop proposed changes to their pensions.

In fact, so much has happened in the past two months that we thought we'd put together a refresher, state by state.

Updated at 7:15 a.m. ET

Republicans defended a congressional seat in Arizona on Tuesday, avoiding another special election upset with a tight victory in a typically strong GOP district.

Republican Debbie Lesko, a former state senator, defeated Democrat Hiral Tipirneni, a physician new to politics, but Lesko's lead was only about five percent, in a district where Republicans typically dominate.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

In a congressional district that is considered as red as the sun is bright, Democrats see a tiny opening in an upcoming special election in Arizona after a surprising victory in a similar race last month in Pennsylvania.

Voters in Arizona's 8th Congressional District, northwest of Phoenix, are choosing a replacement for Trent Franks, who resigned abruptly last year amid sexual harassment allegations.

Teachers in Arizona held a strike vote on Thursday that launched Arizona's first-ever statewide walkout and turned down a proposed pay raise — instead demanding increased school funding.

The Arizona Education Association and the grass-roots group the Arizona Educators United announced that teachers will walk off the job April 26.

Nation's Report Card: mostly flat

The 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress, known as the Nation's Report Card, showed no statistically significant changes from 2015, except for a slight uptick in 8th grade reading scores. This test is given every two years to fourth and eighth graders in reading and math. It is not high-stakes, but it is the largest single test enabling a comparison of students across the country.

Pages