Morning Read: State’s alternative schools have little oversight

There’s no good way to know how CA’s alternative schools are working
Thousands of low-income students flood schools designed for the most vulnerable students, but no one is keeping track of what happens to them. Hechinger Report

LBUSD teachers call for pay hikes, class-size reductions
The teachers’ contract in Long Beach Unified set to expire at month’s end. Long Beach Press-Telegram

Children get extra semester before kindergarten with midyear classes
The Los Angeles Unified School District looked at the concept when the board voted last week to drastically expand its transitional kindergarten program. Ed Source

Report: Low-income communities lack child care in LA County
Families encounter a big disparity in access to licensed child care spaces depending on where they live in Los Angeles County. Ed Source

Senate passes vaccine bill on second vote; now heads to Gov. Brown
The controversial bill would give California one of the country’s strictest vaccination laws. San Jose Mercury News

7 solutions that would improve graduation rates
This month we reported the findings from our nationwide investigation into the forces driving the nation’s rising high school graduation rate. NPR

Morning Read: SoCal schools grapple with teacher shortage

SoCal schools may see more interns, substitutes in classrooms 
School is out for the summer, but for some in education, the work is just beginning on a problem that is growing more acute: the teacher shortage. KPCC

Best school districts for your buck in Southern California
To find the best schools in Southern California, we weighed a district’s affordability, standardized test scores, college readiness and student-to-teacher ratio. NerdWallet

In drought’s firm grip, California schools try to cope
School districts are grappling with how to adhere to new water use requirements. Ed Source

Have Millenials turned away from teaching profession?
Education planners in a number of states are looking with alarm at the sudden drop of college students entering the teaching profession. SI&A Cabinet Report

Arne Duncan: These are the things parents should demand from schools
Certain educational rights should be universal, U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said Friday. Huffington Post

7 more states, District Of Columbia receive No Child Left Behind waivers
The six states, and the District of Columbia, were given a three-year flexibility extension through school year 2017-18. iSchoolGuide

Morning Read: Panel recommends NCLB waiver for LAUSD, CORE

Panel recommends continuing districts’ waiver from NCLB
A committee is recommending that a waiver from the No Child Left Behind law be extended to six California school districts, collectively known as CORE. Ed Source

California bill requires hearings for school military gear
The legislation was introduced before President Obama announced that his administration would stop providing military gear to local law enforcement. Associated Press

What’s the future of iPads in schools?
The debacle in Los Angeles and changing tech have shifted focus from the once-popular device. Ed Dive

Study: Parents Often Think Their Firstborn Is Smarter
Univerersity researchers found that a parent’s perception of his or her child can impact the latter’s future. iSchoolGuide

In lawmakers’ final deal, NYC charters emerge as only big winners
The deal double the number of new charter schools that can open in New York City, from 25 to 50. Chalkbeat New York

Morning Read: Who will replace Cortines at LA Unified?

Who will be Los Angeles Unified’s next superintendent?
Superintendent Cortines told board members at Tuesday’s meeting he would leave the district in six months. Los Angeles Daily News

Vaccine mandate bill up for vote Thursday in California assembly
The legislation, already approved by the state Senate, is expected to draw hundreds of parents to the Capitol for a rally. Los Angeles Times

School districts find ways to support low-income infants and toddlers
There has been a recent shift in school districts’ thinking about the early years. Ed Source

Lost and found yields trove of treasures at end of school year
As surely as the sun will rise in the east and time will march only forward, children will lose things. New York Times

In San Francisco, computer science for all…soon
Many children in San Francisco do not have regular access to computers in school, let alone computer science classes. Hechinger Report

200 schools are named for Confederate leaders. Is it time to rename them?
The backlash against Confederate flags has built quickly since nine parishioners were gunned down inside a South Carolina church last week. Washington Post

Morning Read: A full breakdown of the California education budget

2015-16 state education budget by the numbers
The $115.4 billion state budget is full of numbers – big ones when it comes to record high spending for K-12 schools and community colleges. Ed Source

Music Center cuts back its arts education at schools
After decades of sending artists to work with students in LA County schools, the Music Center has cut its education department’s staff. Los Angeles Times

Burbank school board superintendent search violated Brown Act, DA says
A letter says the board should have announced it had a finalist for superintendent job. Burbank Leader

Last minute moves support student discipline, adult ed
The language containing specific details for hundreds of programs follow the budget bill in what are known as budget trailer bills. SI&A Cabinet Report

New York’s public school students sweat out the end of the semester
Many classrooms in the city’s public schools suffer from broken air-conditioning units or lack them entirely. New York Times

State extends mayoral control of schools for only one more year
Gov. Cuomo and state legislative leaders agreeing to extend mayoral control over New York City’s public schools for just one year. New York Post

Morning Read: CA providing $500 million for teacher training

New initiative for teacher development
School boards must prepare plans for how they will spend their share of a $500 million block grant aimed at boosting teacher competency. SI&A Cabinet Report

Court upholds LAUSD decision to offer Crenshaw facilities to charter school
LAUSD did not violate the state’s charter school law by offering school facilities at Crenshaw High, the Court of Appeals ruled Friday. Metropolitan News-Enterprise

State board gets extra year to create measures of school progress
The Legislature has given the State Board of Education an extra year to complete the next phase of a new school accountability system. Ed Source

Mark Twain Junior High raises the bar with a student study lounge
Making a place for teens to check on assignments, get some help and spend some quiet time studying has worked at Mark Twain Junior High. Modesto Bee

California tempers backlash while embracing Common Core
Gov. Jerry Brown and California’s elected K-12 schools chief are united in their support of the embattled benchmarks. Associated Press

Campbell Brown to launch non-profit education news site 
Former CNN host Campbell Brown went from a career in journalism to a second life as an education-reform advocate. Now she is looking to combine the two. Wall Street Journal

Morning Read: LAUSD more likely to put kids in special ed programs

Nearly 14 percent of LAUSD students in special education programs
Students in LAUSD were more likely to be placed in special education programs than their peers statewide, according to records. Los Angeles Daily News

California vocational education in danger
Career technical education is once again in peril in California. Fresno Bee

The deplorable way LAUSD is treating the world’s most famous teacher
Commentary: I consider Rafe Esquith of the Hobart Boulevard Elementary School in Los Angeles to be the best classroom teacher in the country. Washington Post

State to spend a half billion dollars to promote ‘teacher effectiveness’
The funds, which will be set aside as a block grant, will flow to each of California’s nearly 1,000 districts. Ed Source

Asian parents who stress academics could be hurting their kids, expert says
The pressure for Asian students to do well in school and college admission tests could lead to “a lot of shame and guilt,” an expert said. Pasadena Star-News

California Woman Goes from Teen Mom to Harvard
The teen juggled AP classes, basketball practice and working nearly full-time – 24 to 30 hours per week – to support her family. People

Morning Read: Parents lining up against principal at LAUSD school

Woman says dozens of parents sign petition asking for removal of principal
The parent of a student at a Maywood school says dozens of parents have signed a petition asking the district to remove the school’s head. CBS Los Angeles

Commentary: Why we need to keep iPads out of the classroom
People think tech will magically solve education’s problems—they’re wrong. Time

Zuckerberg announces $5 million donation to scholarships for immigrants
Facebook CEO’s donation to provide scholarships to undocumented students in San Francisco Bay Area. Wall Street Journal

More green space, less noise linked to better learning
A growing body of research shows a relationship between the physical environment of schools and student achievement. Seattle Times

Robert Reich: Elites are waging war on public education
The former secretary of labor on the racket of for-profit colleges and the unfair burden on America’s teachers. Salon

Teachers in L.A., across California file complaints against virtual academy
Teachers in Los Angeles County and throughout California filed scathing complaints Thursday against a statewide virtual school system. San Gabriel Valley Tribune

Morning Read: Early education gets funding boost in state budget

Early education makes substantial gains in state budget
The final budget deal struck by lawmakers on Tuesday provides more than $300 million for early education. Ed Source

Editorial: Keeping better tabs on California’s education funding
The LCFF will work only if districts are committed to spending the money for the benefit of the disadvantaged students for whom it was intended. Los Angeles Times

CA’s budget avoids funding equity issue in special ed
Despite the recent release of a sweeping road map for improving special education, state leaders have settled on far less ambitious changes. SI&A Cabinet Report

For teachers of English learners, Common Core means double the work
For bilingual and English as a second language (ESL) teachers, finding resources and materials in Spanish has posed a major hurdle. Hechinger Report

California budget deal subsidizes health care for kids in U.S. illegally
A budget deal would make California the first in the nation to offer state-subsidized health care to children who are in the country illegally. KPBS

Cancer concerns prompts Long Beach to pay extra for artificial turf
Long Beach may spurn artificial turf fields cushioned with crumb rubber because of concerns about the potential health effects. Long Beach Press-Telegram

Morning Read: Legislature passes bigger budget for education

Legislators pass a bigger budget for schools and early ed
The Legislature on Monday passed a $117.5 billion budget for 2015-16 that includes $700 million more for schools and community colleges. Ed Source

Award-winning teacher allegedly removed over Mark Twain quote 
Rafe Esquith’s attorney fired back Monday at LAUSD officials, saying the allegations are ruining a great man’s reputation for no reason. KCAL

U.S. kids need to drink more water, study finds
The study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that more than half of all children and adolescents in the U.S. aren’t getting enough hydration. WRAL

Data mining finds lessons about procrastination
Highest grades are achieved by college students who start their homework at least three days in advance. Hechinger Report

Torlakson reinterprets department’s stance on teacher raises
Torlakson has softened clear-cut guidance his department issued regarding the use of money intended for underserved students to fund pay raises for teachers. Ed Source

A compromise in the war over school residency
Families have been spied upon, parents arrested and court battles waged over laws that say students must live within the district. SI&A Cabinet Report

Morning Read: O.C. parent trigger case going to trial

Parent trigger dispute over Anaheim school heads to trial
The Anaheim City School Board and district leaders have been at odds with parents at Palm Lane Elementary School. Ed Source

Common Core tests largely over; now comes the wait for scores
The massive effort to assess the students in grades three through eight and eleven using the new standardized tests is practically over. KPCC

Flood of new scorers could pose problems for Common Core
Standardized test scoring, the kind done by human beings when written answers are required, is a mysterious, mostly hidden activity. Washington Post

More states begin embracing play as foundation of kindergarten
Minnesota, Washington and Maryland are starting to train teachers on the significance of “purposeful play.” New York Times

Education reforms spur N.Y. lobbying ‘arms race’
Education policy is big business for lobbyists in New York state. USA Today

UC may add only a few hundred students this fall, Napolitano say
Across the country, public universities have felt the impact of years of cuts in state assistance. Los Angeles Times

Morning Read: LAUSD wants to expand transitional kindergarten

LA Unified explores transitional kindergarten option for more 4-year-olds
The state’s largest school district is considering expanding its transitional kindergarten to more 4-year-olds – a move that could affect other districts statewide. Ed Source

Discounting play time in kindergarten
Supporters of early reading requirements say students who are not proficient by third grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school. SI&A Cabinet Report

College Advising Corps tries to close the counselor gap in California
Private advisers in public schools could help more students from low-income families apply to college. Hechinger Report

High school students create haunting artwork about standardized tests
A teacher asked her students to create art based on their feelings about standardized testing. Huffington Post

Student teaching key to teacher retention, report says
Aspire Public Schools and San Francisco Unified both use a new teachers preparation program that has earned high marks for teacher retention. Ed Source

Study points to charter school superiority: Guest commentary
A study finds that Alliance charter schools have better educational achievement outcomes than students at traditional public schools. Los Angeles Daily News

Morning Read: ‘Incendiary’ vaccine bill clears committee

Mandatory vaccine legislation easily clears Assembly health committee
Vaccine supporters cheered the passage of the bill, which they said echoes a Public Policy Institute of California poll released last week. San Jose Mercury News

Adjoining counties devise different strategies to expand preschool
The counties’ contrasting approaches highlight the efforts of local governments across the state to expand access to preschools. Ed Source

Schools face drinking water safety mandate
School districts could soon be mandated to make sure that water, if it comes from the tap, is also safe. SI&A Cabinet Report

What researchers say about texting, immersing and first-grade math
Kids tweeting and texting about anything related to the lecture topic learned more than others in the class taking traditional notes, according to a study. Modesto Bee

More school districts opting out of federal school lunch program
Since its implementation in 2012, over 1.2 million students have opted out of First Lady Michelle Obama’s National School Lunch program. iSchoolGuide

Teen with Asperger’s goes from special ed to valedictorian
For Chance Mair, the 2015 valedictorian for Marysville Arts and Technology High School, the path to success took special guidance and perseverance. Seattle Times

Morning Read: A skeptical look at those ‘record’ graduation rates

Grad rates up? Very little, at best!
A closer look at the evidence shows that, other than data collection, nothing much has changed in over 20 years. SI&A Cabinet Report

San Diego Unified says it will start following the law on charter school space
Under the terms of Prop. 39, charters are entitled to use district facilities, even if a neighborhood school currently occupies part of that space. Voice of San Diego

New school funding formula to get huge increase
A projected big infusion of state revenue next year will inject much more money into the new K-12 education finance system. Ed Source

Controversial vaccine bill heads to full assembly vote
The bill, if passed, would eliminate the option to not vaccinate kids based on personal or religious beliefs. KXTV

Michelle Obama urges Chicago graduates to transcend a tragedy
Two years after the shooting death of Hadiya Pendleton, Michelle Obama spoke to her graduating class. New York Times

A class of teenagers gave up smartphones for a week, and lived
Why some parents, teachers hope this becomes a global trend. Hechinger Report

Morning Read: High school diploma isn’t what it used to be

Class of 2015 needs more than high school diploma, experts say
The high school diploma — once a ticket to the American middle class — isn’t enough any more, experts say. Los Angeles Daily News

San Marino High student claims teachers failed to report rape allegations
The lawsuit against the San Marino Unified School District in Los Angeles Superior Court alleges gender discrimination and seeks unspecified damages. CBS Local

San Marino teen who ran away because of academic pressure returns home
San Marino police detectives planned to interview Mira about the “circumstances surrounding her absence,” they said. Los Angeles Times

Out of the books in kindergarten, and into the sandbox
Concerned that kindergarten has become overly academic, one school district is introducing a new curriculum in the fall for 5-year-olds. New York Times

How one California school district is dealing with students who don’t live there
How welcoming is too welcoming? Some Berkeley parents wonder if their school district is too nice to outsiders. Hechinger Report

This summer, the cafeteria comes to the kids
About 21 million students nationwide eat free and reduced-price meals, but getting those same kids fed during the summer is a challenge. NPR

Morning Read: Some LA families struggle with graduation costs

Ending senior year with a bang isn’t cheap at many L.A.-area high schools
Sticker shock has hit families hard in these final weeks of high school, which are filled with expensive events. Los Angeles Times

State lawmakers want to change teachers evaluations
State legislators are approving bills that will revamp teacher evaluations for the first time in 44 years. Daily Democrat

Local funding, Common Core combined are ‘extraordinarily ambitious’
For more than three decades, Lenny Mendonca has analyzed big problems and recommended big fixes in government. Ed Source

Editorial: Traditional teaching faces a cyberthreat from school model
AltSchool is trying to modernize education for the digital age. Los Angeles Times

Do lazy June school days include too many movies and parties?
It was June 1, the traditional beginning of parental complaints about how little work is done as the school year nears an end. Washington Post

This is where school funding is the least ‘fair,’ according to new reports
At a time when an increasing number of students qualify for free or reduced-price lunch nationwide, the disparities in resources are deep. Huffington Post

Morning Read: Common Core testing goes smoothly in CA

Students take online Common Core test with minimal interruptions
An estimated 3.2​ ​million 3​r​d- through 8th-graders and 11th-graders will have taken tests in English language arts and math. Ed Source

2 high school students arrested for allegedly changing grades for cash
Authorities said the students hacked into the network and shut down the school’s website, deputies explained. CBS Los Angeles

Downey teacher sues district claiming students harassed her on Twitter
Amy Sulkis said she had to leave her job because of the stress. CBS Los Angeles

New York City schools installing 21,000 door alarms
School employees will also receive training on managing students during transitional periods, when they can slip out unnoticed. New York Times

Inside a family’s year of kindergarten taught in Mandarin
Duarte mom Brooke Gomez has one word for her daughter’s nine months of kindergarten: amazing. KPCC

Lawyers push to dismiss teacher as defendant in suit for in-class racist remarks
Attorneys for Steven Carnine filed court papers stating that their client is not racist, but a “well-liked and revered teacher.” City News Service

Morning Read: Parents want South LA principal to step down

Parents at South LA school demand principal to step down
Parents say they and their students have been mistreated and verbally abused by Brenda Grady for years. CBS Los Angeles

Ed chair’s facility bond fails passage in Senate
Sen. Carol Liu’s bill received support from all 27 Democrats in the upper house but failed to garner one Republican vote – all that was needed. SI&A Cabinet Report

Preschools to receive arts education boost under federal program
An expansion of a federal arts education program announced Wednesday will pump additional resources into some of California’s struggling schools. KPCC

Teen pregnancy is still a problem 
Are online schools a better option for teen moms – or just a high-tech version of schools that once hid pregnant girls from shame? Hechinger Report

Students step up to the plate with Anti-Gang Challenge
The Orange County Gang Reduction and Intervention Partnership identified at-risk students in January based on performance in school. Orange County Register

‘I want to give my students access to the world’
Lovelyn Marquez-Prueher is the recipient of the 2014 LA County Teacher of the Year award and the 2015 recipient of the California Teacher of the Year award. Ed Source

Morning Read: State Senate to vote on teacher evaluation bill

Teacher evaluation bill moves to Senate floor
A bill that would allow teacher unions to negotiate various aspects of their own job performance evaluations is expected to be considered on the Senate floor this week. SI&A Cabinet Report

Los Angeles River School teaches water conservation through gardening
The pilot school is one of only three schools in the entire Los Angeles Unified School District that uses reclaimed water for its landscaping. ABC7

Schools face challenge of explaining Common Core test results to parents
At stake is whether parents – and by extension students themselves – will be able to understand what the scores on the new tests mean. Ed Source

How the new GED is failing students
The GED is affecting students all across California. LA Unified stopped administering the GED altogether last year, relying exclusively on the HiSET. East Bay Express

California Assembly moves to expand sex education in schools
The legislation would require schools to teach more about sexually transmitted infections and discuss same-sex relationships when teaching HIV prevention. CBS Los Angeles

Canada’s forced schooling of aboriginal children was ‘cultural genocide’ 
The schools, financed by the government but run largely by churches, were in operation for more than a century, from 1883 until the last one closed in 1998. New York Times

Morning Read: College Board, Khan Academy offer free SAT prep

College Board, Khan Academy team up to offer free SAT prep program
Students can start preparing for the SAT Tuesday with a new, free online study program affiliated with the test. Los Angeles Times

Teaching-sub hiring policies vary widely
The growing demand for substitutes has raised questions about the quality of temporary teachers and their effect on a student’s education. U-T San Diego

Inside the mind of an anti-vaccine California parent
A surprising number of well-educated people decide each year not to have their children immunized. Huffington Post

LAUSD gives approval to practice on professional development days
Sports teams in the Los Angeles Unified School District will now be able to practice and play games on professional development days. Los Angeles Times

How to anonymously report bullying? There’s an app for that
A new way to stop bullying and negative activity is at the tip of students’ fingers.

Beyond the birds and the bees: Surviving sex ed today
Bronx-based teacher Lena Solow is more than happy to talk about the birds, the bees … and beyond. NPR