Morning Read: Parent sues LAUSD for teacher’s alleged racial slurs

Parent sues LAUSD after teacher reportedly used racially charged comments
A Brentwood parent is suing the school district, charging that a male teacher made offensive and racially charged comments in his class. CBS Los Angeles

66 California teams competing in 3-day academic decathlon
Twenty teams from Los Angeles-area schools will be in Sacramento Friday to compete in the three-day California Academic Decathlon. City News Service

Accusations of sex crimes unnerve Venice High School
Since the arrests of a dozen students, members of the Venice High School community have been doing some soul-searching. New York Times

In 23 states, richer districts get more local funding than poorer districts
In 23 states, state and local governments are together spending less per pupil in the poorest school districts. Washington Post

What the Common Core tests promised, and what they will actually deliver
Four years and over $360 million later, new Common Core tests are here. The Hechinger Report

Parent-trigger showdowns loom nationwide
Proponents of the controversial education laws target Tennessee, Texas. The Hechinger Report

Morning Read: No criminal charges so far at Venice High

Venice high school sex allegations not so clear-cut
Authorities acknowledged Wednesday that they are still trying to sort out exactly what happened and that no criminal charges have been brought. Los Angeles Times

Schools in need to get more LAUSD arts funding
Some LA Unified students in poorer schools are short-changed when it comes to art education, according to preliminary results from survey of principals. KPCC

What if education reform got it all wrong in the first place?
It’s been just over 30 years since war was declared on America’s public schools. Pacific Standard

New funding law creates disparity among low-income schools
There are 200,000 high-need students in 677 schools throughout the state who don’t draw maximum dollars under the formula. Ed Source

School Medicaid claims rejected again
Federal administrators of a school-based Medicaid program appeared this week to issue a final rejection of some $460 million in claims. SI&A Cabinet Report

Morning Read: LA kindergarteners prepping for college

East LA Kindergarten Students Receive College Admission Certificates
Kindergarten students received college admission certificates Tuesday through a program that aims to promote successful educational outcomes. CBS Los Angeles

Boys’ basketball: No trainer at playoff game for hurt Fairfax player
There are only a few schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District with athletic trainers. Los Angeles Times

Teachers at impasse with SD Unified
Contract talks stall over salaries and class sizes. U-T San Diego

From 2,219 to a trickle, pink-slip season slows for Orange County’s teachers
Unlike in previous nerve-wracking years, Orange County’s 28 school districts issued just a smattering of layoff notices. Orange County Register

School transit funding back on the front burner
The cost of bussing students to school – and the amount the state contributes to that effort – is expected back in the legislative spotlight today. SI&A Cabinet Report

Legislative debate brews over ‘parent trigger’ bill
For the second year, a parent trigger bill is up for debate in the Tennessee legislature. Tennessee Chalkbeat


Morning Read: Principal survey shows LAUSD arts ed broken

LAUSD data shows art students can’t always progress
Los Angeles Unified’s feeder school system is broken when it comes to arts education, a survey of school principals reveals. KPCC

Venice High assault arrests stun students, parents; 11th teen arrested
Officers arrested an 11th Venice High School student Monday in connection with alleged sex crimes that came to light last week. Los Angeles Times

Trial to begin for LAUSD teacher accused of fatally stabbing wife
The trial for a Los Angeles Unified School District teacher accused of killing his wife in 2013 was scheduled to begin Tuesday. CBS Los Angeles

Bill seeks to curb lawsuits over physical education minutes
Three of the largest districts in the state are supporting a new bill they believe will curtail litigation in the future. Ed Source

Closing arguments begin in test cheating trial of 12 Atlanta educators
After more than five years of controversy and five months of testimony, a prosecutor used seven words on Monday to recap the accusations. New York Times

The Waltons buy a school district and a state board of education
Who knew that being a billionaire would enable you and your family to buy an entire school district and even the state board of education? Diane Ravitch’s blog

Morning Read: Efforts underway for Alliance teachers to join UTLA

L.A. teachers launch union drive at Alliance charter schools
Teachers at the largest charter school organization in LA have launched a drive to unionize. Los Angeles Times

School reserve cap could harm long-term capital projects
Sources said last week that school administrator and finance groups, seeking a repeal of the reserve cap, have met with administration officials. SI&A Cabinet Report

State’s choice of testing contractor disputed
Board members voted unanimously to approve Educational Testing Service’s contract. Ed Source

Big money arrived too late for L.A. election debate
The DWP union gave a $25,000 donation at the last minute, when it was too late to become an issue for voters. Los Angeles Times

Is the future of education teacher-robots bumping into walls?
“I like driving it around and feeling like I am in the school,” an online teacher said. The Hechinger Report

Principal: How Common Core testing hurts disadvantaged students
This is the third in a continuing series of letters between two award-winning school principals. Washington Post

Morning Read: Teacher layoffs up this year in state

California teacher layoffs up slightly this year
Layoffs are up slightly this year from last. But they’re overwhelmingly lower than during the recession. Capital Pubic Radio

Fourth-grade teacher at LA School arrested, suspected of child abuse
Thelmo Garcia, a fourth-grade teacher at Rosewood Elementary School, on Croft Avenue, was arrested off campus Wednesday. NBC Los Angeles

New Boston superintendent gets 5-year contract with $257,00 starting salary
The Boston School Committee unanimously approved a five-year contract Wednesday night. WBUR

Man charged after boy, 9, brings loaded handgun to Tarzana school
A Canoga Park man faces jail time after a 9-year-old boy brought a semi-automatic handgun to a Tarzana elementary school last week. Los Angeles Daily News

Commentary: Why the Smarter Balanced math test is fatally flawed
If the results are disappointing, who should shoulder the blame—the students, their teachers, the administrators, the standards? Ed Surge

Morning Read: LAUSD drops effort to close 3 Magnolia charters

L.A. Unified ends effort to close embattled charter schools
LAUSD has dropped efforts to shut down three campuses operated by an embattled charter school chain. Los Angeles Times

SBE OKs rubric format but what to measure?
The Board of Education approved the design of a new tool that will be used to measure how well schools are educating students. SI&A Cabinet Report

Why progress on No Child Left Behind rewrite may not be a good sign
There are reports on Capitol Hill that some progress is being made on the rewrite of No Child Left Behind. Washington Post

Commentary: Common Core ignores underprivileged students 
If only every child in America grew up in a financially secure home and had access to enriching activities and an excellent pre-school. The Hechinger Report

Why some schools serve local food and others can’t (or won’t)
But buying local got easier with federal legislation in 2008, and then again in 2010. National Public Radio

Morning Read: State vs. Feds, Brown vs. Obama on testing

CA vs. feds on student testing back in play
State officials acknowledged Tuesday sidetracking a request to be excused from federal accountability mandates. SI&A Cabinet Report

For parents, a new way to view test scores
The vocabulary has changed, and so have the numbers and the format for state testing. Ed Source

Proposal to reopen abandoned campus in Woodland Hills has some reeling
A proposal to reopen an abandoned campus in the San Fernando Valley that would serve 500 high school students has some residents upset. CBS Los Angeles

Beverly Hills school board president steps down following arrest
The president of the Beverly Hills Unified school board “stepped down temporarily” following his arrest for allegedly pushing a female neighbor to the ground. Patch

Alton F. Ballard, Tuskegee Airman and LAUSD teacher, dead at 94
After leaving the military, he was an elementary school teacher and assistant principal in the Los Angeles Unified School District. City News Service

Here’s proof that L.A. is one of America’s worst-run cities
The website WalletHub analyzed how efficiently 65 major U.S. cities spend taxpayers’ money on education, police and parks and recreation. LA Weekly

Morning Read: Next year in LAUSD, red (ink) is the new black

LAUSD budget to end year in black; next year’s outlook cloudy
Revenue projections suggest a more positive outlook this school year than next for LAUSD. KPCC

One in three California students reported being bullied
One in three California middle school and high school students reported having been harassed or bullied at least once in the previous year. Ed Source

Parents take extreme steps to keep their kids from the unvaccinated
The fierce debate over childhood vaccines is prompting some parents to take extreme measures. Los Angeles Times

Jaime Escalante exhibit opens with former students, son in attendance
The show features photos, awards, plaques, teaching tools and videos of the accomplished educator, who died in 2010. Los Angeles Daily News

Beverly Hills Unified, former employee charging corruption, greed
A project management company that had a contract to upgrade Beverly Hills Unified facilities is entitled to up to $22.7 million in damages, an attorney said. Patch

Morning Read: Districts look to roll back lifetime health coverage

Health benefits are a promise school districts find hard to keep
California school districts once viewed lifetime healthcare coverage for employees as a cheap alternative to pay raises. Los Angeles Times

Task force unveils plan to overhaul special education
A statewide task force unveiled Friday a 222-page plan to dramatically improve education for students with disabilities. Ed Source

Canoga Park HS withdraws petition to break away from LAUSD
Days before a vote that would have allowed the school to leave Los Angeles Unified after 100 years, backers pulled their petition. Los Angeles Daily News

Plans to reopen closed Woodland Hills ES campus opposed by neighbors
Neighbors of a closed elementary school want to stop plans by El Camino Real Charter High School to reopen the campus. Los Angeles Daily News

CA’s computer ed specialists, almost 30 years behind
The study required for teachers to gain the Computer Concept and Application Supplemental Authorization hasn’t changed in 30 years. SI&A Cabinet Report

Sen. Casey (PA) introduces bill to reduce school suspensions
Casey introduced a bill that could help keep tens of thousands of young people in the classroom and out of the juvenile justice system. Huffington Post

Morning Read: 7,000 children ordered deported with no hearing

7,000 immigrant children ordered deported without going to court
More than 7,000 immigrant children have been ordered deported without appearing in court since 2013, federal statistics show. Los Angeles Times

Preschools a microcosm of debate on measles vaccinations
Kindergarten classrooms and preschools have been pushed to the front lines as the national debate over vaccines grows. Los Angeles Times

Republicans’ bills would change teacher tenure, layoff laws
Assembly Republicans announced bills Wednesday that would change state laws that establish teacher tenure and a layoff system based on seniority. Ed Source

Schools on U.S. military bases adopting Common Core — but don’t call it that
Each year 40 percent of children living on U.S. military bases change schools. Will CommonCore ease their transition? The Hechinger Report

Why some parents are sitting kids out of tests
In a recent national poll, 60 percent of parents agreed there was too much emphasis on standardized testing in schools. National Public Radio

LAUSD students treated to free prom dresses, makeup tips
The Operation School Bell Prom day event provided prom dresses, shoes, jewelry and even makeup tips to selected girls from 17 LAUSD schools. CBS Los Angeles

Morning Read: UTLA may support Schmerelson in District 3

Teachers union will consider supporting Galatzan’s opponent in runoff
UTLA President Alex Caputo-Pearl said he’s encouraged by Galatzan’s failure to claim an outright victory in Tuesday’s primary. Los Angeles Daily News

Election sets stage for L.A. Unified battle
After Tuesday’s election, UTLA is facing new challenges and a potent adversary. Los Angeles Times

John Mockler dies at 73; architect of California school funding law
Called a guru of public school finance, Mockler held a number of influential posts. Los Angeles Times

Financial health of L.A. County schools is improving, report finds
The number of school districts in California reporting precarious financial conditions is continuing to decline. City News Service

Bill would steer extra revenue to Common Core implementation
The bill would allot $900 million of the anticipated additional money to districts to spend on technology, materials, and Common Core training. Ed Source

GOP targets teacher training as a state priority
A new state priority promoting professional training for teachers would be added to the list of standards school districts must measure up to under a new proposal. SI&A Cabinet Report

Morning Read: Charter amendments to align elections appear to pass

1 City Council race headed to runoff; charter amendments appear to pass
Two charter amendments intended to reverse the low turnout trend appeared victorious Tuesday evening. Los Angeles Times

High school basketball team reinstated after wearing pink
A panel has reinstated the Narbonne girls basketball team, but the coach was suspended for the remainder of the season. NBC Los Angeles

Bill would require ‘breakfast after the bell’ at more schools
Taking aim at the effect of hunger on students’ ability to learn, two California legislators announced Tuesday a bill that would require more schools to provide breakfast after the start of school. Ed Source

Number crunch defines first part of the LCAP rubric
Numerical data on a wide array of topics would serve as the centerpiece of a performance rubric for analyzing how well schools are using new state money to educate students. SI&A Cabinet Report

School agenda bedevils Chicago mayor in race
It may be the education agenda that he proudly, defiantly and swiftly carried out that threatens Rahm Emanuel’s political future. New York Times

Morning Read: Will L.A. election date change help special interests?

Opponents of election date measures worry only special interests will benefit
Charter Amendment 1 and Charter Amendment 2 would only benefit deep-pocketed special interests, opponents say. City News Service

The Times’ L.A. city election ballot endorsements
Voters in Los Angeles head to the polls Tuesday. Los Angeles Times

LAUSD board president outpacing challengers in finances, endorsements
Vladovic is the only incumbent in Tuesday’s primary election who has attracted the support of an array of union groups and school reform advocates. KPCC

Narbonne girls basketball kicked out of playoffs for pink on uniforms
The Los Angeles City Section has bounced the Harbor City school team out of the playoffs. Los Angeles Times

New state preschool funding is having an impact
A once-empty preschool in south San Jose is now filled with 44 children. Ed Source

Commentary: L.A. school board expanding into ‘social justice’
The Los Angeles Unified school board is on a new “social justice” tack these day. Los Angeles Times

Morning Read: What will take the place of API score?

Moving beyond a single measure of a school
The State Board of Education is seizing the chance to redefine student achievement and reframe how schools are held accountable for performance. Ed Source

Editorial: Mayor Eric Garcetti’s silence on L.A. issues helps no one
Averse to controversy and hesitant to take sides, Garcetti has often avoided staking out positions on divisive issues over his 19-month tenure. Los Angeles Times

Grant to promote arts education
The U.S. Department of Education awarded LMU’s Family of Schools and LAUSD with a $1,165,629 grant. The Los Angeles Loyolan

History curriculum update delayed by interest groups
California has not revised its history and social studies standards since 1998. SI&A Cabinet Report

As Common Core Testing Is Ushered In, Parents and Students Opt Out
Almost every state has an “opt out” movement. New York Times

Contentious teacher-related policies moving from legislatures to the courts
The nation’s most contentious battles over the teaching profession are shifting from legislative arenas to the courts. The Washington Post

Morning Read: Charters, unions dominate LAUSD board elections

In LAUSD board election, it’s charter schools vs. labor unions 
Direct campaign donations from individual contributors make up 18 percent of the money spent in the LAUSD’s District 5 school board race. KPCC

Report: New Teacher Prep Rules ‘Too Stringent’
Proposed federal changes to teacher preparation requirements have generated numerous comments from education leaders and organizations. The Journal

Common Core’s unintended consequence?
More teachers write their own curricula. The Hechinger Report

Why Principals Matter
An eighth-grader was featured on the Humans of New York photo blog where he praised his principal as the most influential person in his life. The Atlantic

Three OC school districts forced to prove that they’re making time for PE
Three Orange County school districts must document that teachers are providing physical education instruction during the school day. Orange County Register

Morning Read: Charter group flexes muscle in LAUSD election

Charter school group is political force in L.A. Unified board election
California Charter Schools Assn. Advocates, a political action committee, has put its muscle into a race it considers crucial. Los Angeles Times

After recession cuts, LAUSD reconnects with community art groups
Los Angeles Unified’s arts education leaders took steps to renew long-dormant community partnerships with arts organizations Wednesday. KPCC

Starting early on college and career
Efforts to prepare students for college and careers are taking hold earlier and earlier, expanding beyond high school. Ed Source

LAUSD reopening libraries after recession closings
More than 200 Los Angeles Unified School District elementary school libraries have reopened in just two months, according to district officials. KPCC

Doubts raised about test for severely disabled
Some of the state’s most severely disabled students begin field testing an alternate academic performance assessment this spring. SI&A Cabinet Report

Morning Read: LAUSD could lose $782 million under federal bill

L.A. schools could lose $782 million under federal bill
Republican-led effort to revise a federal education law could slash $782 million for disadvantaged students in Los Angeles Unified over six years. Los Angeles Times

Jeff Bridges encourages eating breakfast at local schools
Elementary School students in Winnetka got a visit from Academy Award-winner Jeff Bridges. KAB7

High-schoolers’ excitement about voting is uplifting
In a city that hibernates through local elections, Miriam Antonio told me she couldn’t wait to vote next Tuesday. Los Angeles Times

Bid to move L.A. elections faces growing opposition from candidates
The campaign to combine Los Angeles’ elections with state and federal contests has been hailed by backers as a way to lift the city’s dismal turnout. Los Angeles Times

LA Unified’s teachers union faces test of organizing strength
The print shop below UTLA’s headquarters cranked out 7,500 signs for protestors to carry when they descend on downtown Thursday. Los Angeles Daily News

In LA, Missing Kindergarten Is A Big Deal
In Los Angeles, the nation’s second largest school district, kindergarten absence is a big problem. New England Public Radio

Morning Read: In defense of No Child Left Behind testing

Commentary: NCLB and testing help hold schools accountable
Even if the NCLB bathwater needs changing, our kids are not likely to learn more if schools and teachers are not held accountable. Los Angeles Times

New online training aims to ferret out child abuse cases
Public school employees can take their required annual training to spot child abuse or neglect online, Tom Torlakson announced Monday. KPCC

Deasy, iPads key issues in LAUSD school board campaigns
Los Angeles Unified’s troubled iPad project and former superintendent are framing discussions in the March 3 school board primary. Los Angeles Daily News

Schools’ reliance on suspension, expulsion isn’t necessary, report finds
The report also found evidence of huge ‘discipline gaps’ when it comes to suspension rates for minorities and students with disabilities. Christian Science Monitor

Bill would give live-in workers rights to area schools
The law governing school residency would be expanded to include children whose parent resides at least three days a week at their place of employment. SI&A Cabinet Report

More conflict over cutting federal role in education
Congress and the White House on Monday inched toward a confrontation over the federal role in education. New York Times

Morning Read: Task force wants big changes to special ed

Sweeping change set for special education services
A blue ribbon panel shared 44 specific recommendations aimed ultimately at improving academic outcomes for students with disabilities. SI&A Cabinet Report

Critics say EPA played dual role in recycled tire controversy
The EPA has terminated its longtime campaign to promote the use of recycled tires on artificial turf fields and playgrounds. San Francisco Chronicle

Expelled in preschool
Preschoolers are expelled at three times the rate of their older peers. The Hechinger Report

More students snub standardized exams
The backlash is kicking into high gear this spring as millions of students start taking new, more rigorous exams aligned with Common Core standards. Huffington Post

Infants to return to SaMo High School daycare after measles scare
More than a dozen infants exposed to a baby with measles at a Santa Monica day care center will be allowed to return to the facility Monday. CBS Los Angeles

Miramonte teacher resigns in advance of hearing over job
A teacher who became a figure in the Miramonte Elementary child abuse case resigned Friday from the Los Angeles Unified School District. Los Angeles Times