Morning Read: Obama calls for reduction in testing

Obama administration announces new testing guidelines
The Obama administration announced new guidelines toward standardized tests, saying kids spend too much time taking “unnecessary” exams in schools.
CNN, by Laurie Ure and Kevin Liptak

Families are choosing this L.A. school over privates and charters
As L.A. Unified’s enrollment shrinks, with tens of thousands of students fleeing to charter and private schools and to other areas, Porter Ranch reflects a reverse trend.
Los Angeles Times, by Teresa Watanabe

Commentary: How not to help English-language learners
A huge omnibus study of English-learner education in California faults the state for not having any rigorous effort to determine what works and what doesn’t.
By San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial Board

California students with dyslexia gain ground with new law
A new law requires schools to assess struggling readers specifically for dyslexia, the most prevalent learning disability in the U.S.
EdSource, by Jane Meredith Adams

District PIOs: Critical link between schools, community
Typically relegated to a behind-the-scenes role, a district communication officer serves an important position in bridging public schools with the community.
Cabinet Report, by Alisha Kirby

Fair offers students of color a better shot at prep school dreams
Dozens of well-dressed Southern California middle-schoolers attended a fair at Occidental College to hone their interviewing skills.
Los Angeles Times, by Tony Barboza

Morning Read: Speculating on who the next LA Unified leader could be

Who might head LA Unified after Cortines?
What type of person would the next superintendent be? And who would want a job that presents almost insurmountable challenges?
Los Angeles Times, by Howard Blume

DOE to schools: You must teach all students, regardless of legal status
The Edu­ca­tion De­part­ment just is­sued a subtle re­mind­er to edu­cat­ors across the coun­try: Re­gard­less of cit­izen­ship or im­mig­ra­tion status, all stu­dents are leg­ally en­titled to edu­ca­tion in the United States.
National Journal, by Emily DeRuy

Report calls for big changes in educating state’s English learners
Researchers studying a group of California school districts are highly critical of the state’s system for providing services to English language learners.
EdSource, by John Fensterwald

When students become patients, privacy suffers
Weaknesses in state and federal laws have left patient privacy vulnerable when students receive medical treatment on campus.
Chronicle of Higher Education/ProPublica, by Charles Ornstein

Professors, students gather to talk issues affecting undocumented students
Students, academics, and community organizers will gather Friday, Oct. 23, at UC Riverside to discuss issues affecting undocumented students in higher education.
Riverside Press-Enterprise, by Alejandra Molina

Pre-K literacy key to English language learner reclassification, study finds
English language-learners who enter kindergarten with a basic grasp of academic language are more likely over time to be reclassified as former ELLs.
Education Week, by Corey Mitchell

LAUSD allocates $5M to prepare schools for El Nino
The Los Angeles Unified School District has allocated $5 million to make necessary school repairs in preparation for El Nino.
ABC-7, by Adrienne Bankert

Morning Read: Charters post strong scores for low-income students

Charters’ clout grows as top performer to disadvantaged
Half of the top-performing schools serving low-income students in California are charters, according to a new analysis of test scores.
Cabinet Report, by Kimberly Beltran

Principal churn highlights tension in in San Diego school district
Since San Diego Unified Superintendent Cindy Marten took over in 2013, about half of all principals have retired, transferred or moved to “special assignments.”
Voice of San Diego, by Mario Koran

Meet the teacher lobby behind Clinton that’s not the teachers union
These two teachers want to influence education policy, and they want Hillary Clinton to hear from more than just unions or reformers.
Los Angeles Times, by Joy Resmovits

S.F. teachers get help living in city under ambitious plan
Mayor Ed Lee and the San Francisco Unified School District announced Wednesday they plan to build a 100-unit housing complex solely for public school teachers.
San Francisco Chronicle, by Emily Green and Heather Knight

S.F. principal causes controversy after delaying results of student election
The winners did not reflect the school’s diverse student body.
Associated Press, by Sudhin Thanawala

For Kevin Johnson, Sacramento mayor, abuse claims resurface
Johnson suggested that the attacks against him were being orchestrated by political opponents, starting with the teachers’ unions.
New York Times, by Adam Nagourney

Morning Read: Friedrichs v. CTA, a threat to union dues — and power

Friedrichs v. CTA: What you need to know about challenge to union dues
The lawsuit challenges the authority of the CTA and other public-employee unions to collect mandatory fees, a main source of their income and, by extension, their power.
EdSource, by John Fensterwald

More than half of LGBT students have felt unsafe at school
LGBT students report fewer than half of these instances to family members or staff.
Los Angeles Times, by Sonali Kohli

Ex-Pacoima teacher who molested students back in court
The former third-grade teacher at Telfair Elementary School is serving a 25-year sentence imposed on him in 2012.
My News LA

Should we turn high school into college?
A low-income school district in Texas wants to prove all of its students can succeed in high school and college at the same time.
Hechinger Report, by Sarah Butrymowitz

Poll: Voters increasingly support early education investments
A national poll found that a majority of bipartisan voters would positively view a presidential candidate who supports improving federally funded early education.
EdSource, by Sarah Tully

Assessment: 2% of Fresno Unified students college ready
Data projects about 98 percent of Fresno Unified students will need to take remedial courses once they get to college if they don’t catch up their senior year.
Fresno Bee, by Mackenzie Mays

Morning Read: HS graduation rate increases in California

California’s 2013-14 grad rate increased from year before
The state’s graduation rate mirrored the previously announced national average of 81 percent.
EdSource, by Theresa Harrington

Final budget report notes big school spending upturn
The Proposition 98 minimum school funding guarantee has jumped almost 32 percent from the depth of the recession to surpass $68.4 billion for the 2015-16 fiscal year.
Cabinet Report, by Tom Chorneau

Keeping black men in front of the class
Of all the teachers in the U.S., only 2 percent are black and male. That news is bad enough. But it gets worse: Many of these men are leaving the profession.
NPR, by Elissa Nadworny

High-school diploma options multiply, but may not help for college success
For too many students, high-school diplomas are “tickets to nowhere” that offer “false assurances” that graduates are ready for college or a job, according to a report.
The Chronicle of Higher Education, by Katherine Mangan

Robots that teach: Using sphero in class
The company that inspired Star Wars’ BB-8 droid has already won the hearts and minds of K–12 students.
Ed Tech Magazine, by Sam Patterson

The Thresholds of Violence: How school shootings catch on
School shootings mostly involve young white men. And, not surprisingly, given the ready availability of firearms in the United States, the phenomenon is overwhelmingly American. But, beyond those facts, the great puzzle is how little school shooters fit any kind of pattern.
New Yorker, by Malcolm Gladwell

Morning Read: More districts seek alternatives to suspensions

Schools across US find alternatives to suspending students
The school districts in New York, Los Angeles and Denver are just some of those that have moved away from discipline policies that relied heavily on suspensions.
Associated Press, by Jamie Stengel

How Fresno Unified bond measure caught the eye of investigators
Critics say what Fresno Unified did was a blatant misuse of an exception a law that was intended to help poor school districts.
Fresno Bee, by Craig Kohlruss

For two sharply divided Manhattan schools, an uncertain path to integration
P.S. 191 and 199 are neighbors with glaring disparities. Competing plans could help integrate the schools, but not everyone is on board.
Chalkbeat New York, by Patrick Wall

LCAP reviews continue without evaluation tool
County offices of education are limited to using a simple, three-question criteria to determine adequacy of the Local Control Accountability Plans.
Cabinet Report, by Tom Chorneau

Are turnaround districts the answer for America’s worst schools?
State-run school districts have a shaky track record, but more are on the way.
Hechinger Report, by Emmanuel Felton

Morning Read: Can students learn the Common Core through gaming?

Can students learn the Common Core through gaming?
Teachers are increasingly turning to video games in class, but does that work with Common Core?
The Hechinger Report, by Emmanuel Felton

The turnaround story at Compton’s schools
How has Compton Unified School District become one of the nation’s great education turnaround stories?
Los Angeles Sentinel

Trial continues for Pacoima elementary teacher accused of molesting boys
One of two boys sexually molested by a Pacoima elementary school teacher and who are now suing Los Angeles Unified told a jury Thursday that his assailant used candy to lure him into his trust.
My News LA/ City News Service

Great California Shakeout helps students prepare for ‘The Big One’
Millions of students across California took part in the largest earthquake drill on Thursday at 10:15 a.m.
Los Angeles Daily News, by Claudia S. Palma

LA students to learn about Hollywood jobs at Careers in Film Summit
Students from the Los Angeles and Compton Unified School Districts will learn what it’s like to work in Hollywood at the first Careers in Film Summit held on Saturday.
Associated Press

Obama announces education commitments for Latino students
President Barack Obama is announcing some $335 million in commitments from various groups to expand educational opportunities for Latino students.

State will ‘run out of college graduates’ to meet future economic needs
In just 15 years – by 2030 – the state will face a shortfall of about 1.1 million college graduates needed to fill a range of jobs in California.
EdSource, by Theresa Harrington

Morning Read: LAUSD wins grant to develop ‘learning mindsets’

Long Beach, Los Angeles win grants to develop ‘learning mindsets’
Both districts have been systematically developing learning or “growth” mindsets, which are the skills that teach students how to think and learn.
EdSource, by John Fensterwald

How an LAUSD school is providing cleaner air for its students
Students at Murchison Street Elementary School in Boyle Heights are breathing cleaner air.
City News Service

Feds ready new regs on teacher prep programs
Expectations are that Arne Duncan will release a controversial rewrite of regulations governing teacher preparation programs before leaving office.
Cabinet Report, by Tom Chorneau

Sex Ed lesson: ‘Yes means yes,’ but it’s tricky
With Gov. Jerry Brown’s signature, California became the first state to require that all high school health education classes give lessons on affirmative consent.
New York Times, by Jennifer Medina

CEQA ruling upends school closure plans
A recent court decision in a case aimed at overturning the closure of two schools in California should serve as a warning to other districts, according to lawyers.
Cabinet Report, by by Alisha Kirby

Tennessee county closes schools, cites Obamacare as reason
Classes in a small, financially struggling school district in northern Tennessee have been canceled until officials can find a way to generate more revenue.
Associated Press

Morning Read: Brown vetoes ethnic studies and saves for-profit charters

California Gov. Jerry Brown vetoes ethnic studies bill
The measure would have directed the California Department of Education to form an advisory panel to develop the curriculum.
Los Angeles Times, by Stephen Ceasar

A roundup of Gov. Brown’s actions on key education bills
Brown vetoed AB 787, which would have banned the operation of charter schools by for-profit corporations, saying that the bill’s author hadn’t made a strong enough case.
EdSource, by EdSource staff

With Exit Exam scrapped, search for now-qualified graduates is on
School officials are scrambling to hand out thousands of diplomas to former students, many of whom gave up on graduating and don’t realize they’re now eligible.
San Francisco Chronicle, by Jill Tucker

Barbara Byrd-Bennett due in court today; guilty plea expected
Former Chicago Public Schools CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett is expected to plead guilty today in an expensive kickback scheme.
WGN, by Nancy Loo

Meet the mind-reading robo tutor in the sky
Is Knewton really any different from other over-hyped “adaptive learning” platforms that have struggled mightily to become a pedagogic staple?
NPR, Eric Westervelt

Morning Read: Some districts ignoring state LCFF guidelines

Brown’s school budget reform embraced, exploited
Many schools are investing in buildings with their LCFF dollars and are trying to divert funds to teacher salaries and ignoring their poorest students.
San Jose Mercury News, by Sharon Noguchi

Charter school battle heats up
As these privately run, publicly funded schools expand, traditional ones are feeling threatened.
Wall Street Journal, by Jennifer Levitz

Governor vetoes bill setting timetable for expansion of preschool
A bill that he said “sets an arbitrary deadline, contingent on a sufficient appropriation, is unnecessary.”
EdSource, By Louis Freedberg and Sarah Tully

Will the Obama administration now focus on desegregating schools?
Arne Duncan will step down soon as education secretary and John King will take over. What will change?
Washington Post, by Emma Brown

A technology team from Facebook works to serve classroom teachers
At a California school, 20 Facebook employees built a software program that could eventually be used in any public school that wants it — free.
Hechinger Report, by Nichole Dobo

Parents, do you know what your kids are actually doing in class?
Parents at a school in Reseda for an annual fund-raiser where teachers gave current and prospective parents a taste of what their kids experience in class.
Los Angeles Times, by Sonali Kohli

Morning Read: Trial begins to decide amont LAUSD owes molested boys

Trial over amount sexually molested boys should get from LAUSD underway
LA Unified should be ordered to pay a large sum to two students who were sexually molested by their teacher while attending a Pacoima elementary school.
City News Service, by Bill Hetherman

Out-of-state billionaires spending in Louisiana board of ed elections
The billionaires helping are Eli Broad, the California-based housing magnate who is now leading an attempt to send half of Los Angeles’s public school students to charter schools.
Washington Post Blog, by Valerie Strauss

Commentary: Preschool for all is no panacea, California
Providing access to preschool for the state’s low-income children may sound like an obviously good idea. But the Preschool for All Act is the wrong way to give kids a boost.
Los Angeles Times, by Katharine B. Stevens

Commentary: Quality preschool will boost California’s children
Yes, quality early education makes a difference, and there is vast research to prove it. Gov. Jerry Brown should sign Assembly Bill 47 to expand preschool in California.
The Sacramento Bee, by Deborah Kong

Cool Kid Rogelio Justo inspiring others with musical talent
Student musician Rogelio Justo is a volunteer and mentor with children at Youth Orchestra Los Angeles.
KABC-TV, by Danny Romero

LAUSD Magnet Programs: Now’s the time to consider
Los Angeles residents have a dazzling array of choices when it comes to Kindergarten through 12th grade education and the deadline is Nov. 13.
Larchmont Buzz, by Elizabeth Fuller


Morning Read: LAUSD rehires lawyer dismissed over teen sex case

LAUSD brings back lawyer who said student could consent sex with teacher
The district announced last November that it would sever ties with the attorney, W. Keith Wyatt. It has now rehired his firm for several cases.
Los Angeles Times, by Teresa Watanabe

New law calls for modernized role of school counselors
The law comes as schools and districts not only in California but across the nation struggle to provide even meager access to academic counselors.
Cabinet Report, by Kimberly Beltran

Eli Broad and the end of public education as we know it
If there were still any doubt about Eli Broad’s desire to gut traditional public education, it has been erased.
Capital and Main, by Marc Haefele

Governor signs bill allowing diplomas for students who failed exit exam
Senate Bill 172 will require school districts to award diplomas to students who met every other graduation target but failed the exit exam.
EdSource, by Fermin Leal and Theresa Harrington

Board OKs settlement over principal who hypnotized students
The settlement closes a bizarre, yearslong case that began after a former principal admitted he hypnotized dozens of students. Several committed suicide shortly after.
Sarasota Herald-Tribune, by Shelby Webb

In exit exam limbo: Telesis Radford
If Telesis Radford scored two points higher on the math portion of the California High School Exit Exam, the last nine years of her life may have turned out very differently.
EdSource, by Matt Levin and Tiffany Lew

Morning Read: Thousands of retroactive diplomas may be coming

California poised to grant high school diplomas retroactively
The state of California is poised to give between 40,000 and 150,000 diplomas to former students who failed to pass the California High School Exit Exam, or CAHSEE.
EdSource, by Louis Freedberg

Parents of teen killed outside East L.A. middle school sue LAUSD
Steven Cruz was stabbed about 3 p.m. Jan. 23 outside Griffith Middle School just as classes were being dismissed for the day. MyNewsLA, by Hillary Jackson

Report highlights education inequities in nine California cities
The report was released Wednesday by the University of Washington’s Center on Reinventing Public Education.
EdSource, by Theresa Harrington

Updating key things new teachers should know and do
Teaching Performance Expectations, or TPEs, were first developed in 2001 and have been amended from time to time since.
Cabinet Report, by Tom Chorneau

Test scores under Common Core show that ‘proficient’ varies by state
Ohio seems to have taken a page from Lake Wobegon, where all the children are above average.
New York Times, by Motoko Rich

California’s Aspire charter network gets a blended-learning boost 
Aspire Public Schools announced last week that the network will expand its blended learning program to 15 of its 38 schools.
Hechinger Report, by Nichole Dobo

Morning Read: Brown, Duncan were often at odds

Jerry Brown, Arne Duncan had deep, long-standing disagreements
The governor of a solidly Democratic state and a Democratic president’s point man on education were like two ships colliding in a sea of policy disagreements.
EdSource, by John Fensterwald

Girls and boys, the lesson today is how to start your company
As South Bay communities increasingly become a sun-kissed complement to Silicon Valley, startup culture is making its way into some L.A. schools’ curricula, too.
Los Angeles Times, by Sonali Kohli

Fallout from lower test scores challenges some states
If debate over the adoption of the Common Core State Standards has subsided, the new struggle is how to deal with the fallout when student test scores plunge.
Cabinet Report, by Tom Chorneau

Texas mother teaches textbook company a lesson on accuracy
Texas textbooks — and how they address aspects of history, science, politics and other subjects — have been a source of controversy for years.
New York Times, by Manny Fernandez and Christine Hauser

Would any college reject President Obama’s daughter?
Admission decisions rest largely on grades, test scores, extra-curricular activities and “the hook.” What’s the hook? Something that distinguishes you from everybody else.
Washington Post, by Valerie Strauss

Duncan’s departure illustrates national divide over education
Duncan’s announcement on Friday that he plans to step down later this year was greeted by a range of reactions.
Washington Post, by Emma Brown and Lyndsey Layton

Morning Read: Delayed test results frustrating parents, educators

Late parent notification of test results frustrates some educators
The California Department of Education said the delays were due in part to a desire to ship all the reports at once. EdSource, by Theresa Harrington 

Obama vs. teachers unions: It’s still on
Unions wanted Obama to fire Arne Duncan. They got John King instead. Politico, by Michael Grunwald

What Arne Duncan did to American education and whether it will last
During his tenure, one of the longest in President Barack Obama’s cabinet, Duncan made a deep mark on U.S. schools. Hechinger Report, by Ariana Skibell

When the incoming Education secretary met former gang members
On a hot day in August, John King arrived in Los Angeles to better understand gangs. LA Times, by Joy Resmovits

How much time should kids spend with screens?
The current recommendation is that parents monitor and limit their children’s screen time, but there’s no magic number. LA Times, by Jessica Roy

‘They don’t allow failure’: In custom classrooms, at-risk students thrive
At a NYC high school, a technique called blended learning replaces a portion of traditional face-to-face instruction with online learning. PBS, by Hari Sreevivasan

Morning Read: Brown approves ‘yes means yes’ for high schools

Governor approves ‘yes means yes’ sexual education for high schools
Jerry Brown approved legislation making California the first state in the nation to bring lessons about sexual consent required at many colleges into high schools. Associated Press, by Lisa Leff

How the Department of Education’s top salaries stack up
New York Department of Education’s top earners are compared to LAUSD and other school districts. NY Chalkbeat, by Geoff Decker

NASA picks STEM partners to get $42M in education cash
The agency selected 27 science organizations, museums and universities to receive a chunk of the $42 million to expand their science program for children of all ages. FedScoop, by Corinne Lestch

Malibu issues command Santa Monica school board attention 
The school board will consider making another tweak to the school district’s agreement with the state Department of Toxic Substances Control. Santa Monica Daily Press, by Jeff Goodman

The story behind the test: Let’s gear up, not give up
Schools simply don’t have adequate resources to make this monumental shift to deeper learning that Common Core demands. Huffington Post, by Ama Nyamekye

LAUSD strives to implement anti-sexting campaign, sex education
Independent charter schools are required only to meet California Department of Education (CDE) standards, which do not require schools to teach sex education. Park LaBrea News, by Jessie Lingenfelter

Morning Read: Villaraigosa likes charter expansion plan

Former L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa endorses charter expansion effort
“I would support any effort to expand high-quality education,” Villaraigosa said. “So I could certainly support that.” Los Angeles Times, by Howard Blume

California denied renewal of federal funding for charter schools
This will be the first time California, the state with the largest number of charters, has been shut out of federal funding in two decades. EdSource, by John Fensterwald

Judge may allow lawsuit over alleged 1999 Highland Park molestation
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Richard Fruin said he wanted to take the case under submission before making a final ruling. City News Service

This high school makes every student take AP classes
Los Angeles Unified has joined a number of districts nationwide that are pushing to open access to AP classes. Los Angeles Times, by Sonali Kohli

Lawsuit says California budget violates school funding guarantee
California school boards want a judge to force changes to the June state budget that would provide more money for schools. Sacramento Bee, by Jim Miller

Clinton endorsement divides teachers union
State officials and rank-and-file members plan to protest upcoming vote to endorse Hillary Clinton. Politico, by Annie Karni

Morning Read: Anti-vaxxers want CA constitutional amendment

California vaccine law foes announce new drive for ballot measure
The new initiative was announced by a group that has been seeking to recall some lawmakers who recently approved a new vaccination law. Los Angeles Times

Dan Walters: Charter schools are new front in old war
The epic war between California’s education establishment and a loose coalition of school reform and civil rights groups rages on many fronts. Napa Valley Register

Education reformer turns sights on Santa Ana
Caprice Young helped expand district charters during her time on the LA Unified school board. Orange County Register

The Boehner effect and No Child Left Behind
House Speaker John A. Boehner’s decision to resign complicates the fragile effort between House and Senate negotiators. Washington Post

Uncertainty discovered over college readiness
A study found that teachers are concerned about choosing the best instructional techniques for Common Core. Cabinet Report

Why do more than half of principals quit after five years?
The new generation of principals, especially those who work in urban schools, have become far more involved with what happens in the classroom. Hechinger Report

Morning Read: Opt-out movement on tests gaining traction

Experts predict the opt-out movement will get some of what it wants
With up to 80 percent of students refusing to take federally mandated tests, policymakers are reviewing the national opt-out movement. Hechinger Report

How my time at a “failing” high school blew me away
With the implementation of state standards, many public schools have wound up with their curricula painfully narrowed. Salon

The ‘grand experiment’ behind NYC schools’ new computer science program
New York City schools are embarking on a bold new computer science program, set to reach all of its public schools by 2025. EdTech

Achievement gap an ‘indicator that right strategies are not being used’
Michael Fullan is working closely with California school districts  to implement what he calls the “right drivers for whole system reform.” EdSource

Why ‘homework gap’ may pave way for universal Internet access in schools
As schools embrace technology, FCC regulators say many low-income students don’t have Internet access at home. Now Congress steps in. Christian Science Monitor

LittleBits opens up access to kits in educational settings
LittleBits Education is launching to enhance the use of its products for schools and libraries. The Journal

Morning Read: Report finds child poverty does not improve in CA

Report: Economy improves, but not for California’s poor kids
In 24 states, the lot of poor children did improve slightly between 2013 and 2014, but in California, progress has been stagnant. KPCC

Orange County says special ed students must comply with vaccination law
Many parents who opposed the new vaccination law believed that special education students would be exempt because of language in the bill. EdSource

Gov. Brown must decide fate of exit exam, other key ed bills
Gov. Jerry Brown has until Oct. 11 to sign or veto legislation that the Legislature passed before heading home last month. EdSource

All D.C. public school students will learn to ride a bike in second grade
Second-grade students at Walker-Jones Education Campus this week are learning a new alphabet: The ABC’s of bike safety. Washington Post

Survey: Late nights online affecting behavior and academic performance
Stop Procrastinating, a company that offers site blocking and filtering software, conducted the survey of 3,000 parents of children aged 12 to 15. The Journal

New NCES study examines black-white achievement gap
The report explores the black-white achievement gap as it relates to a school’s demographic composition. Yahoo