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Morning Read: City sets timeline for election to fill L.A. school board seat — and 6 more must-reads

LA School Report | September 24, 2018

Good morning! 7 must-reads on the education beat this morning:

City sets timeline for election to fill L.A. school board seat

The Los Angeles City Council has formally approved a March 5 special election to fill a vacancy on the Board of Education. If no candidate wins a majority, a runoff would be held between the top two finishers on May 14. The action taken Friday was largely a formality because the school board had requested this timetable. The seat opened up when Ref Rodriguez resigned in July, after pleading guilty to political money-laundering charges.

The first date for potential candidates to pay attention to is Oct. 6. That’s the last day aspiring board members have to begin living within the boundaries of District 5, which includes neighborhoods north of downtown and reaches into the cities of southeast L.A. County. The Los Angeles Unified School District includes areas outside of the city of Los Angeles and much of this territory is part of District 5. The next dates of note are Nov. 5 to 13, when candidates must file to run. Then, they must gather signatures for petitions in support of their bid for office. These petitions must be filed by Dec. 5. By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times

Prison officers’ union jumps into race for schools chief, CALmatters

Kids skip school in alarm-bell numbers. A simple solution: Make sure their parents know, Los Angeles Times

5 things to know about the education funding compromise moving through Congress, The 74

San Francisco schools giving teachers raises without revenue to pay for them, San Francisco Chronicle

Newsom’s ‘cradle-to-career’ education pledge will require sweeping changes in California, EdSource

WATCH: Newly crowned homecoming queen kicks game-winning field goal for her football team, The 74

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See previous morning roundups below:

THURSDAY, SEPT. 20: LAUSD leader wants to ‘manage out’ bad teachers

LAUSD’s Leader Wants To ‘Manage Out’ Bad Teachers. But Does The District Know Which Ones Are Bad?

Los Angeles Unified School District Superintendent Austin Beutner said last week that it’s time to find a way to “manage ineffective teachers out” of the district’s classrooms. Figuring out how to remove those teachers will be difficult enough for district administrators already engaged in high-stakes contract negotiations with the teachers union. But Beutner’s team may need to tackle a different challenge first: identifying precisely which teachers are “ineffective.” In taking on that task, the superintendent could reignite a years-long fight over how teachers are evaluated and how those evaluations are used. By Kyle Stokes, LAist

Investigation: Hefty Fines, Long Suspensions, but Rarely Losing Your State License: Documents Show What Happens to NYC Teachers After They’re Disciplined, The 74

Vladovic Says LAUSD Should Apologize To Parents For Destroying Kids’ Lives By Keeping Ineffective Teachers, Speak UP

California has under-funded schools by $22 billion, report saysSan Diego Union-Tribune

For some teachers, Kavanaugh’s nomination is a civics lesson for the #MeToo eraLos Angeles Times

Remedial Classes Aren’t Working In Community Colleges — And Now They’re About To Be CanceledLAist

 Several California Schools Recognized as Some of the Healthiest in the CountryNBC Los Angeles


WEDNESDAY, SEPT. 19: California still suspending black and Native American students way more than whites

California still suspending black and Native American students way more than whites

California has made strides to reduce student suspensions for minor classroom disruptions, but a new study concludes the state still has not gone far enough — and in some districts, pernicious disparities remain. Statewide, school districts in 2017 issued some 381,845 suspensions that resulted in an estimated 763,690 missed days of instruction, according to the Center for Civil Rights Remedies at UCLA. The number of days lost for minor infractions categorized as “defiance and disruption” has fallen since 2011, but reform advocates say the decline has begun to taper off. The report comes as Gov. Jerry Brown considers whether to sign a bill that would ban suspensions for so-called “willful defiance” in all grades. By Michael Finch II, Sacramento Bee

School-based health care a low priority in California, EdSource

California governor signs bill that could yield millions for Oakland and Inglewood schools, EdSource

Study: Grade Inflation More Prevalent at Wealthy Schools, Where Parents Have Greater Ability to Game the System, The 74

The Power of the Supreme Court Inside America’s Schools, The New York Times

A benefit of free lunch for all: fewer students get repeatedly suspended, new study suggests, Chalkbeat

Senate Passes Spending Bill to Increase Funding for Several Education Programs, Politics K-12


TUESDAY, SEPT. 18: California students enter school far behind national peers and never recover

California children enter school unprepared and never catch up, landmark research finds

When students enter school in California, they learn at a pace on par with — if not better than — those in other states. The problem is that they arrive far behind their national peers, and they never catch up. This conclusion, from a sweeping research project aimed at charting future education policy, focuses new attention on what is often overlooked: infant and toddler care, parenting skills, preschool and early childhood education. The researchers argue that if California wants to improve student achievement in schools, it has to start much earlier so that children are prepared when they show up for kindergarten. By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times

Spending on California schools chief race expected to set records again, EdSource

Big gap in where students are and where they need to be, Modesto Bee

Editorial | Study shows education establishment doesn’t want to know what works, San Diego Union Tribune

‘Instead of fighting each other, we should be fighting together to increase funding for our students,’ LAUSD superintendent says, SpeakUP

The voucher program we really need is not for school — it’s for after, Hechinger Report

Opioid Epidemic Raising Special Education Concerns, Education Week 

Think year-round school calendars increase achievement? Think again., USA Today

Investigation: Disciplinary Hearing Records Reveal Disturbing, Criminal, Sometimes Violent Behavior By NYC’s Most Egregious Teachers, The 74

MONDAY, SEPT 17: Project finds numerous reforms needed to reach California’s education goals

Multifaceted reforms needed to reach California’s education goals, research project finds

Researchers on Monday released a massive collection of education studies timed to inform the next California governor’s and Legislature’s preK-12 agenda. Among the findings of Getting Down to Facts II:

—The big achievement gap for California’s low- and middle-income children relative to their peers in other states starts in kindergarten, indicating a need to significantly expand preschool and quality child care.

—California would have to increase K-12 funding by 32 percent — $22 billion — to prepare all children adequately in the state’s academic standards, according to experienced educators and analysts who did the math.

—California has fewer adults in schools, with higher ratios of students to teachers, administrators and counselors than in most states.

—Principals with the least experience are assigned disproportionately to the lowest-achieving schools. Nearly three-quarters of school districts report teacher openings they can’t fill,  with the most severe shortages in special education, math, and science. Read More: John Fensterwald, EdSource

How can parents tell whether a school can really serve their special-needs child? These 7 principles can help, The 74

Tony Thurmond, California schools chief candidate, has poor record as trustee, San Francisco Chronicle

Early evidence of a ‘Trump effect’ on bullying in schools, Hechinger Report

Ten years on, California is making progress but must do more for preK-12 education, EdSource

Winners and losers from Capitol Hill’s school spending agreement, Education Week

Panel: Beyond mass school shootings, ‘we know that every day, our children are suffering from gun violence’, The 74


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