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Education must-reads: From UC proposing five years of tuition increases to teachers filing suit against Delta for dumped jet fuel, 13 new things to know about California’s schools (and beyond)

LA School Report | January 17, 2020

Education Must-Reads is our daily roundup of the most interesting news articles and analysis surrounding students, schools and California education policy.

California teachers exposed to jet fuel dump plan lawsuit

Southern California teachers plan to file a lawsuit after a commercial airliner with engine trouble dumped jet fuel over a densely populated area, including several schools, while making an emergency return to Los Angeles International Airport, their attorney said Friday.

Nearly 60 schoolchildren and teachers were exposed to the smelly vapor Tuesday and were examined for minor skin and lung irritations. None were taken to a hospital at the time, Los Angeles County Fire Inspector Sky Cornell said. Health authorities said those affected should clean themselves with soap and water.

Attorney Gloria Allred said in a statement Friday that teachers who were exposed to the fuel are filing a lawsuit against Delta Air Lines. By Stefanie Dazio, Associated Press

UC proposes five straight years of annual tuition increases, Los Angeles Times

No permission slips needed for sex ed in California schools, despite GOP effort, Sacramento Bee

Gov. Newsom proposes $20,000 stipends for high school teachers in California budget, Los Angeles Daily News

Parents Rip School Board Member Schmerelson for Investing in Tobacco Company That Owns E-Cigarette Maker JUUL, Speak UP

Closing a middle school and converting others to K-8 stirs opposition, EdSource

The new Prop. 13: a $15 billion bond for school construction, CalMatters

Cal State Fullerton a state and national leader in graduating underrepresented students, Orange County Register

Next stop for ‘college promise’ efforts: Free Cal State University?, Press-Telegram

Jordan: Surveys Can Tell a Lot About School Climate and Quality. But Be Careful When Using Them for Accountability Under ESSA, The 74

Teachers, the Robots Are Coming. But That’s Not a Bad Thing, Education Week

Two Tsunamis are About to Hit Higher Education, Real Clear Education

Trump Thrills Base With Moves To Protect School Prayer, Funding For Religious Groups, HuffPost

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See previous morning roundups below:


L.A. Unified pays $25 million to settle sexual misconduct cases

The Los Angeles Board of Education on Tuesday agreed to pay more than $25 million to settle lawsuits over alleged sexual misconduct. Some cases were related to well-known incidents of abuse at Telfair and De La Torre elementary schools, for which teachers went to jail. Others never led to convictions. The larger settlements are about $2 million per student.

Officials with L.A. Unified like to believe they’ve turned the page on the worst employee misconduct following a spate of high-profile cases, and they can cite a long list of new safeguards. But attorneys for the victims questioned the district’s commitment to reform. By Howard Blume, Los Angeles Times

San Francisco Bay Area district’s budget cuts may hurt neediest students, advocates fear, EdSource

Defining a ’California Indian tribe’ + Consent for sex ed + Expanding mental health coverage, The Sacramento Bee

New push in California to increase diversity among math and science teachers, EdSource

Analysis: Sin Taxes, Children’s Funds, Community Benefit Agreements — How Local Leaders Use Creative Financing to Benefit Kids & Education, The 74

To and through: What research says about what works (and what doesn’t) to help students complete college, Chalkbeat

Should There Be a Federal Right to Education?, Education Week



LA Unified schools chief reflects on his district one year after strike

One year after the turbulent teachers’ strike that shook Los Angeles Unified and drew national attention, Los Angeles Unified Superintendent Austin Beutner reflects on the current state of the district, and some of the district’s ongoing challenges, including spending more than it is getting from the state. In an interview with Louis, Beutner discusses his own tenure, the need for more financial support from the state, and efforts to grant more decision-making authority to local schools in the nation’s second-largest district. By Louis Freedberg, EdSource.

Newsom’s budget includes $900 million to address California teacher shortage, Los Angeles Times

Years of reform efforts contribute to declining African-American suspension rates in California, EdSource

Colleges are using high school grades, not just standardized tests, to determine if students need remedial courses, Los Angeles Daily News 

Follow the money: Are changes coming for California’s school funding law? CalMatters

Good schools for all: Breaking down barriers for homeless youth, Voice of San Diego

Castillo: Across the U.S., There Are Stark Differences in Opportunity for Students. Accessible Data Tools Can Illuminate These Gaps, The 74

Why Don’t Parents Always Choose the Best Schools? Education Week

A charter chain thinks it has the answer for alternative schools, The Herchinger Report

U.S. Schools See Surge in Number of Arabic- and Chinese-Speaking English-Learners,  Education Week



Amid Vaping Controversy, California Schools And Health Officials Want To Teach Kids How To Quit

Across California, posters and billboards from the state health department warn young people about the dangers of vaping. State lawmakers introduced a bill this week to end all store sales of flavored tobacco, and the federal government recently moved to ban some e-cigarettes.

But experts say bans and information campaigns don’t get at one crucial problem: how to help young people who are already addicted to nicotine.  By Sammy Caiola, Capital Public Radio

California’s effort to turn school staff into teachers starts to pay off, EdSource

Inglewood charter school with history of alleged wrongdoing denied renewal by county, Los Angeles Times

LAUSD Board District 3 Candidate Elizabeth Badger: ‘It’s time we have someone who cares about our children’, Speak UP

Teachers who must pay their subs while on extended leave may get reliefKQED

Churches, private entities that served A3 charter school students say they’re owed $1.8 million, San Diego Union-Tribune

Goldberg: To Address Our National Reading Crisis, Teachers Need More and Better Training, Not a Lowering of the Credentials Bar, The 74

More charter operators are offering a plan B to alumni who drop out of traditional college. Will it work? Chalkbeat

Who’s to Blame for the Black-White Achievement Gap?, Education Week

Bernie Sanders: America must end high-stakes testing, finally invest in public education, USA Today



End of the Decade: Superintendent turnover, labor unrest marked a tumultuous decade for LAUSD

Over the last ten years, the nation’s second-largest public school district was helmed by six different superintendents. That turnover was coupled with increases in graduation rates, declines in enrollment and clashes over charter-school growth.

That instability Los Angeles Unified was most vividly underscored by the first teachers strike since 1989, a week-long walkout in January. The clash between United Teachers Los Angeles and the district was months in the making, and brought to bear disputes over failed contract negotiations. By Ariella Plachta, Los Angeles Daily News

Charter schools vs teachers union: A high stakes L.A. school board election takes shape, Los Angeles Times

Gavin Newsom’s 1st-year K-12 scorecard: good grades on priorities and some incompletes, EdSource 

Financial troubles upend this tiny L.A. County school district since its former superintendent’s suicide, Los Angeles Times

California governor keeps higher education pledges but need for financial aid reform remains, EdSource

Parents, school leaders fight to keep San Jose charter from closing, The Mercury News

Meet the Candidates Running in the 2020 School Board Elections, Speak UP

The long road to college from California’s small towns, Los Angeles Daily News

2020 Priorities Inside America’s 15 Biggest School Districts: Student Protests Over Equity, School Boundary Changes, Abuse Charges & More, The 74

Top Dem Candidates Are at Odds With Voters on Education Priorities, Real Clear Education

Ten Education Headlines You Probably Won’t See in 2020, Education Week

70 Years of Promises in Education. What Will It Take for Us to Keep Them? Education Post                    



L.A. Unified’s ban on willful defiance suspensions, six years later

Long before California banned suspensions for “willful defiance” or disruption of school activities in K-8 classrooms, Los Angeles Unified embarked on an even more ambitious goal: eliminate defiance suspensions entirely.

Six years after it implemented the policy, L.A. Unified officials, advocates and students say they’ve seen dramatic improvements in campus culture at many schools, providing lessons for California as it attempts to reshape school discipline across the state.

Since implementing the policy, L.A. Unified has seen a 75 percent drop in suspensions across all categories and a narrowing of racial disparities among students who are suspended. By Carolyn Jones, EdSource

Some ratings rise in 3rd year of California School Dashboard, EdSource

L.A. County and Planned Parenthood to open 50 high school sexual health and well-being centers, LA Times

The charter school debate is more complex than either side admits, Hechinger Report

San Diego Unified’s budget woes widen include potential layoffs, Voice of San Diego

San Francisco high school graduation rate increases with help from mentor program, San Francisco Chronicle

Opponents drop bid to block California vaccination law, AP

If the University of California drops the SAT, what would take its place? CalMatters

14 Charts That Changed the Way We Looked at America’s Schools in 2019, The 74

A teacher makes 10 predictions for education in 2020 – some of them rather hopeful, Washington Post

Wish Book: Sharing hearts and minds: Program links elderly and youth, Mercury News

House Democrats Grill Betsy DeVos Over Denying Student Borrower Relief, NPR

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