In Today's News archive: June 2013

Education News: June 29-30, 2013

2 LAUSD officials demoted, principal leaves over handling of sex-abuse complaints — Two senior Los Angeles Unified administrators have been demoted and a principal has left the district following a two-month investigation into the handling of sex-abuse allegations against an elementary school teacher in Wilmington, Superintendent John Deasy said Saturday. Barbara Jones in the Torrance Daily Breeze — 6/30/13

Student loan hike fears provoke protests in Claremont — An Inland Empire group rallied Thursday, protesting Congress' inaction to prevent student loan interest rates from doubling on Monday. Beau Yarbrough in the Inland Daily Bulletin — 6/30/13

Walters: Does latest school 'reform' benefit students — or teachers? — Periodically – albeit, not frequently – it dawns on the Capitol's politicians that the 6 million kids in California's public schools aren't learning as much as they should be, and they vow to do something big about it. Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ — 6/30/13

Funding windfall helps new Cal State chancellor, but can he reshape 23-campus system? -- Six months ago, Tim White took over as chancellor of a California State University system that is a shadow of its former self. Adolfo Guzman-Lopez KPCC -- 6/29/13

Student loan rate likely to double on Monday, but lawmakers hope to reverse hike -- Lawmakers acknowledge that the rate on a low-interest federal loan for millions of college students in financial need is likely to double on Monday because of a congressional stalemate over how to stop that from happening. Nick Anderson in the Washington Post$ -- 6/29/13

State appoints new administrator to oversee Inglewood schools -- Don Brann, the former head of the Wiseburn School District in Hawthorne, was selected Friday to lead the Inglewood Unified School District — the third leader to take the helm after the state takeover of the financially troubled school district. Stephen Ceasar in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/29/13

State News: July 1, 2013

Skelton: Gov. Jerry Brown holds strong hand on prisons —Standing up to three federal judges, who want nearly 10,000 inmates released, makes the governor look like he's protecting Californians from thugs. George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times$ —7/1/13

Walters: California farm belt district a big target — California's 12th Senate District was born in a bipartisan political deal after the 2000 census. Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ —7/1/13

Transit workers go on strike after failed talks —Two of San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit's largest unions went on strike after weekend talks with management failed to produce a new contract, ensuring a nightmarish journey ahead for Monday commuters. Terry Collins Associated Press

BART's top-level employees' vacation bank tops 69 years of unused time off -- Thanks to an extraordinarily generous vacation policy, a select group of BART's white-collar employees have stockpiled a combined seven decades' worth of unused time off -- literally like money in a bank that can be cashed in for fat retirement windfalls. Thomas Peele in the Oakland Tribune -- 6/29/13

Oakland city employee unions said they plan to call a one-day strike Monday — Oakland city employee unions said they plan to call a one-day strike Monday, Mayor Jean Quan said Sunday night. Natalie Neysa Alund in the Oakland Tribune —7/1/13

CFT in the News: June 28, 2013

California union complaint has accreditors in hot seat
The U.S. Department of Education has told the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges that it has until July 8 to provide a documented response to a complaint the accrediting agency received from the California Federation of Teachers and its City College of San Francisco affiliate.
On April 30, the CFT and AFT Local 2121, representing 1,650 full-time and part-time faculty, counselors, librarians and researchers at CCSF, filed a 298-page complaint and third-party comment with the ACCJC, raising serious concerns about the commission.

What strategy will defeat the privatizers?
Monica Hill, June 2013
The Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) has been attacking California community colleges since 2001. In July, 2012, it bombarded City College of San Francisco (CCSF) with austerity demands and closure threats. An interim chancellor and the Board of Trustees endorsed ACCJC’s business-oriented vision and immediately began budget slashing.

Faculty have leaped to the defense of students, the progressive mission of CCSF, and their own jobs and union, American Federation of Teachers (AFT) Local 2121. Drawing in non-faculty classified staff has been difficult, because they’re demoralized by the unwillingness of campus union leaders of Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 1021 to fight back during the last several years of severe austerity cuts.

Education News: June 28, 2013
Antonio Villaraigosa leaves his mark on L.A. schools -- The mayor vowed to turn the district into an incubator of education reform. In his two terms, during which his nonprofit took over more than a dozen campuses, he's had mixed results. Teresa Watanabe and Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/28/13

Amended bill to rein in high-cost construction bonds moves on -- A bill that would rein in the type of build-now, pay-later school bonds that saddle a future generation of taxpayers with costly balloon payments passed another hurdle after the author, Assembly Education Committee Chair Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo, accepted changes easing a few of the restrictions she had proposed. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/28/13

UCLA turns MBA degree into self-supporting program -- UCLA wins approval from UC president to support the MBA program through tuition and donations, freeing $8 million for other purposes. Louis Lavelle Bloomberg Businessweek -- 6/28/13

Officials, students debate funding change at UCLA's MBA program -- Debate continued Thursday over the upcoming switch that will end any state funding for UCLA’s MBA program and make it dependent on tuition and donations. Larry Gordon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/28/13

Student Loan Rates Set To Double On July 1 -- The interest rate on government-backed student loans is going to jump from 3.4 percent to 6.8 percent Monday. Claudio Sanchez NPR -- 6/28/13

State News: June 28, 2013

Assembly sends Jerry Brown enterprise zone revamp -- Gov. Jerry Brown's push to restructure an enterprise zone program of hiring tax credits that has been criticized as wasteful and ineffective passed Thursday with a 54-17 approval in the Assembly. Jim Sanders in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/28/13

Walters: Budget won't end fiscal angst -- Gov. Jerry Brown and the Legislature's Democratic leaders patted themselves on the back Thursday for enacting a 2013-14 state budget that's balanced and has a reserve. Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/28/13

CFT in the News:

Teachers fight increase in healthcare costs
They do not believe the union should cover the 'Cadillac tax' mandated by the federal Affordable Care Act.
June 26, 2013|By Bradley Zint
More than 50 Newport-Mesa Unified School District employees expressed their concerns about rising healthcare costs at Tuesday's board meeting.

Such a change would shift the "bulk of the burden onto those least able to afford it" and provide, in essence, an "unacceptable" income boost to those in the district who make more than $200,000 a year, according to a news release from the Newport-Mesa Federation of Teachers and California School Employees Assn. Chapter 18, which represents classified workers.

Education News: June 27, 2013

UC president OKs self-supporting plan for UCLA business master's program -- UC President Mark G. Yudof has approved a controversial plan to turn UCLA's MBA program into a self-supporting unit that depends wholly on tuition without state funding. Larry Gordon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/27/13

Next steps in common core will cost state ‘tens of millions’ of dollars -- The $1 billion set aside in next year’s budget to help schools transition to new testing and instruction based on common national curriculum standards might seem like plenty of money to get the job done. But new analysis suggests the Legislature will be responsible for tens of millions more before the entire program has been implemented. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/27/13

After legal ruling leaves some parcel taxes in jeopardy, clarity must come from Legislature -- The state Supreme Court has declined to hear the appeal of a parcel tax case with statewide implications, leaving it up to the Legislature, if it chooses, to change the law that undid one district’s parcel tax and left similar parcel taxes in other districts vulnerable. A bill that would do that failed to move this year but will resurface in 2014. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/27/13

Financial misdeeds sinking Oakland charter school -- A high-performing charter school is one step closer to closing under the weight of an audit showing its former director broke the law by paying himself $3.8 million from school funds for construction and rental services. Doug Oakley in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/27/13

L.A. Unified accused of bullying in Miramonte student abuse cases -- Attorneys representing a group of Miramonte students and parents responded aggressively to renewed pressure on their clients to settle abuse claims filed with the Los Angeles Unified School District. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/27/13

Summer lunch gap persists for Sacramento-area students -- During the academic year, more than half of students in Sacramento and Yolo County public schools are eligible to receive free or reduced-price meals. Loretta Kalb in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/27/13

Family of girl sexually abused by teacher awarded $5.6 million -- The lawsuit alleged Chino Valley school district did too little to stop the teacher, now a convicted sex offender, even after learning of inappropriate emails. Richard Winton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/27/13

Stanford named smartest U.S. city -- In a turn that probably won't make Stanford seem any more accessible to mere commoners, a new study names the Peninsula city the nation's smartest locale. Lauren Hepler Silicon Valley Business Journal -- 6/27/13

State News: June 27, 2013

Gay marriage: Proposition 8 appears doomed in California after Supreme Court ruling -- And foes of gay marriage, from the architects of Proposition 8 to, immediately signaled they are not ready for wedding bells to ring in California just yet for same-sex couples. They plan to try to skirt the impact of Wednesday's Supreme Court ruling, which most legal experts predict ends the defense of Proposition 8 for good. Howard Mintz in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/27/13

Water fight!
Gov. Jerry Brown says building two multibillion-dollar, 39-mile tunnels will save the Delta and bring more H20 to Californians. Sacramento County residents worry it will destroy their communities.
By Alastair Bland, published on 06.27.13.
The brown water of the Sacramento River lumbers quietly downstream along the levee bank, swirling eddies and occasional surges of turbulence revealing the power of this greatest of California's waterways.

AM Alert: With Jerry Brown's signature, California gets a budget
This year's budget process comes to a conclusion today: Gov. Jerry Brown is poised to make the pact between him and legislative leaders official at 11 a.m. in the Governor's Council Room. Fiscal year 2013-2014, its allocations and obligations set in writing, starts Monday.

Education News: June 26, 2013

More charters, including those in California, outperform district schools in reading, study says -- The nation’s charter schools, including those in California, have made “slow and steady” progress over the past four years, with students in nearly a quarter of charters now outperforming their traditional school peers in reading and, on average, catching up to them in math, a group of Stanford researchers reported. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/26/13

No reprieve for Oakland Indian charter schools -- Three controversial Oakland charter schools facing closure this summer failed to win a reprieve from the Alameda County Board of Education on Tuesday night. Jill Tucker in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 6/26/13

Inactive school districts face losing millions in state support for construction -- Time is running short for a number of California school districts with approval to build or upgrade facilities but which have yet to claim the millions set aside for their projects under the state’s school construction program. Kimberly Beltran SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/26/13

LAUSD summer school expects full house for limited courses -- All 5,100 seats in Los Angeles Unified School District's summer school program have been snapped up by high schoolers needing to make up a failed class, with a wait list not available until classes start July 8, officials said. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/26/13

L.A. Unified presses families to settle Miramonte abuse claims -- Alleged victims of abuse at Miramonte Elementary have until July 5 to accept recent settlement offers from the Los Angeles Unified School District, officials said Tuesday. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/26/13

Miramonte: LA Unified settlement countdown website has lawyer seeing red -- The Los Angeles Unified school district put up a new website Tuesday for victims of abuse by teachers at Miramonte Elementary School — and at least one plaintiffs' lawyer is not happy about it. Jed Kim KPCC -- 6/26/13

Common Core foes spreading misinformation, Duncan says -- Education Secretary Arne Duncan planned a robust defense on Tuesday of the Common Core standards, new academic standards in reading and math that have been adopted by 45 states and D.C. Lyndsey Layton in the Washington Post$ -- 6/26/13

Schools would be required to track anti-gay bullying under new federal proposal -- For the first time, the federal education department is proposing that schools collect data about anti-gay bullying in its biennial survey of civil rights compliance on school campuses, a move advocates said could drive policies to reduce bullying and improve school climate. Jane Meredith Adams EdSource -- 6/26/13

Public Research for Private Gain -- In a unanimous vote last month, the Regents of the University of California created a corporate entity that, if spread to all UC campuses as some regents envision, promises to further privatize scientific research produced by taxpayer-funded laboratories. Darwin BondGraham East Bay Express -- 6/26/13

Student Loan Rates Likely to Double With No Congressional Agreement in Sight -- With immigration center stage and a bipartisan agreement to stave off the student loan interest rate hike nowhere in sight, principal negotiators on both sides conceded Tuesday that rates will likely double on July 1 and will need to be fixed retroactively. Lauren Smith Roll Call -- 6/26/13

Proposed California budget to deepen attacks on public education and social programs
By Dan Conway  26 June 2013
The California state legislature last week passed a budget for the 2013-2014 fiscal year. The proposed budget which is expected to be signed by Democratic Governor Brown this week, continues a statewide assault against social programs. This, in spite of a projected budgetary surplus rather than a deficit for the first time since the onset of the financial crisis of 2008.

State News: June 26, 2013

Feinstein, NSA’S top congressional defender, has built respect over decades of service -- Just as she is playing such high-profile roles, Feinstein, who turned 80 on Saturday, is blazing a new political trail as a symbol — an unwilling one — of the changing workplace. Emily Heil in the Washington Post$ -- 6/26/13

Morain: Legislators, lobbyists? This time it's hard to tell -- The California Legislature has decreed that it is within its rights to approve legislation that specifically targets one particular business. No matter your political persuasion, this ought to be of concern. Dan Morain in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/26/13

Plans to ease voter hurdles for local taxes on hold -- for now -- Proposition 13, California’s iconic, tax-cutting ballot initiative of 1978, is confronting its most serious political challenges in decades as majority Democrats push to reduce the thresholds needed to approve local tax measures. Samantha Gallegos Capitol Weekly -- 6/26/13

Jerry Brown tells California counties to issue gay marriage licenses
In the wake of a U.S. Supreme Court ruling undercutting California's same-sex marriage ban, the Brown administration told county officials this morning the ruling applies statewide - with all 58 counties required to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples once a lower court stay is lifted.

Education News: June 25, 2013

Duncan indicates support for district waiver, praises Brown’s funding reform -- U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan set aside years of acrimony and disagreements with Gov. Jerry Brown and sang the governor’s praises during an event Friday night in San Francisco. Kathryn Baron EdSource -- 6/25/13

Supreme Court retains affirmative action if needed for diversity -- Defying widespread expectations that they were on the brink of doing away with affirmative action in higher education, the Supreme Court justices Monday upheld using race as a factor in admissions decisions but said colleges and universities must prove that race-based policies are truly necessary to achieve diversity. David G. Savage in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/25/13

Study: charter school students show reading gains over public schools -- The nation's charter school students showed more academic gains in reading than their public school counterparts did according to a new study by the Center for Research on Education Outcomes at Stanford University. The study showed no difference in math performance between the two groups. Jed Kim KPCC -- 6/25/13

Tablets in the classroom bring cutting edge problems, too -- Tech writer and wireless network administrator Lee Badman outlines a multitude of problems educators face when incorporating iPads into the school day including failing wireless networks and teachers serving double duty as tech support. Mary Plummer KPCC -- 6/25/13

Senate Faces July 1 Deadline for Student Loan Reform -- Over seven million college students will see their subsidized student-loan rates double on July 1 if Congress can’t reach a compromise to avert the hike. In the meantime, House Republicans—having acted first this time—are using the issue to bludgeon Democrats. Miles Graham TIME -- 6/25/13

New Scholarships Would Help Middle-Income Students
by Charla Bear | June 24, 2013
School is about to become a little cheaper for some university students in California.
After years of tuition increases, the state is set to launch the Middle Class Scholarship program.
When fully funded, it would cover between 10 and 40 percent of tuition, applied on a sliding scale, for students whose families make up to $150,000 a year.

BC's appeal of football sanctions denied
Bakersfield College officials announced Tuesday morning that the Southern California Football Association has denied the college's appeal of athletics sanctions.
The college said it has 10 days to appeal, and will.

State News: June 25, 2013

Bay Bridge: Caltrans releases hundreds more bolt documents -- Caltrans has released 15 volumes and hundreds of pages of inspection and test data on thousands of high-strength steel fasteners installed on the eastern replacement span of the Bay Bridge. Lisa Vorderbrueggen in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/25/13

CFT In the News: June 24, 2013
The arrival of summer means it's time for those of us on an academic schedule to adjust. For some members of the California Federation of Teachers, that will entail a visit to "CFT Union Summer School" to learn organizing and collective bargaining techniques. The weeklong labor training retreat starts today and takes place at the idyllic Asilomar Conference Grounds on the Monterey Peninsula

Education News: June 22 – 24, 2013

Feds to panel: Take faculty complaints seriously at CCSF San Francisco Chronicle (blog)-5 hours ago Faculty at City College of San Francisco have been in a slow burn for a year, since the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges said their ...

Tier Parcel Tax Relief Will Take Another Year -- Earlier this month, the state Supreme Court let stand a ruling invalidating a tiered parcel tax measure put before voters in 2008 by Alameda Unified. The move also held open an invitation to the Legislature to weigh in on the question of ‘rational classification’ of tax rates. TOM CHORNEAU SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/24/13

Districts To Get $1.25 Billion This Fall To Implement Common Core -- With uncommon speed, school districts and charter schools this fall will receive substantial money they didn’t foresee coming their way a few months ago to prepare for the Common Core standards. The catch: They first have to tell the public how they plan to use it. JOHN FENSTERWALD EdSource -- 6/24/13

Are Teachers Getting The Right Training? -- A new report said most teacher-credentialing programs in San Diego County do a poor job of preparing future educators — and three are deficient enough that students should consider avoiding them. GARY WARTH and KAREN KUCHER UT San Diego$ -- 6/24/13

Parenting Classes Tailored For Latino Families Show Promise In Closing Achievement Gap -- A program offering parenting classes tailored to Latino families is showing promise as a way to help children arrive in kindergarten ready to learn, a key early benchmark that educators say can help close entrenched achievement gaps across racial and economic lines. LILLIAN MONGEAU EdSource -- 6/24/13

Stem Advocates Call Pedagogy ‘Out Of Touch’ With K-12 Classrooms -- As work begins on the first comprehensive evaluation of the state’s teacher preparation system in more than a decade, a widely respected math and science advocacy group is calling for sweeping change in support of STEM instruction. TOM CHORNEAU SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/24/13

California Schools: New State, Federal Strategies Flawed, Familiar By Lisa Schiff in the California Progress Report Almost as much has happened in the two weeks since public schools let out for the summer than in the entire second semester. In the first part of June, a revised version of federal education policy was introduced in the Senate and a California state budget has all but passed that includes dramatic funding changes for our state's schools.

Affirmative Action Ban At Uc, 15 Years Later -- Janelle Scott went to UC Berkeley as an undergraduate in the early 1990s. When she returned as a professor in 2008, she saw the effect of a decade-old ban on racial preferences -- in the faces of the students. The thriving black student scene of her college days was gone. KATY MURPHY in the Contra Costa Times -- 6/23/13

For Many Community College Students, A Full Summer -- Some campuses' class offerings have increased more than 500% this session. Schools are looking to help students meet their goals faster. CARLA RIVERA in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/23/13

L.A. Unified's Change In School For The Blind Draws Outrage -- Shift from a separate Frances Blend campus to joint arrangement with Van Ness Elementary is part of a district plan to integrate learning. Not everyone approves. DALINA CASTELLANOS in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/23/13

Data Security Is A Classroom Worry, Too -- Like many privacy-minded parents of elementary students, Tony Porterfield tries to keep close tabs on the personal information collected about his two sons. NATASHA SINGER in the New York Times$ -- 6/23/13

Education News: June 21, 2013

Why Our Schools Are Broke: Five Years of Corporate State Tax Avoidance
by Paul Buchheit‚ Jun. 18‚ 2013
We hear a lot about corporations avoiding federal taxes. Less well known is their non-payment of state taxes, which along with local taxes make up 90% of U.S. education funding. Pay Up Now just completed a review of 2011-12 tax data from the SEC filings of 155 of the largest U.S. corporations. The results show that the total cost of K-12 educational cutbacks in recent years is approximately equal to the amount of state taxes left unpaid by these companies.

$1b in common core money comes with lots of flexibility, some strings -- While California school districts will have wide discretion over spending the additional $1.25 billion in this year’s budget to help them integrate new academic content standards, they must first adopt spending plans showing how the money will be used and then follow that up with detailed expense reports to the state. Kimberly Beltran SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/21/13

After passage of school finance plan, focus shifts to implementation -- Less than a week after the state Legislature approved a sweeping school finance reform plan that will funnel additional funds to low-income students and English learners, the state’s finance chief says school districts will have to spend the extra funds in a way “that shows improved outcomes” among their students. Louis Freedberg EdSource -- 6/21/13

Task force recommends including mental health training in teacher credential -- Sweeping national reforms in children’s mental health care have yet to materialize in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., school shootings, but a group of high-profile educators and policy analysts in California is mapping a plan to transform student mental health services in the state. Jane Meredith Adams EdSource -- 6/21/13

Duncan grants relief to some schools facing two sets of standardized tests next year -- U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has just made the challenge of transitioning to the Common Core standards less burdensome for about one in five schools in California. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/21/13

LAUSD studying new curriculum plans -- Los Angeles Unified's incoming freshmen class will be the first that will have to pass a rigorous college-prep curriculum with a "C" in order to get a diploma, which has district officials scrambling to identify and replicate successful programs that can get and keep students on track to graduation, Superintendent John Deasy said Thursday. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/21/13

State News: June 21, 2013

Judges: Brown must fully comply with prison order -- A panel of federal judges on Thursday rejected Gov. Jerry Brown's attempt to circumvent its long-standing order for reducing California's prison population, the latest step in an ongoing legal drama over how to improve inmates' medical and mental health care inmates. DON THOMPSON Associated Press -- 6/21/13

Jerry Brown will support bill keeping Public Records Act intact -- Gov. Jerry Brown will support a bill reversing a proposed weakening of the California Public Records Act, apparently resolving the controversy that has swept over the Capitol in recent days. David Siders in the Sacramento Bee$

Darrell Steinberg considering run for Sacramento mayor -- Facing the end of his career in the state Legislature next year, Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg said Thursday that he is considering a run for mayor of Sacramento. Laurel Rosenhall in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/21/13

Education News: June 20, 2013

Budget simplifies special education money -- Just as Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders moved last week to make overall school funding more simple and transparent, the 2013-14 budget also includes a number of changes to special education funding with the same objective. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/20/13

Salary tracker shows earning power of community college grads – often more than graduate degree holders -- With the right major, California community college graduates can out-earn workers with bachelor’s and master’s degrees – often by a lot. Kathryn Baron EdSource Nanette Asimov in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 6/20/13

San Diego Teacher Prep Programs Dismiss New Ratings -- A report from the National Council on Teacher Quality and U.S. News withheld its highest marks, three or more out of four stars, from all but 9 percent of the 1,200 teacher preparation programs reviewed for the first time by the council. Kyla Calvert KPBS -- 6/20/13

Senators Scramble to Prevent Doubling of Student-Loan Rates -- As the clock ticks down toward the doubling of some student-loan interest rates, a group of senators has been scrambling to come to an agreement to solve the problem. Elahe Izadi National Journal -- 6/20/13

San Diego Unified Hopes To Feed 600,000 With Summer Meal Program -- San Diego Unified is a partner in the Summer Fun Café program, which hands out free lunches to students who would otherwise not be able to afford them during the summer. Erik Anderson KPBS -- 6/20/13

LAUSD spending $30 million to buy 30,000 iPads for students -- The Los Angeles Unified board Tuesday approved a $30 million contract to buy iPads for 30,000 students, the first phase in an ambitious plan to equip every pupil with a tablet computer within the next 14 months. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/20/13

Camp: Guess how much we invest in our students -- In the course of a public K-12 education, how much money will be invested in the average California student? How much does a basic, public K-12 education actually cost? Jeff Camp EdSource -- 6/20/13

Looming Loan Rate Increase Has Students Worried
California congressional representatives are joining students in the nation's capital today to try to stop a student loan interest rate hike. If Congress doesn't act by July 1st, rates on federally subsidized loans will double. The hike would mean thousands of dollars more debt for the average student. Reporter: Charla Bear

State News: June 20, 2013

Legislature plots new course following Public Records Act controversy -- Gov. Jerry Brown and Senate leaders appeared Wednesday to reject an Assembly proposal to uphold key provisions of the California Public Records Act, instead saying the issue should go before voters as a constitutional amendment next year. Melody Gutierrez and David Siders in the Sacramento Bee$

Tom Calderon speaks: 'No idea' why Ron's office raided -- In his first comments since an FBI raid on his brother's legislative offices, former Assemblyman Tom Calderon denied any wrongdoing in his work for a Southern California water agency he has advised. Jeremy B. W hite in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/20/13

Legislators will make more money than 85 percent of California workers -- Legislators will make at least twice as much as most California workers following the roughly $5,000 pay bump approved by the California Citizens Compensation Commission Wednesday, census figures show. Phillip Reese in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/20/13

CFT in the News: June 19, 2013

Reform Rekindled - A little-discussed trend in organized labor is the rise of local union reform movements, which aim to challenge unresponsive leaders, resist concessions, build ties with the community, and promote internal democracy and member control.

Beyond the local level, the 37,000-member New York State Nurses Association, the 54,000-member Public Employees Federation of New York, and the 120,000-member California Federation of Teachers now have reformers in charge.

Education News: June 19, 2013

LAUSD board passes $6.2 billion budget -- The Los Angeles Unified school board passed a $6.2 billion budget for 2013-14 on Tuesday, the first time in five years that deep cuts and gut-wrenching layoffs haven't been part of the financial plan. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/19/13

LA school board OKs $30 million for Apple iPads -- Apple Inc. won a $30-million contract Tuesday from the L.A. Unified School District, paving the way for the company to provide every student with an iPad in the nation's second-largest school system. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/19/13

Herdt: Some relief for the middle class -- When CSU Channel Islands opened its doors in 2002, the annual systemwide fee to attend was $1,507. At the time, the median household income in Ventura County was $57,052. Timm Herdt in the Ventura Star -- 6/19/13

Critical report on teacher preparation programs sparks debate -- California’s teacher training programs were excoriated as among the worst in a nation of poor-quality programs in a report released Tuesday, immediately sparking a debate about the validity of the report’s methodology and findings. Jane Meredith Adams and Kathryn Baron EdSource -- 6/19/13

Bill to restrict schools' use of long-term bonds face amendments, opposition -- Three of the state’s largest public education advocacy groups are leading opposition to legislation that would greatly restrict the use of long-term bond issues by school districts. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/19/13

Report: Humanities, social science education needed for innovation along with STEM -- A workforce lacking robust a humanities and social science education could be just as detrimental to the country’s future economic competitiveness as one deficient in science and technological expertise, according to an American Academy of Arts and Sciences report released Wednesday. Lynh Bui in the Washington Post -- 6/19/13

Student loan debt nearly doubles in last five years, report says -- Student loan debt has nearly doubled in the last five years, posing a potential risk to the economy, according to a new report from Congress. Adolfo Flores in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/19/13

Arne Duncan Allows Waiver States Extra Time On Teacher Evaluation
The U.S. Department of Education will allow some states that have gotten waivers from pieces of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act to postpone using student growth on state tests as a factor in personnel decisions for up to one additional year, EdWeek has learned—until the 2016-17 school year. By Alyson Klein on June 18, 2013

State News: June 19, 2013

California's Latest Budget-Cutting Target: Public Records -- Jerry Brown, California’s straight-talking two-time governor, is known for making hard and often unpopular choices in the name of fiscal discipline. Elizabeth Dwoskin Businessweek -- 6/19/13

Morain: Budget goodies not so good for open process -- No matter whether it's called budget dust, Christmas tree ornaments or bling, the massive $145 billion state budget and 22 trailer bills that implement it are crammed with stuff, much of it added with little public airing. Dan Morain in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/19/13

Proposals allowing 55% vote for local taxes sidetracked -- Proposals to lower the voter-approval threshold for various local tax increases from two-thirds to 55% got sidetracked Tuesday, with even some Democrats saying more consideration is needed. Patrick McGreevy in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/19/13

California House members convene on Bay-Delta water plan -- Water brought California lawmakers together on Tuesday. Or, at least, it got a bunch of them in the same room. Michael Doyle in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/19/13

CFT in the News: June 18, 2013

Minimum wage bill could be changed
Christopher Arns Staff Writer- Sacramento Business Journal
Under Assembly Bill 10, California's minimum wage would increase to $8.25 next year and continue to rise by $0.50 every year until 2017 when future raises would be linked to inflation.

Labor groups, including the California Labor Federation and the California Federation of Teachers, already have voiced their support for previous versions of the bill.

Education News: June 18, 2013

Loeb Opposes Teachers Union on Pensions as Asness Quits
By:  Martin Z. Braun and Amanda Gordon
Date of Source:  Wednesday, June 12, 2013 BLOOMBERG
Daniel Loeb [1], founder of Third Point LLC, is escalating a battle between hedge-fund managers and American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten [2] over public-worker pensions.

What's next for City College of San Francisco?
It’s been a tough year for City College of San Francisco. The school first ran into trouble last July, when an oversight commission called CCSF’s accreditation into question, citing fiscal, structural and governance issues. By Jen Chien

A reporter's perspective on City College, from the Chronicle's Nanette Asimov.
The story at City College of San Francisco has had a lot of twists and turns since last year, and the San Francisco Chronicle’s higher education reporter, Nanette Asimov, has been one of the public’s main sources for information on it. By Ben Trefny

New teacher training study decries California universities -- A controversial policy group singles out teacher training programs at UCLA and Loyola Marymount as hardly worth attending. But the schools say the report is flawed. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/18/13

LA Unified school board member wants changes to California's Parent Trigger law -- California’s Parent Trigger law has been used five times to try and overhaul low-performing schools. Three of those were in the L.A. Unified School District. School board member Steve Zimmer has proposed a resolution up for a vote at Tuesday’s meeting calling for new restrictions. Adolfo Guzman-Lopez KPCC -- 6/18/13

Banks: Here's a teacher I'd want for my children -- Kaylie Gomez, a rookie teacher in a South L.A. neighborhood, imparts skills that don't show up on achievement tests. Sandy Banks in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/18/13

California Implementing New Way of Teaching -- California is setting aside more than $1 billion for the implementation of a common core curriculum in the new state budget. The method takes a holistic approach to learning. For instance, students won't just memorize fractions; teachers will make sure kids understand the concept behind them. Katie Orr KPBS -- 6/18/13

Huge Minority Gaps in Higher Ed -- The Lumina Foundation produced a report last week detailing disturbing gaps in college degree attainment rates by race. Blacks, Native Americans, and Hispanics are lagging woefully behind whites and Asians in college graduations. Fawn Johnson National Journal -- 6/18/13

UC Berkeley to help overhaul green job training for public utilities -- The California Public Utilities Commission chose the University of California, Berkeley, to oversee big changes in job training meant to accelerate the state's shift to a green economy. Steven E.F. Brown San Francisco Business Times -- 6/18/13

Study: Teacher Prep Programs Get Failing Marks
Teachers are not coming out of the nation's colleges of education ready, according to a study released Tuesday by U.S.News & World Report and the National Council on Teacher Quality.
The U.S. spends more than $7 billion a year preparing classroom teachers, but teachers are not coming out of the nation's colleges of education ready, according to a study released Tuesday by U.S.News & World Report and the National Council on Teacher Quality. by Claudio Sanchez | June 18, 2013

State News: June 18, 2013

Lawsuits hit new Delta Plan -- A plan intended, at least in part, to resolve decades of water conflict in the Delta has instead spawned a flood of lawsuits, with at least five separate suits filed against the plan in recent days. Matt Weiser in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/18/13

New state budget offers few major reforms for business -- California’s lawmakers agreed last week on a state budget that tackled issues like school funding and Medi-Cal, but had little in it for business. Christopher Arns Sacramento Business Journal -- 6/18/13

California finance director will decide when state raises kick in -- State workers, welcome to the back of the line. Jon Ortiz in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/18/13

Cutting Food Stamps Will Cost Everyone -- The House opens debate Tuesday on a farm bill that would include unprecedented cuts to food assistance. With less money for quality food, though, comes more obesity, more sickness, and more overall cost. CHIN JOU The Atlantic -- 6/18/13

Education News: June 16-17, 2013

Business, Military Signal Strong Support For Public Preschool, But Republican Lawmakers Unswayed -- Early childhood education advocates are working to make it clear that not everyone supporting President Barack Obama’s proposal to vastly expand federal funding for preschool and infant and toddler care is a tax-and-spend liberal. LILLIAN MONGEAU EdSource -- 6/17/13

As California Revenue Rises, School Districts On Firmer Ground -- Three local school districts, including the region's largest in Elk Grove, have stabilized their budgets enough to receive a clean bill of fiscal health from California education officials. DIANA LAMBERT in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/17/13

California Teachers Start Training for New Standards Among other things, California's newly adopted $96 billion budget includes $200 per K-12 student to implement new Common Core standards. Teachers start the first training session on the new standards on Monday. KQED Reporter: Charla Bear. 6/17/13

Class for Foster Youth Teaches Life Skills and Eases Isolation KQED California Report Less than 50 percent of students in foster care earn a high school diploma, leaving them few opportunities for jobs that pay a living wage. However, a program in Elk Grove Unified School District in the Sacramento area is improving the odds for foster youth. KQED California Report 6/17/13

Schools with fewer needy students decry California funding change California's new funding formula gives more money to districts with more needy students and less to districts with fewer needy students. LA Times 6.17.13

State News: June 16-17, 2013

California Legislators Pass New Budget There's an old saying that you can't spend money you don't have. But over the past decade or so that hasn't stopped California governors and legislators, who often use budget gimmicks and fuzzy math to make the books look balanced. But a funny thing happened in Sacramento this week, when Governor Jerry Brown and Democrats in the Legislature agreed to a budget that spends less than the state might actually KQED California Report 6/17/13

CFT in the News: June 14, 2013

Vast reforms proposed for teacher credential programs
June 13th, 2013 | By Kathryn Baron
When California placed a one-year limit on the length of teacher preparation programs back in 1970, there were no personal computers, tablets or smart phones; no online classes or Common Core standards; and not nearly as many English learners in public schools.

The California Federation of Teachers (CFT) representative got so excited about dancing that she made that seem like her union’s primary concern!

PV trustees approve raises for workers, administrators
Thursday, Jun 13th, 2013   BY: TODD GUILD
WATSONVILLE The Pajaro Valley Unified School District Board of Trustees Wednesday unanimously and without discussion approved a proposal to give a 4 percent raise and $500 to its school workers.

The increased spending, according to PVUSD Chief Business Officer Brett McFadden, will increase deficit spending by $840,000. But thanks to Proposition 30, increased revenue from the state and the retooled school funding formula, it’s an expense district will be able to weather.

Education News: June 14, 2013

Deasy and new board member Ratliff laud teacher report -- Los Angeles schools Supt. John Deasy on Thursday broadly endorsed proposals from an outside group for attracting and retaining teachers, including more money for those who take on difficult assignments and deliver measurable academic gains. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/14/13

State Board handed job of defining rules of new funding system -- The Legislature will vote today on a bill establishing Gov. Brown’s historic school funding system that punts to the State Board of Education some key decisions on how dollars for disadvantaged students must be spent and accounted for. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/14/13

Study says nationalized K-12 science standards fall far short of CA’s -- Plans in California to replace the state’s existing science curriculum standards with a new national set recently released for public review would be analogous to trading in a Cadillac for a Chevy, according to new analysis from the Fordham Institute. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/14/13

Brown retreats from conditions on university funding -- Gov. Jerry Brown has backed off his proposal to tie some money for California's public universities to such requirements as improving graduation rates, enrolling more low-income students and freezing tuition for four years. Chris Megerian in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/14/13

LAUSD students awarded cars, iPads for excellent attendance -- There was an ad-libbing emcee, guests dressed in finery, a couple of acceptance speeches and a clutch of photographers snapping shots of the award-winners. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/14/13

Group urges teachers' raises based on student achievement -- A local advocacy group is pushing for teachers' raises and bonuses based on whether instructors are willing to take on difficult assignments and on whether they deliver measurable student achievement gains. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/14/13

Fruits And Nuts In The Golden State -- The “Choose California Act” was one of hundreds of Assembly bills volleyed into the Senate during the end-of-May frenzy before the deadline for legislation to leave its house of origin. GREG LUCAS Capitol Weekly -- 6/13/13

State News: June 14, 2013

Bay Bridge contractor in line for bonus if new span opens on time -- The contractor building the Bay Bridge's iconic suspension span will collect a $20 million bonus if it opens to traffic as planned on Sept. 3 -- an incentive state lawmakers fear will drive a risky rush to completion. Lisa Vorderbrueggen in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/14/13

Perez tuition aid plan not best way to increase college access, analyst says -- A massive middle-class scholarship program in the proposed state budget ranked last among options for increasing college access in findings prepared, but not released publicly, by the nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office. Jim Sanders in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/14/13

Walters: California's budget bill 'trailers' keep on rolling -- As a legislative conference committee was doing its item-by-item sojourn through the state budget this month, many were marked "tbl." Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/14/13

CFT in the News: June 13, 2013

Novato School District Reaches Tentative Deal with Teachers Union
Novato Federation of Teachers is expected to ratify the deal on Friday. Novato teachers haven't worked under a longterm contract since 2009.
Posted by Gideon Rubin, June 12, 2013
Years of negotiating futility in Novato's public schools appear to be over. The Novato Unified School District and the Novato Federation of Teachers have reached a tentative agreement on a three-year contract.

Pajaro Valley school leaders approve raises
By Donna Jones, Santa Cruz Sentinel 06/12/2013
WATSONVILLE -- The Pajaro Valley school board unanimously approved a 4 percent pay increase for management Wednesday.

Negotiators for the Pajaro Valley Federation of Teachers rejected an offer that would have increased teacher pay.

Education News: June 13, 2013

Middle-class scholarships to UC, CSU likely -- As tuition has soared at California's public universities in recent years, students who have the most trouble paying that bill aren't from poor families. They are middle-income students who don't qualify for financial aid. Nanette Asimov in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 6/13/13

Schools eye smaller classes, teacher raises after California budget deal -- Woodland school leaders want to shrink kindergarten class rosters now jammed with 30 students. Natomas Superintendent Chris Evans wants to add a week of school. And Washington Unified leaders will give raises to teachers in West Sacramento. Diana Lambert and Jim Sanders in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/13/13

Brown Plan Gives Big Money To Close Education Gap -- California schools will receive an infusion of more than $3.6 billion in extra money this year, much of it targeted to the neediest students as part of a redistribution plan pushed by Gov. Jerry Brown. JULIET WILLIAMS and JUDY LIN Associated Press -- 6/13/13

School funding change will have Inland impact -- A compromise school-funding formula at the heart of this week’s state budget deal includes more money for suburban and wealthier districts, addressing complaints that an earlier Brown administration plan was unfair. JIM MILLER and MICHELLE KLAMPE in the Riverside Press -- 6/13/13

San Francisco State University votes to divest investment in coal, tar sands -- San Francisco State University will stop investing its endowment in coal and tar sands companies, joining a growing list of universities that are avoiding investments in fossil fuels, the school said Tuesday. Associated Press -- 6/13/13

School Districts Have Different Attitudes on School Funding Formula
By  Katie Orr  Wednesday, June 12, 2013
School districts in California will receive varying amounts of money under the state’s new school funding plan. And attitudes about the plan vary as well.
Under the new formula, districts will receive a base level of funding for every student. They’ll get additional money for every low-income and non-English speaking student they have.

State News: June 13, 2013

Pacific Hospital of Long Beach says it has 'no direct knowledge' of Calderon scrutiny -- Pacific Hospital of Long Beach has made its first comments to The Bee since the paper began asking last week about its business relationship with the brother of state Sen. Ron Calderon, whose Capitol offices were searched by the FBI last week. Laurel Rosenhall in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/13/13

Skelton: Give credit to California voters -- A triumphant Gov. Brown and legislative leaders savor an on-time, balanced budget. But two ballot measures helped considerably. George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/13/13

Matsui to live on food stamp budget for 3 days to protest cuts -- Rep. Doris Matsui of Sacramento on Wednesday pledged to spend only $13.50 on food the next three days, joining nearly 30 of her fellow House Democrats in protest of cuts to the federal food stamp program. Curtis Tate in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/13/13

CFT in the News: June 12, 2013

Board Oks health coverage pact
Two Newport-Mesa employee unions agree to take on more costs to lessen the effect of Affordable Care Act tax.
June 11, 2013|By Jeremiah Dobruck
The Newport-Mesa Unified School District and its two employee unions are moving to avoid a $2.3-million tax the district predicted it would have to pay if it couldn't rein in healthcare costs.

The Newport-Mesa Federation of Teachers and California School Employees Assn. Chapter 18 say they will pay a deductible and higher co-pay on certain services to reduce an expected rate increase from 6% to 3%.

Education News: June 12, 2013

Brown’s budget compromise slows pace of school deferral repayment -- Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders joined Tuesday to applaud agreement on next year’s budget at a Capitol news conference – a plan that would seem to include the lion’s share of what the governor wanted. A close review, however, suggests the governor had to give up a cherished element of his fiscal agenda to make the deal work – a rollback in his efforts to reduce the state’s debt owed schools. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/11/13

California budget deal overhauls four-decade-old school funding model -- Seven months after his tax initiative refueled funding for California's beleaguered public schools, Gov. Jerry Brown has orchestrated what's being billed as a major overhaul of how the state funds K-12 education. Sharon Noguchi and Mike Rosenberg in the Oakland Tribune -- 6/12/13

Adult ed, regional occupational centers, partnership academies get reprieve -- Once-threatened programs that prepare high school students for careers and adults for jobs or college appear likely to get at least a two-year reprieve under the compromise budget plan negotiated between legislative leaders and Gov. Jerry Brown. Susan Frey EdSource -- 6/12/13

California to spend more to educate poor, non-English speakers -- Public schools in California would receive significantly more money to educate students from disadvantaged backgrounds under a deal announced on Tuesday that would dramatically reshape public school funding in the nation's most populous state. Sharon Bernstein Reuters -- 6/12/13

A college and a community mourn their losses -- Hundreds gather at Santa Monica College for a memorial to the five people slain in Friday's shooting rampage. 'Thank you for showing up for each other,' a faculty member says. Matt Stevens in the Los Angeles Times$ Rina Palta KPCC -- 6/12/13

Budget deal includes agreement on Prop 39 monies -- All California school districts will be eligible for energy-efficiency grants based on district size and average daily student attendance numbers, under the budget deal reached in Sacramento this week. Kimberly Beltran SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/11/13

Michael Kirst, father of new school funding formula, looks back and at the work ahead -- It was the morning after the evening of the last revision, and the father of the Local Control Funding Formula looked upon all that the governor and Legislature had made, and declared, “Hey, not bad.” John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/12/13

No Child debate begins in Congress, again -- Partisan disagreements over the role of the federal government in education policy threaten this year’s best chance to overhaul No Child Left Behind. JOSE DELREAL Politico -- 6/12/13

State News: June 12, 2013

California legislators question incentive payments to speed Bay Bridge opening -- Bay Area members of the California Assembly and Senate formally requested that officials responsible for the new San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge disclose any incentives promised to the span's builders if it opens as proposed on Labor Day weekend. Charles Piller in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/12/13

California budget accord balances restraint, social services -- Lawmakers and Gov. Jerry Brown announce a $96.3-billion deal, with new spending on welfare grants, tuition aid and dental care for poor adults. But they agree to pare some outlays until next year. JUDY LIN Associated Press

Largest California state workers union says pay raises on the way
By Chris Megerian June 11, 2013.
SACRAMENTO -- California's largest union of state workers, SEIU Local 1000, said it has reached a tentative agreement with officials of Gov. Jerry Brown's administration to award "across-the-board" pay raises to its members.

Brown says he hasn't agreed to consider future spending hikes -- One day after reaching a compromise with legislative leaders on the state budget, Gov. Jerry Brown said Tuesday he has not agreed to consider increased spending if the economy outperforms his administration's expectations. David Siders in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/12/13

Cap-and-trade loan in state budget deal irks environmentalists -- Gov. Jerry Brown and California lawmakers have cleared the air by announcing a budget accord, but environmental groups are choking on a piece of the deal that would borrow half a billion dollars intended for programs to curtail greenhouse gases. Jeremy B. White in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/12/13

CFT in the News: June 11, 2013

Reform Rekindled
June 10, 2013
The sight of tens of thousands of striking teachers and their allies marching through the streets of Chicago last fall had a back-story, a little-discussed trend in organized labor—reform movements.

Beyond the local level, the 37,000-member New York State Nurses Association, the 54,000-member Public Employees Federation of New York, and the 120,000-member California Federation of Teachers now have reformers in charge.

Education News: June 11, 2013

Dan Walters Daily: It's time to test the Governor's education reform theory
June 11, 2013
With Gov. Jerry Brown's education spending proposal relatively unscathed in the new budget deal, Dan says its successes and failures fall on Brown's shoulders.

It’s a deal: Brown, top lawmakers raise base funding in finance formula -- In a nod to suburban districts that argued they would be shortchanged, Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders negotiated a new version of Brown’s plan for school finance reform that will increase the base funding level for all students and lower the extra dollars for some high-needs students. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/11/13

Majority of California districts offer transitional kindergarten in first year of program -- An estimated 39,000 students enrolled in transitional kindergarten this school year, the first year districts were required to offer the program, according to a new report. Lillian Mongeau EdSource -- 6/11/13

Two LAUSD seniors win new cars -- you read that right, NEW CARS -- for perfect attendance -- Graduating senior Vanessa Umana expected to leave last Friday's commencement ceremony at Francis Polytechnic High School with a diploma, a few photos and some wonderful memories. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/11/13

Higher education for the 1% or for all? Let’s discuss
by: Special to  June 10 2013
Is higher education getting even farther out of reach for working class families in the US?  What are some of the obstacles that affect young people's opportunities to get a college education?  Why do we have a crisis in student debt, and what is the latest on legislation aimed to address it?

State News: June 11, 2013

Jerry Brown, lawmakers come to terms on key budget issues -- Governor wins important victories involving redistribution of money for schools and how much revenue to expect to be coming in for the state. Mike Rosenberg and Sharon Noguchi in the San Jose Mercury

Old-School Politics Reign in California's New Primary -- California’s new top-two primary system was supposed to revolutionize the state’s political process. Instead, it’s forcing candidates to revert to an antiquated practice: competing for the state party’s endorsement. Emily Cahn Roll Call -- 6/11/13

Ron Calderon speaks: "My intention is to do my job" -- In his first public appearance since the FBI searched two of his offices last week, Sen. Ron Calderon, D-Montebello, confirmed on Monday that he has retained counsel but declined to offer any details about the nature of the investigation. DON THOMPSON Associated Press

CFT in the News: June 10, 2013

City College overseers bar most speakers from meeting
The Accrediting Commission of Community and Junior Colleges has the power to close City College of San Francisco, and students and faculty in line at the San Francisco Airport Marriott June 7 were there to hear about the fate of their school.

One was Teeka James, a San Mateo community college teacher speaking on behalf of the California Federation of Teachers and the American Federation of Teachers. Joe Fitzgerald | 06.09.13

College accreditors bar many from meeting
Nanette Asimov Friday, June 7, 2013
The private accrediting commission that will announce the fate of City College of San Francisco made no friends Friday when it barred dozens of people from attending the public portion of its three-day meeting at a Burlingame hotel.

Here is a 15-minute excerpt of testimony from Friday's meeting of the accrediting commission that is deciding the fate of City College of San Francisco. Many people were barred from the meeting, but freelance reporter Joe Fitzgerald was there and recorded Teeka James, president of the American Federation of Teachers, addressing the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges.

California Union Seeks Federal Intervention in Battle With Accreditor
Chronicle of Higher Education (subscription)-Jun 6, 2013
The California Federation of Teachers has filed a formal complaint with the U.S. Department of Education against the Accrediting Commission ...

School district benefits
The Newport-Mesa Unified School District's remarks in the Daily Pilot on May 26 are disappointing on so many levels.
While the California School Employees Assn., the Newport Mesa Federation of Teachers and the Newport-Mesa Unified School District are in negotiations, the superintendent has decided to go public regarding benefits.

Education News: June 10, 2013

Inglewood schools' slide steepens despite state takeover -- Inglewood Unified's finances worsen despite a state takeover and an infusion of cash; there is even talk of dissolution. Stephen Ceasar in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/10/13

Separating fact from fiction about Common Core education standards -- A backlash against the Common Core educational standards for grade school has hit the radio talk shows and Internet blogs in recent weeks. The tea party has taken it up as a new rallying cry against what it claims is a government takeover of educating our kids. Renee Schoof McClatchy DC -- 6/10/13

Dream-catcher serves key role in 8th grade algebra study -- In an education system crowded with academic specialists, curriculum managers and instructional theorists – Robyn Fisher’s role might be overlooked or even unappreciated in some settings and yet, it could be argued, it is as fundamental to student success as any other. Her job is to get children to dream. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/10/13

Elk Grove program brings stability, sense of normalcy to foster youth -- Shuffled from home to home and school to school, often with no one to turn to for guidance and support, foster youth can end up feeling isolated, alienated and without purpose. A simple but effective program at Elk Grove Unified is helping to restore a sense of normalcy and stability to the lives of foster students, allowing them to connect to their school and community. Susan Frey EdSource -- 6/10/13

Stockton woman is nominated as next UC student regent -- Sadia Saifuddin, who is studying social welfare at UC Berkeley, is believed to be the first Muslim who would represent students on the Board of Regents. Larry Gordon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/10/13

State News: June 10, 2013

California tops list of states with water infrastructure needs -- California could use $44.5 billion to fix aging water systems over the next two decades, according to an EPA assessment. Texas and New York are next in line. Bettina Boxall in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/10/13

San Onofre nuclear plant closure will mean hundreds of layoffs -- Southern California Edison says its closure of the troubled San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station will force the company to lay off 900 workers in the next few months. Wendy Lee KPCC -- 6/10/13

Delta could get saltier if tunnels are built -- The two giant water diversion tunnels Gov. Jerry Brown proposes building in the Delta would be large enough to meet annual water needs for a city such as Newport Beach in a single day's gulp from the Sacramento River. Matt Weiser in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/9/13

Walters: Jerry Brown's allegiance to 'subsidiarity' will be tested -- Jerry Brown is fond of citing "subsidiarity" as a guiding principle of his governorship – a $5 word roughly meaning local control is usually the best public policy. Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/9/13

CFT in the News: June 7, 2013

California Union Seeks Federal Intervention in Battle With Accreditor
The California Federation of Teachers has filed a formal complaint with the U.S. Department of Education against the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, arguing that the accrediting body has brushed off accusations that it violated the law and was biased by conflicts of interest when it punished the City College of San Francisco and other community colleges in the state. By Peter Schmidt June 6, 2013

Education News: June 7, 2013

Dozens Protest Over SF City College’s Potential Loss Of Accreditation
BURLINGAME (KCBS)— About 75 supporters of San Francisco City College showed up at the Burlingame Marriot on Wednesday where the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges  are for a three-day meeting.June 5, 2013

Funding reform worries potential ‘loser’ schools within ‘winning’ districts -- Until now, the greatest tension over Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed school finance reform has been largely among districts: a political tussle between unhappy suburban and optimistic urban school factions over how new education dollars should be divvied up. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/7/13

Dan Walters Daily: Education is biggest piece in budget puzzle
June 7, 2013 With less than a week to go, Dan contemplates California's unsolved budget issues, particularly Gov. Jerry Brown's education reform plan. 

Legislation being considered that would subject charter schools to disclosure laws -- Charter schools would be subject to the same open meeting and disclosure laws as traditional public schools and other local government agencies under a bill now pending in the California Senate. Kimberly Beltran SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/7/13

No agreement yet on holding districts accountable for new state money -- Gov. Jerry Brown’s new school funding system is based on the idea that school districts, not Sacramento, should be given control over spending and then held accountable for students’ results. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/7/13

State tells schools to repay lunch money -- The San Diego Unified School District has been ordered to pay back $13.4 million that the state says it improperly diverted from its cafeteria funds to pay for custodial and utility expenses. Aaron Burgin UT San Diego$ -- 6/7/13

Competing plans on student loan rates fail in Senate -- Democratic and Republican plans on student loan rates fail in the Senate in an opening skirmish over how to avert a sharp increase. Michael A. Memoli in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/7/13

Survey shows growing support for online education in California -- In new USC Dornsife/L.A. Times poll, 59% of respondents said increasing online classes at public universities will make education more affordable and accessible. Larry Gordon in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/7/13

Troubled Oakland charter schools to stay open -- A trio of controversial Oakland charter schools slated for closure at the end of this month can continue to operate as they move through theappeal process, an Alameda County Superior Court judge ruled Thursday. Jill Tucker in the San Francisco Chronicle -- 6/7/13

San Jose Proves Public Schools Can Be Innovative, Too
Friday is a big day at Bulldog Tech, a public middle school in southeast San Jose. It’s finishing its first year as an entirely project-based learning school, a concept that’s got education reformers across the country buzzing. Bulldog is a small school with large ambition: prove that a public school can innovate as well as charter schools. June 7, 2013 • Posted by Katrina Schwartz

Study Finds Obtaining Tenure for New Teachers Difficult
California education policies outline a clear, straight path for good teachers to gain the credentials they need to earn tenure and clear the path for a long career. But a recent study finds that, in reality, the road for new teachers is actually pretty bumpy. by KQED News Staff and Wires | June 6, 2013

State News: June 6, 2013

35 years ago today, California voters passed Prop. 13
No initiative mounted by the public has brought more change to California than Proposition 13, which voters passed 35 years ago today. Did it keep the middle class in their rapidly appreciating homes or set the stage for the struggling public schools and crumbling public infrastructure California has today?

CalPERS report: State, schools pension costs will dip next year -- A new CalPERS staff report says that pension costs for California state government and school district employees will fall by a combined $102.8 million for the coming fiscal year. Jon Ortiz in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/7/13

Steinberg calls Jerry Brown's education plan '80 percent there' -- With just nine days of budget negotiations left, Senate leader Darrell Steinberg called the Legislature and Gov. Jerry Brown "basically aligned" on public education funding. Annalise Mantz in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/7/13

FBI raid should spark wider look at legislative ethics, group says -- Whether any wrongdoing is proved or not, the FBI's search of Sen. Ron Calderon's offices is a sobering reminder that California lawmakers are sent to Sacramento to represent voters, not special interests, according to a statewide advocacy group holding a Capitol news conference Thursday. Jim Sanders in the Sacramento Bee$

California high-speed rail approves cheapest firm to start building first phase -- State bullet train leaders on Thursday approved the start of construction for California's $69 billion high-speed rail line, choosing the cheapest but least qualified firm to build the first leg. Mike Rosenberg in the San Jose Mercury

CFT in the News: June 6, 2013

Labor Training Program: California Federation of Teachers (CFT)
Jun 23 - 28, 2013 Pacific Grove, CA
Wellstone Action will be joining CFT's training team at their annual Summer School Conference during the "A Strong Local Union: Building Power Through Organizing" track at the Asilomar Conference Center.

Education News: June 6, 2013

Commission to vote today on accreditation of CCSF
Amy Hollyfield Thursday, June 06, 2013
BURLINGAME, Calif. (KGO) -- A vote on the Peninsula will decide whether City College of San Francisco stays open or closes its doors. That vote, by a junior college accreditation commission, will take place today in a Burlingame hotel.

City College of SF’s fate decided Thursday — but secret for now
An accrediting commission is deciding Thursday whether City College of San Francisco gets to live or die — but they aren’t telling anyone for another month.
The school has worked hard to transform itself for a year, wondering all that time about its fate. What’s another month, you say?

S.F. City College's fate decided Thursday
In a hotel meeting room near the San Francisco airport, an accrediting commission will privately decide the fate of City College of San Francisco on Thursday - but not before hearing from college leaders one last time. By Nanette Asimov June 6, 2013

LAUSD offers $17M to settle 40 more Miramonte sex-abuse cases -- Los Angeles Unified School District offered Wednesday to pay $17 million to settle about 40 claims filed by students who say they were molested by two teachers at Miramonte Elementary School, according to the district's top attorney. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/6/13

Colorado’s new school funding formula calls on rich districts to raise taxes -- As Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders huddle over rival plans to restructure school funding, lawmakers in Colorado have devised a novel approach to directing more state money to disadvantaged students while calling on wealthier communities to raise their taxes if more is needed. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/6/13

Cuts force Hinkley's only school to close on Thursday -- The life center of a town struggling for decades with an infamous plume of contaminated groundwater will close on Thursday, the victim of cost-cutting at the Barstow Unified School District. Jim Steinberg in the San Bernardino Sun -- 6/6/13

Azusa Adult School closes doors, hoping for reprieve from state -- While teachers pack up their classrooms for the summer, clearing out old papers and books, the educators at Azusa Adult School are getting ready to close their classrooms for good. The Azusa Unified school's last day was Wednesday but everyone from the director to the newest students are hoping for a reprieve. Melissa Masatani in the San Gabriel Tribune -- 6/6/13

San Diego Schools Narrow Racial Gap On AP Tests -- San Diego Unified was one of just six large urban school districts across the country to make progress in narrowing the gap between black and white students who take and pass Advanced Placement exams, according to a report from The Broad Foundation that was released Tuesday. Kyla Calvert KPBS -- 6/6/13

4 more LAUSD schools qualify for federal anti-poverty money -- An LAUSD recount of applications for Title I funding determined that four more schools qualified to receive thousands of dollars in federal anti-poverty money, officials said Wednesday. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News -- 6/6/13

California to receive largest share of proposed Universal Preschool funds -- California is expected to receive the most federal funding of any state in the country under President Obama's "Preschool For All" proposal. Deepa Fernandes KPCC -- 6/6/13

Poor ventilation in California classrooms may make kids ill, researchers say -- In the largest study of its kind, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory researchers tracked the outdoor ventilation rate in 162 classrooms. The results, published in the journal Indoor Air, surprised researchers when they saw just how many schools fall short of what the state requires in all buildings. Cynthia H. Craft in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/6/13

Student loan battle set in Senate -- The Senate is set to vote on two separate bills to keep low the interest rates on student loans, but the issue is far from settled. BURGESS EVERETT and JOSE DELREAL Politico -- 6/6/13

Six Big Tech Trends in Education to Follow
Big data, open content, mobile learning, and digital printing are the big themes represented in this year’s NMC Horizon Report: 2013 K-12 Edition. Katrina Schwartz | June 5

Dream Act immigration amendment imposes graduation requirement -- Part-time college student Ray Jose arrived at Democratic Sen. Joe Manchin’s office this week with an overriding goal: To convince the West Virginia Democrat to back off his proposal to stiffen the educational requirements in the Dream Act section of the bipartisan immigration bill. Lisa Mascaro in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/6/13

State News: June 6, 2013

Debate over California's Prop. 13 still hot 35 years later
Proposition 13, Howard Jarvis' iconic property tax limit measure, was passed by California voters 35 years ago this week - but the debate over its provisions is just as heated now as it was then. June 5, 2013

Sen. Ron Calderon no stranger to political fire -- Ron Calderon landed a plum assignment back in 2005 when he took the chairmanship of the Assembly's Banking and Finance Committee, a position that would give him power over some of the Capitol's wealthiest interest groups. Laurel Rosenhall in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/6/13

State workers want their cut of tax hike -- State labor groups are insisting that Gov. Jerry Brown return their robust support of his successful tax-hike initiative in November by rewarding them with pay increases. Ben Adler Capital Public Radio -- 6/6/13

California high-speed rail's choice: Price or quality in building first leg? -- The leaders behind California's $69 billion bullet train face a stark choice Thursday: Should they save a hundred million dollars or more by hiring a contractor with the poorest qualifications or pick a more expensive firm they think would do a better job? Mike Rosenberg in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/6/13

Governor's wife: Challenge to keep Brown focused -- Anne Gust Brown, the wife, chief adviser and de facto chief of staff of Gov. Jerry Brown, acknowledged her role in keeping her intellectual but sometimes unfocused husband on track during his second stint in the governor's office. But she also conceded that no one really manages him. JULIET WILLIAMS Associated Press -- 6/6/13

Education News: June 5, 2013

Hearing on CCSF future on tap
by Andrea Koskey
The discussion about what's next for City College of San Francisco will begin today behind closed doors, but the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges, which will decided the school's fate, is being tight-lipped about the process.
City College was given a "show cause" sanction last year after a team found numerous violations in the institution's operations.

LAUSD board hears pleas to boost campus hiring, academic programs in 2013-14 -- The teachers union called for hiring more instructors while the administrators union wants more assistant principals. Various campus employees requested more librarians and gym teachers, counselors and social workers. Adult Education students want more classes. And parents just wanted more of everything for their kids. Barbara Jones in the Los Angeles Daily News Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/5/13

California could get $350 million for preschool under federal proposal -- California could nearly double its spending on public preschool with an influx of federal funding if the president’s proposal to significantly increase the money available for early childhood programs passes Congress, according to data released by the U.S. Department of Education on Tuesday. Lillian Mongeau EdSource -- 6/5/13

Privatizing UC Instruction -- A controversial bill proposes that California public universities partner with private technology companies to provide general education classes online. Whitney Phaneuf East Bay Express -- 6/5/13

Language Immersion Program Pushed for Vietnamese Youth -- While just a brief visit to Orange County's Little Saigon shows the deep connection the local Vietnamese community maintains with its homeland, there is growing concern that the community may be losing its most important cultural tie — its language. THY VO -- 6/5/13

Jobs Outlook Is Brighter For Class Of 2013
This year's graduates — whether from high school, community college or a four-year college — are finding better job prospects than at any time since 2008. Overall starting salaries for college grads are expected to rise 5.3 percent this year.

Community College Farm Faces Tough Times
Even as the state begins to restore some funding to community colleges, years of budget cuts have done serious damage. Specialized programs are still an easy target for trimming. One program at risk is the Pierce College Farm Center in L.A. County's San Fernando Valley. Reporter: Chris Richard.

State News: June 5, 2013

AM Alert: Union rally mobilizes in Sacramento
Yesterday health care, today contract negotiations. A day after masses of people converged on the State Capitol to advocate for more Medi-Cal funding, thousands more are expected to arrive today to show solidarity with SEIU Local 1000's push for a new collective bargaining agreement with California.

Federal search of Capitol office ends after dark -- Federal agents wheeled boxes out of Sen. Ron Calderon's Capitol office after dark on Tuesday night and exited through the garage, ending the first such raid in nearly three decades. Melanie Mason and Chris Megerian in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/5/13

Walters: California budget has many holes to fill in 10 days -- Anyone who would tune into the Legislature's budget conference committee sessions this week expecting to learn how the 2013-14 budget is shaping up would be disappointed. Dan Walters in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/5/13

Slow, steady growth forecast for California -- California's economy will continue to make a steady but not spectacular recovery, but the construction market is making enough progress to create labor shortages, according to the latest forecast from UCLA. Dale Kasler in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/5/13

Hiltzik: Social Security should be expanded, not cut -- Social Security is still the best retirement program we have. Benefits should be increased, paid for by raising or eliminating the payroll tax cap. Michael Hiltzik in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/5/13

CFT in the News: June 4, 2013

As State Watches, LA Unified Tests New Ways to Grade Teachers
By Ashley McGlone, The Hechinger Report Tuesday, Jun 4, 2013
LOS ANGELES – Robin Wynne Davis was taken aback last year when the state test score gains of her third-grade students at Melrose Elementary School labeled her a less-than-stellar teacher.

Deasy and Xavier De La Torre, Santa Clara County’s superintendent of schools, have endorsed the case, according to the nonprofit Students Matter, the advocacy group sponsoring the lawsuit. After failed efforts by the state to get the case dismissed in the last year, a judge granted a request by the California Teachers Association and the California Federation of Teachers to join the lawsuit as defendants May 2. A trial date is set for Jan. 27, 2014.

Complaint about CCSF accreditation found to be ‘without merit’
By: Andrea Koskey | 06/03/13 SF Examiner Staff Writer
A complaint filed against an accreditation agency for its evaluation of City College of San Francisco was found to be “without merit.”

According to the response to the 288-page complaint filed by the California Federation of Teachers, the commission followed the same standards it employs to review all its institutions, there was no conflict or bias in the commission, and the federation is not acting on behalf of City College.

Education News: June 4, 2013

Closing CCSF would have huge impact
Shutdown unlikely, but its ripples would harm whole region
June 3, 2013 By Nanette Asimov
If you call for paramedics or get your blood drawn, it's possible your phlebotomists and rescuers learned their skills at City College of San Francisco. The same goes for mechanics at the airport, caregivers at your child's day care, and the waiters - and owners - of your favorite watering holes.

More money for schools means less for San Mateo County, memo warns -- Unlike most counties, San Mateo annually stashes tens of millions of dollars from property taxes collected on behalf of local schools and community colleges. Bonnie Eslinger in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/4/13

Reform of California’s school finance system likely -- Less than a year after convincing voters to approve a multi-billion dollar tax increase for the state’s schools, Gov. Jerry Brown is on the verge of accomplishing a task that few California governors have dared to take on, let alone accomplish: reforming a school finance system that researchers and education advocates have for years labelled as inequitable, irrational and excessively complex. Louis Freedberg EdSource -- 6/4/13

Willful Defiance Suspensions Vary Widely Among San Diego County Districts -- Students can be suspended in California for 24 types of offenses. They include causing physical harm, bullying and theft. But 48 percent of the state’s suspensions during the 2011-12 school year were willful defiance or disruption. Kyla Calvert KPBS -- 6/4/13

Schools use restorative justice to reduce suspensions -- Big change is afoot in how public schools in California discipline students. Clare Noonan -- 6/4/13

Carbon monoxide detectors, door locks among school facility bills moving on -- Lawmakers moved a bill late last week that would require schools to install carbon monoxide warning devices – but narrowed its reach to only new construction coming after January of next year. Tom Chorneau SI&A Cabinet Report -- 6/4/13

LA tests ways to grade teachers -- Nowhere else in California has the debate over the use of student test scores to grade teachers gained more attention than in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Ashly McGlone Center for Investigative Reporting via UT San Diego$ -- 6/4/13

President Obama calls on teachers to help identify mental health disorders in students -- President Barack Obama on Monday asked teachers to help identify and seek help for children who are suffering from mental health disorders, saying that it was time to bring “mental illness out of the shadows.” Jane Meredith Adams EdSource -- 6/4/13

San Diego School Trustees To Vote On Adding Meat-Free Meals To Cafeterias -- The San Diego Unified School District Board of Education is scheduled tomorrow to consider whether to implement meat-free menus at school cafeterias on Mondays, beginning this fall. KPBS -- 6/4/13

State News: June 4, 2013

California officials launch effort to overhaul state parks -- California officials on Monday launched a new program to analyze and overhaul the state parks system, to be led by a volunteer commission. Matt Weiser in the Sacramento Bee$ -- 6/4/13

Livermore scientist still reinventing the wheel at 94 -- At 94, Dick Post is the oldest scientist Lawrence Livermore Laboratory has ever had. And he may be the most fascinating. Jeremy Thomas in the San Jose Mercury -- 6/4/13

CFT in the News: June 3, 2013

Vallejo theme park's mechanics seek help from other unions
By Rachel Raskin-Zrihen Times-Herald staff writer 06/01/2013
Jon Nagel is just the kind of teacher Garry Horrocks said he had in mind when he sent out a letter asking union members to honor Six Flags Discovery Kingdom's unionized mechanics' picket line.

Federation spokesman Steve Smith said his office distributed the letter to all 1,200 of its affiliates statewide, representing 2.1 million members. The California Teachers Association is not among its affiliates, but the California Federation of Teachers is.

Education News: June 3, 2013

School bond campaign reform sought -- Critics see underwriters' role in supporting ballot measures as unfair to opponents and say their deals with school districts can leave out competitive bidding. Dan Weikel in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/3/13

Q&A: Lessons for California from New Jersey’s ‘Improbable Scholars’ -- Students in Union City, N.J., get twice the funding of students in California. They attend two years of full-day kindergarten. Recent immigrants to this country are taught initially in their native language. John Fensterwald EdSource -- 6/3/13

Online college course experiment reveals hidden costs -- About two weeks into San Jose State's online education experiment at an Oakland charter school, it became clear that something was wrong. Some of the students in the college's for-credit math courses weren't even logging on. Katy Murphy in the Contra Costa Times -- 6/3/13

L.A. students tackle social problems for Aspen Ideas Festival -- The high school teams' projects include growing and selling healthful food, teaching inland communities about protecting the ocean and giving small children hands-on lessons about plants. Dalina Castellanos in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/3/13

Schools' effort to shift to Common Core faces a difficult test -- The move toward standards that teach students to be analytical encounters a bipartisan backlash. Howard Blume in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/2/13

Lawmaker faces questioning on college tuition measure -- Before a skeptical crowd Saturday morning in Ventura, Assemblyman Das Williams fielded questions and debated the merits of a measure that would let California community colleges charge more for high-demand courses during summer and winter sessions. Jeremy Foster in the Ventura Star -- 6/2/13

State News: June 3, 2013

Skelton: Gov. Jerry Brown is poised for a big victory -- California is close to making the most sweeping change in how it spends money on schools since Ronald Reagan was governor four decades ago. George Skelton in the Los Angeles Times$ -- 6/3/13

As Bay Bridge deals with controversy, Golden Gate seismic works plods along -- As Caltrans struggles to get the Bay Bridge's seismic fix finalized, officials report no such problems on the Golden Gate Bridge, though completion of its seismic work is still at least six years off. Mark Prado Marin IJ -- 6/3/13

Feds could slow down California’s high-speed rail -- The California high-speed rail project is now rapidly approaching an intersection controlled by a powerful, but usually low-profile federal board. Michael Doyle McClatchy DC -- 6/2/13

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