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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Districts and families in limbo over proposed cut to new kindergarten program

A new state law requires districts to put transitional kindergarten programs in place. But Gov. Jerry Brown last week proposed eliminating that mandate. Faced with an estimated $9 billion budget deficit, officials said now is not the time to expand or create programs.

Brown's school plans could help, hurt Valley

Education changes laid out in Gov. Jerry Brown's State of the State address Wednesday could jeopardize programs that limit class sizes and help students prepare for college. But school officials said the changes could give districts more flexibility and local control over funding.

Davis schools still rank high, but lag peers

Davis city schools have long enticed families looking for a great place to raise children, but test scores are falling and some schools are lagging behind their former peers at the top, the latest state figures show.

Monarch School names new CEO

Erin Spiewak has been named the new CEO of Monarch School, a unique San Diego-based public K-12 school for children impacted by homelessness.

Public schools increasingly rely on private donations

School foundations and PTAs used to raise money for the extras – high-tech projectors and special field trips. But these days, private donations to schools have grown dramatically and are being used to prevent teacher layoffs, keep libraries open, and save music and foreign-language classes.

Gov. Jerry Brown calls for less testing

California’s Jerry Brown, who has gone further than any other governor in blasting modern test-based school reform, said Wednesday that he wants to reduce the number of standardized tests students take, give more authority to local school boards and design a system to measure education performance that is less test-centric than the one now in use.

Fensterwald: Brown favoring school inspections

Call it the right-brain complement to the left-brain world of standardized test accountability. In his State of the State address on Wednesday, Gov. Jerry Brown called for a new “qualitative system of assessments” and specifically cited, as an example, a system of “school visitation, where each classroom is visited, observed, and evaluated.”

'The Worst of Times in California Public Education'

Don't celebrate. Don't even be happy. Stay strong. That's the message San Diego Unified School District Superintendent Bill Kowba sent out in a memo to district employees today.Kowba's main concern: In the best-case scenario, Gov. Jerry Brown's budget will keep California's education funding flat. That's bad news for San Diego Unified because it consistently spends far more than it gets each year in state and federal funding.

Brown's school plans could help, hurt Valley

Education changes laid out in Gov. Jerry Brown's State of the State address Wednesday could jeopardize programs that limit class sizes and help students prepare for college. But school officials said the changes could give districts more flexibility and local control over funding.

Brown touches on issues affecting all Californians

Gov. Jerry Brown’s 20-minute State of the State address Wednesday touched on a number of challenges ahead that have a direct bearing on the lives of all Californians, from the tests their children take in school, to the water they drink, to the taxes they pay at the cash register every day.

Gov. Brown pitches higher taxes in annual State of State address

Gov. Jerry Brown gave Californians a choice between higher taxes and deeper cuts to public schools and other core functions of government during his State of the State address Wednesday, essentially beginning his campaign for a planned November ballot initiative seeking to raise taxes.

Death Valley students face loss of lifeline

California has pulled funding for school transportation for the rest of this fiscal year and may eliminate it entirely next year. In Death Valley, where some students have a two-hour round trip, the cut is "catastrophic."

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