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Monday, April 16, 2012

Layoff uncertainties roil San Juan Unified

More than 200 San Juan Unified School District teachers, counselors and other certificated employees on Friday snacked, read books, drank coffee, and checked smartphones and iPads while they attended a hearing on their potential layoffs.

Expert sees conflict in consultant's ties to Sacramento City superintendent

An ethics expert says Sacramento City Unified School District consultant Don Katzir's involvement in the evaluation of Superintendent Jonathan Raymond is a conflict of interest.

Program helps boost Monterey Peninsula USD scores

About 15 students strut into Griselle Rose's English class to the sound of Vivaldi's "Double Concerto in A Minor." After the bell rings, and Seaside High School's announcements are heard over the intercom, Rose points to the class objectives for the 10th-graders to read out loud.

Sacramento-area schools review racial imbalance of student suspensions

Across the state, nearly one of every five African American students and one in 14 Latino students were suspended at least once in 2009-10, compared with one in 17 white students and one in 33 Asian American students, according to a report released last week from the Center for Civil Rights Remedies at UCLA.

Hundreds of substitute teachers needed next week

The San Diego Unified School District is scrambling to find hundreds of substitutes to cover for teachers who are scheduled to attend three-day hearings next week to contest their pink slips.

Galt elementary school district takes new salary cuts to save schools

An additional union group took cuts and Galt Joint Union Elementary School District's top brass volunteered for extended furlough days and salary freezes to stave off school closures for at least another year.

Cafeteria workers, Lodi Unified School District at odds over breaks

After cafeteria workers at several school sites reported being denied their paid break time, the classified union has filed a grievance against Lodi Unified School District.

Upland Unified School District board reviewing transportation cuts

The Upland Unified School District Board of Trustees are reviewing possible changes to the transportation system in order to meet needed budget cuts for the next fiscal year.

Los Gatos board votes suddenly to close school

The Los Gatos School District cited unexpectedly stricter state demands for seismic safety when it voted suddenly Tuesday to close Lexington School and send its students from the Santa Cruz Mountains to a school in downtown Los Gatos.

At an urban L.A. school, nature grows — and test scores too

At Leo Politi Elementary, workers ripped out concrete and planted native flora. The plants attracted insects, which attracted birds, which attracted students, who, fascinated by the nature unfolding before them, learned so much that their science test scores rose sixfold.

When time allows, 1992 riots are poignant lesson in L.A. schools

L.A.-area high school students find lessons about the 1992 riots gripping and galvanizing — when their teachers have time to turn the focus away from standardized tests.

Ed Prof challenges professional development conventions

Ivan Cheng, who spent more than two decades teaching math in Los Angeles schools, is one of a growing number of researchers who believe conventional methods for making teachers better doesn’t necessarily help their students.

Fensterwald: Dilemma over English learners

English language learners currently get about 8 percent per student in extra funding, says the Legislative Analyst’s Office. That amount would more than quadruple in six years, to 37 percent, if the Legislature adopts Gov. Brown’s weighted student formula, phasing in substantially more money for every poor student and each English learner. That potential bonanza has advocates for English learners ecstatic and anxious.

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