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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Norris superintendent to retire

Wallace "Wally" McCormick, 12-year superintendent of Norris School District -- one of the highest achieving districts in Kern County -- will retire at the end of July.

Thieves steal Linden High cherry crop

To the high school students, the 50 or more cherry trees and their bounty represent effort, diligence and hands-on experience. To thieves, it was an easy mark.

Teacher, janitor have relatives in power

The principal of San Ysidro Middle School has a relative on staff — his brother-in-law is a language arts and history teacher. The head of the San Ysidro School District’s maintenance department has a relative on staff — a grandson who’s a janitor. (He’s also the nephew of a school board member.)

Middle school incident sparks 'horrible questions'

A union representative at Bell Middle School in San Diego is working to rally support for an English teacher who recently had nine students suspended from his class. The seventh graders were suspended from one of Ed Johnson’s all-boys English classes in May. The incident has divided the staff and raised "horrible questions" among students, according to one teacher.

East San Jose parents assail 'intolerable' middle schools

With fewer than half of eighth-graders testing proficient in English and math, parents in two East San Jose school districts have declared a middle-school crisis and are pressing for opening new alternative and charter schools.

School year calendar runs into resistance

The hottest topic on a hot night in the Stockton Unified boardroom was the district's 2012-13 instructional calendar. And it wasn't even on the agenda for Tuesday night's meeting.

Special report, part 4: Not even outside help can fix schools

Lucia Mar and other districts are looking to San Luis Obispo County’s countless booster clubs, community service groups, education foundations and parent-teacher organizations for help.

LAUSD board pulls proposed $298-a-year parcel tax from November ballot

Worried that a financial catastrophe would cripple Los Angeles Unified if voters reject the governor's proposed tax hike, the school board decided Tuesday to remove the district's parcel tax from the November ballot to avert an Election Day showdown over education funding.

Alum Rock hires interim superintendent

The Alum Rock school board on Monday named Stephen Fiss, a former administrator in the district and a charter school director, as its interim leader.

Carmel school district postpones bond issue

Carmel Unified School District trustees on Monday decided against placing a bond on the November ballot after hearing poll results that revealed tepid enthusiasm from voters to approve one.

Moraga school board approves committee to review district sex abuse policies

In its first meeting since a child sex abuse scandal polarized this small community, the school board voted Tuesday night in favor of creating a student safety committee that will review the district's policies regarding child abuse and the legally "mandated reporting" of abuse incidents.

Four firms offer proposals to improve stadiums at three Pomona high schools

Four teams of architects and engineers, including one that was involved in designing a retractable natural grass field system for the stadium where the Arizona Cardinals play, are interested in improving athletic fields at three Pomona Unified schools.

Upland Unified board postpones transportation cut decision

The Upland Unified School District Board of Trustees on Tuesday postponed a decision on making cuts to home-to-school transportation.

Academy of the Redwoods may lose full-time principal

Nineteen students, teachers and parents spoke out at the Fortuna Union High School District board meeting Tuesday against a proposal that would reduce the principal's hours at Academy of the Redwoods and turn it into a teaching and administrative position.

Baron: Adult education’s existential crisis

Adult education in California is nearly as old as the state itself. Today, the program that has helped millions of people learn English, earn a GED, and receive job training for 156 years is facing extinction.

CASBO votes to endorse Brown tax initiative, but not Munger’s

Even as public support for Gov. Jerry Brown’s November tax initiative appears to be slipping, another powerful school association has endorsed the measure that is designed to restore some K-12 education funding.

Trigger cuts to schools make budget vote a problem for incumbents

One of the key elements of the plan that is unlikely to change is that the final budget will assume voter approval of a tax hike in November. The final budget plan is also expected to include some $5.5 billion in cuts that would be automatically triggered if tax initiatives fail. It is these trigger cuts that may be giving heartburn to lawmakers facing tough elections this fall since most of them would come from K-12 schools.

Critics decry latest shrinkage of L.A. Unified's school year

A tentative agreement to shorten the school year for Los Angeles students — for the fourth consecutive year — is almost certain to weaken academic gains, and was driven, critics said, by expediency more than the best interests of students.

Walters: California school aid at center of wrangle over tax measures

California's 6 million-student public school system is not only the largest chunk of the state budget that will be enacted this week – by far – but the major component of Gov. Jerry Brown's campaign for sales and income tax increases as well. And if that isn't yeasty enough, the governor is also proposing huge changes in the way state school money is calculated and disbursed. What emerges from all of this is impossible, even for political insiders, to predict.

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