Monthly Archives: December 2018

Issues with impact: Highlights from CSBA publications in 2018

19 Dec
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California School Boards Association logo; www.csba.org
In 2018, CSBA’s staff, members and partners explored some of the most pressing subjects facing California’s schools and our 6.2 million students. We had a lot to choose from – the issues schools grapple with have never been more numerous, more varied or more complex. Here’s some of the most compelling writing on those topics from the past year. Thanks for reading in 2018; we look forward to providing more insight in the new year. Magazine Articles Trial by Fire:...

Federal commission releases school safety report; sparks debate about student discipline

19 Dec
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Recommendation to roll back Obama-era guidance largely moot in light of California state law A wide-ranging report has intensified the debate over appropriate methods of discipline in a time of increasing concern about student safety. On Tuesday, Dec. 18, the Federal Commission on School Safety released what the U.S. Department of Education called “best practices and policy recommendations for improving safety at schools across the country.” The Commission was established in response to the February 2018 mass shooting at Florida’s...

Protecting existing school funding while fighting for Full and Fair Funding

19 Dec
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By Mike Ambrose Full and Fair Funding is crucial for student success, and research continues to demonstrate that increasing funding to education makes an important and lasting impact on students, particularly for students in high-need and low-income schools. Nonetheless, despite boasting the fifth-largest economy in the world and the highest gross domestic product of any state, California sits near the bottom nationally in nearly every significant measure of school funding and school staffing. Even with improvements to funding levels in...

Commentary: Education, protests & freedom of speech are the ties that bind our republic

17 Dec
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By Vernon Billy Students are the future torchbearers of liberty I hope I got your attention… By the time you read this, the November 2018 election will be history and the outcomes of Election Day will have been debated and analyzed by every political pundit and pollster. This analysis, such as it were, is welcomed by political junkies and policy wonks across the political spectrum. But underneath all this analysis (or noise) is the fact that Election Day reflects several...

Bolstering your district’s LCAP stakeholder engagement might not involve the term ‘LCAP’

14 Dec
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When it comes to promoting meaningful community and student engagement and input, schools and districts might want to consider a jolting principle: Why even use the acronym “LCAP” when initially communicating with the audience? Do they know what it is and will using the term result in a quality two-way education tool representing a diverse stakeholder group? A recent California Collaborative for Educational Excellence-hosted webinar posed such questions and offered tips on communicating to engage rather than to simply inform...

Commentary: A commitment to equitable outcomes for all students

12 Dec
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students taking test
By Dr. Shawnterra Moore As a young African-American girl being raised by a single parent, I had no true understanding of the statistics that forecasted my future. My mother was single, not by choice; my father was gunned down a few months before I was born, but she was an educated woman who emphasized the importance of education. I was very successful academically; however, the harsh realities of the world in which we lived hit me upon entrance to college....

CCEE outlines structure, timeline for Community Engagement Initiative networks

10 Dec
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Kids together
After announcing lead partners and launching the program in November, the California Collaborative for Educational Excellence outlined the next steps for its Community Engagement Initiative at its Dec. 6 board meeting. The effort will include a series of multi-year professional learning networks that build district and community collaboration, with a focus on student outcomes. Josh Daniels, CCEE director heading the initiative, said in his presentation (PDF file available here) that the timeline calls for an initial professional learning network to...

California School Dashboard arrives with new indicators, look for 2018

6 Dec
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The fall 2018 version of the California School Dashboard is now live and brings with it several additions and changes for board members to be aware of, namely the presence of a new indicator measuring grades K-8 chronic absenteeism for schools, districts and county offices of education. Due to the changes, 374 districts qualify this year for differentiated assistance through the System of Support, compared to 228 districts in 2017. Ninety-three districts that qualified for differentiated assistance last year are...

New faces and new bills as 2019-20 legislative session begins

5 Dec
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At Monday’s kickoff to the 2019-20 legislative session, both the Senate and Assembly held their respective organizational sessions to seat newly-elected members. Eight seats in the Assembly change hands for 2019-20, as do nine seats in the Senate. On Monday, the desk was also opened for 2019-20 bill introductions, with 198 bills submitted thus far. Following the organizational sessions, the Legislature stands in recess until January. Click here to download an Excel table from the California Department of Education on...

Free, virtual active shooter training platform now available for schools

4 Dec
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Active shooter incidents and other school emergencies require teachers, administrators and staff to become first responders in the blink of eye. A new, free virtual training program from the Department of Homeland Security allows personnel to create and practice response plans for such an incident. EDGE, or the Enhanced Dynamic Geo-Social Environment, School Environment scenario launched in November and is now available for download by agencies and educational institutions. Built on a gaming engine that powers popular titles like Fortnite,...