Monthly Archives: January 2019

CSBA and its partners continue push for school facilities funds

16 Jan
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construction site
Last week, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced a notable shift from his predecessors’ policies pertaining to school facilities. When the voters of California approved Proposition 51 in 2016, which provided $7 billion for K-12 school facilities construction and modernization projects, then-Gov. Jerry Brown was less than supportive of the bond measure, due to his concerns over the existing School Facilities Program. As a result, his subsequent budget provided only $653 million in Proposition 51 funds, during a time when the Office...

State Board adopts new requirements for districts in LCAP process

16 Jan
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Interim changes are coming to the Local Control Accountability Plan template, but a much larger revision is likely still a few years out. As part of that process, the State Board of Education approved a new LCAP section at its January meeting. The revision is designed to comply with the federal Every Student Succeeds Act’s rules for improving low-performing schools. District with schools targeted for assistance through the California School Dashboard must now verify that each school’s LCAP includes a...

‘Silent Recession’: Rising costs and rising challenges confront California school districts

15 Jan
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pencils and coins
California’s public schools are still struggling to meet basic needs even as the state’s economy has rebounded from the Great Recession, analysis finds. Against the backdrop of a strike in the Los Angeles Unified School District and a looming financial crisis in districts statewide, the WestEd report authors say, “The multiyear budget forecasts for California school districts are increasingly grim, and many school districts are being forced to make difficult decisions about how to maximize limited dollars to best meet...

What the $3 billion CalSTRS proposal in the 2019-20 budget means for local schools

14 Jan
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About 20 minutes into last week’s marathon budget press conference, Gov. Gavin Newsom began discussing the issue of pension cost increases – and was kind enough to name-drop California school board members and CSBA in the process. Watch a clip of Gov. Newsom discussing pension relief (Jan. 10, 2019) “We are adding an additional $3 billion into immediate relief to school districts to address their STRS anxiety…” the Governor said, in a statement met with off-screen applause from Superintendent of...

Statement on the Gov. Gavin Newsom’s Budget Proposal

11 Jan
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“We are encouraged by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s first budget, particularly his commitment to the Local Control Funding Formula, school construction, services for young children and families, and recognition of the challenges facing school districts in the form of rising costs for pensions and special education. The Governor has demonstrated an appreciation of the critical issues facing public schools as we work to provide the next generation of Californians with the tools needed to expand our prosperity and ensure that every...

AG advisory creates new considerations for charter school governance and operations

9 Jan
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By Kathryn Meola, CSBA General Counsel  California Attorney General Xavier Becerra has issued an advisory opinion (No. 11-201, dated December 26, 2018) concluding that charter schools and their governing bodies are subject to the Ralph M. Brown Act and the California Public Records Act. The Attorney General also concluded that the governing bodies of charter schools are subject to both Government Code section 1090, which prohibits conflicts of interest in public contracts, and the Political Reform Act of 1974. Finally,...

Brief illustrates alarming health and well-being data for LGB youths in California

8 Jan
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LGBT Textbook
Lesbian, gay and bisexual youths in California experience negative behaviors and consequences at about twice the rate of their straight peers, according to a new Kidsdata issue brief. Those behaviors and outcomes for LGB youths include higher alcohol and drug use, more common feelings of depression and a higher likelihood of skipping school. Compounding the issue is the fact that many districts and schools lack the capacity and resources to support positive health and educational outcomes for all students, particularly...

A conversation with … CSBA President Emma Turner

8 Jan
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Emma Turner is a trustee of the La Mesa-Spring Valley School District in east San Diego, a TK-8 district with about 12,300 students. Turner is particularly proud of the work the district does in its Literacy Academy, Arts Academy and STEAM Academy. She has been involved in CSBA since her second year as a board member in 2007. Tell us a little about your background including your own K-12 education and professional experience. I’m a lifelong learner, and that is...

CSBA institute helps new board members answer ‘what’s next?’

7 Jan
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From the Redwood Coast to the Coachella Valley, about 80 newly elected district and county board members gathered Jan. 3-4 in Sacramento to focus on “what’s next.” With their campaigns finished and a largely procedural first board meeting under their belts, attendees learned about effective governance, finance, human resources and student learning at CSBA’s popular Institute for New and First-term Board Members. Governance Consultant and CSBA Past President Luan Burman Rivera started the program by outlining the key concepts of...

Attorney General echoes CSBA’s call for greater charter school transparency

2 Jan
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On Dec. 26, when Californians were more focused on holiday celebrations than legal matters, the state’s Attorney General published a report with enormous implications for charter schools and their authorizers. The 23-page opinion assessed issues of transparency, accountability and conflict of interest and concluded that — contrary to current practice — charter schools should have to comply with the same laws on these matters as other public schools. “We are presented with a series of questions about whether charter schools...