Category Archives: Closing the Achievement Gap

Closing the Achievement Gap

Enthusiastic Capitol crowd calls for Full and Fair Funding of California’s public schools

23 May
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From Humboldt County, Monterey, San Diego and beyond, school leaders converged on Sacramento by the busload on May 22 to make their voices heard and to fight for Full and Fair Funding of California’s public schools. About 200 school board members took that fight to the steps of the State Capitol, where they joined CSBA staff, the California Teachers Association and other education partners in an afternoon Day of Action Rally for Education. Whether teacher, administrator, school employee, student, or...

Coalition rallies at Capitol with funding message of ‘Our students deserve more!’

3 Apr
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Alameda County school board members, teachers, administrators, other staff members, students and parents rallied at the Capitol steps in Sacramento on April 3 behind a unified call for increased state education funding. More than 300 people attended the event organized by the East Bay Coalition for Public Education, with a majority carrying red signs reading “Our students deserve more!” Speakers such as Alameda County Superintendent of Schools L. Karen Monroe said the coalition’s unprecedented alliance of people and groups from...

Study finds achievement gap is as large as it was 50 years ago

2 Apr
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teacher with student
As the United States grapples with growing inequality, a new analysis finds that the achievement gap between haves and have-nots remains as large as it was 50 years ago — neither having widened, as some have suggested, or closed. “Two surprises emerge from this analysis,” the paper’s authors — a team of Stanford University, Harvard University and University of Munich researchers — conclude. “First, gaps in the achievement between the haves and have-nots are mostly unchanged … Second, steady gains...

Digital divide largely closed at California schools, but large gaps remain in homes

25 Mar
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California has closed the digital divide at its K-12 schools, but internet access at home remains a persistent problem, a new report finds. Analysis by the Public Policy Institute of California  shows that 90 percent of the state’s schools met the Federal Communication Commission’s minimum threshold (100 kbps connectivity per student) for digital learning in 2018, and 59 percent of schools met the FCC’s long-term target (1,000 kbps per student). In contrast, as highlighted in the summer 2017 edition of...

Chronic absenteeism, stakeholder engagement practices shared at PACE conference

5 Feb
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math teacher
Two timely and important issues facing districts and school boards, chronic absenteeism and stakeholder engagement, shared the spotlight at this year’s Policy Analysis for California Education annual conference. The Feb. 1 event in downtown Sacramento, with a theme of “Putting Evidence into Action to Advance Equity in California,” served as a venue for researchers and practitioners to share best practices in key areas identified in PACE’s “Getting Down to Facts II” report. A fresh focus on chronic absenteeism About 10...

Commentary: Justice for all students is imperative

31 Jan
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By Dr. Emma Turner It is one of the great honors of my life to serve as President of the California School Boards Association and advocate for the needs of students — all students — at the highest levels. I reflected on this during the Annual Education Conference when the Delegate Assembly rose as one to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. Hands on our hearts, we concluded with the phrase, “with liberty and justice for all.” Those words provide the...

Shattering inequities: One California school’s story

17 Jan
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students taking test
by Robin Avelar La Salle and Ruth Johnson Pico-Union is one of the most socioeconomically challenged neighborhoods in the city of Los Angeles. More than 44,000 people live in a 1.67-square-mile area, making it one of the highest density places to live in the county. Sixty-five percent of the residents are Latino and immigrant, mostly from Mexico and Central America. Pico-Union is in the top 17 percent for number of violent crimes in L.A. Seven percent of residents have a...

Students who engage in civic life are healthier, aim higher — but gaps exist

2 Jan
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Higher rates of teenage civic engagement are tied to being healthier, missing fewer days of school, receiving better grades and having higher aspirations of attending college, according to a new study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. Researchers also found vast differences in rates of civic engagement across student groups, with activities consisting of volunteering, voting, and participating in school, community or political organizations. Low-income high school students were less likely to participate in two or more of...

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....

California’s trailblazing History-Social Science Framework earns national award

20 Nov
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For its groundbreaking efforts to provide all students with an engaging and relevant education, California’s instructional guide for history and social science standards recently won the American Historical Association’s Beveridge Family Teaching Prize for distinguished K-12 history teaching. The History-Social Science Framework for California Public Schools — approved by the State Board of Education in 2016 and published last year — was a joint project from the California Department of Education and California History-Social Science Project (UC Davis). Among other...