Category Archives: Conditions of Children

Conditions of Children

Report: Police officers outnumber health staff in schools by wide margin

13 Mar
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Silhouette of students
A new report finds that more than 400,000 K-12 students in California attend a school that has a police officer on site but not a school counselor — reflecting critical gaps in staff essential to student health and well-being. Based on analysis of newly available federal data, the report from the American Civil Liberties Union found that police officers outnumber nurses, social workers, psychologists and nurses at school sites by wide margins . Nationwide, there are 1.7 million students attending schools...

Data illustrate need for greater focus on California’s homeless students

7 Mar
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school safety
In the 2016-17 school year, 4.2 percent of California’s public school students were identified as homeless, according to a new report from Education Leads Home. The state’s homeless student population that year of 262,935 marks a 4.16 percent increase from the 2012-13 school year. Researchers and advocates say the facts reinforce the need for state-level policymakers, district officials and board members to allocate additional resources toward the issue and to address root causes. Meanwhile, the Joint Committee on Legislative Audit...

Budget battles hit schools as Oakland Unified teachers go on strike

21 Feb
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public school building
Oakland Unified School District teachers walked out of their classes Thursday, Feb. 21. As part of the strike, the Oakland Education Association, a union representing teachers, is asking for a 12 percent raise over three years, smaller class sizes and the hiring of more counselors and nurses. In an open letter, 75 Oakland USD principals said they supported the teachers and, echoing CSBA’s Full and Fair Funding campaign, called for the state to prioritize investing in K-12 public education. California...

Flushing lead from school pipes remains a work in progress

19 Feb
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As School Nutrition Month kicks off in March, California is making progress on a key issue impacting daily nutrition at school — water.  But there is still room for improvement and a need for more information, a recent report finds. The report, “Early Adopters: State Approaches to Testing School Drinking Water for Lead in the United States,” concluded that 3 percent of California’s K-12 public schools had at least one tap with an elevated level of lead in water and 1...

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...

Toolkit offers guidance and resources for English learner, immigrant parents

4 Feb
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The U.S. Department of Education has released a new guide to help schools better support English learner students, immigrant students and their families. Dubbed The English Learner Family Toolkit, the publication should be of particular interest in California, home to more than 1.3 million English learner students. The toolkit, which is available in English, Spanish, Arabic and Mandarin, consists of a series of modules that the agency will publish throughout the year. In January, the department unveiled the first two...

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...

Sextortion: Another cyber danger for youth

22 Jan
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cybersecurity
By Kathy Espinoza, assistant vice president, Ergonomics and Safety, Keenan A new form of online abuse and exploitation of young people is growing rapidly. It’s called “sextortion,” and it’s defined as the threatened dissemination of explicit, intimate or embarrassing images of a sexual nature without consent, usually for the purpose of procuring additional images, sexual acts, money or something else. New research from the Cyberbullying Research Center indicates that sextortion is more prevalent among adolescents than first realized, and youth...

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...

‘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...