Category Archives: Conditions of Children

Conditions of Children

Federal legislation proposes free meals for all children, extension of waivers

4 Aug
New federal legislation would allow all children to access breakfast, lunch and after-school snack programs either in school or through “grab and go” and delivery options during the 2020–21 school year. House Committee on Education and Labor Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-Va.) introduced the Pandemic Child Hunger Prevention Act on July 30 amid a national child hunger crisis and as school meal programs are struggling financially to maintain critical services. CSBA, as part of a larger nutrition coalition, supports...

Pressure to close digital divide gains urgency; learning loss funds one piece of the puzzle

27 Jul
State officials are calling California’s digital divide an “all-hands-on-deck situation” considering the very short time available to equip 700,000 students with computing devices and another 300,000 with hotspots to connect to the internet. The matter — the focus of the California Department of Education’s Closing the Digital Divide Task Force for months — takes on added urgency in light of a state order mandating that roughly 90 percent of students will begin the 2020–21 year solely with distance learning. In...

New study finds Obama-era school meal policy contributes to decline in obesity rates for children in poverty

24 Jul
A new study examining the effect of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act on children found that, since the policy was enacted in the 2012–13 school year, obesity rates for children in poverty decreased by 47 percent. While the study in Health Affairs, “Impact Of The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act On Obesity Trends,” cannot definitively say the link is causal, no such change in obesity rates was found for children overall, suggesting that the new meal and snack standards for the...

State introduces school reopening regulations, requires masks for students in grades 3-12

18 Jul
Gov. Gavin Newsom on Friday, July 17, unveiled new guidelines mandating that all California schools in counties on the state’s COVID-19 monitoring list begin the school year solely with distance learning and must meet strict criteria in order to open campuses. As of today, 32 of 58 counties, representing more than 90 percent of the state’s schoolchildren, are on the watch list. It’s important to note that districts located in counties that are not currently on the watch list, but are...

A conversation with: Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, California Surgeon General

15 Jul
Prior to being named California’s first surgeon general in 2019, Dr. Nadine Burke Harris worked as a pediatrician in the Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood of San Francisco. There, she founded and became CEO of a clinic focused on addressing the community’s health disparities. Much of her work has surrounded the awareness and mitigation of adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs, and their effects on children and adults. California Schools recently spoke with Dr. Burke Harris about how ACEs can impact education, what...

More than half of California school districts report lead in drinking water

10 Jul
More than 2,100 drinking fountains tested positive for lead at 1,300 California schools over the past three years, according to new analysis by the CALPIRG Education Fund, with the health problem encompassing more than half (53 percent) of the state’s school districts. The independent group has also launched an interactive statewide map showing the highest lead levels detected at each school, a project based on the latest publicly available data and stemming from state law requiring public water systems to...

Deadline approaching to apply for Pandemic-EBT meal benefits

7 Jul
Only about half of an estimated 3.8 million California children eligible to receive Pandemic-Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) benefits are signed up or have received their benefit cards, according to the Department of Social Services. To ensure that all children have access to healthy meals, the deadline to apply has been extended to July 15. Applications can be completed at P-EBT provides food benefits for children who would normally receive free or reduced-price meals at school. Through the program, eligible...

Mandated reporters help ensure the safety and well-being of children during COVID-19

23 Jun
public school building
While learning loss has been at the forefront of concerns about the impacts of school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the shuttering of schools across the country poses additional risks for children who may experience abuse and neglect in their households. The economic crisis has brought financial stress to millions of families that have lost income and are experiencing food and housing insecurity. Coupled with more time at home due to shelter-in-place orders, these factors make abuse and neglect...

New CSBA guidance for reopening schools addresses challenges faced by governance teams

10 Jun
As new information about COVID-19 and guidance for the reopening of schools in the 2020–21 academic year is released at a breakneck pace, CSBA has released a document that speaks directly to the needs of its members during this time. The Uncertain Road Ahead: Reopening Schools in the Time of COVID-19 presents a robust examination of what it will take to reopen schools safely and effectively. While the California Department of Public Health and the California Department of Education have...

CDE releases guidebook as schools plan how to reopen campuses

9 Jun
The California Department of Education on Monday, June 8, released a 55-page document to guide local educational agencies in their planning and discussions on physically reopening schools. “What we’ve done is compiled, as best as we can, a ‘how to’ to how we can safely reopen schools,” State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Thurmond said during a webinar unveiling the document to LEAs. The document features a 10-page health and safety checklist for LEAs for resuming in-person instruction and dives...