Category Archives: Effective Governance

Effective Governance

The Janus Decision and Implications for School Leaders

3 Jul
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by CSBA staff The U.S. Supreme Court issued its highly anticipated opinion regarding Janus v AFSCME. As expected, the Court has ruled, by a 5–4 margin, that compelling nonconsenting employees to pay agency fees, also known as fair share fees, to unions is a violation of their First Amendment rights. This decision by the Court overturns its 1977 ruling in Abood v. Detroit Board of Education. Abood, a 1977 Supreme Court case, gave public employees represented by a union the...

Reach future voters during High School Voter Education Week

23 Apr
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i voted sticker
As highlighted by recent student protests and walkouts, children and young adults have an interest in politics, too. Yet that interest does not always translate to votes. Young adults have the lowest voter registration and participation rates of any age group in California. Only 8.2 percent of eligible voters age 18–24 voted in California’s 2014 state election. In the 2016 presidential election, just 53 percent of Californians between the ages of 18–34 were registered to vote, with an estimated one...

From 6 to 600,000: CSBA salutes California trustees during School Board Recognition Month

3 Jan
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governance meeting
In the spring of 1850, San Francisco’s city council established California’s first free public school. This was followed soon after by a city board of education and a city superintendent. Since that time, California school boards have served as stewards of an education system that has helped drive the state’s transformation into a cultural and economic powerhouse. From that first school house in an old church in San Francisco, boards of education have grown to oversee county offices of education...

School districts audit reveals lack of “Buy American” compliance

9 Aug
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Buy American - cafeteria
The California State Auditor found late last month that California’s schools are failing to follow one specific federal rule — keep food local and “Buy American.” Districts participating in the National School Lunch or Breakfast Program are required to comply with all requirements of federal law for purchasing commercial food products served in the school meals programs, including those outlined in the Buy American provision (42 USC 1760, 7 CFR 210.21). This provision indicates that a district must, to the...

New video highlights LCFF Collaborative Working Group

14 Jul
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LCFF Working Group
The Local Control Funding Formula, or LCFF, first enacted in 2013–14, marked a major shift for school districts and county boards of education. The LCFF is intended to increase equity through local control, giving school districts and county boards of education a greater ability to ensure that all of California’s 6.2 million students receive a quality education. To make sense of the new changes, a group of school district and county office of education representatives convened by CSBA and California...

One district’s move to create a safe haven

28 Jun
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Silhouette of students
The School Board of the Sacramento City USD listened to the fears and concerns of students and the community and responded with a strong message in support of protecting students from possible deportation. On Dec. 8, the District unanimously approved a Safe Haven School District Resolution, one of the first of its kind in the nation....

New research report shines light on school crime and safety

24 May
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school safety
All California students have a right to feel welcomed and be free from emotional and physical harm at their public schools. School safety is one of the most important elements to consider in order to ensure that an environment is conducive to learning. According to Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2016, a newly released research report from the National Center for Education Statistics and the Justice Department’s Bureau of Justice Statistics, the last 20 years have seen a decline...

DeVos has turned attention to public education —  it’s up to school board members to keep it there

23 May
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by Vernon Billy Earlier this year, the confirmation hearings of Betsy DeVos as U.S. Secretary of Education was covered more exhaustively than any other education secretary in recent memory The curiosity surrounding the new education secretary demonstrated the deep interest and concern that Americans have about the policies and issues that can shape our education system. The American public recognizes the need to protect public schools and defend every American student’s fundamental right to a free, high-quality public education. Here...

Survival Of The Fittest: Adapting To Drive The Public Education Agenda

27 Apr
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by Susan Henry In biological terms, fitness is defined by the ability to survive and reproduce — a condition dependent on how well an organism has adapted to its environment. As leaders in public education, we are operating in an extremely difficult environment. The political climate is changing rapidly, the landscape is constantly shifting, and we are surrounded on all sides by special interests with competing agendas. The old ways are no longer sufficient. We must adapt to our new...

CSBA President Susan Henry Issues Statement Regarding Cuts to Federal Education Budget that Threaten Teacher Training and Class-Size Reduction Programs

31 Mar
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Educators apprehensive about budget which piles new mid-year cuts on top of reductions already proposed for fiscal 2018 “The California School Boards Association is deeply concerned about the Trump Administration’s plan to slash federal education spending. The $9.2 billion in cuts for the upcoming fiscal year was bad enough, but proposing an additional $3 billion in surprise mid-year cuts is particularly worrisome,” said CSBA President Susan Henry. “These reductions target funds marked for important teacher training and class-size reduction programs that improve...