Category Archives: Uncategorized

Investing in Our Youth

14 Dec
by San Francisco Mayor Edwin M. Lee If we want our families to stay and grow in San Francisco, and if we want employers to stay and grow here, we must strive for the best public schools, anywhere. I say the best public schools “anywhere” because we’re not just competing with other cities in California.  For the jobs of the future, our students will have to compete with the rest of the world. But to all those parents and aspiring...

New Research Suggests Common Strategies to Align Expanded Learning

12 Dec
by Jessica Gunderson, Policy Director, Partnership for Children & Youth Did you know that your students who regularly and fully participate in state-funded or federally-funded expanded learning time – afterschool, intersession, and/or summer – programs can gain up to an additional 90 full-days of learning or more? Today, thanks to shifting educational priorities and policies, school district leaders in California have a critical and unique opportunity to maximize their investment in expanded learning time* to better support local goals for...

Reforms need time and leadership, and the board has the power to sustain both

5 Dec
California School Boards Association logo;
by Christopher Maricle, Policy & Programs Officer A recent education week article reports that the average tenure of superintendents across the country has dropped slightly to an average of 3.2 years for large urban districts. Is this a trend that we should be concerned about? There are three separate but related facts that would suggest the answer might be ‘yes.’ Or at least ‘maybe.’ Fact # 1: While everyone would like quick fixes for K-12 education, and as much as...

Making the Most of Summer Time

2 Dec
Summer Matters at the state Capitol 2013
by Jennifer Peck, Executive Director, Partnership for Children & Youth Districts are working hard to meet the demands of multiple initiatives and new expectations … with the valid lament – “There’s not enough time to get all this done!”  But Summer TIME offers a solution. Districts across the state are finding that 4 to 6 weeks of quality summer learning programs provide enough time for multiple wins – 1) keeping students up to speed on math and ELA, and getting...

California Thursdays: Making the Case for Farm to School Programs

27 Oct
by Nathaniel Browning, Policy & Programs Officer The growing prevalence of schools acquiring food from local farms makes me wish I could once again eat at school. The increasing popularity of Farm to School (F2S) programs is for good reason: they have a positive impact on student learning and health as well as the greater community and environment. Many districts and county offices of education have incorporated school gardens and seasonal fruit and vegetable curriculum into classroom instruction. Many are...

Lead, arsenic, nitrates, OH MY!

22 Oct
by Nathaniel Browning, Policy & Programs Officer, CSBA Research has shown that adequate consumption of healthy water ensures proper motor functioning, mental acuity and stress reduction. Access to safe drinking water helps promote greater student achievement, physical fitness and a positive school climate. Unfortunately, many students in rural communities throughout parts of California are worried about the ills that face them as they tip their glass for a drink of water. They are concerned about the chemicals lurking in their...

September Attendance Awareness Month

29 Sep
by Tom Torlakson, State Superintendent of Public Instruction September is a busy time of year for all of us. Our schools are back in session – students and teachers around the state are hard at work – expectations are high. And we are charged with the responsibility of continuing our work to make sure they have all the right resources they need to achieve their goals. We’ve made some very big, very fundamental improvements in the last year – not because schools...

Making a Difference in Student Attendance–Lessons Learned

18 Sep
by Audrey Yamagata-Noji, Ph.D., President, Santa Ana Unified School District Board and CSBA Director-at-large, Asian Pacific Islander Attendance is especially challenging in a district where the majority of families qualify for free/reduced lunch and the majority of families are immigrants. Cultural differences can lead to a lack of understanding about the importance of daily attendance – not because parents don’t care, but because their life situations are complex and frequently unreliable. As CSBA’s Director-at-Large Asian/Pacific Islander, I would like to...

Two Languages: Multiple Benefits

12 Sep
students reading
by Julie Maxwell-Jolly, Programs & Policy Officer In an increasingly globalized economy, California will need a population with the skills and understanding to thrive in multiple settings, languages, and cultures. One way to prepare our young people for this interconnected future is by providing them with the fluency in two languages, cross cultural experience and understanding, and increased brain flexibility that they can gain through dual language or two-way immersion (TWI) programs. Two-way immersion programs use English and a partner...

CTC again considers special credential for ROTC teachers

16 Apr
By Alton (Own work) [GFDL (, CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or CC-BY-SA-2.5-2.0-1.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons
The Special Teaching Authorization in Physical Education for members of the Reserve Officers' Training Corps would serve as recognition that the credential holder has met the subject matter requirement and represent another option for school boards considering whether to grant high school graduation credit for ROTC or Basic Military Drill....