Good morning, kiddos — time to eat up your education news. We blog about a staffing problem deviling San Diego Unified, the issue of whether parent groups should be able to foot the bill for teacher salaries, the revival of the idea of a parcel tax and more anxiety over school bus schedules. The Union-Tribune chronicles San Diego Unified getting close to finishing its budget and so does KPBS. And SDNN reports on a Mission Bay High student who was barred from his graduation ceremony because of truancy — he believes it’s because he is a vocal student activist. John de Beck is backing him.
Statewide, the Wall Street Journal zeroes in on California school districts that have passed parcel taxes to help weather the budget crisis. Wonks editorialize in the San Francisco Chronicle that “California is dragging down the nation” and needs to simplify school funding, collect better data, and reward teachers with better track records in the classroom. The San Jose Mercury News delves into the debate over digital textbooks. And I nearly overlooked this amazing Los Angeles Times investigation into how neglected kids were lost because of Los Angeles county agencies failing to communicate with each other. It may not be school news, exactly, but it can impact schools too.
In national school news, the Washington Post dissects the research on “summer learning loss,” which includes the troubling finding that poor kids slip behind in reading over the summer while their middle-class peers push ahead. Education Week writes about a study that finds that No Child Left Behind raised student scores across the achievement spectrum. And it did an analysis of states’ stimulus applications and found that 90 percent of the stabilization dollars are filling in for state cuts instead of really adding money. And in the New York Times, a study found that splitting big high schools up into small ones helped the small schools, but ended up sending more needy students to other big high schools.