A special shout out to everyone I met or reconnected with at our fabulous People at Work event — including Matt Wong, who you might remember him as the La Jolla High student who got suspended last spring after trying to sell sandwiches on campus to raise money. He’s now a student at the University of California Davis with an eye toward an engineering degree. Figures.
Now on to education news: We write about a program to cut down class size that is now in limbo, zeroing in on one City Heights elementary school where hopes are high for using stimulus money to save it. The Union-Tribune and SDNN report that San Diego Unified has to pay $1.25 million after a student who was involved in a sexual relationship with a teacher won her lawsuit against the school system. Vista schools have balanced their budgets without cutting salaries or the school year, but the North County Times writes that next year could be much worse.
Zooming out across California, the Mercury News writes that schools in the San Jose area were able to save athletics from the chopping block, but they warned that doing it again might mean passing a parcel tax. Sacramento schools are reaping revenue by leasing out vacant schools to tenants from charter schools to churches. The plan to allow donors to name community college classes in exchange for their cash is still kicking in San Francisco, the Chronicle reports.
Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez writes about a student take on laying off teachers based on seniority. And Education Week blogs about a new California study on “independent study high schools” where most work is done independently.
In national news, the Supreme Court ruled that strip-searching an Arizona student who was suspected of carrying ibuprofen pills was out of bounds, the Los Angeles Times reports. A task force is urging Obama to de-emphasize test scores as the measure of school success when he redesigns No Child Left Behind.
The Associated Press reports that the ACLU found a zero tolerance law in Michigan schools is being applied with too little discretion and disproportionately ejects black students from school. And the Washington Post writes that university professors are taking up Twitter for class discussions, but D.C. schools are mainly using it like a lecture instead of a dialogue.