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I am informed that a school news item I picked up yesterday from Indiana was not, in fact, from Indianapolis but rather from the now famed town of Churubusco. Duly chastened, I return to give you another, geographically correct newsblitz:

  • We bring you the findings from a just-the-facts-ma’am report that looks at San Diego Unified from test scores to finances. It’s meant to be the beginning of a conversation about how parents, philanthropists and business leaders can help improve schools. But the next steps are unclear. Researchers also found that two options floated to revamp schools, mayoral control and expanding the school board, would lead to battles at the ballot box.
  • Chula Vista Star News reporter Jon Campbell turned up an amazing story on how Sweetwater Superintendent Jesus Gandara failed to notify the school board and repeatedly denied publicly that he was seeking a job in Austin — despite the fact that documents from Texas point to him being a candidate. If true, it would be grounds for his termination, the Star News reports. More will certainly come on this story.
  • KPBS reports that San Diego Unified could get as much as $74 million in federal loans to pay for solar energy projects at schools. The only problem is it has to pay it back — and if it doesn’t think it can reasonably do it, it can’t accept all that money. The UT has also reported on this.
  • Two school parcel taxes were turned down by voters near San Jose yesterday, the Mercury News reports. This doesn’t bode well for similar plans here in San Diego. I’m still looking for news on what happened to a similar proposal in Long Beach.
  • The Los Angeles Times editorializes that a bill designed to help California be more competitive for federal stimulus dollars for schools is poorly constructed and includes a hodgepodge of ideas, some not so great, that aren’t really related to the stimulus.
  • Chino schools are considering whether to solicit corporate advertising in schools to help get more money amid the state budget crisis, the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin reports.
  • The Educated Guess blogs about a class size reduction program won by the California Teachers Association and its results, both good and bad. The union just issued data showing that it has had positive effects on school scores.
  • Jay Mathews at the Washington Post opines that the office of federal education secretary should be abolished, and Arne Duncan should be freed from the lecture circuit and sent back to local schools where he could do better work.
EMILY ALPERT

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