I repent. I’ve been making fun of San Diegans’ inability to cope with rain, but this actually is a real storm. Please be careful. You could always just stay in and read the newsblitz:

  • We report on a nagging problem that some schools took a debated step to solve: Kids normally have little reason to try hard on state tests, which don’t impact their grades. That changed last year at a handful of Grossmont high schools, when teachers began offering to boost students’ grades if they did well on the tests. Proponents say teens finally gave their all, but some parents call it grade inflation or worse.
  • We also blogged on your ideas on how schools can measure creativity and critical thinking. Keep them coming!
  • Lots of news about colleges today in the Union-Tribune: A Southwestern College police academy has been suspended in the wake of an unhappy state audit. Bonuses for UC medical executives are causing a stir. And Cuyamaca College is getting spiffed up.
  • Also in the UT: Food helps bridge the cultural divide at Crawford High. And what a delicious cultural divide it is.
  • MiraCosta College wants to overturn a court decision that invalidated a $1.6 million settlement with a former official. The North County Times explains the details of this latest twist.
  • The Sacramento Bee has a new tool to look up and compare teacher pay in your school district. Check it out! San Diego Unified is near the bottom of the San Diego County list, while Sweetwater is near the top.
  • The University of California schools will start putting students on waiting lists for admission, breaking with tradition to make sure they can control enrollment, the Los Angeles Times reports.
  • Oakland teachers are going on strike — for a day. The Tribune writes that the action comes after the union rejected a school district offer that didn’t include any pay increases.
  • Did Schwarzenegger really spare higher education in his budget? Capitol Weekly breaks down the confusing picture. The Contra Costa Times reports on why UC leaders are skeptical of the numbers.
  • Only in San Francisco: The Chronicle reports that after parents complained, schools are swapping out the kind of sweetener used in nonfat milk sent to schools, even though nutritionists say it makes little difference nutritionally. (It’s okay. My family lives in the Bay Area. I can poke fun at it.)
  • Educated Guess says that California has little to crow about in a new math index from Education Week.
  • Speaking of Education Week, the paper pulls out all the stops for a big profile of federal education secretary Arne Duncan and his first year on the job. Blogger Alexander Russo — not a big fan of Duncan himselfgives it a C.
  • The Wall Street Journal argues that if the feds want to make waves with Race to the Top, the competition for more stimulus money for schools, they should give it to very few states.
  • A Sacramento teacher writes in Teacher Magazine about the difference between a classroom and a “community of learners.”
  • And across the country, schools are teaching Chinese with financial backing from the Chinese government, The New York Times reports.

— EMILY ALPERT

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