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Monday, Monday. Get back to work with a quick dose of the newsblitz:
- No child left unmeasured? That’s the thrust of a new plan for testing in San Diego Unified, still in its infancy. It could be a more sensible way to gauge what schools are doing, but it could also require new tests, a political and financial hazard during the budget crunch.
- We also blogged on Friday that San Diego Unified teachers are being asked to take a pay cut to help balance the budget. The Union-Tribune followed up on Saturday with more details and some important background — including some interesting commentary from school board prez Richard Barrera.
- KPBS reports on the final State of Education address from state Superintendent Jack O’Connell, including why he says teacher evaluation needs to change and why he favors a federal contest for stimulus dollars called Race to the Top.
- Palomar College may have a shortage of classes, the North County Times writes.
- Also in the UT: There could be national ripples from a court settlement over censoring a student newspaper in Fallbrook. A labor pact struck over school construction has triggered a move to ban such deals in the future. And the editorial page zeroes in on government delays that are putting off school construction that could generate jobs.
- The Daily Transcript talks with the UCSD chancellor about how it will keep up its programs despite cuts.
- The Los Angeles Times has a phenomenal story about how a Berkeley High plan to cut science labs to fund programs for struggling students became embroiled in issues of race and class.
- Educated Guess blogs about how lawmakers are seeking to lower the threshold to pass parcel taxes for schools — a change that could help nudge such a tax into reality in San Diego.
- California Watch finds that many school districts that signed up for Race to the Top balked at another, seemingly less controversial set of reforms that were voluntary, including improving preschool and classes for English learners.
- Menifee schools pulled a dictionary from elementary schools because it included a definition for — ahem — “oral sex,” the Riverside Press-Enterprise reports.
- The New York Times reveals the impact of the budget cuts at California’s state colleges through a single student at San Francisco State University.
- Doing more with less? Education Week writes about how some experts are urging school districts to do just that. In related news, the Economist sums up how the economic squeeze is impacting schools internationally.
- Ars Technica looks at six research papers on whether laptops improve student learning and finds they could help students perform better on standardized tests. The New York Times writes that there may be federal money for school technology for the first time in a decade.
- Want to know who gets to decide which states will get Race to the Top money? Too bad. Education Week blogs that the judges are being kept secret, ostensibly to keep them from being pressured.
- And Jay Mathews at the Washington Post weighs in on five “blind spots” in higher education.
— EMILY ALPERT