I can’t get over how awesome this kid is. Her message: Don’t underestimate us. Duly noted. Now for your newsblitz!

We followed up on our story about discipline at Innovations Academy with some extra bits that landed on the cutting room floor — and a letter from an extremely happy mom.

The Union-Tribune reports that the Grossmont school board is holding off on revoking the Helix charter after the school got a new board. The editorial board opines that Grossmont should just drop it.

Also in the UT: Twenty Sweetwater teachers who were facing layoffs got a reprieve, but 85 are still on the chopping block.

KPBS delves more into why parents are spending more time with their children, according to two local economists, but it’s not necessarily quality time.

Grade schoolers in Escondido are using iPod Touches to help with their schoolwork, the North County Times writes.

The Sacramento Bee reports that school districts are taking out loans — and paying the price — because California is delaying its payments to schools.

This is what happens when parents with Hollywood connections face school budget cuts: Megan Fox stars in a video that needles Gov. Schwarzenegger about the cuts, the Los Angeles Times blogs.

A San Francisco Chronicle columnist says critics of Republican gubernatorial Steve Poizner’s book about teaching are just punishing a good deed.

Schools are clamping down on transfer requests that let students — and the state money that comes with them — go to other school districts, the Contra Costa Times reports.

The New York Times blogs about Oakland schools’ push for practical learning.

Education Week reports that the feds are offering $350 million for states to create better tests that measure student growth over time and go deeper than the multiple choice tests we’re used to. This is one of the things that San Diego Unified agrees with the feds on.

Also in EdWeek: As stimulus money fades, the financial outlook remains grim for many schools.

The Wall Street Journal writes that the D.C. teachers contract is being eyed across the country because it includes merit pay, but it relies heavily on outside money.

Time asks whether schools should bribe kids for grades. This is a fascinating counterpoint to our article on Innovations Academy, which eschews rewards and punishments.

Testing critics blog in the Washington Post that the Obama Administration is selling “snake oil remedies” to failing schools. A New York Times editorial counters that Obama’s first educational initiative put the right issues in focus.

— EMILY ALPERT

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