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Save the date! voiceofsandiego.org is hosting a forum for candidates for the San Diego Unified school board on the evening of Thursday, May 20. I can’t wait. More details to follow. Now for the newsblitz:
- A local businessman who sued the San Diego Unified school district over how it chose a specific brand of digital whiteboards says he’s been contacted by the FBI, we report. Federal investigators are already looking into whiteboard purchases in Florida and Iowa.
- Alpine schools are launching an International Baccalaureate program, something that’s still rare in the elementary grades, the Union-Tribune writes.
- The North County Times reports that the deputy superintendent in Vista schools, who wasn’t popular with the teachers union, is resigning her job.
- Also in the North County Times: Some kiddos in Poway schools won some serious money for a science project.
- KPBS talks to a national activist for teaching peace in schools.
- Also in the U-T: Teachers at Serra High and the Preuss School were stunned to get a prestigious teaching award.
- The San Jose Mercury News writes that the same independence that works to the advantage of charter schools, which are touted by President Barack Obama, can also hinder outside intervention when they fail.
- Oakland teachers are holding a one day strike after the school district imposed a contract with no raises, the San Francisco Chronicle writes.
- The Associated Press reports that a new survey finds that Californians are increasingly worried about school budget cuts.
- Educated Guess blogs about the new plan being floated for California to try again for Race to the Top money: Only applying for three school districts. Fresno is one of them, the Bee reports.
- Calexico schools are still recovering from recent earthquakes, the Los Angeles Times reports.
- Education Week writes that the second round of competition for Race to the Top is heating up.
- The finance chief for D.C. schools rejected a plan to pay for teacher raises with private money, the Washington Post reports. Why? The outside groups said they could withdraw the money if the current chancellor left.
- The D.C. dilemma is a really fascinating test of how far school districts are willing to go for private funding. Claus von Zastrow blogs about it.
- Also in EdWeek: A Stanford economist has written a controversial new book that argues that shedding the bottom 5 to 10 percent of teachers could put U.S. students on par with Canada in two decades.
- And the Associated Press reports that in Rhode Island, the teachers union is suing a school district that fired all the staff at a troubled high school.
— EMILY ALPERT