Albert Einstein might have been pretty disappointed with the kids who attended Einstein Academy in San Diego’s South Park neighborhood.

They did just fine in math through elementary and middle school. That is, until they reached algebra. Then their scores tanked.

What went wrong? Educators think they know the answer, and they revamped the curriculum last year. Already, scores have jumped. Parents are intrigued and feel challenged themselves by their kids’ worksheets. The school’s approach may serve as a lesson for other campuses.

“Math really isn’t about filling out a form that has a bunch of problems on it,” said Ivan Alba, a math consultant who worked with Einstein. “It’s about putting people on the moon.”

In Other News:

• Now here’s a bold claim: a councilman-elect says almost a third of all car thefts in the city occur in his district, which serves San Diego’s southernmost neighborhoods. San Diego Fact Check examines the claim and discloses the city’s hot spots for car thefts.

• In education, we follow up on our story explaining the intricacies of teacher tenure with an aggregation of links to important articles and research about the topic.

• If you liked our story last week about San Diego Space 4 Art, a converted warehouse in downtown, then check out a video about it from our partners at the Media Arts Center.

• Also in arts: This week’s comment barrage on our site over local arts coverage continues, with a new voice declaring that “Music and arts, done right, is pure. Media is money driven.” Oh really.

• The Photo of the Day captures a French bulldog named Francesca who’s got her eyes on the world.

• Our redesign is here! Our engagement editor Grant Barrett explains some of our graphic approach and our goals, and asks our graphic consultant Ashley Pingree Lewis about what she hoped to accomplish.


• The crippled Carnival cruise ship finally limped into San Diego. How bad was it? “It was absolutely deplorable,” one passenger tells CNN, complaining of mayo sandwiches. “I expected a really nice time, and it was like Gilligan’s Island or something.”

• The U-T offers local and national Veteran’s Day news. And the Internet has endearing videos of returning servicement and servicewomen surprising their kids at school and greeting their ecstatic dogs. As a misty-eyed commenter puts it, “of course you post this on the day I make my annual Onion & Habanero Salad.”

• In the U-T: “Conservationists are pressing San Diego officials to conduct what they say is a legally mandated environmental review in the city’s bid to privatize its Miramar Landfill.”

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• A jury has awarded $1.7 million to an illegal immigrant prisoner’s family that claimed he received poor medical care at federal and state prisons, including one in San Diego. He died of cancer that was undiagnosed for more than a year despite obvious lesions. (SF Chronicle)

• A group called Walk San Diego found that homes in Mid-City communities deemed more walkable maintained slightly more of their value during the housing downtown. (WSJ)

• Your fast food probably comes from a franchise. How about your urgent care? It’s already happening: the first outpost of an urgent care chain has opened in Santee, California Healthline reports. The national chain is the only one of its kind. Another is scheduled to open in Oceanside.

It’s unclear whether they’ll make a dent in long emergency room waits or accept Medicaid. If they don’t, poor people will have a harder time going to them for care.

• Finally, in East County, a Grossmont hospital district trustee quit the board because he expected to get a job with the district, but that didn’t happen after a local resident complained of a seemingly cozy deal. Now the trustee wants his board position back, the same one he resigned from. (U-T)

I’ve heard of “You can’t fire me. I quit!” Perhaps this story will popularize a new declaration: “I unquit! Did you hear me? Hello?”

Please contact Randy Dotinga directly at and follow him on Twitter:

Randy Dotinga is a freelance contributor to Voice of San Diego. Please contact him directly at and follow him on Twitter:

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