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We recently explored how far behind the San Diego city school district was on getting kids up to new standards it set for graduation to be implemented in 2016.

Fewer than half of all students who graduated in 2013 earned a C or better in so called A-G courses, which are required to get into the University of California or California State University schools.

But now, the district tells us not to worry. They’re preparing kids earlier, officials told Mario Koran. Oh, and, getting Ds in those classes will be OK too.

Comparing the Policies: Minimum Wage Hikes in Other Cities

City Council President Todd Gloria and his allies have modeled the proposed minimum wage hike after other cities increases. Lisa Halverstadt takes a look at how exactly this proposal compares to other cities that have raised their own minimum wages.

The Kids Coming from Central America

The talk this week was about the flood of young people coming across the border. Typically, we see 8,000 or more unaccompanied youth come across the border without proper documents. This year, it’s projected to be 10 times that. It has provoked outrage in Escondido and Murrieta and sympathy from a congressman and many others.

Here’s a brief reader’s guide: Vox has a cardstack explaining all the background. Go through each one of these and you’ll get a lot of context. Here’s a feature from Mother Jones on what happens to the kids. The U-T’s Steve Breen says a lot here with a drawing.

It makes a bit more sense to think of this as a refugee problem than as the typical immigration debate. Even countries like Nicaragua, Costa Rica and Mexico are seeing skyrocketing numbers of applications for asylum. Here’s Foreign Policy magazine on what’s going on that has so many fleeing Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. It includes this map of where they’re coming from.

In short, unlike kids from Mexico, kids from these Central American countries can’t be immediately sent back. They stay for 72 hours in Border Patrol custody and are either released to family pending a hearing or enter the Refugee Resettlement program. And that program is overwhelmed, thus the need for facilities like what was proposed in Escondido.

Why San Diego’s So Big with the Military

Holidays like the Fourth of July are especially cool in military towns like ours.

Randy Dotinga took a look back at one of the biggest reasons for the huge military footprint in San Diego: WWI, the start of which happened 100 years ago this year.

Among the ways the war changed San Diego: It escalated the Navy’s presence here, helped transform Balboa Park into its current jewel status and made the city “The Air Capital of the West.”

What We Learned This Week

• The mayor’s office fired the Civic Innovation Lab staff after saying it wouldn’t.

Sheriff Bill Gore and DA Bonnie Dumanis sat down with Jose Susumo Azano Matsura, the man at the epicenter of the campaign finance scandal. The meeting doesn’t appear on Dumanis’ calendar. And Azano also tried to donate to a pro-Dumanis PAC before the 2012 mayoral primary before he created his own.

San Diegans used more water in the first five months of 2014 despite urgings to cut back.

• The sculptures on Park Boulevard the city once toyed with tearing down are now fully restored – and staying put.

• Businesses that want to avoid San Diego’s proposed minimum wage hike won’t be able to just move their headquarters outside of city limits.

Quick News Hits

• The company Active Network, a child of San Diego innovation, has been lured to Texas by Gov. Rick Perry and the Texas Enterprise Fund, which is paying the company $8.6 million and taking 1,000 jobs.

• SeaWorld’s Beluga Whale Ruby has died.

• The full San Diego City Council will consider an ambitious open data policy.

Quote of the Week

“The sheriff does not recall many specifics, but does remember that Mr. Azano discussed his affection for golf, his residence in Coronado and that he mentioned at length all the government officials he knew in Mexico.”

— Melissa Aquino, spokeswoman for Sheriff Bill Gore, on a meeting the sheriff had with District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis and Susumo Azano, who’s been charged with illegally funneling money into local politics.

Scott Lewis

Scott Lewis oversees Voice of San Diego’s operations, website and daily functions as Editor in Chief. He also writes about local politics, where he frequently...

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