You hear it all the time: Children don’t just need education, they need a quality education with excellent teachers. Mario Koran has been thinking a lot about preschool education recently, and wondered what high quality teaching actually means for kids in preschool in this week’s Learning Curve.

“This student-teacher interaction, it turns out, is actually the core,” Koran writes. Many schools also participate in a system where they are scored by factors like assessments and teacher credentials. Or, just go watch. “Assess whether that teacher is helping children build up that resilience, that ability to overcome frustration,” advises one education expert.

The Border Life

Former Voice of San Diego intern Zoe Schaver reported in once more to give a glimpse of what it was like during her time living in Tijuana and working in San Diego. Family to a diplomat, Schaver’s interactions with the border were unique, once she discovered she had certain privileges enjoyed only by buses and a few individuals.

But even then, the driving hours were long. “I’m not going to recommend that anyone devote two hours of each day to driving, period,” Schaver writes. That sound you hear is the entire population of Los Angeles sighing in deep reflection.

School Power: San Diego Explained

San Diego Unified is getting ready to pour millions of dollars into expanding its use of solar panels at schools. On the surface it seems like a good idea, with potentially millions of dollars in savings being redirected toward serving students.

But Lisa Halverstadt and NBC 7’s Catherine Garcia point out how the district’s best solar intentions haven’t always worked out well in the past, in our most recent San Diego Explained.

Turf Rebates in the Ranch

People living in San Diego’s upscale community of Rancho Santa Fe were the largest beneficiaries of a government rebate program which offered cash to homeowners if they replaced grass lawns with drought tolerant landscaping. The Union-Tribune reports how Rancho Sante Fe homeowners pulled down the top five most expensive grants, ranging from $48,000 to $70,000. The RSF community as a whole collected $288,000 of public dollars to install elaborate, drought-tolerant landscaping.

Residents of Rancho Sante Fe were previously called out for huge water consumption in the face of  California’s relentless drought. The community is known for large houses and even larger plots of land, which are covered in expansive lawns. Back in May, we questioned whether these rebate programs were subsidies for people who don’t need subsidies while not saving much water and raising costs.

The Union-Tribune also has a handy map showing where the rebates went throughout Southern California.

Water? You want water, you say? This season’s El Niño may result in more water than we can handle. (Los Angeles Times)

Overall, water use in July was the lowest it has been in San Diego since 1975. (Times of San Diego)

Stadium Scoops

At one point in negotiations, San Diego wanted to consider a downtown stadium project for the Chargers, but the team was all nope nope nope. (NBC 7)

Deadspin delivered some internet vitriol to San Diego Chargers fans as only Deadspin can.

One NFL official agreed to take questions from USA Today about a team moving to L.A. What he (didn’t) say will (not) shock you!

News Nibbles

The San Diego Police found themselves on defensive footing due to a New York Times article critiquing the department’s aggressive use of facial recognition technology on citizens. (Union-Tribune)

A new school year means another discussion about vaccinating kids. In 2016, it becomes required by law. (KPBS)

A long-sought community plan update for Ocean Beach may be nearing the end of its journey. (San Diego 6)

Social Scoops

One pollster stepped up to Twitter to discuss a recent poll that claimed San Diegans would support hundreds of millions in public spending on a new stadium. He took the opportunity to slam a competing poll taken by the NFL which showed sharply different results.

You know the Charger’s point man Mark Fabiani has done his job well when little bat-wielding kids are wailing on his effigy piñata.

Seth Hall is a local writer and technologist. You can ask to wail on his effigy piñata by emailing or by hollering on Twitter: @loteck.

Seth Hall is co-founder of the community group San Diego Privacy, which is a member of the TRUST SD Coalition.

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