By Gloria Romero
We Californians like to think our state is the national leader in policy change and innovation, that new ideas are born here and other states follow our lead.
In one area, I am sad to say, that is not the case.
California is short-selling too many of its public school students because of education programs that inadequately prepare the next generation of teachers. A new review from the National Council on Teacher Quality that evaluates educational institutions, state by state, produced some sobering results for anyone who cares about what’s going on inside California schools of education.
Viewpoints: Stronger teacher preparation needed to improve schools – Viewpoints – The Sacramento Bee.
The quality of teacher education is falling flat in the United States, according to a new report. Host Michel Martin speaks with Stephanie Banchero of The Wall Street Journal about why some teachers say they’re not well prepared.
New Report Finds Many Teachers Aren’t Ready To Teach : NPR.
from District Dossier blogger Jaclyn Zubrzycki
Yesterday, the Obama administration released the comprehensive emergency guidelines for school districts it had first promised after the school shootings in Newtown, Conn. this winter.
The guidelines were written jointly by the U.S. departments of Education, Homeland Security, Justice, and Health and Human Services, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and contain lessons and suggestions from each. They deal with prevention, protection, mitigation, response, and recovery from technological, human-caused, natural, and biological threats. The document is quite thorough, touching on everything from school design and storm shelters to planning emergency drills to balancing privacy and safety.
White House Releases Detailed Guide on School Crisis Management – Rules for Engagement – Education Week.
By David Ezekiel, research associate, Public Policy Institute of California
This commentary appeared in The Daily Californian on June 17, 2013
When I graduated from UC Berkeley — 2010 — my annual fees were 36 percent higher than they had been in my freshman year. Since then, fees have increased further, due largely to the state’s disinvestment in public higher education. Students will get a reprieve from more increases this year, but they will still pay fees that are quadruple what they were in 1990. Rising costs led more of my fellow students and those who came after to go into debt to pay for college. And increasing student debt has ignited a debate over the question: Is college worth it?
PPIC’s Higher Education RSS Feed.
BY FRIENDS OF THE DIXON MAYFAIR
The Friends of the Dixon May Fair has awarded $12,500 in college scholarships to seven Solano County students seeking careers in an agricultural field.
Jordan Dosker of Vacaville, an animal science major at California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo, is the recipient of the Esther Armstrong Memorial Award Scholarship, totaling $3000. The award memorializes fair industry veteran Ester Armstrong of Rockville, a former director of the California Division of Fairs and Expositions who served as interim CEO of the Dixon May Fair from 2006-2009. She died in May 2009 of cancer.
Friends of the Fair Awards $12,500 in College Scholarships for Ag Majors – Top News – Dixon, CA Patch.
By Linda Darling-Hammond / commentary
This week, the National Council on Teacher Quality (NCTQ) issued a report, NCTQ Teacher Prep Review. Billed as a consumer’s guide, the report rates teacher preparation programs on a list of criteria ranging from selection and content preparation to coursework and student teaching aimed at the development of teaching skills. While the report appropriately focuses on these aspects of teacher education, it does not, unfortunately, accurately reflect the work of teacher education programs in California or nationally.
National Council on Teacher Quality report is deeply flawed | EdSource Today.
By Jane Meredith Adams and Kathryn Baron
California’s teacher training programs were excoriated as among the worst in a nation of poor-quality programs in a report released Tuesday, immediately sparking a debate about the validity of the report’s methodology and findings.
Nearly every teacher preparation program in California, at both public and private colleges and universities, received poor ratings in the report, which was issued by the National Council on Teacher Quality, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit. The report was published as a new educational rating category by U.S. News & World Report, which publishes widely followed rating lists whose methodologies have been criticized by some educators.
Critical report on teacher preparation programs sparks debate | EdSource Today.
The U.S. spends more than $7 billion a year preparing classroom teachers, but teachers are not coming out of the nation’s colleges of education ready, according to a by U.S.News & World Report and the National Council on Teacher Quality.
The study says most schools of education are in disarray.
“Right now, much of higher ed believes that it’s not their job to have a teacher be ready for the classroom on Day 1,” says Kate Walsh, president of the National Council on Teacher Quality.
Study: Teacher Prep Programs Get Failing Marks : NPR.
The Obama administration’s Race to the Top would be history, there would be no federal role in school improvement, and the number of education programs would be significantly curtailed under a bill reauthorizing the No Child Left Behind Act slated for consideration by the House education committee this week.
But for some conservatives that may go far enough.
Could Conservative Criticism Create Hurdles for NCLB Renewal? – Politics K-12 – Education Week.
VACAVILLE — The Vaca Valley Tea Party will host Orlean Koehle, president of CA Eagle Forum, at the group’s next event.
The group meets from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday at Pietro’s No. 2, 679 Merchant St.
Tea party group to examine Common Core standards Daily Republic.
SACRAMENTO—With the state budget setting aside $1.25 billion to implement new standards in California’s public schools, State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson kicked off California’s Common Core Summer with a daylong seminar to help teachers instill deeper learning of mathematics in their students.
“For teachers, this is California’s Common Core Summer. They’ve just finished their own school year, but they’re already back in class—because they see the opportunity Common Core presents to prepare students for a successful future,” Torlakson said. “They’re setting aside the one-size-fits all curriculum, recycling the ‘drill and kill’ worksheets, and dumping the multiple choice ‘bubble tests’—replacing them with Common Core mathematics, which focuses on a few key areas at each grade level so students learn the skills they really need, step by step.”
Common Core Summer Showcase – Year 2013 CA Dept of Education.
FAIRFIELD — The Solano Community College governing board will hear an update on the current academic affairs reorganization.
A couple of years ago, the college consolidated its divisions from six down to four “schools” to save money. The college is now looking to expand again because of savings in learning-management-system costs.
Solano College to hear update on academic affairs reorganization Daily Republic.
The Vallejo school board will hold a public hearing Wednesday before considering next year’s budget.
As outlined at an earlier meeting this month, the 2013-2014 budget is one of the most stable the Vallejo City Unified School District has seen in years.
Unlike previous budgets, the one under consideration does not include multi-million dollar cuts. Though dozens of positions had been issued preliminary layoff notices in March, only four full-time certificated jobs will be cut under the current budget proposal.
Vallejo school board considers historic budget – Vallejo Times Herald.
Vacaville Unified School District leaders, after quickly opening and then closing a public hearing because no one spoke, approved proposed uses of categorical funding during a regularly scheduled board meeting on Thursday.
Categorical funding is state and federal money set aside for specific subgroups (English tutoring, school safety and violence prevention, adult education, for example) or to support goals like career education. Specifically, the board approved Tier III funds totaling $5.3 million for fiscal year 2013-14.
VUSD OKs spending of funds – The Reporter.
Well, forwardish. There’s going to be a lot more action in Congress this year than we’ve seen at any time since way back in 2001, when the No Child Left Behind Act passed and George W. Bush was president and “Friends” was the hottest sitcom and no one was tweeting NCLB markups because Twitter wouldn’t be invented for five more years.
Of course, all this action action probably won’t result in a brand new version of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act this year, but it will set the stage for whatever comes next.
Five Questions as NCLB Reauthorization Moves Forward – Politics K-12 – Education Week.
By Kathryn Baron
Celebrate might be too strong a word, but, in the current fiscal context, community colleges have reason to at least raise a small glass as they head into summer.
The budget bill passed Friday by the Legislature brings the budget for the 112 community colleges up to $6 billion for the 2013-14 fiscal year. That’s up by more than $200 million over this year, and begins the process of restoring the $809 million hit community college have taken during the past three years.
State budget puts community colleges on (slow) path to recovery | EdSource Today.
By Lillian Mongeau
Early childhood education advocates are working to make it clear that not everyone supporting President Barack Obama’s proposal to vastly expand federal funding for preschool and infant and toddler care is a tax-and-spend liberal.
“This has become a bipartisan issue in the real world,” U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said recently in a sound bite that has become standard language in his stump speech for the president’s proposal to invest $75 billion over the next decade for states wishing to create or expand public preschool for 4-year-olds and early care for infants and toddlers.
Business, military signal strong support for public preschool, but Republican lawmakers unswayed | EdSource Today.
By John Osborn
The Legislature on Friday passed a $96.3 billion budget plan for the state that includes a shift in how California funds schools and contains significant funding for education. Gov. Jerry Brown must sign the budget before the start of the fiscal year on July 1.
Click through our interactive graphics for budget highlights.
Scroll over graphs for additional information.
Interactive graphic of state budget highlights for education | EdSource Today.
By Eric Premack / commentary
The current Local Control Funding Formula (LCFF) legislation pending before the Legislature utterly fails to reach any of the key reform goals that Gov. Jerry Brown and his advisers articulated. The bill presents the Legislature and governor with a stark choice.
The key goals of LCFF, as articulated by the governor’s astute adviser Mike Kirst and his colleagues in a seminal paper, were as follows:
LCFF lemmings poised to leap? | EdSource Today.