By Christina Samuels
A study of more than 10,000 Norwegian children found a connection between gender and delayed language development, with boys at greater risk of delays than girls.
The study also found that reading and writing difficulties in other family members were associated with delayed language development in children.
The study was published online by the International Journal of Language and Communication Disorders. The information was gathered on questionnaires filled out by mothers about their children, starting in their 17th week of gestation up through age 5.
via Gender Plays Role in Delayed Language Development, Study Says – On Special Education – Education Week.
By Richard Bammer
A key component of Gov. Jerry Brown’s Local Control Funding Formula, state school districts’ Local Control Accountability Plans detail what educators, governing boards and teachers must do to educate students and how they are going to measure results.
LCAP, as it is called for short, will be the subject of a special meeting of Vacaville Unified leaders when they meet Monday in Vacaville.
In previous interviews, Superintendent Ken Jacopetti described the historic change in school funding and LCAP as “a new journey for a lot of school districts.”
via Vaca school leaders to hold special meeting – The Reporter.
By Doug Ford
After he was sworn in as Superintendent of Public Instruction in January 2011, Tom Torlakson “convened a 59-member Transition Advisory Team including parents, teachers, classified staff, administrators, superintendents, school board members, business and union leaders, higher education and nonprofit representatives.” He charged the team with what amounts to the development of a strategic plan for education in California in a time of momentous change.
The team met as a whole three times and its members “participated in one of eight policy-working teams focused upon particular issues.” Their report was made available on the California Department of Education website as “A Blueprint for Great Schools.”
via Doug Ford: Blueprints for better schools – The Reporter.
Brianna Boyd, Editor
Following several months of meetings and discussions, the Dixon Teachers Association has reached a tentative agreement with Dixon Unified School District on its 2013-14 contract.
Amy Circo, the co-president of the teachers association, said Tuesday that 98 percent of its members participated in an official vote on the new contract last week and an “overwhelming majority” approved it. Dixon Unified’s board of trustees is expected to give final approval at its next meeting. Bargaining teams from the Dixon Teachers Association and Dixon Unified School District have been meeting every other week since December to discuss the contract and iron out details.
Key points of this new contract include a 2.5 percent ongoing raise that is retroactive from the beginning of this school year. The raise will continue annually and will also be incorporated into the contracts for the district’s classified staff and administrators.
via Dixon Unified and DTA approve new… – The Dixon Tribune | Facebook.
By Barry Eberling
What will be the next chapter of Gomer School’s long history in Suisun Valley remains a mystery.
The Solano County Board of Education voted in September 2012 to declare the property at 4522 Abernathy Road as surplus. County Office of Education staff was to investigate how it might be sold or leased.
Since then, discussions about the 113-year-old, one-room schoolhouse have moved out of the public arena. State law allows the county Board of Education to discuss property negotiations in closed session. Agendas show the board has done so several times.
via Gomer School has yet to find buyer Daily Republic.
By Barry Eberling
The Solano County Office of Education is honoring its employees of the year.
It selected Cory Smith as its Certificated Employee of the Year. Smith is a special education preschool teacher at Silveyville Primary School site in the Dixon School District. She has worked for the Office of Education since 1993.
“Cory was born to teach special education,” supervisor Lead Principal Penee Hughes wrote in a nomination letter.
Kira Levin, school secretary for the Special Education Department at Golden Hills Educational Center, is the Classified Employee of the Year.
via Office of Education shines spotlight on employees Daily Republic.
By Ian Thompson
Their stories of challenge and achievement got Vacaville High School student David Quintero and Buckingham High School student Jacqueline Holbert named the 2014 Vacaville Boys and Girls Club Youths of the Year on Thursday.
They were two of four candidates who vied for the honor to represent Vacaville at the state competition in April for the California Boys and Girls Club Youth of the Year.
Quintero and Holbert, as well as fellow competitors Julian Howard of Will C. Wood High School and Dominique Hyson of Country High School, were lauded by the four judges for how they have improved their lives through the Boys and Girls Club’s teen programs.
via Boys and Girls Club names Youths of the Year Daily Republic.
By Jessica A. York
The Vallejo School district launched its first step in budgeting planning for next school year on Wednesday, even as plans for some $4 million in new state funding entered their second stage.
Vallejo City Unified School District Superintendent Ramona Bishop updated the school board on her office’s outreach to various focus groups — ranging from students and parents to teacher and management — to create the first Local Control Accountability Plan.
Under Gov. Jerry Brown’s January spending plan, Vallejo’s schools could see a $10 million budget increase. A large percentage of that would be locked in for programs supporting low-income students, English language learners and foster students, and%
via Vallejo school board begins new budgeting process – Vallejo Times Herald.
By Richard Bammer
Nearly 90 percent of Vacaville Unified 10th-graders, which includes some English learners, passed the California High School Exit Examination last year, school district officials reported.
At the governing board meeting late last week, Jane Luick, an English learner program specialist, told trustees that 89 percent of all sophomores in three district high schools passed the exam, CAHSEE for short, in 2013. The same number passed in 2012, and 85 percent passed in 2011, she said, with members of the district’s English Learners Advisory Committee, or DELAC, standing at her side in the Educational Services Center.
via Most Vacaville students pass exit exam – The Reporter.
By Richard Bammer
Joining the ranks of neighboring Solano County school districts, Travis Unified leaders voted to consolidate future governing board elections to even-numbered years, saving the district a sizable amount of cash.
On a 4-1 vote, with trustee Angela Weinzinger dissenting, the board last week agreed to the change, effective 2016, thus extending every board member’s term by one year.
The five-member board made its decision after a presentation by an official from the county Registrar of Voters, noting savings in excess of $200,000 per election if trustees approved the change.
“It was dumbfounded,” recently elected trustee Riitta De Anda said Wednesday of the estimated election costs that would be incurred every two years without the change.
via Travis Unified consolidates elections – The Reporter.
By Barry Eberling
First 5 Solano is seeking businesses that will donate at least $200 each to send children who have never attended preschool to pre-kindergarten academies.
Each tax-deductible $200 donation is matched by First 5 Solano to fund one seat in the summer preschool program. Last year, 35 businesses raised $13,500, with some donating as much as $1,000 to sponsor five children, a First 5 Solano press release said.
via First 5 seeks business to sponsor pre-kindergarten academies Daily Republic.
By Barry Eberling
Children from kindergarten through high school who live in Fairfield and Suisun City and on Travis Air Force Base are invited to participate in an Earth Day poster contest.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle is the theme of the contest sponsored by Solano Garbage Co. and parent company Republic Services. Posters can be created using paint, crayons, color pencils or color markers. No computer-generated artwork or three-dimensional artwork will be accepted.
via Students can enter Earth Day contest Daily Republic.
by Keri Luiz
Superintendent Janice Adams and Chief Business Official Tim Rahill will request today that Benicia Unified School District trustees approve a resolution to put a $50 million bond on the June 3 ballot.
A five-year assessment was approved by the board in November that outlined the repairs and improvements needed for the district’s locations.
At its meeting Feb. 6, the school board heard a report from adviser Jon Isom, who outlined four areas of need in the district:
• Modernization and technology needs: $24 million
• Health, safety and security improvement needs: $13 million
via To bond or not to bond? School board to decide on $50M ballot measure.
By Tom Loveless
Do we know how to improve teaching? I don’t mean tinkering around the edges—making a particular history lesson better or getting an individual teacher to alter his or her instructional strategies—but a lasting, substantive change, one that reshapes the profession. Do we know how to transform bad teachers into adequate teachers? Can we take teachers who are merely adequate and make them good—even outstanding?
Those questions are especially relevant right now. The burden of answering them affirmatively falls on professional development (PD). All levels of government spend a huge amount of money on teachers’ professional development; it’s a mainstay of federal education policy. Expenditures on Title II of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (The Eisenhower Program), mostly devoted to PD, are budgeted at about $2.3 billion in 2014. More than $450 million of i3 grant money spent from 2010-2012 went to PD. Advocates of school reforms that affect teaching and learning inevitably rely on PD to implement their preferred changes. The prominent contemporary example is the Common Core. Advocates of the Common Core are counting on PD to equip teachers with the instructional capacity to actualize the standards.
via What Do We Know About Professional Development? : Education Next.
Jay Speck, Solano County Superintendent of Schools, is pleased to announce the names of the Solano County Office of Education’s (SCOE) 2014-15 classified and certificated educators of the year.
Cory Smith has been selected as SCOE’s Certificated Employee of the Year. She is a Special Education Preschool Teacher at the Silveyville Primary School site in the Dixon Unified School District. She began her career with SCOE in 1993, and, according to her supervisor Lead Principal Penee Hughes, “Cory was born to teach special education.” In her nomination letter, Penee describes Cory as a very caring individual who adores children and enjoys using her time and talents to assist students by making learning fun and interactive, help families in need, and support her colleagues in developing effective teaching strategies and materials.
via COUNTY SUPERINTENDENT OF SCHOOLS JAY… – Solano County Office of Education | Facebook.
Brianna Boyd, Editor
Dixon Unified’s board of trustees unanimously voted to move forward Thursday with a resolution that moves board elections to even-numbered years, which in turn extends the terms of all current trustees by one year.
Moving school board elections from odd-numbered years to even-numbered years – so it falls during a consolidated election – will not only save the school district money but could increase voter participation, said Superintendent Brian Dolan. Last spring, many school districts in the region approved similar resolutions, Dolan added, including most in Solano County.
“Our board decided not to because there was so little time for any kind of public input or consideration,” Dolan explained. “Last summer, before the filing period began, we looked at this again but county counsel’s interpretation of the law was that it wasn’t possible for the board to act on it at that time because it has to be the sitting board that would have their terms extended that approves this.”
via Dixon Unified changing its election… – The Dixon Tribune | Facebook.
By Thomas Elias
Gov. Jerry Brown and a lot of public school officials are just now rediscovering how right the 18th century Scottish poet Robert Burns was when he observed, “The best laid plans of mice and men oft’ go astray.”
The latest example in California is the new public school funding formula Brown aggressively pushed last year, one giving a greater portion of new money raised via the 2012 Proposition 30 tax increases to schools with the highest percentages of English-learner students, foster children and children from poverty-ridden homes.
Essentially, Brown wants to finish the job begun in 1971 by the Serrano v. Priest decision of the state Supreme Court, which directs most funds from newly approved property tax levies to the poorest districts.
via Some new school funding plans go awry Daily Republic.
By Mike Corpos
The Solano Community College governing board is scheduled to vote Wednesday on a proposal to redefine the duties of the athletic director after the reorganization of the School of Human Performance.
The new job description is part of a larger, ongoing process in which a number of departments have been reorganized.
Staff reports define the position: The athletic director shall be directly responsible to the chief student services officer. The athletic director is responsible for providing the overall leadership and management of the intercollegiate athletics program and compliance of the Title IX within the laws, policies, procedures and guidelines established by Solano College, the Bay Valley Conference, the California Commission on Athletics, the California Community College Athletic Trainers and the National Collegiate Athletic Association.
via Solano College positions to redefine athletic director position Daily Republic.
By Times-Herald Staff
A 15-year-old male student reportedly seen walking with a gun near Vallejo High School was arrested shortly about 8:20 a.m.. Tuesday, police said.
The gun was reportedly a pellet gun which is identical to a real handgun both in size, weight and appearance, Vallejo Police Lt. Kenny Park indicated in an e-mail to the Times-Herald.
via Male teen, 15, arrested near VHS on suspicion of possessing a pellet gun – Vallejo Times Herald.
KATHI HILL JOINS SOLANO COUNTY BOARD OF EDUCATION Jay Speck, Solano County Superintendent of Schools, and the members of the Solano County Board of Education are pleased to announce the provisional appointment of Katherine Hill to fill the Board vacancy representing Trustee Area 7.
via Timeline Photos – Solano County Office of Education | Facebook.