California Watch: K–12: New environmental curriculum corrects plastic bag information

Susanne Rust

The state’s Environmental Protection Agency finalized a revision of a controversial K-12 environmental curriculum on plastic bags Friday.

California Watch reported last year that whole sections of an 11th-grade teachers’ edition guide for a new curriculum had been lifted almost verbatim from comments and suggestions submitted by the American Chemistry Council, the chemical and plastics industry trade group.

That investigation spurred politicians and state regulators to demand an examination into how the controversial text was compiled and changed, and whether industry bias was present.

via New environmental curriculum corrects plastic bag information.

Virtual Strategy Magazine: More California Students Back on Track for Graduation as the Vallejo City Unified School District Adult School Implements Rigorous, Engaging Online Learning Curriculum

Like many cities across the country, Vallejo, California, is challenged by financial strains. Yet over the past several months, the Vallejo City Unified School District Adult School has found a new way to keep significantly more of its at-risk high school students on track toward graduation, despite limited resources.

Since March 2012, when Vallejo City Unified School District Adult School implemented a new online learning curriculum, Aventa Learning® by K12, nearly 200 students have recovered more than 900 high school credits enabling them to either graduate or get back on the path toward graduation. This is a 25% increase over the number of students who attempted to recover credits in the spring and summer semesters of 2011, when classes were offered in the traditional classroom setting, or through a state-supplied software program.

via More California Students Back on Track for Graduation as the ….

Sacramento Bee Editorial: State leaders must meld on K-12 standards

This year may finally be the time to get a major overhaul in education – simpler, fairer, more flexible and accountable.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/2012/04/23/4433991/state-leaders-must-meld-on-k-12.html#mi_rss=Editorials#storylink=cpy

via Editorial: State leaders must meld on K-12 standards.

The Educated Guess: STEMing the minority gap

By John Fensterwald – Educated Guess

The gap starts early in elementary school, widens in middle school, and continues, through filters and barriers, on a trajectory of low achievement and missed opportunities. By the end of college, the number of Latinos and African Americans who graduate with degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math is a trickle: an estimated 1,688 from the University of California and California State University in 2008.

via STEMing the minority gap – by John Fensterwald – Educated Guess.

The Educated Guess: U.S. in and out of step with top ed systems

By Kathryn Baron

Andreas Schleicher looks the part of a diplomat.  Tall and slim, with thick gray hair, and impeccable English spoken with a European accent.  He is also the consummate diplomat when it comes to assessing the United State’s standing in education.  In most countries, low results on the Programme for International Student Assessment, known as the PISA exam, led to contemplation and action.  In the United States, not so much; at least not initially.

via U.S. in and out of step with top ed systems – by Kathryn Baron.

The Reporter: Jay Speck – Education: Trapped in the past

By Jay Speck

I recently participated in the Grad Nation Summit in Washington, D.C., where community members, legislators, parents, educators and business leaders from across the country gathered to develop and share strategies to address the staggering high school dropout problem.

via Education: Trapped in the past.

Benicia Patch: A New Set of School Standards Taking Hold in Benicia Schools

If the reaction of kids and teachers is any indication the new Common Core State Standards adopted late last year by Benicia Unified School District will be a boon to students and educators throughout the district.

via A New Set of School Standards Taking Hold in Benicia Schools.

Benicia Herald: BUSD prepares for Common Core standards

By Keri Luiz, Assistant Editor

Benicia Unified School District teachers are gearing up for the transition to a set of statewide standards in English and math.

California adopted the Common Core State Standards, or CCSS, in 2010, and districts statewide were given until the 2014-15 school year to adopt the program.

via BUSD prepares for Common Core standards.

Vallejo Times Herald: Vallejo school officials extend an invitation to parent forum


Vallejo City Unified School District officials hope a parent forum next month will clear up some mysteries.”I was getting lots of questions from our parents about our goals — questions like, ‘What are the A-G requirements?’ and ‘How can I help my child do better on the STAR (Standardized Testing and Reporting) tests that are coming?’ ” Superintendent Ramona Bishop said.

via Vallejo school officials extend an invitation to parent forum.

EdSource Extra!: Steinberg introduces new proposal for reforming school rating system

By Louis Freedberg ~ EdSource Extra

After his last legislative effort on the subject was brusquely rejected by Governor Jerry Brown, Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento, is making another effort to reform California’s dozen-year-old method of ranking its public schools.

via Steinberg introduces new proposal for reforming school rating system.

Benicia Herald: Curriculum changes on agenda for trustees

By Keri Luiz, Assistant Editor

The new Career Tech Education Committee and changes to district curriculum will be topics of discussion Thursday night at the regular meeting of the Benicia Unified School District Board of Trustees.

In December, two trustees, André Stewart and Dana Dean, were added to the new committee, and on Thursday the board will discuss the panel’s structure, size and make-up, as well as its goals.

via Curriculum changes on agenda for trustees.

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