The Oakland Ed Week in Review 6/10/23-6/16/23

Welcome back to the Oakland Ed Week in Review, our weekly roundup of education news articles from Oakland and around the state and nation to help you stay up-to-date with what’s going on. This is a Dirk favorite and one of the last blogs he published for Great School Voices. This week, not much happening in Oakland, but interesting stuff from around the state and nation: budget approvals and an averted teachers’ strike among the headlines; and a must-read New York Times opinion piece on how K-12 enrollment is declining across the country and what that means for the future of US education. What did we miss? Hit us up in the comments below. (Photo credit: Getty Images/NBC News)

The State of California

Legislature passes placeholder state budget, continues talks with Gov. Newsom

The Legislature’s budget is $5 billion larger than Newsom’s May revision. The Legislature restored $2 billion Newsom cut in transit capital spending, and added $1 billion in subsidies for mass transit. It also built in $2 billion in expected property taxes, raising the amount for Proposition 98, the formula that determines funding for schools and community colleges, by that amount.

Read the article by John Fensterwald in EdSource

West Contra Costa Unified approves 23-24 budget, with cuts likely down the road

At the school board meeting last week, West Contra Costa Associate Superintendent of Business Services Robert McEntire explained to the board that the district anticipates to spend beyond its projected revenue for the following two fiscal years. Without making cuts, West Contra Costa Unified would exhaust its reserves below the state-mandated minimum, triggering receivership.

Read the article by Ali Tadayon in EdSource

California school district considers policy of outing transgender students to parents

Chino Valley Unified School District staff would be required to out transgender children to their parents or guardians, under a proposal being considered by the school board Thursday. If approved, that policy would put the school district at direct odds with the California Department of Education, which has issued guidance to school districts to protect the privacy of transgender students who may not be out at home.

Read the article by Andrew Sheeler in The Sacramento Bee

LAUSD Board of Education votes to promote safe passage

Currently, the district has 27 safe passage programs that provide routes for students to travel to and from school without feeling their safety is at risk, states the resolution authored by School Board members Tanya Ortiz Franklin, Rocio Rivas and Kelly Gonez. LAUSD has also allocated $30 million over the past two years toward community-based safety programs as part of the Black Student Achievement Plan, but about 90% of that money has not been spent, according to a coalition press release.

Read the article by Mallika Seshardi in EdSource

San Diego Unified teachers avert strike and agree to contract with better pay and benefits
The labor agreement calls for a 10% pay increase, retroactive from when their contract ended last year, in addition to a 5% raise for the next school year, followed by an option to negotiate a future raise for the 2025 school year.
Read the article by Chris Gros of San Diego CBS8

Across The Nation

Soon we won’t have enough kids to fill our schools. That’s a problem.

K-12 public school systems around the country are facing a similar demographic reality. Declining enrollment hit cities like Chicago and states like Michigan before Covid, and the pandemic hit many other school systems — Philadelphia, New York City, Seattle and several districts in the Boston suburbs — like a wrecking ball. As The Times’s Shawn Hubler reported in May, “All together America’s public schools have lost at least 1.2 million students since 2020,” according to a survey from the right-leaning American Enterprise Institute.
Read the opinion piece by Jessica Grose in The New York Times

New Report Flunks Teacher Prep Programs on the Science of Reading
Only 25% of teacher preparation programs cover all the core elements of scientifically based reading instruction, and another quarter don’t cover any adequately, according to a report released Tuesday by the National Council on Teacher Quality.
Read the article by Kate Rix in The74

The child care crisis hurts families, workers and the economy, report shows
The report shows that many parents cannot find childcare that fits their work schedules. In 2020–21, 13% of parents with young children had to quit, change or refuse a job because of child care. Women, it should be noted, are five to eight times more likely than men to experience employment consequences due to caregiving.
Read the article by Karen D’Souza in EdSource

NAACP says it is ‘disappointed’ Biden ended pause on federal student loan payments
“The resolution of the debt ceiling crisis is one we wholeheartedly welcomed and we appreciate all that went into debt ceiling negotiations. However, we are disappointed that the needs of Black communities have suffered from the negotiated agreement that will erode economic progress for Black Americans,” Wisdom Cole, the NAACP’s national director of youth and college, and Derrick Johnson, the group’s president, say in the letter.
Read the article by Daniel Arkin in NBC News

College Board says it won’t edit AP Courses, despite pressure from states
The statement is a response to a recent request from Florida’s department of education for potential edits to AP Psychology, according to the nonprofit. It builds upon the College Board’s stance to educators last year that if state or district policies require that instruction in AP courses be censored, students could lose out on AP credit.
Read the article by Ileana Najarro in Education Week

Behavior vs. books: US students are rowdier than ever post-COVID. How’s a teacher to teach?
Three years after schools across the nation were shuttered because of COVID-19, educators say they are still struggling to teach kids skills they lost out on during remote learning while managing a surge in post-pandemic misbehavior. More than 70% of 1,000 educators said in a recent national survey that students are misbehaving more now than they did before the pandemic in 2019. That’s a slightly larger share than those who said the same in 2021.
Read the article by Kayla Jimenez in USA Today

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